Teddy Picker’s

It had not been 12 hours since we arrived home when TimmyC asked me if I wanted to eat breakfast at home or out. After 13+ years together, you’d think he would know the answer to that question. I had the exact place in mind of where I wanted brunch as soon as I was back in Canberra; the newly opened Teddy Picker’s in Campbell.

As we drove past roads lined with parked cars, it was reminding me of the almost impossible car parking situation in Braddon but we eventually found a spot a short stroll away. We were met with a relatively short line and we were told it was going to be a 10-15 minute wait until a table for two was available. With that, TimmyC ordered what appeared to be a very tiny small coffee ($4.00) and a Dream Cuisine croissant ($5.00) for whilst we waited outside.I love the funky interior setting of the cafe, the natural light through the windows makes it the perfect place to take food photos.Brunch is ready!Large flat white ($4.50). TimmyC said it was a nice smooth coffee but not the nicest one he has ever had.

The coffee had beautiful latte art before TimmyC dumped all the sugar on top.Vermont Chai infused tea recommended with soy ($5.50). I didn’t think the taste of chai was very strong but it was very milky and frothy.Pressed French toast blueberry custard, lemon yoghurt, macadamia ($17.50). There is an ever so slightly crunchy exterior of the French toast before you hit the squishy soft almost pudding-like centre. I like the subtle sweetness on the surface of the toast but I felt that the blueberry custard didn’t add anything except for visual effect. We really enjoyed the yoghurt + fresh blueberries + toasted macadamia combo.How soft and squishy does that French toast centre look!Eggs Benedict Christmas ham, smoked hollandaise, rye muffin, poached eggs ($16.90) + Teddy’s hash brown ($4.50). I think the Teddy’s hash brown makes everything better; add it to your benny, whopper, heck even your oats! I love how it was crunchy on the outside and soft and potatoey on the inside. TimmyC substituted the Christmas ham for Pialligo Estate bacon which accentuated the smokiness of the hollandaise. The rye muffin was a little tough to cut through but I really enjoyed this breakfast.

The big plate makes it look like something is missing from the breakfast.The eggs were cooked perfectly.This hash brown is what you need in your life right now!Double points to Teddy Picker’s for an awesome extensive tea menu and their collaboration with local businesses such as Tea Garden Co and Red Brick Espresso.

Once we were seated, the wait staff were very attentive, friendly and efficient. There wasn’t a long wait time for our food after ordering and our water bottle was never empty. I cannot wait to go back and try more of their menu.

Venue: Teddy Picker’s

Address: 53/65 Constitution Ave, Campbell ACT 2612

Phone: no phone number- don’t bother booking, they only take walk ins

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Teddy Picker's Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - ZomatoThey even have a cute ‘dog bar’ area for your furry companions.

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Fancy Nance – Melbourne series

After back to back eating sessions, I probably wasn’t feeling the hungriest when we stepped into Fancy Nance for high tea but FOMO got the best of me and I could not pass up the ‘I’m so Fancy’ option while my more sensible eating companions opted for the smaller ‘Pink Flamingo’ high tea.

Follow the signs for Fancy Nance.
A very mad hatter’s tea party feeling as you walk in.
I love the tea pot and tea cups lights.I’m so Fancy ($65.00)~

 

Despite the order written on the menu, things came a bit out of order but you did receive sweet things first and then ended on savoury which is usually how I eat things anyway. They must be going off the premise that life is short, eat dessert first.

 

