A Year in Review – Top Eateries of 2014

As everyone looks back at the year that was 2014, I sit down try to remember where I’ve enjoyed good meals at in Canberra and surrounding areas. My list has changed from last years but some have been good enough to remain on there. Not all of them are flashy and expensive and not all of them made it to the top 20 list according to the Good Food guide (see here).

This is a list that I have developed myself based on my own opinions and my own experiences when I have gone to these establishments this year.

*I haven’t written about all the places as I have been busy but as I add them to my blog, I’ll create a link from here.

Tales of a Confectionist’s 2014 top twenty list



Ricardo’s Jamison, I’ve never really enjoyed their cakes as I always find them OTT and too sweet but everything else they do is awesome.

Post #1          Post #2

Akiba Civic, I like the speed at which the food comes, the variety of choices and some of the dishes are amazing.

Post #1          Post #2          Post #3

Mr Papa Braddon, I got Mr Papa to cater for TimmyC’s 30th birthday and they were absolutely brilliant but you can just grab one of their tasty treats from the Hamlet in Braddon without worrying about inviting 24 of your closest friends.

Post #1          Post #2

Chiefly’s Barton, hands down the best steak I’ve eaten in a restaurant in Canberra this year. Their desserts are fabulous too, I hope to return soon!


Flute Bakery Fyshwick, still a favourite of mine as they have amazing cakes and pastries. I am still amazed when people have not heard of this place. Just remember it’s only opened Monday – Friday 8 til 3pm and more importantly, no eftpos (or bathrooms).

Frugii ice cream several locations, technically not a shop front yet (although you can sample a lot of John’s work at Stripey Sundae in Gold Creek village and the ODBM/Farmer’s market) but Frugii ice cream seems to be popping up more regularly at Canberra markets and events. He puts lots of thought into his unique ice cream flavours and if you get a chance, you have to try his cakes.

Up 2 You Belconnen, I get cravings for their claypot rice whenever I think about it. I enjoyed my first hot pot experience but the second time around was a bit harder to enjoy when we were at the top level and they didn’t really replenish the stuff that I wanted to eat.

Post #1          Post #2

Les Bistronomes Braddon, as filling as it is sharing a Beef Wellington, I somehow always manage to also squeeze in dessert. I don’t love their smaller plates, if I came here I would just get a Beef Wellington (maybe share between three people?) and a dessert.

Post #1          Post #2          Post #3

Dumpling Inn Jamison, this is not my local, but if it was I’d be a lot fatter. I’ve stopped blogging about this place because I come here so often but don’t mistaken my written absence as a sign of me no longer eating here. Every now and then they have mudcrabs and it is magical.

Post #1

Jimmy’s Chinese Restaurant Dickson. Some may be surprised by my inclusion of this restaurant but I come here only for one thing- MUD CRAB *drools* Mudcrab with ginger and shallots and yi mein noodles is the only way to go.

Morks Kingston, I really need to go back here again with TimmyC, he keeps whinging that I went without him.

Post #1

Soju girl Civic I have eaten here a lot and the only bad thing I can say about this place is that I’m always too full for their dessert menu.

Post #1          Post #2          Post#3

Penny University Kingston, I had an amazing brunch here and I’m super keen to return.


Robyn Rowe’s chocolates Murrumbateman, these hand made chocolates are fabulous and you can get them locally at the Farmer’s market if you don’t have time to make it to the shop.

Post#1          Post #2

Poacher’s Pantry Murrumbateman, I was lucky enough to have my Human experience here and we were really spoilt. I really enjoy their smoked meat products and they are widely available around Canberra.

Post #1          Post #2          Post #3

The Cupping Room Civic, for good coffee, great breakfast and amazing milkshakes.

Post #1          Post #2

Lonsdale Street Eatery Braddon, I haven’t written my post yet but the ribs and burgers are amazing.

Post #1

Joe’s Thai Wanniassa, I love eating noodles and curries from here and it is my ‘go to’ for take away food when I’m at home.


Pomegranate Kingston, I might not have loved their panna cotta but everything else was delicious despite the price tag.

Post #1

Tudo Turner, after many years, the food is consistently good, I’d push you over for a pan fried chicken wing and I find so much comfort in their noodle soups.


Common Grounds

Pancakes, crepes and waffles oh my!
These are the breakfast items that make TimmyC’s face light up, so when RiotAct named Common Grounds in Gowrie with the best pancakes, we made plans to go immediately if not sooner.IMG_7927.JPGIMG_7929.JPGI love the look of their front counter, it has a bit of everything.IMG_7940.JPGDue to an overly comfortable bed, we did not make it to the cafe until 11:45am, but we were seated immediately despite the place being very busy.

They serve Campos coffee here which is good to know. I tried buying my friend some coffee beans but they said they doubled their usual order and they still sold out.

When the friendly waitress came to take our order, my mouth dropped when we were told they had sold out of pancakes. Poor TimmyC, he had to pick up the menu and actually read it this time. I on the other hand wanted one of their pasta specials, “sorry the lunch menu doesn’t start until 1pm”. ‘What? What kind of menu is this?!’ I thought to myself. I too then had to scan the menu and choose what will be second choice.

Banana, honey, nutmeg and cinnamon smoothie ($6.00). I’m not the biggest fan of banana taste outside of a cake but this was super nice! It had a great taste of banana mixed in with honey, nutmeg, cinnamon and a decent scoop of ice cream. I would easily order this again but it does fill me up.IMG_7941.JPGFlat white coffee from Campos coffee beans.IMG_7938.JPGEggs benedict poached eggs and hollandaise sauce served  on two pieces of sourdough toast with bacon ($15.50). I really liked the hollandaise sauce and I kept on dipping my fork in to get some. Unfortunately there was only really one rasher of bacon for the whole dish.IMG_7942.JPGConquistador sauteed chorizo, tomato, chilli, garlic and basil on toasted sourdough served with poached egg and topped with goats cheese ($16.90). The chorizo had a decent bite to it and it was a really good sausage but every now and then I had to pop a tomato in my mouth to cool down from the spiciness. I really enjoyed the bread and kept on eating it even when I was full. The goats cheese was too strong for my liking and I felt my poached eggs were a bit rubbery so I didn’t finish either of them.IMG_7948.JPG

IMG_7945.JPGThe central indoor dining area was open to the back area which was nice for ease of access but it did mean that annoying flies came in and kept bothering us while we ate; we were squatting away flies between each bite. As we were leaving they closed the doors up to maybe keep the air con contained but it would have been nicer to do it earlier to keep the flies away.IMG_7939.JPGDespite our disappointment with the availability on the menu, the food that we ordered was really nice, the staff were super friendly and attentive and I really like the lay out of the place.

Being the stubborn person that I am, TimmyC and I returned much earlier the next day (their last trading day of the year) and we didn’t want to be seated unless we knew that there were pancakes available and there weren’t so we left and had breakfast somewhere else.

Venue: Common Grounds

Address4/1 Jeffries St Gowrie, ACT

Phone: 02 6291 7412

Opening hours:

Monday – Friday 7:30am – 4:00pm

Saturday – Sunday 8:00am – 3:00pm

2014 Holiday opening hours: re-open Wednesday January 7th 2015

Common Grounds on Urbanspoon