Smudge Eats: Raven's Eye

[Originally published on Smudge Eats, October 2015]

Profile: Raven's Eye, Sydney

- by Camilla Sampson

Italo-American bites, good music, and one of Newtown’s best kept secrets puts Raven’s Eye on the map for Newtown foodies.

Combine Italo-American inspiration with a local’s atmosphere and you’ve got Raven’s Eye. It’s fresh on the Newtown scene and takes its name from the hangout in the popular 90s mafia film, Donnie Brasco. The venue’s look is all exposed brick and industrialism juxtaposed with soft lighting, candles and service with a smile.

Simon McGoram is joined by Edward De Souza and Joshua Franco in bringing Raven’s Eye to life. They make up the IDLE group, and have 40 years combined industry experience between them. The place is co-owned by Anthony Hughes, an acclaimed singer songwriter, and Keith Hodgson, the owner of Bondi Radio. Anthony and Keith’s involvement in the venture means they are passionate about supporting local artists and ensure DJs and live entertainment on Fridays and Saturdays.

The Italo-American vibe transcends into the menu, which includes plenty of pastas, breads and delectable sauces. There are classics like spaghetti vongole; pork and fennel meatballs, and hand-made ravioli. American-style burgers and tasty bites like Mac ‘n’ ‘Cini Balls, and Popcorn School Prawns are also highlights of the menu. Keep your eye out for specials throughout the week too!

What makes the food better is that it is almost entirely made by hand on-site and Chef, Matt Ouwerkerk’s philosophy is focussed on zero waste. Simon said, “the whole crew live and work in the area and our approach to hand-made, fresh-pressed, do it yourself, food and drink is a well noted and embraced concept in Newtown”. Matt and his team make their own ricotta, pasta, bread and sauce, and out-source only from the best suppliers in town– Textbook Bakery for example makes a damn good custom burger bun.

Come the weekend customers are enticed by one of Newtown’s best kept secrets – the Raven’s Eye courtyard. A sun-filled spot, it’s a popular place to sit back, relax, and enjoy a cocktail or two come the weekend.

Photo by Amanda Davenport

FoodCamilla Sampson