‘Not so late’ carrot cake. I could not stop smiling while eating this. In short this was a deconstructed carrot cake but it was so tasty. The soft torn cake pieces delicately sat on top of the whipped cream cheese was genius but my favourite part was the candied nuts and different coloured carrots. This made me very excited for what was still to come.
Complete with a carrot top!
I felt a bit rushed when this board was placed in front of me with four different things on it. I didn’t eat fast enough and some of the ice creams started to melt and drip everywhere.
Bubbles, marzipan, rum fruits and roast cinnamon ice cream. This was more complex than what meets the eye, just below the bubble surface was many complex layers of different textures and flavours.
Cocoa nib creme brulee, pineapple and pina colada ice cream. This might have tasted sweeter if I had started off with this before the other desserts but by the time I got to this, the ice cream had melted into a puddle of mess and flavours weren’t as prominent because of the sweeter flavours from the other desserts.
Chai panna cotta, pear cremeux, ginger and honey. You had to dig down to get all the layers but the chai panna cotta flavour was the most prominent aftertaste. The texture of the panna cotta was incredibly smooth.
Macaron I couldn’t tell what flavour it was, after eating the entire board the sweet flavours started to meld into one.
Scones with 2 jams – roast capsicum jam and some other jam that I didn’t really try. As full as I was, I could not stop eating these scones with roast capsicum jam and cream cheese, it was sweet yet felt savoury at the same time. This might not be for everyone but I certainly enjoyed it.
Pastries de jour. I started to slow right down after the scones because by this point, things arrived one after another and I could barely keep up. I slow nibbled at this but I didn’t find either one particularly extraordinary. 
Tapioca cracker, tomato and ricotta. There was a nice break before the savouries started to arrive and like most people who have a separate dessert stomach, I have a separate one for savouries. This was a nice transitioning course from sweet to savoury as it was definitely salty but it wasn’t heavy or overwhelming.
Taco de Nance tuna, strawberries, avocado, tomato sorbet. This might sound like a strange combination but it really works well together, although I did find the corn taco shell getting a bit soggy and hard to eat as the sorbet melted. With the fish and fruit combined, it was refreshing on the palette.
Chinese chicken balls. These came out extremely hot and not as I expected, I assumed it would be more like a meat ball rather than a doughy interior with a meat centre but it did soak up the delicious sauce very well.
Beef cheeks with vanilla and purple carrots. This was really tender and the sweetness of the vanilla and carrots balanced out the heaviness of the meat. It wasn’t as good as the beef from MoVida, but it was definitely memorable.
Tea, coffee or hot chocolate. We ordered our beverages first and since we had so much sweet on the way, I opted for green tea. 
Someone TimmyC managed to squeeze in an iced coffee with everything else ($5.50).

Pink Flamingo ($45.00)~
 
Bubbles, marzipan, rum fruits and roast cinnamon ice cream.
Chocolate and cherry long john. This was the pick of the Pink Flamingo high tea, so it was a shame that it was one of the first things to come out. It was like a cronut with many flaky layers with the perfect amount of cream and sweet toppings.Creamsticle. I thought these were adorable. Not much particular flavour to them but they are so teeny tiny.
Scone with 2 jams
Tapioca cracker, tomato and ricotta
Taco de Nance tuna, strawberries, avocado, tomato sorbet
Chinese chicken balls
Tea, coffee or hot chocolate
 
For a high tea with so many courses of sweet and savoury and also the obligatory high tea scones, it was definitely value for money compared to the high teas we get here in Canberra. What I thought was disappointing was for someone who specialises in sweets, I was hoping that Zumbo would push the envelope with his desserts and give me something new and exciting. I really enjoyed the carrot cake but from there, the dishes didn’t really compare; there were just lots of soft textured layered desserts. I thought the savouries had more variety and were more daring in flavour combinations and textures than the sweets. Still worth checking out though, it beats stake cake and tarts and crustless sandwiches any day.

 

Venue: Fancy Nance
Address: 21 Daly St, South Yarra VIC 3141
Phone: (03) 9826 0312

Fancy Nance Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Adore tea re-run

I was shocked to find out that one of my friends who loves tea had never been to Adore tea at Gold Creek Village so we made a date with more friends to go there immediately if not sooner. I booked a table inside because of the cold wet weather forecasted, which allowed us a two hour window for our reservation (I didn’t know there was a time limit, we just saw the next scheduled booking for the table). It is advisable to book ahead especially on the weekends as they are very busy and also have lots of varying high teas and parties (we happened to go on Mad Hatter’s tea party day).

We all chose a different tea which made for a very pretty photo, I went with classic chai blended with milk.I thought the colour of my friend’s berry tea was beautiful. Not a drop was wasted.My usual ‘go to’ food regardless of the time of day are their scones or the poffertjes but friend was telling me how nice the apple pie was. I was torn between choices but as soon as she said that she would go halves between the pie and scones, I was sorted.

