What goes up, must close down

Not in all cases, but it was inevitable that Canberra’s crazy eatery boom would slow down and now I’ve noticed a big surge of places either closing, changing names or changing owners. Here are some examples:

Old >> Schnitzel Haus (Braddon)

New>> Tipsy Bull (coming soon)

The original restaurant in Erindale is still open but the Braddon venue will now be transformed into a new restaurant.


Old >> Vitis Eatery (Braddon)

New >> Lazy Su (coming soon)

Unfortunately, it won’t be the delicious Vietnamese food that we have come to love from Miss Van’s but it will be interesting to see how their new venture goes offering Japanese and Korean flavours.


Old >> Turkish Pide house (Civic)

New >> Hannara Korean BBQ

My post about my recent visit to Hannara will be on the blog soon.


Old >> Shanghai Dumpling King (Erindale)

New >> Mr. Asian Chef

No more dumplings, just your typical westernised Chinese menu.


Old >> Breeze Sports Bar & Restaurant (Civic)

New >> The Alley Bar and Grill

Located in the Pacific Suites on Northbourne Avenue. I don’t know much about this place except that it popped up as one of my new Entertainment book deals.


Old >> Petra Palace (Phillip)

New >> Yummy Yalla

I don’t know if these are new owners or a rename, it went from a Lebanese restaurant to… Another Lebanese restaurant.


Moved >> Lahori gate restaurant

They moved from a small restaurant underneath apartments in Phillip to a much more spacious fit out in Weetangera apparently sometime around mid-2016. I’m yet to go but I found this awesome review from Travel and Beyond.


Changing owners 

Old >> Adore Tea (Gold Creek) you can still catch Adore tea products from their warehouse in Mitchell.

New >> The Tea House Gold Creek

I’m excited to see what direction the new owner takes on this tea house, I am trying their food out this weekend!


Old >> Mood Food  >> The Black Sheep (Braddon)

New >> Kith and Nosh (coming soon)

I didn’t even get around to trying The Black Sheep before they closed up. Hopefully, the new establishment stays around a little longer.


Closed >> Autolyse

Closed >> The Yarralumla bakery

Closed >> The Lobby / Pork Barrel


Changing owners >> Pulp kitchen- finishing up on Valentine’s day, it will be bittersweet to see the old owners go but exciting to see what the new owners can do with the place.


Changing names >> Paleo cafe to Tallow and Thyme (Braddon)


Changing names >> CIBO kitchen to Deli and Kafe (Woden)

Same family, just expanding their wares to cover European supermarket goods and deli meats/cheeses


Expanding >> Milk Crate cafe is not just a for the exclusive neighbouring buildings anymore, they have a much roomier space in their second set up down on Marcus Clarke street. They have a different chef and staff and I hear it isn’t as good as the original place.

 

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All You Can Eat

When you mention ‘all you can eat’, most people would think of the the dodgy looking Family Food Court upstairs in Dickson (which is now closed) or the Star Buffet down in Kambah, but there is more that Canberra can offer.

See below for more all you can eat options.

Kusina 

Monday Madness 5pm – 9pm ( $24.00 pp). Choose one of the platters or better still go with someone else to get a chance to eat a bit of everything, just finish your platter before ordering more. Monday Madness is served with unlimited papaya salad, rice and soft drink.

Grilled platter grilled pork belly marinated with sweet BBQ sauce + grilled chicken marinated lemongrass, ginger, garlic, soy

or

Fry up platter crispy chicken wings + crispy pork bellyUntitled.png


Park Hyatt Canberra Afternoon Tea ($59.00pp)

Enjoy the famous afternoon tea buffet during Friday (2:30pm to 5:00pm), Saturday and Sunday (11:00am to 1:30pm and 2:30pm to 5:00pm) at the Park Hyatt. They have an array of savouries, finger sandwiches, freshly baked scones, a selection of tempting cakes and slices and includes a glass of Lerida Estate Zenzi sparkling wine.


The Promenade Cafe

This is one I’ve haven’t tried yet but they have a breakfast buffet, seafood buffet and a BBQ and roast buffet! This is the information I found on their website.

Breakfast
Daily Full Buffet ($39.00pp)

Lunch
Saturday Full Seafood Buffet with antipasto, hot and grand desserts ($75.00pp)

Sunday BBQ and Roast Buffet with bountiful seafood, soup of the day with fresh bread, live cooking stations, gourmet salads and selections of antipasto, hot buffet dishes, farmhouse cheeses and decadent desserts ($85.00pp for cuisine only or $115.00pp inclusive of unlimited beverages for 2 hours that includes Australian sparkling, white and red wine, draught beer & soft drink).

Dinner
Wednesday – Sunday  Full Seafood Buffet with antipasto, hot and grand dessert ($75.00pp)


Up 2 U ($25.00pp)

During the cold winter nights, you can warm up with a personal steam boat with your friends at Up 2 U in Belconnen. There is a large range of meat, noodles, vegetables, seafood options and condiments.

If ‘all you can eat’ hot pot isn’t for you, you can also order their delicious claypot rice or BBQed skewers.


Eightysix ($86.00pp)

That’s right, you can get all you can eat at a fancy pants trendy restaurant. Apparently no disclaimers, just let them know you’re ordering the all you can eat menu, order until your heart/stomach’s content and try and be out before the next seating (usually two hours). We greedily ordered all their desserts because we could!

Their pasta range is A-MA-ZING! Read my latest visit here.

 

There is a huge variety in the ‘all you can eat’ sector from sweets to Asian to modern Australian, all with a varying price tag. Which one will you be trying?

