Tag Archives: Chocolate

Nutella and Peanut Butter French Toast – Rustica Sourdough

Rustica Sourdough Cafe

Rustica Sourdough Cafe

I’m such a stalker, I am always stalking my foodie friends on Instagram to see what new cafe/restaurant they have recently visited and Rustica Sourdough is one that has been coming up on my feed quite frequently. But my ever growing ‘to-go’ list, it simply slipped my mind. Hence, that’s why I jumped up in joy when I received the email from ID Collective to visit Rustica Sourdough cafe.

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We were very lucky and found parking just around the corner, and that’s where we realised Rustica Sourdough is actually opposite from Hammer and Tong another popular cafe :) The cafe staff were all very friendly and welcoming, immediately showing us to the table they reserved for us.

Flat White $3.8

Flat White $3.8

Mr Bao has been working quite hard so dragging him out on a Saturday morning (it was closer to midday 11am!) isn’t easy. So a lot of bribing and coffee is required to wake him up. He’s recently changed his preference and opted for a flat white, he found the coffee to be very floral in taste and with a softer body.

Monsieur Truffe Hot Chocolate $5

Monsieur Truffe Hot Chocolate $5

I would never pass the chance to have a hot chocolate, but when it’s using Monsieur Truffe chocolate I will definitely order it! For those who don’t know Monsieur Truffe is a boutique chocolate maker in Melbourne, and seriously their hot chocolates are one that should not be missed! This one did not disappoint and I found the native flowers in the background to be so pretty too.

Grandmother Ham, heirloom tomatoes, avocado crush, Merideth feta + Sweet basil sourdough $16.50

Grandmother Ham, heirloom tomatoes, avocado crush, Merideth feta + Sweet basil sourdough $16.50

I already had my eyes and heart set on the french toast, so I tried to choose a healthier dish as my brunch and it was this sweet basil sourdough topped with Grandmother ham, heirloom tomatoes, crush avocado and Merideth feta. As the name of their cafe/bakery suggests their sourdough is absolutely scrumptious, lightly tense with a slight tangy aftertaste. I particularly enjoyed the moist and flavoursome Grandmothers ham which wasn’t too salty. I know I am being greedy but I would’ve perhaps like an egg or two on top of my sourdough, only because I am an egg yolk addict!

Beef brisket burger with Chipotle mayo, herb slaw and pickles on Brioche bun $17.50

Beef brisket burger with Chipotle mayo, herb slaw and pickles on Brioche bun $17.50

Mr Bao wanted something substantial so nothing beats a beef brisket burger with pickles, herb slaw and French fries with Chipotle mayo. The beef brisket was very tender and flavoursome, only needed some more Chipotle mayo inside. Great lunch dish and highly recommend if you like brisket!

How does it look? :P

Would you like a bite? Hehe

We had a short break before we moved onto dessert and that is the French Toast using brioche topped with fresh peanut butter, Nutella, strawberry jam, ice-cream, chopped hazelnuts and chocolate cookie crumbs. Now please tell me that sounds AMAZING!

Brioche French Toast with peanut butter, strawberry jam, Nutella, Chocolate cookie crumbs and hazelnuts $16.50

Brioche French Toast with peanut butter, strawberry jam, Nutella, Chocolate cookie crumbs and hazelnuts $16.50

I simply can’t get over the fact, how pretty this French toast is and it has all my favourite ingredients! Especially the peanut butter, Nutella and fresh strawberries! Everything just worked so well, and the brioche was so soft and buttery, the texture resembled a little bit like pancakes! I can’t recommend this enough so please do yourself a favour and try! Because it’s so good had to share another photo hehe

Too pretty! Another shot :)

Too pretty! Another shot :)

We had such a lovely time at Rustica Sourdough, blown away by the service, food and more importantly the bread and pastries. Look look! I already need to plan a revisit and not eat anything but the croissant, cronut, and fig + peanut butter tart!

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As we were heading out one of the friendliest staff stopped us and said they had a little goodie bag for us to take home. We were completely not expecting anything and it was definitely not a little bag, there were so many things in the bag – sourdough, pastries and doughnuts!

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Profiteroles, Cronut and Chocolate Croissant

All that flakey pastry just staring at me and telling me to ‘Eat it, Eat it’! But I was unfortunately too full, so took a couple of quick snaps and saved it for later.

Chocolate Croissant

Chocolate Croissant

The chocolate croissant was super flakey with thick chocolate and crushed nuts nom nom perfect with a cup of coffee.

Lemon Curd and Jam doughnut

Lemon Curd and Jam doughnut

The lemon curd doughnut was tangy and a slightly dense texture and the strawberry jam was also delectable.

Profiterole with cream cheese filling and freeze dried raspberry

Profiterole with cream cheese filling and freeze dried raspberry

Last but not least was this profiterole with I’m pretty sure cream cheese, raspberry ganache and freeze dried raspberry. Phew, that was a lot of food to get through in this post haha but the pleasure was all mine!

Rustica Sourdough Bakery on Urbanspoon

 

Daisy@Nevertoosweet and Mr Bao visited Rustica Sourdough as their guest and ID Collective

Merry Christmas!!! – Cookie Love + Giveaway *Winner Announced*

Merry Christmas everyone :)

Merry Christmas everyone :)

My small little family (Mr Bao, Cupcake and myself) would like to wish all my Dearest Readers a very Merry Christmas and Happy Boxing Day :) Hope you’ve been enjoying this wonderful festival of overeating, overspending but more importantly spending time with loved ones.

