Posts Tagged ‘photos of food’

Drink Better Wine was conceived so that a bottle shop could operate in the same space as a restaurant. Customers could eat their way through the menu, walk the aisles of the cellar, pick their wine and drink straight from the bottle without paying any corkage.

Since their conception, they have changed their pricing structure to match their online wine prices which is at a significantly reduced cost. To make up for the difference, they now charge a $10 corkage per bottle. I am told that even with the corkage the price still works out to be cheaper. Even so, the sound of not paying corkage versus paying corkage, will always have a better ring to it. Even if this means passing on the savings to the end consumer.

I’m not terribly phased though, good food and good wine awaits me and it will be cheaper too!

collage - fpn

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Some say that Zilver is their ‘go to’ yum cha spot and that it is one of the better Chinese restaurants around.¬†I haven’t really been there myself so I took advantage of one of the Groupon Vouchers on offer. $49 for 2 people for a 6 Course Peking Duck Banquet. Yippie-kai-aye!

I used to be a bit dubious about the online voucher experience. Over time, I’ve become more comfortable. Bloggers alike seem to swear by Groupon for being the best place to grab a food voucher for decent restaurants. For hatted restaurants too.

Convinced? I am.

Now, all I do is click, click, click. Buy, buy, buy… and if I can eat at the likes of Tokonoma, Foveaux & Blancharu, why the hell shouldn’t I?

(Posts to come).

duck 2

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Swell Restaurant is said to be one of Matt Moran’s favourite breakfast spots. Coming highly recommended by the man himself, I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to give it a whirl.

Set against the beautiful Bronte Beach, on a beautiful day it is the perfect spot to grab a decent breakfast or brunch, soak in the atmosphere without too much damage to the hip pocket. It is a popular spot, so best to book ahead and watch out for parking. It is either extortionate or a nightmare!

truffle poached eggs

We begin with the truffle poached eggs which arrive plump and pulsing at the middle. The dish has the indelible scent of truffles and is served with pieces of wafer thin prosciutto, adding a lovely crunch and saltiness to the creaminess of the yolk. The sourdough is as it should having texture and crunch – positively moorish.

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gnome space

Gnome is located¬†just moments away from¬†the main hustle and bustle of Crown St. It’s a great spot for breakfast, brunch & lunch. It¬†operates as a cafe by day and wine bar by night. So you can wine and dine on Wednesday to Saturday nights if you fancy.

Food is cheap and cheerful, which is¬†great given that the produce is locally sourced, sustainable and organic¬†but it¬†comes without the price tag.¬†Staff are switched¬†on¬†and personable in their approach, ¬†that when¬†you order your next round of coffee, they¬†remember your coffee¬†order¬†to the letter¬†– no questions asked. You really can’t go wrong.

coffee

Brazil takes on the ocean trout sandwich ($12). Served with capers, dill, mascarpone & watercress. At $12, I am really impressed with the quality of ingredients and serving size of the sandwich not only in its entirety but also with the generous helpings of ocean trout and subsequent fillings.

ocean trout

I opt for the ultimate self destruction and¬†take on¬†the super grilled cheese ($12). It’s stuffed with cheddar, gruyere, buffalo mozarella & prosciutto. The cheeses are fit for purpose and are¬†served at melting point.¬†Again, at¬†$12¬†I¬†more than impressed with the variety and quality of cheeses. And more so, at the amount of it¬†that is served.

So much so, that the sandwich had this pulsing white buffalo centre, which I had to squeeze and pop open. Which was pretty spectactular. And to top it all off, there are these beautiful prosciutto layers on top that blends remarkably well. Adding a meaty saltiness against all the other creamy and crunchy textures of the cheese and bread.

super grilled cheese

Welcome to Gnome Espresso & Winebar, for a great little find.

Gnome Espresso and Winebar on Urbanspoon

After a 17 month restoration project the Gowings building has been resuscitated back to life with the QT Hotel Рa hotel, spa, bar and restaurant. Inside you will find the Gowings Bar and Grill Рa European style brasserie serving up seafood, steaks, woodfired meats and rotisserie fowl. Try and time your visit for Friday at lunch for the pinot and suckling pig special, if you can.

Located between the historical Gowings building and the State Theatre, the Bar & Grill has that staged New York Broadway¬†feel to it. ¬†Walk on in and you will taken by the slab of tuna hanging by its tail cut wide open and red raw. Hello… fish bits.