 

 

 

Eightysix

I know this is a big call to make because we aren’t even close to the end of the year but my meal at Eightysix last week was definitely in the top 3 best meals I’ve had in Canberra this year. What was even better was that it was only $86pp and I say ‘only’ because for this price, it was all we could eat… And so we did.

Duck bun with hoisin and hot sauce. This was a nice soft bun that had a nice meaty filling but I think the pickles overpowered everything. Whoever was running this station was very efficient as every time we ordered them they came out super fast. Gnocco fritto. This is like a deep-fried pastry topped with prosciutto but I found the pastry a bit too oily for me.Heirloom carrot, hummus, mint and almonds. Who knew I could enjoy carrots so much? This was a perfect pairing of flavours and with all the pasta and meat, it was good to have a salad somewhere in there. I love the sweetness from the cranberries, apples and carrots.Four cheese risotto with radicchio and balsamic. Man I love a cheesy good risotto, it was a shame I had to share.

Don’t be fooled by the camera angle, this was a really small serve. Order three!Pappardelle with parmesan and local black truffle. I felt that the truffle didn’t have as much of an effect because it wasn’t infused in anything. It was a nice simple pasta and the perfectly cooked egg yolk bursts to make a rich sauce.Pumpkin and mascarpone tortellini with hazelnuts. This ladies and gentleman, was exquisite. I really do love things that involve a pumpkin parcel pasta with burnt butter sage combo and this has to be the BEST rendition I’ve ever had. Hands down! Before they change the menu you HAVE to try this. The filling is silky smooth, the pasta thickness is perfect and the sage is super crispy.Rag pasta with lamb and rosemary ragu. I loved the sauce, the pasta, the whole thing. This was a very close second pasta choice for the table. Ghetto beef with rocket and salsa verde. I had tried this before where the beef was really dry and the rocket leaves were limp, I couldn’t tell if this time was much better or I was just really hungry. Be aware that the beef is rather quite pink, one of my friends didn’t eat it which meant more for us!Whole lamb shoulder with sides. Wow! This was incredible! A wonderful lamb roast served with chimichurri sauce and a really smooth mash potato and jus. This was apparently a 1kg roast and we almost finished the whole thing.One of the downsides of being in a busy restaurant is the wait. Sometimes there was a 15-20 minute wait between dishes, which left us a little frustrated and hungry and in turn we ordered more food hoping that something would come to the table soon. Despite ordering so many things, we had very little wastage. I knew we were testing the time constraints of our sitting (2 hours) but we asked if we could have dessert with a hopeful look in our eye. The waiter checked to see if there was someone waiting for our table but he came back happy to report we could squeeze in our dessert first.

There was a little pause in the conversation when the waiter asked us what we wanted for dessert and without hesitation while not joking I replied ‘all of them’.Strawberry cheesecake. I loved the soft creamy textures with strawberries. I didn’t realise that there was granola at the bottom for the ‘base’ until I dug a little deeper but there was a strong saltiness to it that I didn’t enjoy.

It might not look like much but I promise you there is a lot going on under that snow.Choc mint fudge sundae. If you love the choc mint combo then this is definitely for you, it was like an after dinner mint on the palette. There was a really good brownie somewhere in all that.Caramel popcorn sundae. I felt that the signature dish of the restaurant was superseded by the other desserts. It is a nice combination but this wasn’t our favourite this time.Banoffee pie. That caramel wasn’t too sweet which meant that this wasn’t OTT. A great way to finish the meal.Frozen margarita. The description didn’t give much away but this tasted like lemon meringue. It was very delicate and was the pick of the desserts. You have to try this!Even though there was a wait from the kitchen, the front of house service was fantastic, efficient and attentive. I keep telling everyone about my experience and it excited me so much I pushed it up my backlog of posts to write about because I wanted you all to know about it too.

Venue: Eightysix

Address: Elouera St, Mode 3 Building, Braddon,ACT

Phone: (02) 6161 8686
Eightysix Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Yat Bun Tong re-run

I recently met up with a few fellow food bloggers (check out some of their awesome blogs here and here) for dinner at Yat Bun Tong (see my first post here). It is so nice to meet up with such like minded people and laugh about the same things we go through like- forever questioning ourselves of who is actually really ever reading our blog other than our number one fan (thanks for your support YummyLummy).

Serina from MsFrugralEars with her awesome mandarin skills took charge with ordering and conversing with the staff. It was refreshing not having to look at the menu or having the responsibility on deciding the whole table’s meal, which is the default mode that my friends usually put me in.

Shanghai steamed bun (10 pieces $13.80). It is still no Din Tai Fung, but I guess it is unfair to compare. The dumpling wrapper is the Goldilocks of thickness, not too thin and not too thick, it was just right. I’m still not completely sold on the soup interior but am still happy to have it there. They don’t always remember to give you a spoon but please do request one for easier eating.   Shallot pancake ($7.80). The pancake was crispy and flaky which reminded me of roti with flecks of shallot. I really enjoyed the texture but I think I would have liked more shallots and more salt throughout the pancake.Hot and sour soup ($5.80 per serve). My eyes widened when they lowered this bowl on the table. It was enormous! I asked Serina ‘I thought you only ordered two serves?’, she responded with ‘I did’. The waitress explained that the chef wanted to give us more but would only charge for two serves. I loved that the soup was full of lots of ingredients and most of us easily had two bowls. If it was a tad (chilli) hotter and you added a few drops of chinese vinegar like you’re supposed to, it would have been perfect.I took a photo of the serving bowl next to my bowl so you could see how big it was.Shanghai pan fried pork buns (10 pieces $14.80). This was the one dish I was determined to order after seeing photos from Michelle’s instagram who in turn saw it from Wita (#contagiousfood). The buns were light and fluffy with a good meat filling and a little bit of soup inside. It reminded me very much of Sydney food, which says a lot. I would happily return just to eat these.The filling inside the buns.BBQ duck spring rolls (2 pieces $6.80). We were told that this was a popular menu item and I can see why. A crispy hot spring roll filled exclusively with delicious duck meat complimented by the hoisin dipping sauce. These would make a good starter, maybe I’ll order these next time before I sit down and even look at the menu.Fried handmade noodles with black pepper beef ($15.80). People were starting to get full but insearchofgoldenpudding and I wanted to try their handmade noodles. I really like black pepper beef but usually with rice, it felt odd eating them with noodles especially when I’m used to eating my noodles with pork and vegetables. Some people might not like the fact that it came with no vegetables.

