European Gourmet Food Safari in Sydney

Come with me on a gourmet journey through Sydney.

My friends know me so well and for my Christmas gift they purchased me a voucher to have a Gourmet Safari. I chose the European Gourmet Food Safari in Sydney to experience a lot of Europe crammed into one exciting and delicious day.

Stop#:1

Starting the day right with a coffee and their famous ricotta cake that did not disappoint.

Venue: Pasticceria Papa

Address: Shop LG 1–4, 75–79 Hall Street, Bondi Beach

The one thing to buy/try: Ricotta cake or get some freshly shaved ham

Pasticceria Papa Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato It is hard to concentrate on anything when there are so many sweets.


Stop#:2

We left with bags in hand and samples in our mouths. If you don’t know what to get, the kind and friendly staff will help you out.

Venue: Russkis Deli

Address: 131 Bondi Rd, Bondi NSW 2026

The one thing to buy/try: piroshki, pashka or some delicious European sausages.


Stop#:3

I was really surprised with the variety in this shop that didn’t just include the traditional bakery wares. The chocolate Kugelhopf is bound to impress but you need a lot of people to share it with or a pair of stretchy pants.

Venue: Wellington Cake Shop

Address: 157 Bondi Rd, Bondi NSW 2026

The one thing to buy/try: cream cheese puffs!I could have 10 of these cream cheese puffs right now!


Stop#:4

This is truly cheese heaven. I left with $90 worth of cheese in my hand and everyone I shared it with was also really impressed. They made me eat AND like Stilton cheese which I am still amazed about and they also taught me a lot about ‘ripe’ cheeses and stabilisers.

Venue: Formaggi Ocello

Address: Shop 16/425 Bourke St, Surry Hills NSW 2010

The one thing to buy/try: Guccio Italian bloomy rind cheese (seriously, it is like liquid gold), Stilton with truffle honey or raspberry and herb jelly.  You probably don’t need to know this but they deliver Australia wide.

Formaggi Ocello Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato So many samples, so many amazing flavours.


Stop#:5

If I lived in Sydney I would buy my house in Chester Hill. I love how they have every smoked and cured meat product imaginable and all at decent prices.

Venue: Ivan’s Butchery

Address: 141 Waldron Rd, Chester Hill NSW 2162

The one thing to buy/try: Cevapi, pork crackling, anything really! My mouth is salivating as I type this.Ivan was really generous and let us try so much and it was all definitely worth trying.


Stop#:6

Just when we didn’t think we could fit any more food in, we stopped and had a long late lunch. We ate and enjoyed everything! The hospitality was really warm, the menu was authentic and the food was really good.

Venue: Na Zdrowie

Address: 161 Glebe Point Rd, Glebe NSW 2037

The one thing to buy/try: Everything! Seriously, I loved everything that we ate at this restaurant even though I was a bit sceptical of the description of seasoned pork lard.Na Zdrowie Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato From pierogi to bigos to placki, you have to order it all!

We all had such a fun time on the tour, it is definitely worth going on. I learnt so much, ate so much and bought much much more, I hope to go on a different tour soon.

 

Katers restaurant 

We had just booked our accommodation in Bowral when I saw the Groupon voucher that was an absolute steal for Katers restaurant at Peppers Manor House. The deal included three courses and a bottle of wine for $85.00 for two people.

We were slightly amused with our waitress. She was an older woman who didn’t seem too fussed that the restaurant was really busy and had a very blasé attitude about everything as she casually pottered about.

Groupon voucher: three courses and a bottle of wine for $85.00 for two people, but I’ve written the prices from the menu.

The white and red wine options that are included in the Groupon voucher.Complimentary bread and butter~

The bread was served warm and there was plenty of butter, the perfect combination!Amuse bouche~

Rockmelon with goats cheese, ash and prosciutto. When I asked our blasé waitress about where the prosciutto was, she simply shrugged and said she would ask the kitchen but she never came back with an answer.Entrees~

Seared scallops and Rodriquez spiced chorizo, roasted cauliflower puree, squid ink meringue, coriander oil ($24.00). These scallops were much plumper than the ones we had at lunch and it has been a while since I’ve had such delicious scallops. The chorizo was also very nice, while the puree really help meld all the strong flavours together. We were very happy with our entree and were quite excited for what was to come.Confit quail terrine, toffee parsnip, spear, watercress, cumin ($23.00).Mains~

Pan seared duck breast, kumara, hazelnut crumble, cherry glaze, whiskey coffee gel ($40.00). My friend joked and asked where the rest of his carrots were as they mostly appeared to be the tops. I jokingly replied that they were on the lamb dishes.Maugers lamb back strap, braised baby leek, roasted garlic crushed, roasted Kipfler potato, eggplant caviar, chilli fig, rosemary jus ($39.00). I was really disappointed with the portion sizes; there was just two tiny pieces of lamb for almost 40 bucks, I’m glad we came in with a voucher. Marseille bouillabaisse, today’s market fish, cold water langoustine, scallop, saffron rouille ($40.00). I loved the intense prawn head flavour throughout the soup base and it had nice meaty seafood textures to compliment but it is these same aspects that made my friend not like her main. It goes to show each to their own.Desserts~