Apple pie classic style apple pie served with vanilla ice-cream ($10.50). The pastry was very soft and semi sweet and apple pie obviously pairs perfectly with vanilla ice-cream, I just wish for the price that the pie was a little bigger or more filling. A close up of the apple pie.Scones served with cream and tea infused jams (about $9.50). Tea goes so well with scones so it almost seems like a ‘must’ when you come here. I really also enjoy their house-made jams.Chicken focaccia with gluten free bread (around $15.00). I looked over at my friend’s gluten free plate with envy. I usually am the savoury girl type and her plate looked goooood…I ‘adore’ this place, it’s a lovely venue to catch up over sweets and tea with friends and family. They are often very accommodating and the staff are super friendly and knowledgeable. Check in store or online for their various high tea days and live music sessions.

Venue: Adore tea

Address: Shop 6, Federation Square One, O’Hanlon Place, Nicholls, ACT 2913

Phone: (02) 6230 9962

Website: http://adoretea.com.au/

Opening hoursOpen Everyday: 10:00am to 5:30pm

Fridays: 10am to 7pm

Public Holidays: 10am to 4pm

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PappaRich – rerun

After hearing about complaints that I went to PappaRich without certain people, off we went together to play the ‘line ride’ to eat Malaysian food after their official opening (see my previous visit before they officially opened here). Initially there was 5 of us for the waiting ticket but after some delays we just cut the number down to 3,  we probably would have gotten in sooner if we initially only had the three of us but by the time we adjusted the number and got seated it ended up being a 40 minute wait. I didn’t find this too bad if you have ever waited for a table for yum cha in Sydney, but for those who aren’t used to it, they might consider the wait too long or the large crowd waiting around too daunting. The annoying thing is that you have to wait around for the ticket to be called, at least at Jamie’s Italian they give you a buzzer when a table becomes available so you can continue shopping until then.

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When we got inside, we were greeted with friendly faces and a bustling crowd of happy patrons.

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Drinks~

These drinks are perfect as a refreshing beverage on a hot Summer’s day.

Lemon Iced tea ($3.90).

Ribeana melon ($6.50).

a blurry photo of an Iced chocolate ($4.20).

and a Mango mania ($6.50).

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We were so excited about so many things, we just ordered what we wanted but the problem with that was the table couldn’t fit all our food despite conglomerating everything as it arrived and just when I thought everything complete, the noodles came and we had to pull up a chair to accommodate it.

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We ordered some things that I’ve already tried before like:

Hainan chicken rice set ($12.90).

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20131215-175459.jpgRoti canai with chicken curry ($12.50), 1 extra roti canai ($4.90).

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Then we ordered some new things:

Pappa deep fried chicken skin ($6.90). I wouldn’t eat this as a ‘main meal’ or anything but as a snack between mouthfuls of curry and roti, it made for an addictive salty snack. The unplucked feathers can be a bit off putting.

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Pappa Char Koay Teow wok-fried flat noodles with prawns, egg and bean sprouts. This dish is mildly spicy ($12.90). I was eager to order this because a Malaysian friend said that they used authentic noodles in their char koay teow here and I was keen to see what that meant. I was surprised to find that the noodles were thin almost like pad thai noodles, but overall I found that the dish a bit bland only consisting of egg and bean sprouts, some fish slices and only two prawns tossed to the side. I much prefer my noodles to have lots of shallots, soy sauce and fatty Chinese sausage.

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Even the fish pieces didn’t offer much in the way of taste. 20131215-175728.jpg

Satay mixed 3 sticks of chicken satay and 3 sticks of beef satay ($13.90). I am always wary of ordering anything other than chicken on a satay stick as I think the other meats get tough and over cooked and it was no different here. The beef satay sticks were hard to chew and were nowhere near as nice as the moist tender chicken. Stick to the chicken satay sticks! 20131215-175622.jpg

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Tandoori chicken ($8.90). I was surprised to find this on the menu but it was a moist chicken leg piece with all the spices served with a creamy yoghurt.

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Dessert~

Roti bom a variant of roti canai. It is thicker and sweeter and served with condensed milk and sugar ($7.90). I was determined to make space for the dessert roti that everyone kept talking about. It really is a thicker roti which made the centre more doughy. I didn’t think it was sweet enough or needed more condensed milk despite other people’s thoughts that it was sweet enough as is but I don’t think it is worth almost $8.00 for a bread with a bit of dip when for a few extra dollars you could get a whole meal with a roti canai. Sorry people, I really did want to love this.

