78 Queen Street Woollahra, New South Wales 202502 9327 7014
|Opening hours||Daily, 8.30am-4pm|
|Prices||Moderate (mains $20-$40)|
There are three things you should know about Wieczorkowski.
One, it's pronounced "Vee-chor-kov-ski", something best done in a voice as deep as the lovely Natasha's in ye olde Rocky & Bullwinkle cartoons.
Two, before you wonder out loud why anyone would name their new cafe Wieczorkowski (go on, say it. "Vee-chor-kov-ski"), you should also know that it was opened by Kasia and Peter Wieczorkowski, with their son, Adam. Kasia is from Krakow, and is so proud of her family's Polish heritage and culture that the cafe and ''delikatesy'' assumed an almost ambassadorial role when it opened in February after months of delay.
And three, it has two completely separate entrances. Step off Queen Street into the handsome charcoal-grey cafe and you are immediately in cake-and-coffee land - espresso machine thrumming, walls lined with Polish delicacies, and counters and tall glass cabinets laden with freshly baked Polish tortes and pastries. Step in off the narrow laneway to the side, and you're in a glass-walled indoor-outdoor Polish restaurant. Smack-bang in the middle is a busy little glass-walled kitchen - which only staff can access - bustling up food straight out of down-home Krakow.
The big order is a tasting platter ($28 to share) of mixed fried pierogi dumplings. It comes with a mug of nicely vinegary beetroot soup (barszcz), a delectably light, rice-studded cabbage roll (golabki), a fairly dry crumbed mushroom crepe, and a pot of that all-important sour cream to slather over everything in sight. Lighter options include boiled pierogi and potato pancakes; bowl salads that include a generous and colourful smoked trout and kipfler potato with cress, dill and chives; big sandwiches with evocative names such as Kossak; and a herring board with apple, onion and sour cream that could do with a denser rye bread to accompany. But it's all dangerously filling if you want to finish - as everyone does - on cake.
Those who grew up with babka, dobos torte, poppyseed cake and strudel will get straight to work, matching them with an organic house blend coffee ($3.80) that's as highly scented as the slabs of creamy vanilla slice. The less fortunate will gravitate naturally towards the iced or sugar-dusted Polish doughnut (paczki), a fat golden cloud with a dark heart of plum jam. Wieczorkowski definitely has Woollahra talking, if only about "that new Polish cafe". Come on, everybody. "Vee-chor-kov-ski". You can do it.
Do learn how to pronounce it.
Don't expect to float out hungry.
Dish smoked trout and kipfler potato salad, $17.50.
Vibe Mittel Europe in the middle of Woollahra.