I really liked their handmade noodles, it wasn’t overly oily although it was a tad softer than I would usually have it.  I really like black pepper but even I  thought it was borderline overwhelming, next time I might try their handmade noodle with seafood in X.O sauce.I had a much better experience at Yat Bun Tong this time around because of the selection of food. I will definitely be back to eat more pork buns and eat more noodles.
Yat Bun Tong Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Les Bistronomes Saturday degustations

I had seen on my Facebook feed that Les Bistronomes was doing a 5 course degustation for only $50.00 per person on Saturdays and I promised my stomach that we would go. And so we went.

Complimentary bread and butter.5 course degustation ($50.00 per person)

Escargot and pork rillettes. Quintessentially French. The escargot was in an intense herb and garlic sauce, which was easy to dig out from the shell. I really enjoyed the rillettes as the pickle gave the right amount of tang with the meat and the crouton was perfectly crunchy.Escargot anyone?Beetroot and goat curd. I found this visually stunning dish simple with a great balance of flavours. The goat curd itself wasn’t really strong and I liked how they used an array of coloured beets which were subtly sweet.Alternative dish mushroom delight. TimmyC dislikes beetroot and goat dairy products, so he requested an alternative dish for his second course. This was on the saltier side but very moreish and amazing if they had to just make something on the spot.Duck breast with foie gras salad. This was a very light salad with good balance of acidity and salt. The foie gras was delicately shaved and was enjoyed by everyone including me who doesn’t usually eat it.

Pork with nectarine. I was expecting a big piece of meat but the slices of pork were very tender and succulent. I did find the other edges of my portion were fatty and inedible but not everyone had that. The dressing was on the sweeter side but it paired nicely with the meat.

Crème brûlée. It is always a grand theatrical conversation stopper when Les Bistronomes serve up their crème brûlée complete with flames. The custard itself is cold but very smooth and silky. It is a generous serve to say the least, especially when you’re finishing off a degustation, but I managed to squeeze it all in *pats belly*.One just for me? I wasn’t feeling full at this point but I had a feeling I was about to be after this course.Over the 5 courses, it covered an array of meats and flavours while not being was overly heavy. The degustation is a steal for $50 bucks especially when the crème brûlée alone is usually $16.00.

Venue: Les Bistronomes

Degustation details: Saturdays, 5 courses for $50.00, bookings recommended

Phone(02) 6248 8119

Dimmi: yes, you can book through the app and earn points.

Yat Bun Tong

We were driving home from Sydney when I realise there was nothing but carrots, eggs and butter in my fridge, so I made plans to meet my friends in Braddon to try out the new dumpling restaurant Yat Bun Tong for dinner.

On a Sunday night without a booking at 7pm, we were very lucky to get a table for four without a reservation. The menus are huge  (and heavy) because of the diverse range of dishes and the accompanying photos. I had to be careful not to over order and there were a few dietary restrictions within the group.I was torn between ordering the Shanghai pan fried pork bun (10 for $14.80) or the Shanghai steamed bun (10 for $13.80) but because I know the pan fried pork buns can be filling, I went with the steamed dumplings so I could order more dishes instead.

I expected them to come out in a particular order but instead they came as they were ready and the gap between waiting times wasn’t that long. It was a struggle to fit everything on the table though as the plates are rather big.

Garlic chicken fried rice ($12.80). I wanted a more garlic flavour but it was nice enough as an accompaniment to the other dishes.Fried beef onion dumplings (15 for $12.80). These weren’t fabulous but still rather tasty and I preferred these over the steamed ones.Pan fried chive cakes (2 for $8.80). Not very flavoursome and definitely not worth ordering again.Shanghai steamed bun (10 for $13.80). There is a little soup inside each dumpling which stayed inside as the dumpling wrapper wasn’t too delicate. I didn’t love the taste of the dumpling though.Deep fried soft shell crab with spicy peppery salt ($19.80). I was surprised to see that this was a rather large serve. The batter was a tad too thick but there was plenty of delicious fried garlic, chilli and shallots.Chinese broccoli with garlic ($14.80). A simple tasty dish to break up the oily and heaviness from the other dishes.Someone told me that Yat Bun Tong have the same owners as Chinese Kitchen Dumpling House in Woden. It’s no Din Tai Fung but it is better than other dumpling places I have tried around town. I would like to come back and try the other dumplings like the Shanghai pan fried pork bun and also try their noodles which I hear is quite nice.