Chestnut bitter chocolate torte, raspberry egg, espresso and hazelnut ice cream ($21.00).Lemon panna cotta, rhubarb foam, coconut parfait, lime cannoli ($18.00). This had way too much gelatin in it, we could tell from the moment it was placed down in front of us with its stiff movement.Blood orange and almond pudding, lychee sorbet, pomegranate ($21.00). We had to remind the waitress that this dessert came with lychee sorbet and she rushed back into the kitchen to have it added.Toffee apple tea cake, camomile  ice cream ($18.00). I liked how the cake looked like a cross between a toffee apple and a real apple but made the cake very messy and difficult to eat. The cake’s sweetness comes from its sticky toffee coating which was balanced by the ice cream.House cheese: aerated Manuka honey blue, lavender Bergamot, rosemary and thyme labna, local Camembert, local goat’s cheese, selection of breads and crackers ($26.00). The last cheese platter I ate/stole from was amazing (see my post here) but I left most of this on the platter. I found some of the cheese bland while some of the other cheeses were pungent, especially the goats cheese.We definitely got our money’s worth considering my three courses was more expensive than the voucher for two people. The food quality was okay, but definitely nowhere near the calibre of which they had advertised to be (it is supposed to be a hatted restaurant by the Australian Good Food and Travel Guide). It was a shame because they started the night off so strong with our entrees.

I think everything sounded really fancy on paper but the execution missed the mark and therefore the prices are too high for the actual food quality. I wouldn’t come here again considering there is so much good food around the Bowral area.

Venue: Katers restaurant

Address: Kater Rd, Sutton Forest, NSW

Phone: (02) 4860 3102

 

Katers Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

The Pancake Place

The Pancake Place might seem like an unusual choice for dinner but they have an extensive savoury crepe menu and then there are some people who still act like they are five and choose sweet pancakes for dinner *looks at TimmyC*.

This establishment has been in Port Macquarie for more than 20 years and it brings much nostalgia to those who used to come here for a treat as a kid, not because it is still open and serving delicious pancakes, but because the decor, friendly hospitality and uniform have not changed much since.

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If we are going to do a kid indulgent meal, we may as well complete it with an iced caramel ($6.50) and iced coffee ($6.50). It is very nicely decorated with cream, ‘tv snacks’ and sprinkles.
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Large stack of 3 pancakes ($14.90) with extra ice cream ($1.50) and extra syrup. Thick fluffy pancakes that have never disappointed. I’m glad that we got an extra scoop otherwise I don’t think they would have gone far enough for three pancakes. I also like how if you want extra syrup they leave it with you at the table.

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Gourmet crepes~

Each savoury crepe comes with a soft roll with delicious butter. The meals came out at lightning speed, drinks and water came out within minutes of ordering and in less than 10 minutes all meals were on the table.

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Bologneseprime ground beef with onions, mushrooms, garlic, tomato and red wine, topped with a mild cheese sauce (lite bites $16.90).

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Chicken and asparaguschicken, mild cheese and asparagus with our creamy wine sauce (lite bites $18.90).

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Mexicanprime ground beef with chilli, capsicum and beans topped with melted cheese (lite bites $16.90). Obviously not authentic, just an Australian Mexican version complete with Doritos corn chips. I chose a small one so I could fit in sweet pancakes for dessert but even after eating the small one I was stuffed. Lite bites just mean there is less filling. The salad was very bright filled with unusual things such as kiwi fruit, watermelon, zucchini, red cabbage, pretzels, tomatoes, pineapple, canned fruit and fresh strawberries.

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Always fast friendly service here at the Pancake Place, but I think that the savoury crepes lacked a bit of salt and flavour having only used very mild cheeses and the ‘cream of the crop’ choice on the menu would be their sweet pancake options.

Venue: The Pancake Place

Address: Clarence Street, Port Macquarie, New South Wales 2444, Australia

Phone: (02) 6584544 They apparently don’t take reservations during the peak holiday season, it is a first come first serve basis but we didn’t have any trouble getting a seat for dinner.

Pancake Place on Urbanspoon

I have gone crackers for cheese platters

So this is my fourth cheese platter in a week. I must be loving my cheese or overly social- maybe both! Yum! Today’s cheese platter occasion is for the ‘Big Cake Bake’ in support of the Australian Red Cross (I made Portugese tarts« will post about later, the cheese is for my savoury side).

What’s on the board: strawberries, crackers, cabanossi, olives, South cape fruit and almond cheese, Jindi triple cream Brie, Mersey valley club vintage cheddar and Maggie Beer’s quince paste.

Great to see an Australian triple cream brie as I’ve been eating lots of French ones. This big 500g baby was only $12.99 @ Costco!

Other things to try:

Maggie Beer Spiced Pear paste + Mersey Valley vintage cheddar– my friend got me hooked onto this combo! So evil but so good!

Red seedless grapes– currently imported from the US but they are oh so sweet

French Triple cream brie– available @ the Fyshwick delicatessens, a bit more expensive but very good

A good dessert wine– loving the Brown Brother’s whole wine collection!