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Despite saying I was full, it didn’t stop me from ‘tasting’ my friend’s meal as we were leaving the restaurant.

I’m used to having my silken tofu dessert with more of a gingery syrup but this had a very caramel/coffee taste to it. The texture was silky, smooth and perfect.

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Hainan toasted bread with peanut butter. This was one super thick paste of sticky peanut butter but overall nothing special.

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Even though I’ve been here twice and tried to order lots of things, there are still many menu items that I would like to try. If you don’t go overboard, a tasty meal can be rather cheap if you don’t mind a bit of a wait to get in.

High tea at Adore tea

It probably wasn’t the best weekend to do High tea at Adore Tea being the Father’s day weekend but when I inquired what differed between ‘Blokes High tea’ and the normal high tea, the difference was minimal and I probably preferred the ‘meatier’ savoury options.

The high tea was staggered out and timed with two savoury courses and two sweet courses over a leisurely one and a half hour period. We were each greeted with an option of sparkling wine, a beer or a non-alcoholic sparkling wine. I should have just gotten the alcoholic option and given it away as the non-alcoholic sparkling wine tasted like bubbling sweet cordial.

Blokes High tea ($48.00 per person)

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Top tierpotato salad. Not very creamy and almost watery. Not the best way to start the high tea.

Middle tier beef with onion chutney finger sandwich. The chutney made the sandwich particularly tasty.

Bottom tierham and mustard finger sandwich. Very simple and too plain.

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Matching tea – Oh I can’t remember exactly, but it was either Platinum Black or Earl Grey berries. Very nice.

A party of three was probably not the best amount of people as it meant that three of us had to share one pot of tea, which still (just) allowed a cup of tea each but four people meant there was two to a pot.

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Top tierCracked pepper mountain bread and lamb with mint jelly. The cube of meat looked a bit unappetizing but it was okay as a savoury morsel.

Middle tierPotato chamomile soup made in house. I couldn’t detect the chamomile but the potato soup was nice and warm with a decent amount of black pepper.

Bottom tier‘meat kebab’ and a different take on a meat pie, ‘meat pie voulevant’. The ‘kebab’ was a bit simple and I didn’t expect to find it at the high tea but it was much better than the voulevant, which I had to play ‘find the meat’ and because there wasn’t much sauce it was very dry.

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Matching tea‘Green with envy’ green tea. A lovely refreshing light tea to balance all the savoury food.

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Top tier – raspberry and apple crumble tart.

Middle tier – lemon meringue tarts and macadamia and caramel slice.

Bottom tier – warm scones with cream and house made jams (strawberry and mixed berry) infused with Earl Grey tea.

I’ve always been a fan of their jams but the best thing for me on the tier is the macadamia and caramel slice, deeeeeeeelicious.

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Matching tea – Rooibos Tea with caramel. I don’t usually like teas that smell sweet and had nothing for the palette but you could really taste the sweetness without the heaviness of sugar.

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Final courseNip of port with whisky infused fudge. The port was very smooth, not overly sweet and didn’t burn on the way down. The fudge was supposed to be infused with a little bit of real whisky but most of the flavours should have been from their whisky tea. I thought it tasted like the icing that you would get from a packet cake mix but it was better than getting sickly sweet OTT fudge.

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They had very friendly service and their knowledge of the food was impeccable. Overall the food was okay but I really do like the fact they have not only ‘matching teas’ with each course but have actively sort out to try all the include their tea infusions as an ingredient. I’ve been to a lot of high teas in Canberra and this is one of the better ones. It is also lovely to enjoy the sunshine outside or their live music when they have it during the warmer months.

They had chosen the best of the best of their teas to be included into the high tea to showcase their signature house blends. Once I dwindle down on my tea pile at home, I definitely coming back for their green tea.