Venue: Yat Bun Tong

Address: 61/10-12 Lonsdale street, Braddon, ACT 2612

Phone: (02) 61520880
Yat Bun Tong Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Beef wellington at Les Bistronomes

I haven’t been back to Les Bistronomes since late last year but when our plan A of eating Mr. Papa’s new menu fell through, TimmyC was very quick to point out that I hadn’t taken him to eat beef wellington yet. So as we were eating our dessert from Peppercress, we proceeded to order our main at another restaurant on the other side of town, as true foodies do.Complimentary house bread served with ash butter. I liked the concept of a whole mini loaf served to the table but I didn’t like the execution, I crumbed EVERYWHERE. It was hard to cut with your normal table knife but a serrated knife would have just glided through this baby. The bread was delicious, the butter was incredible, and I was just messy.Apparently people don’t usually leave this much mess, I’m just special.They have gone all ‘home style’ with these plates.Entrees~

Charcuterie platter cured meats, salami and rillettes with bread ($24.00). This platter was much bigger than I remembered, I’m glad I only ordered one serve of the pork belly. I really enjoyed the mixture of cured meats served with bread and gherkins, although the hot sausage was not to everyone’s liking. For me personally it would have been nicer with fruit/cheese/more bread to break up the salty meat taste.Caramelised pork belly and warm celeriac and truffle veloute served with shaved apple and celeriac crisp ($22.00). This was much smaller than I expected for the price we paid, despite being very delicious. Luckily the platter was bigger than we expected or I would have started to get hangry before our mains were due to come out. The veloute made me almost want to lick the plate but I’m a lady so I ended up soaking up every last bit with bread instead.Mains to share ~ pre ordering is recommended

Boeuf en croute (beef wellington) mushroom duxelle and foie gras served with a side of your choice ($88.00 for two people 30 minutes cooking time). We had pre-ordered just one beef wellington when we made the reservation so that we could try other things, even though it is recommended for two people I think it suits 3-4 people so that everyone isn’t stuffed by the end of the mains and you get a bit of variety. Chips are the best thing to get as a side as it is hot, crispy and well seasoned and sometimes you just need that hit of salt between bites. I absolutely loved the jus and poured extra all over my serve.

It might not look like much but I think this baby can feed more than two people.

Look at it glisten when I add more jus.Ash crusted duck a l’orange style (whole duck) served with red cabbage, orange and pine nuts ($80.00 for two people 25 minutes cooking time). We were shown our smoking ash encased duck before it was taken away to be cut in the kitchen; it was gone for a considerable amount of time before we were actually served the dish, so much so that I thought that they had given our duck away. I usually prefer ‘dark meat’ as I find breast can tend to be dry and disappointing, but because the duck was cooked whole and encased in ash, every part of it was moist and juicy. The meat had a combination of smoky duck flavours which paired perfectly with the sweet red cabbage and orange segments. It was hard to choose a favourite out of the two main dishes because both were amazing.

Excuse the blurry photo, I wanted to take one ASAP before it smoked out the whole room.When it is served, it has beautiful vibrant colours.Look at that juicy tender meat.Dessert~

Traditional apple tart tatin served with triple vanilla ice cream ($32.00 to share for 2 people allowing 40 minutes cooking time). This dessert is made from scratch and you would have to order it while ordering your meal. As delicious as the passionfruit soufflé and the crème brulee is, I’m glad that we didn’t order another dessert. It might sound expensive but it easily satisfied all four of us and shared between the four of us it came to only $8.00 a serve which is pretty decent. The apples were soft and sweet, the pastry was buttery and the caramelised sugar parts get stuck in your teeth, all in all a fabulous dessert.

I added the fork for scale, when you’ve eaten two courses already, this is enough to share between 3-4 people.It is so pretty with its shiny sticky sugar.I noticed some tables having a long wait time for their mains, but if you order an easy to share entree like the platter and you have good company, you wouldn’t generally notice the wait time. The restaurant started to get a little smoky towards the end with everyone’s ash encased mains being presented to them and the restaurant was closed up to keep the warmth in.

We left completely satisfied and happy as we had a good variety of delicious food. It did get a little salty towards the end and I had to prompt for more water as I was drinking so much, but I think I’ll have dreams about the tart tatin for months to come. Don’t forget to use your Entertainment book for this one!

See you first two posts here and here.

Bowing to the Churros King

After posting about Oliver Brown and their churros, I got to talking to Lisa from blithemoments about churros in Canberra. There was one place that I have been meaning to try their churros and it is the only thing they serve so you would expect it to be good. The Churros King resides as a little cart amongst the Hamlet crew just inside the entrance way on the right. Their menu is simple: churros dipped in either chocolate or caramel sauce, 1 churro ($2.00) or 6 churros ($10.00).

I had just eaten a combination of roast pork roll with extra crackling and a souvlaki wrap and was looking for something a little sweet. It was the perfect time to try a churro (and someone was actually running the cart that night). TimmyC chose a chocolate dipped one; the only down side is that the sauce is really only on one end, fortunately the churro had a subtle sugar coating so even without the sauce it was still a little sweet. I like the star-shaped churros as opposed to the kit kat like bars from Oliver Brown for the crunchy texture. The batter is squirted straight into the deep fryer, fried until its crispy and then dipped into your choice of sauce. I like the ‘fresh and hot’ aspect but it did mean it was a tad oily. I definitely want to go back and try the caramel sauce.

Not the greatest photo in the world, but know that an impatient hungry boy was holding the churro and I was holding a pork roll in one hand and try to focus the camera with the other

Venue: Churros King

Address: The Hamlet, 16 Lonsdale Street, Braddon, Canberra, 2612

Hamlet opening hours:

Wednesday – Saturday 12:00pm | 9:00pm

Sunday 12:00pm | 3:00pm
Click to add a blog post for Churros King on Zomato

Fillos Souvlaki

Gone is BurraBerkshires free range food van from the Hamlet and up popped Canberra’s newest Greek eatery: Fillo Souvlaki, which opened less than 3 weeks ago. I hadn’t been to the Hamlet in ages (in my mind) and while I was tempted to go to good ol’ faithfuls like Broddogs and Mr. Papa, but I couldn’t help but try something new.

