Twice a year the Carriageworks precinct hosts a night market with stands curated by chef Kylie Kwong. This last week saw the summer version of the Carriageworks market. Come and take a peek at what went on!
I have to admit for the first five to ten minutes after Ivy and I arrived at the Carriageworks night markets, I wanted to flee. There were just so many people and it was just so large and I got a bit of situational anxiety. But once Ivy and I did a lay of the land I calmed down.
The night market is enormous-there's an outdoor undercover section as well as an indoor section and an art installation by artist Nick Cave (not the musician). The event sold out the day before it was held and tickets were $10 plus booking fee which gets you entry. All food and drinks are paid for and there aren't any samples but food prices are reasonable. Vendors take either cash or card.
Unlike the day market, the night market is not dog friendly, mainly because they serve alcohol (you know how dogs love to drink ;) ).
We've arrived during prime dinner time and we've walked around a few places. There's a long list of Sydney's restaurants but there are a small handful I haven't been to so we hone in on those.
We start off with a drink. Ivy really likes Seedlip, a non alcoholic distilled beverage and she goes for a Tarragon and Okra spritz made with the Seedlip garden (there are three kinds and that's the only one she likes), seasonal shrub and soda. I take a sip and I have to admit I wasn't a fan at first but when it gets to the end it's quite nice. I ask her what the difference would be and she guesses that they weren't very generous with the pour.
The next stop is for a Bretzel with Pepe Saya butter. We chose this because it would be a good walking snack while we queued up for other things. The queueing is a bit confusing at the stand but we aren't waiting long.
The pretzel and butter is absolutely delicious. The pretzel is soft and fresh and the cultured butter so creamy with a hint of tang.
Pretzel in hand we walk outside where it's a bit cooler and join the queue for Four Brave Women. It's a group of four refugees from Russian, The Ukraine, Iraq and Syria who have an eatery in Summer Hill. You can order a plate from each country or a Festival Feast platter for $15 that has a bit of everything which we try. The food is pleasant but quite mild in flavour.
We eat this food while joining what has to be the longest queue of the whole festival. Ivy darts away for a few minutes to buy some bugs from the Edible Bug Shop. She comes back with a small box of mixed bugs for $15. I try one and they're inoffensive and like a dry chip and very lightly seasoned.
But back to our queue. Mirritya Mundya serves indigenous cuisine with a twist. And they've got beef brisket, pork and kangaroo smoking away.
By the time we reach near the front of the queue the brisket and pork have sold out and by the time we get to the front of the queue we're one of the lucky last to get the cinnamon myrtle spiced kangaroo.
Ivy is a fan of kangaroo and this one is nicely smoky and quite tender for kangaroo that has been cooked through. The smokiness also takes away that gamey aroma. There's also a lemon myrtle coleslaw and Warrigal green potato salad as well as a spicy barbecue sauce.
We go back to the undercover area to join the Lillah Express queue that has the longest queue (my motto: have longest queue, will join). There are three types of hummus bowls and we go for the one with oxtail and bone marrow. It takes a while but it's worth the wait.
The bone marrow and beef is meltingly soft and the hummus creamy and strong with a hint of bitterness. There are also pickles, herbs and chickpeas. We love that the soft flatbread is served warm and brushed with oil.
During the market there are demonstrations and these are popular. You just need to queue early or be tall ;) Another tip for the market is to bring your own water bottle. There are water filling stations for you to use and they use a lot of recyclable packaging and serving plates.
I got a bit thirsty towards the end so we stop by Jacoby's Tiki Bar for a pina colada which hits the spot and watch the Cafe of the Gate of Salvation gospel choir singing.
One good thing about this market is that there is a good amount of tables and chairs so eating is easy and you don't have to fight for a table or stand to eat which can happen at some markets.
There isn't a lot of dessert available-two gelato places are about it and by that time everyone seems to have joined these queues so we take a peek at the art exhibition.
His exhibition is called "Until" and was sparked by the question "Is there racism in heaven?" and the Rodney King beating and subsequent riots. We climb one of three sets of stairs up the "Crystal Cloudscape" and take a peek at the oddments. It's like a slightly odd Santa sleigh crossed with a chandelier. I whisper to the security person, "What are we looking at?". She explains that some of the items up there are tokens of racism. Then we go on to walk through the Kinetic Spinner Forest made up of 1,800 of spinning metallic ornaments before calling it a night.
So tell me Dear Reader, do you like night markets? Do you have a favourite night market? Or find events with lots of people overwhelming?
All food and drink in this post were independently paid for
Carriageworks Night Market
245 Wilson St, Eveleigh NSW 2015