Monday, September 14, 2009


To celebrate Father's Day we decided to head out for a special dinner at Taxi. Upon arrival we were greeted with a warm welcome and we were shown to our seats which offered a stunning view of Southbank. The decor was everything we expected it to be, simple and elegant.

After ordering our starters and mains we were given a palate cleanser which was a serving of miso pumpkin soup. Sounds weird I know but it was creamy and absolutely delicious! Our starters arrived and we had ordered tempura to share, the vegetables and tofu were coated in a light batter and deepfried served with some kind of sauce. This dish was nice (there were some unidentifiable vegetables) but not spectacular.

For mains I had the T-bone with bonemarrow, this was accompanied by mushrooms and crispy pork and spinach puree. I had thought that the sauce would be something different (since it said it had bonemarrow) but it was essentially a pepper sauce and everything was just a tad too salty for my liking. The others at the table had the special for the night flat head with scallops wrapped in prosciutto, and the wagyu beef which came with a horseradish dipping sauce. The fish was a hit being perfectly cooked and the scallops were a nice a touch, the wagyu steak and horseradish was also enjoyed although the horseradish we would have to say is an acquired taste.

We finished the evening with a strawberry souffle and petite four. These were flawless and made their way easily into our already bulging bellies.

All in all it was a nice evening, the service and mood of the restaurant was perfect although I would have to say I was not as impressed with the food as I thought I should be especially for the price.

Place: Taxi

Where: Level 1 of Transport Hotel, Federation Square Melbourne

Did we have a great time: We had a good time.

Would you go again? I would probably try somewhere else first.

Recommended: Yes, it's a nice place to go for a special occasion.

Dress Code: You don't need a suit but don't turn up in jeans and a top!

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Good Satay – Hong Kong

After recently arriving back from a brief trip to Hong Kong and Japan I am filled with many culinary stories most good, some bad and a couple of very odd experiences. But first to focus upon the good.

On our second evening in Hong Kong we decide to venture out of our air conditioned room into the humid summer evening. Taking with us the trust worthy travel book, we decide to take its advice and head in search of a place called Good Satay. This little eatery is hidden around a corner on a middle level of a shopping centre, walking in we pass women sitting in the corridor with buckets of prawns, patiently shelling them in preparation for the dinner rush.

Suffering from mild jet lag (one of us had traveled from the UK) we were fairly early for dinner so we had the whole restaurant to ourselves. We were seated in a corner and handed laminated menus which English descriptions and pictures to go with the food just to make sure you knew what you were ordering. We just had to try the Satay chicken, followed with chicken in Pandan leaves and Fried Kway Teow.

Once the food arrived our mouths began watering. The chicken satay came on sticks with perfect bite sized portions of meat that we covered with the delicious satay dipping sauce.

The chicken in pandan leaves were just as good, the meat was moist and infused with the flavour of the leaves. Unwrapping them proved to be a little dangerous and messy, just need to watch out for the exiting steam from these little parcels.

For me however the winner of the night was the Fried Kway Teow, we were given a very generous serving heaped with fresh prawns and chunks of Chinese sausage, this coupled with crunchy bean shoots left me begging for more. It was simply divine.

All in all our first culinary adventure in Asia was deemed a success, the food was great, we ended up paying under $20 AUD and although the staff were a bit too attentive with the tendency to hover over us we had a great night out.

Place: Good Satay

Where: Houston Centre, 63 Mody Road, Tsimshatsui East, Hong Kong, China

Did we have a great time? Yes

Would you go again? If we find ourselves back in Hong Kong defiantly going to pay a visit.

Recommended? Of course!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

The Ferg Loves You

On holidays in NZ for a bit of skiing and I couldn't resist another visit to the best burger place that I have ever been to FergBurger.

I remember going to the Ferg when it was still located in a back alley of Queenstown, but since then it has moved to a new location onto one of the main streets. While in my opinion it has lost some of that "Melbourne" back alley charm its burgers haven't lost any of their flavour.

The photo's really speak for themselves, the meat is delicious, the salad freash and crispy, and the sauses have that home made flavour to them.

Burgers run from nz$10 to nz$16, they do beef, chicken, fish(the codfather), and veggie burgers. On this particular day I had the southern swine(its a regular beef burger with bacon), the chips thay serve are also fresh and crispy.

In its new(for me anyway) location the Ferg always seems busy now days and for good reason!

Did we have a great time? Definately

Would you go again? I'm thinking of going back there right now

Recommended? It is one of the burger wonders of the world, don't miss it! And Queenstown is pretty good as well!

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Won Ton House

Review by Cabbage:

After a long week at work we decided that cooking was out of the question, so my family and I headed out for a night into the heart of Melbourne to try out Won Ton House on Russel St. The decor, was just as you would expect, plastic tables and chairs downstairs. Whilst upstairs large round wooden tables were scattered around the room with matching ornate chairs.

To relieve the chill three out of the four of us ordered our two favourites; Wonton Noodle Soup and Prawn Dumpling Noodle Soup, along with these we had the Combination Chow Mein and Chciken and Cenutry Egg Congee. On top of these we also enjoyed an entree of deep fried spicy squid tentacles and soft shell crab ins spicy salt. As was expected the squid tentacles disappeared as soon as they hit the table, the meat was sweet and tender. The soft shell crab didn't disappoint with its delicate meat hidden beneath the crispy batter. The soups were perfect to stave off the chill of the evening (although a couple more dumplings in the soup would have been welcome) with the Congee being the favourite of the night. The Chow Mein was also a crowd pleaser with its chunks of seafood, chicken and vegetables providing something for everyone at the table. All in all we enjoyed our night at the Won Ton House, the restaurant definitely provides "bang for your buck" with the bill coming to just under $80 for four.