With its extensive menu, it is difficult to decide what to eat and what to forego. Everything looks like a win and equally very expensive. $38 schnitzel anyone?

crab cakes

For her entree Ms G takes on the hot spanner crab cakes ($19). I’m given a taste and already I’m hit with food envy. It’s the combination of the beautiful crumbs,¬†fleshy crab pieces and the creamy aioli that I would happily come back for.

oysters

Sydney Rock Oysters ($5 each)

steak tartare

I’m always a sucker for steak tartare ($29) but I found myself slightly disappointed. There is no questioning the quality of the ingredients but it wasn’t the traditional steak tartare I had in mind. It was far more creamier and lacked the tang and pep I was hoping for. The shoestring fries, surprisingly came out as the hero of this dish.

yellowfin tuna tartare

Tartare of Yellowfin Tuna ($18)

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cheese bratwurst

For any food lover, a visit to Melbourne always deserves a pilgrimage to the mecca for foodies – Queen Victoria Markets. Almost equals to the amusement parks lovers coming for the theme parks to visit in Melbourne.

Deep down it is like any market, with stall owners bellowing out their best price, urging you to buy, buy, buy!

But unlike no other, everything is all within reach, bringing together a massive hub of fresh meat, seafood, fruit, veges, delicatessens and desserts. It is so delicious to look at, the sight of it rarely gets old.

bratuwrst & co 2

Like all my visits to Melbourne, I always come back to the Bratwurst Shop & Co.

You know it, I know it, everybody knows it.

Even Anthony Bourdain knows it. It is that good.

bratwurst 3

With the sure fire signs of a popular eatery. The human frenzy swarming in front of the counter is something to manoeuvre with. Get your pointy elbows out, move with haste and make way to the front.

bratwurst 4

There is a real sense of urgency and everything is rushed. You’re in and you’re out.

Ordering is quite swift, to the point and goes something like…

Sausage? Sauce? Sides?

Your options include: Spicy Bratwurst, Mild Bratwurst, Cheese Bratwurst, Weisswurst, Chorizo, Black Pepper Pork and Chicken & Mushroom.

bratwurst 5

cheese bratwurst

I ordered the cheese bratwurst and piled it with mustard, onions, sauerkraut and cheese. This required a decent amount of compressing to fit it in my mouth. So far it is my favourite bratwurst to date. Loving the snap of the wurst with the nuggets of soft cheese concealed with each bite. It is the perfect combo – there’s the crunch of bread, the tang of sauerkraut, onions and the creaminess of the cheese.

Welcome to Bratwurst Shop & Co and get your wurst on.
Bratwurst Shop & Co on Urbanspoon

mud crab

Chinese NYE is always spent with family/friends gorging on copious amounts of food to ring in the new year. Kind of what I like to think of as a Chinese version of Christmas! You have your traditional items served at dinner to symbolise good luck, good health and prosperity. On the night, you must have chicken and fish, to symbolise prosperity and long uncut noodles as a symbol of longevity/long life.

With a small gathering of four, I thought I would do a quick post of what I served up last night.

soy chicken

Firstly, we tucked into some soy chicken. Chicken should be served whole to symbolise family wholeness and completeness. I bought this soy chicken from Emperor’s Garden BBQ and I think it is one of the best Chinese BBQ places you can find.

The chicken is deliciously salty and sweet. The flesh is tender and moistened with a touch of sweet soy that seeps to the bottom which I tend to reuse for basting.

mud crab

I managed to prepare 3 kilos of mud crab with a lot of blood sweat and tears. I served it up with egg noodles and a ginger and shallot sauce.This was my first time serving it up and I have to say, I was pleasantly surprised on the results, that I just have to share the recipe! Click here to take a look. I just loved how the noodles slurp up the sauce!

fish

Lastly, I steamed a whole snapper with ginger and shallot sauce which is a very popular and traditional way of serving fish. Eating fish symbolises abundance and excess for the year (ŚĻīŚĻīśúČť§ė, ni√°nni√°n y«íu y√ļ)¬†and again must be served whole from head to tail to signify a good start and finish for the year ahead.

I wonder, if you could feast on anything for CNYE what would you feast on? Perhaps Peking duck or sucking pig? Or if you celebrate CNYE. How did you celebrate and what did you eat? ūüôā

Welcome to the Year of the Snake 2013, Kung Hei Fat Choi!

Emperor's Garden BBQ on Urbanspoon

In the heart of the CBD, we find ourselves tucked away in one of my favourite restaurants in Sydney – Pendolino.

