One of my tasks when writing the food pages for Style Magazine was to ask people about their favourite dining haunts. So many Inner West locals nominated Anouk it started to get boring. Now I know what they were on about.

Anouk is located in the city end of Given Terrace at Paddington. It's a busy spot where it's not always easy to find a park, but that doesn't seem to stop anybody. We turned up at 11.40am after a meeting looking for a late breakie or early lunch but couldn't get either until the kitchen opened around noon. I was a little put out by this as we had a timetable to work to but it didn't worry the group on the next table. They immediately ordered two cakes that looked spectacular when they arrived. They gave us a taste of the housemade chocolate truffle cake and New York maple cheesecake which certainly packed a flavour punch.

The glossy table tops, fans and French music create a chic atmosphere at Anouk but with concrete floors it tends to get bit noisy when there's a crowd. But the food... well that's worth just about anything. All the menu choices were interesting flavour combinations with out there ingredients.

I was tempted by red pepper jam and flat leaf bruschetta with proscuitto and bocconcini ($15.50) until I saw the goat chevre and roast beetroot bruschetta with spiced beetroot jam and rocket ($16.50) - totally delicious and a delightfully sized, light lunch serve. My companion chose lemon smoked salmon and potato salad with rocket, herbs, preserved lemon aioli and salmon pearls ($18.00). The potatoes had been baked in oil and were slightly crisp and caramelised. Delicious.

Find Anouk at 212 Given Terrace, Paddington. p 3367 8663. Best to book if you are going in a busy time.

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