BY EDWINA STORIE

Everyone can have a nice meal but an exclusive, private dinner or lunch can’t be matched, nor forgotten.

Rosetta Ristorante – Crown Towers Melbourne

Everything the famous chef Neil Perry touches turns to gold. And with good reason. He knows the perfect formula for simple but flavour-rich food and stylish design. And this makes his meals the most luxurious of experiences to be savoured in the best company and privacy. Rosetta’s marble-lined private dining room that lays beyond the theatrical chandeliers and red velvet chairs of the restaurant can seat 16 to 20 guests. Perry travels the world for his culinary inspiration, and Rosetta stemmed from the regional recipes he found and created while exploring Italy’s coastlines and inlands. From the wood-fired oven comes thick steak – a Neil Perry signature; from the char-grill comes crisp-tipped baby octopus or smoky fish fillets slicked in olive oil, garlic and lemon; and from the dedicated pasta-making room downstairs comes fettuccine tangled with lobster, mint and chilli. With such flavourful food, Rosetta is designed for indulging in long lunches, late afternoon antipasto, and impressive business dinners.

For more information go online to www.rosettaristorante.com.

Gowings Bar & Grill, QT Sydney

The moody Gowings Bar & Grill is the newest addition to a long history for the old Gowings building. Having been the Gowings flagship store for nearly 90 years, the QT Hotel brand saved it, transforming it into the city’s first design-driven hotel which reflects Sydney’s after-dark character and mystery. Entering the restaurant through QT Hotel is a journey in itself as you notice signs of the structure’s previous life in gargoyles and vintage tiling. Find your way up industrial-style cement stairs, past the bar aglow with a halo of liquor bottles, and into the plush golden hues of the private dining room with its mixed and matched wall of mirrors. There’s nostalgia running through the menu and décor of the gentleman-style, European brasserie. The room’s low leather arm chairs are made for lounging while enjoying classics that have been given an elaborate touch such as the humble schnitzel served as golden-crusted veal tenderloin crowned with an organic fried egg, Ortiz anchovies and nut brown butter. With its brawny, spirit-strong cocktails and dramatic dishes, Gowings Bar & Grill embodies Sydney’s classic corporate luxury.

View the menu on the website www.qtsydney.com.au.

The Source – MONA

The Museum of Old and New Art is carved into the depths of Tasmania’s Derwent River and filled with thought-provoking pieces that make you contemplate your morality and question the cultural foundations of society. And what interesting dinner conversation topics those are. MONA’s French restaurant The Source is “a bubble above the hubbub of humanity below” – intriguing, yes? It looks out onto the waters and landscapes of Tasmania in all its natural glory. Guests can enjoy the view exclusively for a private dinner, or eat amid the artworks of the gallery, dine in the depths of the Tasting Room, or mingle in the haunting hues of the Organ Room. With all of Tasmania’s surrounding local produce, not to mention the brewery and winery on site, it’s a given that the food is regionally driven. The talents of Michelin-trained chef Philippe Leban serve up a contemporary French menu with a seafood focus. Book a private dinner at MONA and be sure to bring up all the topics social etiquette prevents you from discussing – politics, religion and sex.

Book an event and then a personal cultural escape on www.mona.net.au.

O Bar and Dining

Indulging in world-class food needs a view to match, and the 360 degree perspective from O Bar & Dining is one that can’t be experienced anywhere else in the world. Perched 47 floors above the Sydney CBD, the bar and restaurant revolve in a cosmopolitan pocket amid the clouds with plush chairs, low leather lounges and a golden glow. The private dining room, Salon Privé is an exclusive space lined with silver leaf, glowing wall panels and gold mohair accents. Forty-five people can mingle cocktail-style or 28 can dine in the room where every seat is the best in the house, especially as the Opera House and Harbour Bridge meander by. Highly respected chef and owner Michael Moore’s healthy eating philosophy from his bestselling book Blood Sugar, gives the menu a fresh take on fine dining. Lead ingredients such as pasture-fed dry aged beef, rare breed pork or Ike-Jime spiked fish are all accentuated by the day’s market vegetables. While functions in Salon Privé are intimate affairs, the varied spaces of the venue and vast circular room allow enormous flexibility in numbers and style accommodating up to 400 stand up or 250 sit down.

For more information visit www.obardining.com.au.

Marble Bar

Tucked underneath Hilton Sydney like a hidden bunker, the heritage-listed Marble Bar is an age-old drinking den originally built in 1893. It’s made up of 35 different varieties of marble from around the world, decked out with a gallery of Australian art worth $1.6 million, and lit up in gold at night. While city slickers are fickle over ‘industrial this’ or ‘retro that’, and trends come and go, vintage style never goes out of fashion, and the classic Marble Bar will forever stand the test of time. Everyone is said to have had ‘a Marble Bar moment’ and such a memorable night can be created with a private dinner held within its secluded walls. The room can be set with a long dining table running down its centre so guests dine below the dramatic arched glass ceiling. Being set underground and lined in rock, it has brilliant acoustics so jazz bands make a perfect accompaniment to dinner. Executive chef Carl Middleton uses his culinary talents to design special menus with clients to ensure every guest leaves with a Marble Bar moment.

Peruse the cocktail menu on www.marblebarsydney.com.au.

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