Awarded a “One Hat’ out of a possible Three Hats from the Sydney Morning Herald Good Food Guide, I am always shell shocked as to why Pendolino is only given the one.

Being the veteran that I am, I became quite vocal of what we should order. I go in and advocate that we must try the beef carpaccio and the hand made ravioli with burnt butter sage sauce.

beef carpaccio

The first thing that immediately impresses upon you is the beautiful scent of truffles when the beef carpaccio is placed in front you. To taste every single morsel of flesh is phenomenal with its melt in your mouth texture. It is so tender it doesn’t even require so much as a chew, only a gentle slip into your mouth. The aromatic notes of the truffle, the saltiness of the testun barola cheese and soft crunch of the rocket cress deliver a delicious and sensory overload.

four cheese ravioli

This is a dish I simply can not do without. The hand made ravioli is expertly tended to and made to perfection. Resulting in the perfect thinness of pasta that is tightly wrapped around a delicious filling of spinach, parmigiano reggiano, gruyere, buffalo mozzarella.

The filling is beautifully plump and strikes the perfect balance between the mixture of cheese and the burnt butter and sage sauce. And the experience of the buttered sage leaves disintegrating along the roof of your tongue feels incredible.

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Now that the silly season is nearly upon us. I thought I would share with you one of my favourite desserts of all time.

It is considered the mother of all patisseries. Hoards of loyal followers gather outside in anxious uniformity just to taste the legendary Baked Ricotta Cheesecake at Pasticceria Papa.

ricotta cake

People across Sydney have cooed, gushed and fawned over this beautifully baked specimen. With it’s freshly baked doughy exterior delicately protecting a luxuriant fluffy ricotta filling. The cake is blanketed with a dusting of cinnamon and icing sugar in patterned formation.

Completely unassuming, to experience one is to come up against food porn in motion. So set yourselves on to quiver mode.

ricotta 2

cannoli

The cannoli is just one of the other desserts that I can’t seem to pass up. It also has the glorious ricotta filling but this time it spills out of the edges of the concrete cannoli casing. So hard to the bite, it’s like cannoli crackling. Chocolate cannoli is just as good but it’s the ricotta, that will you get you every time.

Now with Christmas around the corner, the baked Ricotta Cheesecake orders are sent into overdrive so I suggest you get in early and place your order over the phone – stat.

Welcome to Pasticceria Papa, for the best fluffy filling.
Pasticceria Papa on Urbanspoon

145 Ramsay St
Haberfield, NSW 2045

Relatively new to lower north shore area, this has fast become one of my personal favourites and probably one of the area’s best kept secrets.

It houses a hot pot of all your asian favourites… but served tapas. I’m talking Jap, Malay, Filo and Chinese food all served in the one convenient location.

SpaAsian tapas? How glorious! And if you come between Mon-Wed, you can even get their $10 tapas.

Sounds too good to be true but the owner (Alan) has made great strides to maintain the integrity of the combination of all these flavours. Housing a Filipino chef, a Malaysian chef, Alan has personally taken care of the rest by recreating Chinese home made favourites and studying Japanese cookery.

spice crusted tofu

We begin with the spice crusted tofu and it is a wonderful play on your humble agedashi tofu. In fact, I think it is much better.

The tofu is squared off into bite sized pieces providing more surface area for a nice and crisp exterior. The edges of the tofu are super crusty and equally find themselves with a healthy dosage of soy.

Sprinkled on the top are the bonito flakes which to my surprise, are literally dancing along my tofu in beautiful symmetry.

chicken san choi bao

The san choi bao is pretty mind blowing. Delivering generously on flavour and texture. It rightfully upholds all the flavours and is quite incredible. This is one dish that should not to be missed.

roast pork belly pancake 1

roast pork belly pancake 2

The roast pork belly pancake plays on a Chinese favourite. Instead of peking duck, here we have roast pork belly, all pre-prepared with all the trimmings and it is absolutely incredible.

The pork is slippery, silky and packed full of flavour. It doesn’t have the crunch factor of the skin but the flavour wholeheartedly offsets the need for texture. But then again, crackling is not something I would ever say no to!

pork and prawn wontons

I am told by the owner that the pork and prawn wontons were just hand made and they usually are.
Alan, grew up with his grandma making these family favourite for him as a child and lucky for us, he too has decided to pass on this family gem.

The translucent skin is neatly tucked around to expose the fleshy prawns and meaty pork filling. These dumplings are really quite remarkable that there really are no words.

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