About Me

Food is one of my many joys in life. It is a common bond I share among my friends and family. Combining food and travel makes it all the more interesting. I enjoy going out for a good meal with friends and family. The array of various cuisines and our fantastic array of produce really makes Sydney such a great city to live in. Blogging is my hobby and my posts on restaurant meals I have had are paid for and not gratis. Any gratis provided to me will always be stated beforehand.

Sunday, 23 February 2014

Three Williams (Redfern, Sydney)

I have been hankering to check this place out since it first opened last year. So I finally made it, thanks to a last minute decision made on a late Friday night at work. Three Williams here I come!

When I got there around 11.30 am on Saturday, there were people queuing up for a table. I quickly put my name down and I was told it would take about 20 to 25 minutes to get a table. I was willing to wait no matter how long it would take. My friends arrived in a few minutes and after a short wait we got a table. A lot less than the 20 minutes. Yay!

The young lady who called out my name asked me if we would be happy with a small round table as there were 3 of us. We said yes! Now why would I even mention this? This is the first time I have been asked by anyone in a cafe or restaurant whether I was happy with the size of the table offered! Big tick!

We decided to order a few dishes and share.

Fish croquette with lemon and aioli - as I could order this as an each, it was all mine. I liked the presentation, cutely presented in a egg carton. It was nicely crunchy and a good start to get my appetite going.

Glazed beef brisket, slaw, gherkins and chipotle mayo narnie - we ordered 2 of these. The meat was juicily tender and I was intrigued by the texture of the naan bread. It impresses me even more to know these naan were made in-house. I definitely liked the crunchy slaw and gherkin, a much needed texture to a delicious dish.

Spicy smashed beans with avocado on toast. The original dish included two poached eggs which I elected to leave out as I knew we would be ordering a few dishes. Note once again it was the considerate young lady who questioned if I wanted to leave the eggs in or out (big tick!). I didn't even know that was an option. Admittedly it was not an attractive looking dish but as we started having bits of it, we kept coming back for more. It was quite addictive and the star was the spicy baked beans. Thoroughly enjoyed this!

Sunday, 16 February 2014

Lunching at Papi Chulo (Manly)

As a foodie, you would think I would be more on the ball when it comes to checking out new and trending places. As in, be there as soon as I hear about it. Well, suffice to say, I am not that quick most times but sometimes when the timing is right I can be so on the money! But only sometimes! :)

Papi Chulo opened just before the year 2013 ended. It has been trending since then. It is another of the Merivale group's list of growing restaurant and bars but this time it opened not in the CBD but in Manly. The first one to do so on that side of town!

We decided to go for lunch as we could do lunch time bookings. Dinner bookings after 6.00 pm are not accepted unless it is for 8 people or more but pre 6 pm is fine. Knowing that we were planning to eat as much as we could, I skipped breakfast that morning just so I had some extra space in my tummy! Hehe!!

I liked the decor of the restaurant. There was a Cuban feel, a South American buzz. I think the music helped with the vibe. Very laid back!

As I walked around to take photos, one of the chefs, Patrick Friesen, posed a slightly goofy shot for me. Hehe!

We got a nice little window nook table for lunch and after poring over the menu, here is what we had.

Grilled corn on the cob, smoked cheese and lime. The girls enjoyed it and I had a bite to sample the taste. There was a light cheese flavour in the corn but not enough to overwhelm the sweetness of the corn.

Prawn and scallop ceviche with mango, chilli and coconut dressing. I fell in love with this dish. The scallops and prawns were very fresh and the dressing was delightfully light, tangy, creamy and slightly sweet. A beautiful medley of flavours! The crunchy texture came from the finely julienned taro strips which I think were lightly grilled. Yum! I could have done with more of this dish!

Empanadas (3 per serve) filled with wild greens and raclette, served with tomato jam. We decided to choose this dish as Papi Chulo is a South American themed restaurant and empanadas is one of the dishes representing the region. The tomato jam had a lovely smoky flavour which lifted up the empanadas.

