Out for a duck

Three years on, I don’t miss much about living with my husband, other than the kids having their parents under one roof and him putting the garbage bins out.

But I felt a nostalgic twinge yesterday when I heard MKR’s Manu Feildel was launching a pop-up duck restaurant in Surry Hills.

My ex helped the kids buy the latest Manu cookbook for my birthday. If we were still together we’d be madly planning a date to visit the pop-up.

My fingers reflexively twitched to text and share the joy of the pop-up … but my brain and heart weren’t so keen. They reckon eating lasagna on a stick together at the Royal Easter Show this weekend will be quite enough “quality” time, thank you very much.

I’m putting the urge down to memories of meals we shared in happier times. I fondly recall post-work visits to a funky little Italian place in Surry Hills for gnocchi gorgonzola; amazing meals on wine holidays in South Australia, including scallops in butter and soy at Bridgewater Mill and octopus hotpot at Stephanie Alexander’s lakeside restaurant in the Barossa Valley; and a glorious lunch beside the river during Fins infancy, marvelling over the Portuguese seafood stew.

We eagerly awaited the release of each year’s Good Food Guide so we could plan visits to the destinations that excited us most.

Each Christmas, my sister would give us a joint gift voucher for the latest “it” restaurant to satisfy our hunger for new flavours.

Towards the end of our marriage, those dinners became strained, unhappy affairs. I remember sitting across from my husband and struggling to find anything to say to him.

But, in our better days, dining out was one of our favourite treats.

I rarely eat in fancy restaurants these days and I don’t miss it all that much. It feels too foreign and extravagant. But the thought of trying Manu’s duck eatery does sound like fun.

Duck In Duck Out opens today in the courtyard next to the Surry Hills Hotel. It only sells ducky stuff. I love ducky stuff. Roast duck and chilli crab are my two favourite “exotic” indulgences, but DD doesn’t like duck or crab much, he’s more of a steak man.

Duck In Duck Out turns duck confit into burgers, hot dogs, bao buns and duck fat chips. Phwoar!

I’ll have to find a duck-loving friend to join me there – any takers?

Song of the day: Nelly Furtado “I’m like a bird”

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