The menu from Fillos Souvlaki, what would you order?Souvlaki pita lamb souvlaki wrapped in traditional pita bread with tomato, lettuce, onion, tzatziki and chips ($12.50). I wanted something easy to eat not knowing if I was going to get a seat or not so I opted for a pita bread wrap that had my favourite things in it: Greek lamb, tzatziki all wrapped together with chips inside. It was a nice mix of ingredients, between the refreshing flavours between the fresh salad and the sauce, it meant that it wasn’t too meat heavy, but I did expected the lamb to be a little more tender and less chewy.I didn’t have to wait long at all for my order, I was trying to instagram a photo but they were just too quick. I don’t know if I’ll have cravings for souvlaki pita like I do for a chanchito or a roast meat roll from the Spit Shack but the addition of a new unique food van is always welcome to increase food choices at the Hamlet.

Venue: Fillos Souvlaki

Address: The Hamlet, 16 Lonsdale Street, Braddon, Canberra, 2612

Opening hours:

Wednesday – Thursday 12:00 pm – 2:30 pm | 5:30 pm – 9:00 pm

Friday – Saturday 12:00 pm – 2:30 pm | 5:30 pm – 10:00 pm

Sunday 12:00 pm – 3:00 pm

Click to add a blog post for Fillos Souvlaki on Zomato

Marble and Grain

It was Monday night and although Marble and Grain wasn’t my first/second/third or even my fourth choice of places to eat, I had seen an influx of instagrammed photos recently and mainly because it was open, that I asked my friends meet me there for dinner.When we walked in, I didn’t expect the premises to be so big but it expands over several shop fronts and it is a bar on one side and restaurant with a big open kitchen on the other. It is the restaurant for the 5 star Avenue Hotel and it proceeded to become quite busy over the duration we were there considering it was a Monday night.     Complimentary bread and butter to start.Starters~

Truffle and parmesan arancini served with garlic mayo (5 for $10.00). These were delicious, the inside was cheesy (not that much truffle though), the outer coating was crispy and the sauce went really well with it.

 
Chorizo corn dogs with smokey tomato relish (4 for $9.00). I would have thought these would have been waaaay more cute if that had sticks piercing through them but I just stabbed my fork through them and dealt with it. The battered coating didn’t do much but the chorizo was full of flavour and made up for it and it definitely needed the tomato relish.
Entree~

Seared scallops cauliflower, water cress and smoked chorizo oil ($19.00). While I shared two smaller plates which were the price equivalent of this one entrée, the boys didn’t regret their choice at all and I barely sampled any of this dish but TimmyC did give me a bit of the scallops. It was naturally sweet, had a good sear and paired perfectly with the little pieces of chorizo that came with it.

 
Mains~

12hr braised beef short rib 500g smoked carrots, cavolo netro and herb jus ($35.00).I’ve had a really good short rib from Temporada and so I had high hopes for this dish, but I found that the sticky glaze felt like it coated the inside of my mouth and proceeded keep going down my throat. The meat itself was very tender and the puree helped to cut through that sticky feeling. Despite being 500g, I found some of that dead weight to be in the big bone that was attached and I was still hungry after my main, lucky for me Timmy couldn’t finish his and I helped him out.

The Grill~ all served with paris mash, sautéed spinach, bone marrow and herb jus.

Scotch fillet grass fed 300g ($36.00). Although I have found Chifley’s has ruined me for steak at other restaurants, this was really nice and I found it to be the best tasting steak on the table; I probably ate just a little over half of TimmyC’s dish. I’m not the biggest fan of bone marrow, I find it too rich even for me, it is like eating really wobbly fat which I don’t mind on a steak if it is seared well.

Rib eye steak special 500g ($40.00). My friend was really disappointed about the way his steak was cooked, although he wouldn’t let the wait staff know and just complained as he cut through pieces of his steak that was definitely cooked beyond rare as he had ordered.Sirloin steak Travale pasture fed angus 250g ($36.00). My other friend was also less than impressed with his steak, something between the taste of the meat and way it was cooked just couldn’t be compared to the steaks that we had a Chifley’s.Sides~

Roast sweet corn with bacon salt ($9.00). I know I am constantly disappointed with corn at restaurants but a juicy sweet corn goes so well with so much meat. There was a slight delay with my corn and when I brought it up with my waitress, she said that she would check on it (it was probably forgotten). When she returned she said that she was sorry for the hold up and that the corn would be taken off the bill which I thought was really nice. The corn itself was sweet and was covered in a salt that I wouldn’t identify as bacon but was nice nonetheless.Desserts~

White chocolate brulee berries, basil and roasted hazelnuts ($14.00). TimmyC pushed his dessert forward and asked me and a friend to taste it, without hesitation I dug my spoon in tasted it and spat it out immediately. After confirmation that it wasn’t just TimmyC’s taste buds and that there was something definitely wrong with this dessert, I called the very polite waitress over and told her that this dessert was utterly salty. She made a puzzled face and was very apologetic, we suggested to get the chefs to taste and we all peered over from afar to see the chef’s reaction was similar to ours. They had mistakenly caramelised the top with salt rather than sugar, an easy mistake to do when comparing the ingredients but it had devastating effects in our mouths and I expected an establishment like this not to make that type of mistake. The waitress apologised a lot but we knew it wasn’t her fault personally, TimmyC was able to either wait for another brulee to be made or choose another dessert and his dessert and coffee were taken off the bill.This looked like a ‘berry’ big mess, I later on found photos of other people’s brulee on Instagram it was plated out much nicer than this.

