Oystervision: Duke Bistro

Duke Bistro is a restaurant with a sense of humour, to be found open until the early hours of the morning upstairs at The Flinders Hotel in Darlinghurst. We asked co-chefs Thomas Lim (ex-Tetsuya's) and Mitch Orr (2010 winner of the Josephine Pignolet Award for Young Chef of the Year) to cook us two of their favourite dishes: fried chicken and watermelon. Then we ate them. They were delicious!

Here are some parts of the interview that we didn't include:

Oyster: What do you like about working with Mitch?
Thomas: Good qualities? Well, he's a gun chef. He's a great bloke. It's easy to work with one of your mates, but then again it can be hard when you have a point of difference. But we're pretty relaxed. Bad qualities are the way he dresses ? it's a bit scrappy ? and the way he wears his hat. The music he listens to.

Mitch, what are the best things about working with Limbo?
Mitch: Look how pretty he is! Looking at something like that every day, how could you be upset about going to work? Those long locks? Also there's just a good vibe; we have the same sort of thinking process about food, even though we have different training. It's good to have someone's that on the same wavelength and wants to collaborate.

What about the bad things?
Mitch: The bad is that he's temperamental, moody, whinges all the time, hates everything?
Thomas: You whinge more than me!
Mitch: You're such a hater, bro. Such a hater.

Does he ever beat you?
Mitch: No, look at him! He couldn't hurt a fly.

Have many other chefs come to visit you? Has Neil Perry been down?
Thomas: Pezza?
Mitch: Pezza!
Thomas: Pezza! Nah, he's too busy. Haven't you seen? He's running seven world-class restaurants. Must be the busiest man in Australia. Plus he's maintaining his ponytail. I tell you what, HE uses a lot of conditioner. He must do it every night. Every night. He's probably sponsored by Pantene Pro-V or something.

What's the best review that you've had?
Mitch: Probably Gourmet Traveller has been our best. Pat Nourse is a big fan of what we do and our style. The Good Living one was alright, I think they maybe missed a plot on a few things, but you can't please everyone all of the time. Everything's been really positive – oh, except for old, what was it, Sunday Tele?
Thomas: The Sunday Telegraph!
Mitch: Yeah, but who reads that fucking paper anyway.

What did they say?
Thomas: Oh, just "blah blah blah, I'm a muppet; blah blah blah, I write like a five-year-old; blah blah blah, I'm a clown." Yeah, basically that.
Mitch: Things like "Oh, the menu says chicken wings. Who would know what chicken wings are? Oh! When it comes to the table, it's a plate of chicken wings."
Thomas: Plonkers!
Mitch: Plonkers.
Thomas: That's the Tele for you. Complete retards.

Duke Bistro
61 2 9332 3180
65 Flinders Street, Darlinghurst
Sydney NSW 2010
www.dukebistro.com.au

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