Bill's is an easy choice when it comes to going out for breakfast. When my sister Blythe comes to visit, she always insist on a visit to a Bill's, her desire partly fueled by Bill Granger's reputation in London. Since her last visit, there has been a new addition to the Bill's empire, a new location in Woollahra.
I've been to all three locations and out of the three, Woollahra is my favourite, not just for the gorgeous nearby boutiques to visit pre and post breakfast. Housed in the courtyard in Queens Court, it offers al fresco umbrella shaded tables or an indoor section. The courtyard, set back from busy, leafy Queen Street means that its a lovely respite from the hustle and bustle of the traffic. Sydney's weather is putting on a good show so its outdoors, in front of the nearby bookshop that we sit. We feel that we must order the dishes for which Bill is famous. Blythe orders his toasted coconut bread ($5.80) and Ricotta hotcakes with honeycomb butter ($16.60). Rose orders organic scrambled eggs and toast ($12.80) with extras of Avocado ($3.90), bacon ($4.50), chicken chipolatas ($5.00) and mushrooms (for me $3.80). I order the grilled chicken salad with pistachios, pink grapefruit and sumac yogurt ($22.50).
Its scarcely 5 minutes before our food arrives, a minor miracle given how busy it is but for which we are grateful as the sight of the food at other tables makes us even hungrier. My grilled chicken salad arrives hidden under a bough of continental parsley, rocket and thinly sliced fennel with smashed pistachios sprinkled on top and a dollop of sumac yogurt which resembles blueberry yogurt. Overall its a rather bitter salad with the pink grapefruit, fennel and yogurt which some may not mind, but the chicken is char grilled and moist still. The much needed yogurt is a piquant complement to the salad leaves and when I help myself to the mushrooms that Rose has ordered for me, its perfect. It needs that bit of juicy moisture as it is a touch dry without it.
We try some of Rose's scrambled eggs and extras, she's particularly impressed with the creamy scrambled eggs and buttery toast. The bacon is a perfect texture, not too crispy and the nicely done chipolatas are tasty fat little fingers of chicken. For $30 including the trimmings, its not the cheapest eggs you can get but its certainly the best that money can buy.
Blythe's toasted coconut bread is crispy, buttery and full of juicy shredded coconut. I've made Bill's coconut bread before and I add raspberries and white chocolate to it and serve it untoasted with butter for afternoon or morning tea. If dessicated coconut is used instead of shredded, it becomes more like an afternoon tea cake and more delicate.
She is more impressed with the Ricotta hotcakes, a dish she always orders when she visits Sydney. They've changed over the years, I remember when we used to get a disc of the honeycomb butter on top of the hotcakes. This time, the honeycomb butter is puddled at the bottom along with the caramelised banana. The hotcakes themselves are fluffy and as good as they always are and as the ritual goes, we try and try to finish them but despite our tastebuds telling us that we can't, our stomachs tell us that we can't. Forks down, we steady ourselves for some shopping.
118 Queen St
Woollahra Sydney 2025
10% surcharge on weekends
Ph: +61 (02) 9328 7997
Also locations at Darlinghurst and Surry Hills