Banoffee cheesecake banana, chocolate shavings and dulce de leche ($14.00). After the debacle of his first dessert, TimmyC had tasted his friend’s dessert and decided that this would be his replacement dessert, although after it was given to him I pointed out that the first dessert had vanilla bean ice cream and his had mango which didn’t really tie in with his caramelised banana and dulce de leche. I called the waitress over again who was scared something else went wrong, I just told her about the flavours of ice cream and she said that it wouldn’t be a problem to give him vanilla bean ice cream and that it was rather delicious and he had to try it. The third plate of dessert was brought to him and TimmyC just wanted it to be good so he could just enjoy his dessert. The caramelised banana and looked beautiful and went very well with the ice cream and dulce de leche, but I found the cheesecake itself a bit bland and out-of-place. TimmyC really liked the pop rocks.

Dark chocolate tart chocolate mousse, honeycomb and vanilla bean gelato ($14.00).Petit fours homemade delicacies ($8.00). After having one and a half meals, I thought I would be conservative and order the petit fours while also gauging TimmyC’s dessert if it wasn’t enough. Tonight’s petit fours consisted of a chocolate bonbon it was dark chocolate and therefore was really intense and left a slightly bitter cocoa aftertaste in my mouth; chocolate brownie this wasn’t decadent at all regardless of its small size, which I found as a refreshing surprise; Turkish delight I don’t usually like Turkish delight but I found myself eating most of this morsel and a raspberry in chantilly cream mini tart I saved this for my last bite because of the fresh raspberry which I adore, berries pair perfectly with cream so it was a match made in heaven.What turned out to be a complimentary flat white coffee.

Despite the sour, or should I say salty note that the meal ended on, I didn’t love Marble and Grain because there wasn’t anything that made them unique. If you were doing things that were heavily on the meaty side, I expect it to be done really well. The service was wonderful and attentive, the mains are okay but the starters and entrée were the star of the night which only meant the rest of the night went down hill from there. It would probably be a nice place to go for after work drinks and nibbles.

Venue: Marble and Grain

Address: Avenue Hotel 25 Mort Street, Braddon, Canberra ACT 2606

Phone02 6246 9555

Opening hoursMonday – Sunday  6:00AM – 12:00AM

Websitewww.marbleandgrain.com.au/
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BurraBerkshires @ The Hamlet

Pulled pork free range pork slow cooked with a light BBQ sauce with a blob of sour cream ($8.00 small). This would probably surprise a lot of people that I chose this dish but when you’re at the Hamlet, you want to try as much as possible so a no/low carb option would pair nicely with let’s say… A huge hot dog from Brod Dogs and maybe also a papa from Mr. Papa. 🙂 (Yes YummyLummy, we also went to Frugii afterwards).

This is how much I nibbled until TimmyC finally came back with more food.IMG_9616At first I couldn’t decide what I wanted between the pulled pork and the pulled lamb but the lovely ladies from BurraBerkshires told me that the pulled pork is better in their opinion which took the guess work out of deciding. There were a lot of sides and I thought we had to choose one to go with the meal but no, you get ALL of them! That’s right; you get rice, citrus cous cous, chick peas with grilled zucchini and feta, spinach and rocket salad and a summer salad. They were all really good, I didn’t get bored because there was so much variety in one meal and yes that pork was very delicious and went well with all that sauce.

I, like everyone else didn’t read the sign properly. You get ALL of the sides which is good because they all sound fabulous and delicious. This is the menu, what would you have chosen?IMG_9612

IMG_9613A close up of the pulled pork. It was very tender, juicy and it just paired so well with sour cream.IMG_9615I was slightly embarrassed that while I was instamming (yes I have a problem), one of the ladies from inside the grass carpeted van came out and hand delivered my meal as I sat right outside at the closest table. I thought that was just a lovely touch and they seemed so friendly.

After looking around, I realised that BurraBerkshires was the only one not selling things in a roll/bun/doughy pizza base/wrap. So if you’re looking for good food with variety or just something light and flavoursome to go with something else, I would definitely recommend coming here.

Venue: BurraBerkshires @ The Hamlet

Address: 16 Lonsdale Street, Braddon

Opening hours:

Tuesday – Sunday 12 – 2pm

Thursday – Saturday 6 – 8:30pm

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Lonsdale Street Eatery

My friends wanted to eat something meaty and this was one of the first places that I thought of. I’ve been meaning to go to Lonsdale Street Eatery and try their real American wood smoked BBQ, their menu states: “our meat and fish is slow cooked using white oak in our Old Hickory Pit, custom made in Missouri, USA”.

Here is their menu, there are so many things to try. What would you have chosen?2015/01/img_7894.jpgNo one ordered a salad but at least there was the option.2015/01/img_7893.jpgIt is a ‘order and pay at the counter’ type of situation which is convenient for the establishment but my friend who ordered a ‘platter for two’ two people ahead of me, received her food while I was still ordering at the counter! Sure everything has been slow cooked for hours and ready to serve, but that serving time is ridiculous!