Place: Wonton House
Add: 181 Russel St

Did we have a great time? Definatley

Would you go again? We would probably try another restaurant on Russel St first.

Recommended? Sure, it was great value for money.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

BBQ HOUSE SeaFood Restaurant- Richmond

Hungry on a Saturday night the decision was made to grab something to eat before going to see Transformers 2 at Victoria Gardens in Richmond ( 2 and a half stars in case your wondering). So of course the natural choice was to wander down Victoria Street and see what caught our eye.

Why did we choose BBQ HOUSE? The truth is after watching too much Masterchef this week we couldn't go past a place with roast duck and pork hanging in the front window plus the fact that we could get a table straight away even though the place was full helped make up our minds.

We ordered four dishes to share and B-Girl ordered. It was a good thing that the crisp pork came out first because it didn't disappoint! Crispy skin, tender flesh, mmmmmmm it didn't last long.
The next dish was duck wrapped in fried taro. It came with a dipping sauce that enhanced the flavours and was also fantastic.
As we were in a seafood restaurant we ordered some calamari with Chinese brocolini and vegetables that did not hit the mark even thought the vegetables were crisp the calamari was a bit tough and the whole dish was uninspiring. Normally, when we go out for Asian dinners the calamari disappears as soon as the plate touches the table. Unfortunately not this time :( . Our final dish was a vegetarian stir fry of Chinese mushroom, bamboo shoots and bok choy. It complemented our other dishes well.

The bill came to just under $80 and the staff were quick to take orders.

Did we have a great time? Yes
Would you go again?ehh probably try a different place on Victoria street
Recommended? yes why not

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Phillipa's Breads, Pastries and Provisions

There are countless places on High St Armadale where you can buy a $4.00+++ latte but for the most consistent service, highest quality of baked pastries and breads you cannot go past Phillapa’s Breads, Pastries and Provisions.

Even thought there is a cheap eats sticker on the door do not be deceived (as currently they stock a goat’s cheese called Holy Goat’s at $16.00 for 50g which makes it only $320 per kilo! Holy Goat! it better be good.) Nevertheless the aroma, taste and presentation of their produce highlights the use of quality ingredients and begs you to enter.

To their credit Phillipa’s use all organic ingredients which equates to no light, skinny options and no skinny lattes. For the veteran skinny latte drinker this is an unaccustomed change but the organic milk makes the coffee creamier and more enjoyable (plus it is only 2% extra fat.)

However, be warned once you make this small seemingly insignificant concession you will soon find yourself in the realm of pastries and provisions that necessitates that you throw the calorie counter out the window. At this point you are greeted with a wide selection of provisions that include chutney’s, biscuits, jams, cheeses and butter from France and organic milk that are imported or homemade and priced accordingly. Their amble selection of quality breads are well complimented by their provisions.

The standout aspect of Phillipa’s must be due its ever changing use of seasonal produce and incorporation of excellent organic food which creates the flavours. At the moment they have both generous pasties and sausage rolls on the menu. The vegetarian pasties have a crisp pastry that are filled to the brim with vegetables (which are distinguishable) filled with flavour and have a lovely aroma whilst the sausage roll has a nice mix of mince with adequate spices. These are served with homemade tomato chutney which has a chunky and silky texture. You can definitely taste the use of only top quality ingredients and after a few bites into either you forget about the lack of change and slowly begin to develop the Phillipa’s addiction.

Phillipa’s is on par with other places on High St when it comes to price but in a league of its own when comes to flavour, service and imaginative quality baking. The biggest problem you will ever have is that the taste and memory will linger and you will drawn back again and again.

Did we have a great time? Yes, service was quick and efficient! Food was great!
Would you go again? Yes I’m addicted
Recommended? Of course

Saturday, June 20, 2009


99 Glenferrie Road, Malvern

B-Girl accepted an new position at work on Friday so four of us went for a late dinner on a Saturday night for a small celebration.

We shared 2 entrees the foccacia(ehh nice but nothing special)
and the bruscetta, which was excellent, as you can see heaps of tomato's that were nice and firm, but not hard, and when we finally found the bread it wasn't soggy as is sometimes the case

For mains we had

Rib Eye(medium)

Veal Scaloppine with a mushroom cream sauce (yummy!)

Whole flounder

Pizza with mushroom and truffle paste (the special), didn't look like anything special but tasted great! It's made in a wood fired oven which sits near the front of the restaurant.

Interesting enough nobody ordered pasta even though they make there own pasta and that's why we went there in the first place!

As per the entree we shared 2 dessert between the 4 of us, in this case it was the

tiramisu (a bit creamy for my liking)

and a ricotta and almond calzone (the special) with a vanilla bean ice cream, this was also made in the wood fired oven and was covered in a caramel sauce

The winners of the night where the Veal and the Calzone, the place has got a great welcoming atmosphere and we all felt relaxed straight away. The wood fired oven gives a nice warmth to the place, particularly on a cold(ish) Melbourne night. On the down side we all felt let down by the vegetables, they where all a bit over cooked and even a bit cold.

Total bill was just short of $200 which included a bottle of wine

Did we have a great time? Yes!
Would we go again? Yes
Recomended? Yes