Venue: Adore tea

High tea: Every Saturday 11:30am or 2pm

AddressShop 6, Federation Square One, 18 O’Hanlon Place, Nicholls ACT 2913 

Phone: (02) 6230 9962 

Adore Tea on Urbanspoon

Melbourne long weekend – The Hardware Societe

I have attempted to get into The Hardware Societe before for brunch on a weekend, so I knew it was a mission impossible to get in without a decent amount of waiting but the mad dash to fit everything in on Monday before we left was filling up fast. I put my name down for three people and lied to my friends it was only going to be a twenty minute wait rather than the realistic 25-30 minutes, I figured that we would fill the void with stimulating conversation and they wouldn’t even notice the wait time. Well no matter how much talking we did, it wouldn’t distract us from the fact that we were getting hungry fast.

Finally after a 35-40 minute wait, we were called upon and we sat in the corner right in front of the heater. Perfect! All I needed now was the food and hot drinks to be worth all that wait.

Tea by the pot for one French earl grey ($5.00) served with a cute sugary morsel.

Calmer sutra chai latte ($4.50). Served at a perfect temperature with all the delicious spices.

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Hot chocolate 54% dark callebaut ($5.00). My friend orders more hot chocolate than anyone I’ve ever known and she said that this was one of the best hot chocolates that she has ever had!

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The Continental house made granola, five:am organic vanilla yoghurt, stewed rhubarb and strawberries, warm croissant ($16.00). We were seated perfectly right under a heater so it might appear that were were in the red light district. It is unusual to order a ‘cold’ breakfast but everything on this board was deeeeeelicious!

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The granola was fantastic- not overly sweet, so many different types of nuts and was served with the perfect amount of yoghurt.

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I didn’t add the jam or butter to the croissant, it was perfect on its own. So buttery and flaky, I’m drooling as I reminisce about the taste.

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Baked eggs chorizo sausage, piquillo pimientos sauce, crunchy almonds, queso de cabra goats milk cheese ($17.00). I didn’t know between the two baked eggs options which one to get but when I asked the waitress for her opinion she said ‘the chorizo’ in a heartbeat. It was served hot and bubbling with cheesy goodness, slight spicy chorizo and a sauce with a little bit of bite to it. 

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Omelette smoked bacon, confit potatoes, triple cream brie ($18.00). My dream ingredients all tucked in an egg blanket.

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As we were indulging in our delicious breakfast and letting the world slip away, we didn’t even notice the large amount of people (the line was bigger than before) waiting behind us for a table.image

Before we left to pay the bill the waitress casually asked if we would like another round of drinks. I really like the fact that we weren’t rushed out the door due to the long line outside, everything was delicious and perfect and I was too full to fit another bite or drink in.

After eating at the Hardware Societe and the Grain Store, I can safely say that Melbourne definitely knows how to brunch!

Venue: The Hardware Societe

Address: 118-120 Hardware St, Melbourne, VIC 3000

Phone: (03) 9078 5992

The Hardware Societe on Urbanspoon

Gold Coast – High tea at Palazzo Versace

One of the ‘must do’s while I was at the Gold Coast was go to the Versace hotel and have high tea. Drinking tea while over looking the pool area with exquisite dainty sweets, it really didn’t take much convincing.

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Fashionista High Tea ($45.00 pp)

Deliciously light scones with Bonne Maman preserves and whipped King Island Double cream. Heavenly selection of tailor made designer pastries, featuring cake pops, macarons, cupcakes, fresh fruit tartlet and more. Boulangerie assortment including homemade finger sandwiches with a range of bespoke fillings. 

Your choice from our range of Versace Collection coffees or teas.

Champagne High Tea ($70.00 pp)

Includes a glass of Veuve Clicquot Yellow Brut Champagne.

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Hmmm, I thought it was odd that this tier was for two people but it didn’t have two of everything(?).

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Let’s break it down plate by plate although it isn’t necessarily the order I ate it.

The plate of sweets including lamingtons, cake pops, a meringue tart, a fruit flan, a cupcake, éclairs and a chocolate cup.

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Crust less finger sandwiches surrounding a sun-dried tomato and capsicum dip.

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2 types of scones with double cream, a single sausage roll and a mini quiche.

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They have a cute little stand for all the jams.

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Time for scones with cream and jam.

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A few things better than others on the tier but this is more about the experience and the extravagance with everything adorning the Versace logo.

Venue: Le Jardin at the Palazzo Versace

Address: 94 Seaworld Dr  Main Beach QLD 4217

Phone(07) 5509 8000

Le Jardin on Urbanspoon