Sydney’s latest Openair cinema and the town’s top Thai

Openair Cinema Pyrmont

With the weather in Sydney turning warmer, the summer options for things to do in town are coming out to play. This week, we’re checking out the latest Openair Cinema to open in Australia.

Plus we’re checking out a couple of favourite food spots – just to make sure they’re still hitting the mark. In the name of quality control. You know what I mean!

We hope you enjoy this Weekly Edition.

Cheers – Jim & Christina xx

Openair Cinema Pyrmont - us at the bar

This evening, we’re excited to be at the opening night for Sydney’s latest American Express Openair Cinema. This one’s in Pyrmont, right next to the Pyrmont Bay Ferry Wharf, which makes the night out a bit more special. A cruise on the harbour and a movie under the stars. Not bad!

Anyone can come to these Openair Cinemas, but if you have an American Express card, there are some extra perks waiting for you. Things like access to the Amex Garden and bar when you’re here and discounts on ticket prices when you book.

There are 11 Amex Openair Cinema venues all over Australia and New Zealand with different showing dates. You can find the one closest to you by choosing your location on the Amex Openair Cinema website.

Openair Cinema Pyrmont mean sky

The views over the city from the Pyrmont venue are pretty cool, but there’s always a risk with open-air events – especially when you’re relying on Sydney’s weather to behave. Those clouds don’t look particularly welcoming, do they?

Openair Cinema Pyrmont raining

And true to form, the heavens open and unleash a bit of rain. Thankfully there are (very stylish) emergency ponchos available tonight, which even come with a mini-poncho for your beer.

I’m actually pretty impressed with myself for discovering this btw!

Openair Cinema Pyrmont food

The rain doesn’t last long, so we take our surprisingly comfortable beanbag seats in the American Express Lounge area and wait for the film to start over dinner.

The food here is great and reasonably priced for a festival. Salt Meats Cheese (we’re fans by the way) are doing delicious pizzas for $14-$16, as well as platters, truffle fries, salads and pasta dishes.

As for the beer, this Urban Ale from Urban Alley Brewery in Melbourne really hits the spot.

Openair Cinema Pyrmont movie

By 8pm, the movie starts and we sit back in our beanbag recliners to enjoy the show. These seats are so comfortable, it’s definitely worth adding them as extras if you’ve got a general admission booking – or just going all out and getting an Amex Lounge or Star Lounge ticket, which comes with these seats.

But check out the view – ours not the actors’. Amazing to have the city just there and every now and again the toot of the ferries as they chug through Sydney Harbour around us.

Openair Cinema Pyrmont movie

So here’s the rundown of tickets at the Pyrmont American Express Openair Cinema:

This venue runs Wednesday-Sunday from 28th November – Sunday 16th December. Doors open at 6pm and everyone’s out by about 10.30pm.

You can bring your own food, soft drinks and pets, but not booze.

There are 3 classes of tickets

General Admission – $20 ($17 for concessions)

You get admission to the cinema but no seating, so you either have to go picnic style or bring your own chairs. You can hire loungers when you book or on the door for $7.50 each though, providing there are some available.

American Express Lounge – $35

You do need an Amex card for this option, but you do get a lot. You’re in a reserved premium location, you get a beanbag lounger, cushion, blanket, table service, ice cream, popcorn and a glass of Giesen wine. Pretty good!

Star Lounge – $40

If you don’t have an Amex card, but want to make a night of it, this is the VIP option. You get a beanbag lounger, blanket hire, table service and a glass of wine.

Amex extras

If you do have an American Express card, you get access to the special bar and garden as I mentioned, but you also get discounts on general admission and the Star Lounge.

General admission comes down to $17 each ($14 for concession tickets) and Star Lounge is $34.

You also get priority on pre-sale ticket purchases online.

Chon Thai pomello salad

Tonight, we’re out with our awesome friend Steph. We always try and catch up when she’s around as she’s often working over in the States.

We’ve come back to an old favourite: Chon Thai in Balmain. I honestly believe this is the best Thai in Sydney. It used to be Spice I Am, but Chon is in a different league in my opinion.

We kick the meal off with this beautiful pomelo salad with king prawns, chilli jam, peanut, roasted coconut, and lemongrass.

Chon Thai sweet and sour crispy pork belly

Next we share a big serve of crispy pork belly in a sweet and sour spicy sauce. This is a killer dish – the pork’s amazingly crispy and the sauce is subtly sweet and sour. No wonder it’s popular, as our waiter tells us.

Chon Thai beef short rib

We also tuck into the slow-cooked beef short rib dish on the specials menu. When it arrives, I’m happy enough, but when Steph pulls off a big chunk of meat with a spoon, I realise we’re in for a treat.

The meat is so tender and delicious, and there’s a surprisingly large amount on the ribs too. The glaze is sticky and rich – the perfect dish for a cool November evening.

Maya da Dhaba Surry Hills

To end the week off with a bang, I’m out with the lads for a curry! The majority of this group is English, and the two token Aussies have both lived in the UK in the past, so going out for a few drinks and an Indian is the recipe for a perfect Friday.

We’re back in an old haunt of ours. Maya da Dhaba on the Surry Hills/Redfern border is pretty close to the real deal you find in the UK. The food’s always a high standard and the wait staff are quick to respond to our ever-eager beer orders!

But I think it’ll be a quiet weekend.

We hope you’ve enjoyed this Weekly Edition. Let us know if you have any top tips for Thai or Indian restaurants we should know about, and make sure you get down to Pyrmont (or your closest Openair Cinema) this season for a lovely night of film and fresh air!

Cheers – Jim & Christina xx

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