Their table numbers are hard to miss2015/01/img_7902.jpgPlatter for two brisket, pulled pork, 2 ribs, slaw, fries and dill pickles ($39.00). I cannot believe how fast this came out! The reason why I didn’t want to share in this platter was because I’m constantly being disappointed with brisket and pulled pork and I’d rather eat other things.2015/01/img_7906.jpgLots of condiments, some on the table and more at the counter. Be carefull one of them is vinegar!2015/01/img_7907.jpgI might have gotten a bit crazy, all this food was just for me.2015/01/img_7915.jpgI have a confession, I got greedy and I didn’t want to share; I ordered a lot of food that was very filling. I didn’t finish everything but I made a fair dent.2015/01/img_7920.jpgRoyal with cheese, 150g hand ground beef patty served in our custom made buns ($14.00). I must say that this was a really good burger despite having pickles, which I did eat for two bites before discarding. It tastes more like an American Burger with the type of cheese, sauce and pickles. The bun was really nice but I discarded the top, if I had to give myself a chance to eat other things like mac ‘n’ cheese, chips and ribs, something had to give. The patty was really juicy and delicious.2015/01/img_7917.jpgMac ‘n’ Cheese ($4.50). This wasn’t what I was expecting. It tasted more like the pasta was mixed through with a bechamel sauce rather than a strong cheesy taste. I was slightly disappointed and I probably wouldn’t order this again.2015/01/img_7916.jpg5 hour smoked pork ribs (3 pieces $15.00). Ribs are always expensive but upon reflection this was rather more pricey than your average smoked meats eatery. The ribs were cooked very well, they were super tender and had a great smokey taste.2015/01/img_7913.jpg“Lonsdale Fried Chicken” chicken tenders, chilli mayo ($8.00). I did share one dish with a friend, I probably didn’t need it but I wanted to taste it. They were nice and crispy but I wish there was more lime for a tangy flavour.2015/01/img_7910.jpgI love the cute little terrarium and the variety of different seating around the place.2015/01/img_7895.jpgMy advice would be to not listen to your greedy inner self. I really wanted to try dessert but there was no way I was going to fit that in. It was a risk ordering a burger when they specialize in American BBQ but it paid off, I get hungry every time I look at that burger. I look forward to coming here again, the atmosphere is laid back and it is also family friendly. It is BYO pretty good if you have a particular beer or cider that you want to wash all this meaty goodness down.

Casual relaxed atmosphere, if it wasn’t so cold that night, we would have sat out here.2015/01/img_7898.jpg

Venue: Lonsdale Street Eatery

Address: 23 Lonsdale Street, Braddon

Phone: (02) 6247 9882

Opening hours:

Monday – Wednesday 6am – 4pm

Thursday – Saturday 6am – 9.30pm

Sunday 7am – 7pm

Websitehttp://lonsdalestreetroasters.com/eatery/
Lonsdale Street Roasters 23 on Urbanspoon

April’s caravan

I’m sure you have all heard of The Hamlet, heck I’m sure most of you have eaten at there as well (but if you haven’t you must go!). What I thought was the cutest addition between all the meat-a-licious food vans was April’s caravan, serving old school milkshakes and drinks in a funky retro pink caravan.2015/01/img_8785.jpgI love polka dots!2015/01/img_8786.jpgThe menu: what flavour of milkshake would you choose?2015/01/img_8789.jpgI love this old school coffee maker!2015/01/img_8787.jpgDeluxe shake Apple pie ($8.00). I was torn about what milkshake flavour to get between caramel and lime but the lovely girl who was serving me suggested I try a deluxe flavour when I can. Oh my! I could not go past an apple pie. My eyes lit up when I saw that they used Tilba milk. The milkshake had lovely notes of cinnamon and I loved the addition of a short bread biscuit.2015/01/img_8790.jpgA close up of my deluxe ‘Apple pie’ milkshake. I probably would have preferred some ice cream blended into it but you need a good drinks/sweets van when you’re surrounded by food trucks with lots of savoury options. They also have cans of soft drink for $2.50.2015/01/img_8796.jpgVenue: April’s Caravan

Address: @ The Hamlet 16 Lonsdale St Braddon, ACT

Facebookwww.facebook.com/aprils.caravan

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Frugii Dessert Laboratory

Today was a foodie’s dream as the highly anticipated Frugii Dessert Laboratory had finally opened their doors. I had watched throughout the day as my news feed and Instagram account was covered in photos of a gorgeous cake cabinet filled with interesting looking desserts and I day dreamed about what I would get when I got there.2015/01/img_8615.jpgI had arranged with my friends to meet at the Hamlet at 6:30pm, we did the adult thing and got dinner first which was our first mistake. After eating my dinner at a record-breaking pace of 30 minutes (which is a huge deal for me) we whisked off to Frugii after hearing rumours that cakes were quickly disappearing.

The more experienced foodies such as Michelle from HerCanberra had dessert first and then later on went to the Hamlet for dinner. She’s a smart girl, but even just after 6pm when she went there were only two types of cakes left.

Rumours were true but one cake is definitely better than zero2015/01/img_8627.jpgThere we were at the back of the line which then quickly turned into the middle of the line as other people joined the queue. I looked at the cake cabinet and there were only three slices left of one type of cake, I felt a little nervous as there was several people in front of us including another fellow food blogger ‘In the Taratory‘. Another cake was taken, now with two people in front of me I held my breath praying that they wanted ice-cream and not cake… Phew! They bee lined straight towards the ice cream.

We’re getting closer to the counter!2015/01/img_8604.jpgI greeted John with a very big smile, ‘one piece of cake please’ I said proudly when I realise the people in front didn’t want cake. Despite being busy John didn’t mind chatting to us while we were being served and he was making us coffee on his gorgeous machine, he and Ed are always so friendly and I’m glad to see they were still like that even after a long busy day which was not over yet.