Sunday, 9 February 2014

Pent-Thai (Epping, Sydney)

Pent-Thai has been around for many, many years. Yet it has managed to survive and thrive. To be honest, I haven't been here for a very long time. When my friends suggested we catch up for dinner and suggested Pent-Thai, I thought why not visit an old food haunt?

I think the restaurant seats up to 25 people and it was fully packed when I got there at 7.30pm on a Friday night.

We were so hungry we decided to ask for all the dishes to arrive at the same time, i.e. entrees and mains served together.

Tod Mun Pla (Thai fish cakes) - an absolute Thai staple. Finely minced fillet of fish blended with chilli paste, and Thai herbs which are then fried. Served with sweet chilli sauce (Thai style), cucumber and topped with crushed peanut. Yum! There were very authentic flavours to the fish cake.

Bird nest spring roll (chef's special) - fried mini spring rolls filled with a mixture of crab, prawn and black mushrooms. Served with sweet chilli sauce and a side of garden salad. We chose this dish because it sounded interesting. I have not seen spring rolls with such a birds nest texture. It was lovely.

Tom yum soup with prawns - I chose the tom yum with prawns. But you also have the options of having it with chicken, fish, seafood or vegetarian. I was surprised at how tangy the soup was. There was just enough kick (chilli wise) in the soup. Delightfully delicious and smack full of flavour!

Gaeng Kaew-Wan (Green Curry) - we decided to have the green curry with chicken and it was not overly sweet in flavour, thank goodness!

Sunday, 2 February 2014

Dining at Sepia in January 2014 (Sydney)

Last week I joined my friends CW, her hubby CHW and her friend Mr O for dinner at one of the best restaurants in Sydney, Sepia. Having been to Sepia once before (way back in September 2011) I already knew what to expect. Great food and great service! But what happened to me that night surpassed all my expectations!!

We arrived a little earlier and decided to sit at the bar and chat over a drink and some great oysters! Out came some really nice champagne which obviously went very well with the oysters! It is hard for me to say how good they were since I am not keen on oysters and I left it to the rest of the group to extoll how good the oysters were. Apparently they were very good.

Everyone working at Sepia knew Mr O. I could not believe how well known he was! I felt I was dining with a VIP of some sort! I can already imagine MR O's head growing bigger even as he reads this! :) And that's assuming he does read it.

As we were sitting at the bar, Chef Martin Benn came out of the kitchen and dropped to say hello to Mr O and was introduced to the rest of us. I was star struck! I didn't expect this at all and could not resist asking for a photo and when it was suggested I pose with him, I was seriously quite embarrassed! Little unknown me who will never ever be able to cook at this level felt quite small (not only physically)! But I was chuffed! I got a photo with Martin Benn! Yay!!!!

We then adjourned to our table and that's when our food adventure began. I was warned beforehand by my friends that we would most probably get a few extra dishes because of Mr O. But even knowing that, the dishes just kept coming.

I have decided to list all the savoury dishes and not go into descriptions on how good they were dish by dish. Didn't want to bore my readers to tears. Thought it best to summarise at the end of this section.

Note that as it was a Saturday night, we had the degustation menu.

Amuse bouche was John Dory cured in batters kombu and pickled daikon radish.

Sashimi of Yellow Fin tuna, steamed Japanese omelette, white soy wasabi and sheep yoghurt.

Carid prawns, heirloom tomato, white cucumber, Creme fraiche, tempura batter and Matcha tea oil.

Housemade goat's milk chèvre, beetroot butter, rhubarb and rye bread. Note this was an extra dish.

Sashimi of Bonito, flavours of roasted chicken, umeboshi, Matcha tea. Note this was an extra dish.

An amazing looking ball of sheer perfection! It was butter served with Japanese milk bread. I was loathed to cut into the butter.

Poached bone marrow, smoked salmon roe, bamboo, roasted onion, thyme and mustard, nasturtium.

Crab rice, egg yolk, tarragon, Japanese land seaweed.

WA Marron tail, shellfish and shiso emulsion, Dashi, tapioca, fried nori. Note this was an extra dish.