The very lovely couple John and Ed hard at work keeping up with the demand of their delectable product. I love your new hairstyle btw John!2015/01/img_8611.jpgA strong latte ($3.00 based on mathematics). This was deliberately made strong by request which meant the coffee was slightly bitter but it was very smooth TimmyC described.2015/01/img_8626.jpgFrugii cake pumpkin and olive oil sponge with a strawberry and raspberry jelly, champagne mousse topped off with a white chocolate glaze ($6.00). I couldn’ taste all the complexity of the cake in one mouthful. When broken up in its separate components I could taste the flavours (although I wouldn’t have been able to pick pumpkin and olive oil) but altogether the dominant flavours were the jelly and mousse with a subtle white chocolate after taste. I wish the jelly wasn’t so stiff as it made the cake a little harder to cut downwards with a spoon.

The dessert I really wanted to try was the choux pastry with the lemon lime and bitters.2015/01/img_8608.jpgSmall tub of ice cream ($5.00). We had asked for chocolate and vanilla and it was serendipitous that John accidentally gave us chocolate and pistachio. Pistachio was absolutely delightful and I’m going to add it to my list of ‘favourites’. My friend also got a small tub which consisted of the very popular salted butter caramel and cookies and cream. I’m not the biggest fan of cookies and cream with its usual chunky texture with stale cookies but this had no chunks of cookies but a beautiful blended cookie flavour, yum!2015/01/img_8614.jpgBig tub of ice cream ($10.00). My friend tried lemon myrtle and we all agreed it was nice. This tub could seriously fit a lot of ice cream.

My friend had eaten a fair chunk of his ice cream before I remembered to take a photo.2015/01/img_8617-0.jpgThere is limited seating but it is a very cute design and use of space.2015/01/img_8619.jpgThere is not distinct sign at the front of the Ori building but that didn’t matter, apparently everyone eventually found their way inside. If you don’t know where he is, you have to look for this funky black building on Lonsdale Street. I hear it is cash only at this point(?).2015/01/img_8621.jpgIt’s amazing, Frugii only opened their doors at midday and before 8pm they had gone from 8 types of cakes/dessert down to one and then quickly none.

I wish John and Ed the very best and they will definitely be seeing me more often!2015/01/img_8625.jpg

Venue: Frugii Dessert Laboratory

Address30 Lonsdale St Braddon, ACT

Phone: 0438 366 368

Websitewww.frugii.com/

Opening hours: Wednesday – Sunday 12pm – 11pm

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Eightysix

It has come to TimmyC’s and my attention that have not been to Eightysix for a full meal, dessert yes, supper yes, but not for a three course dinner and we had to rectify that immediately.IMG_6206.JPGWe were very impressed with all the timing, the Eightysix restaurant ran like a well oiled machine. Our reservation was for 6 pm, we ordered two courses by 6:08pm, received both entrees by 6:20pm with a nice break in between, mains arrived by 6:40 and we were out the door easily at 7:30pm despite my slow eating and also ordering two desserts.

We booked for the seats at the bar so we could watch the kitchen but towards the end of the night my bum was getting sore.IMG_6216.JPG

IMG_6238.JPGEntree~

Duck buns ($8.00 each). I love eating buns like this. The bun itself was steamed well but it wasn’t the fluffiest bun I’ve eaten. It had a little heat to it which really brought out the flavours of the duck and the cooling effects of the cucumber.IMG_6221.JPG

IMG_6219.JPGEl Loco hot dogs ($12.00 each). So it turned out that we paid $24 for some hot dogs. They were okay, nothing spectacular but I loved how the delicately shaved cheese basically melted in your mouth like a snow flake.IMG_6226.JPG

IMG_6228.JPGMains~

Bag salmon with house pickles ($36.00). I’ve never heard of ‘bag salmon’ but it was amazing and incredibly delicate. I’m used to salmon having a distinct taste but this tasted like a ‘white flesh fish’. We really enjoyed the pickled vegetables and the sweet orange segments but I am not a fan of radish.IMG_6235.JPG

IMG_6233.JPGGhetto beef with salsa verde ($48.00). The texture of the sear was noticeable in my mouth but the beef was slightly dry having been cut into pieces. Rocket and parmesan always go well together but I feel that there wasn’t anything particularly special about this dish and I was a little disappointed.IMG_6241.JPGThose lemon slices were so ridiculously juicy, my mouth is watering right now.IMG_6240.JPGDrinks~

Coke ($4.50). Nothing exciting, I just liked how they added the cute straw. TimmyC always insists that coke in a glass bottle tastes better. IMG_6237.JPGDessert~

Banoffee pie ($16.00). The caramel wasn’t overly sweet and almost over powered by the banana. I didn’t particularly like this dessert, I would have preferred one from Dobinsons.IMG_6248.JPGThey probably intended for the salt to bring out the sweeter flavours but I didn’t really like the pretzels.IMG_6251.JPGIMG_6247-0.JPGCheesecake ($15.00). It is a deconstructed cheesecake and I absolutely love the use of a crunchy granola as the cheesecake ‘base’. I thought the white chocolate snow was a choking hazard if you inhaled too closely. A very unique take on a common dessert.IMG_6244.JPGNothing much to look at but it was a very delicious dessert.IMG_6245.JPGWhat is becoming the ‘norm’ prices in Braddon is becoming ridiculous, there was one time I came here for supper and my friend and I shared a few pieces of fried chicken which ended up being $30. Looking back at the hot dogs, I didn’t expect to be paying so much for 2 tiny hot dogs (I can’t wait for Akiba to open and what it promises to deliver).

The vibe is always cheery at Eightysix, it is amazing to watch the kitchen work and the staff were very friendly, quirky and attentive.

Venue: Eightysix

AddressElouera St, Mode 3 BuildingBraddon, ACT

Phone: 02 6161 8686

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