I know I am once again guilty for disappearing and not posting for a few weeks. I really apologise for that, however, I simply have not had the time do very much with work being so busy, working until early hours of the morning and also moving houses. We haven’t found our new place yet, so for the interim we’re back at my parents ~ But hopefully in the New Year we’ll find our new home! Wish me luck :)

Farmhouse direct

Because I feel bad for not blogging for such a long time a have a gift for one special Reader :) Keep reading and scroll down to the bottom for details how to enter this giveaway. Christmas a time for giving and also receiving. And although we tend to spoil ourselves during the holiday season, I think it’s important to remember to give to those who are less fortunate than ourselves. That is the reason why I was keen in trying and reviewing the new website ‘Where Your Heart Is’ website. This is a new website created by both Farm House Direct (a website which supports and helps sell local produce) and Good Spender (a website that sells products from Australian social enterprises).

Cookie Love from Teresa :)

Cookie Love from Teresa :)

The concept of Where Your Heart Is, is to give consumers the options of purchasing products which not only help local producers but also help give back to those in need. I think it’s a great idea and definitely makes Christmas shopping a lot easier! So save the link for next year! I was sent some beautifully packed baked goodies from Cookie Love a local artisan baker from Phillip Island in Victoria.

20141219-IMG_5250Teresa the founder and artisan baker of Cookie love wrote me one of the nicest Christmas cards I’ve ever received explaining how she came up with the idea of selling her gorgeous cookies and moreish panforte. Oh by the way, if you haven’t noticed that’s not my hands haha I recruited Miss D to come help me devour some cookies!

Christmas Cookies

Christmas Cookies

I opened the first box and squealed to see a range of talented decorated Christmas cookies, I particularly like the Santa Claus because he has the most adorable little face. Miss D and both tried a little gift box cookie, as we wanted to save the bigger ones for later ~ I was particularly impressed with how soft the cookies remained and had a nice texture. These cookies would put a smile on anyone;s face!

Gingerbread Men

Gingerbread Men

Underneath Christmas cookies were another layer of Gingerbread men! Once again delicately made with the cutest faces! I’ve made them once before… and lets say some of my gingerbread men we’re definitely not as happy or cheerful looking! They had the same soft texture as the butter cookies, however, these had a subtle ginger and cinnamon flavour through them.

Panforte Noire

Panforte Noire

We then moved onto the other two boxes which were Panforte. For those who are not familiar Teresa explained in the Christmas card that panforte are very traditional Italian fruitcake with lots of nuts. Some may mix chocolate through it to make it a ‘Nero’ a dark version of Panforte.

Panforte Bianco

Panforte Bianco

The serving suggestion is to sprinkle with a little icing sugar, cut into slithers and enjoy with a cup of coffee or I would suggest champagne.

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The panforte bianco has white chocolate mixed through, a variety of nuts and dried fruit. I’m not sure I’ve had panforte before so I’m probably not the best judge, but Miss D and I really enjoyed the chewy texture and crunchiness of the nuts. Compared to the dark chocolate (nero) panforte, we found that this wasn’t as sweet and tasted more fruity.

Panforte Nero

Panforte Nero

Moving onto the Panforte Nero which is exactly the same as the Bianco except it has dark chocolate (Lindt) mixed into it instead. It still has the roasted nuts, glace fruit and also honey for sweetness. I think the dark chocolate one looks more like a regular chocolate cake ~

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Once again severing suggestion is icing sugar (which I forgot oops!) and cut into slithers which mine are also too big…what can I say I’m a greedy person :D I must say the texture is very similar for both panforte but my personal preference would be the nero as it is sweeter and has a more intense chocolate flavour. I would have loved to have this with a glass of latte, unfortunately my life is in boxes right now so I don’t even know where my coffee machine is hehe.

The panforte were quite large and could easily feed 6 to 8 people depending no the sizing of the pieces as it is quite filling. I’ve enjoyed all the products from Cookie Love and really enjoy supporting products made in Victoria. You can also order these Cookie Love products from this Farm House Direct link and be sure to check out the other products they have. It’s like a local farmers market online without having to wake up early the products are directly sent to you :)

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Now thanks to Teresa (Cookie Love), Where Your Heart Is and Farmhouse Direct I have one set of this Christmas pack to giveaway. I’m sorry that it’s after Christmas but it’ll be more like a New Years present :)

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To enter this giveaway
– Leave a comment and tell me have you tried Panforte before? Will you like the Bianco (White chocolate) or Nero (Dark chocolate) more?
– For more entries please ‘Like’ me on Facebook and Follow me on Twitter ~ If you’ve already done that please let me now! Thank you!
– Giveaway ends on the 4th January (Sunday) 
– You may reenter daily, one entry per day
– Winners will be chosen by me personally and announced on this blog and notified via email on the 5th January
– Open only to all Australian residents (Sorry International Readers!)

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My little Reindeer (Cupcake) would like to wish everyone good luck in this giveaway and also have a safe and Happy New Year!

WINNER ANNOUNCED!!!

Congratulations CC you are the winner of this Cookie Love giveaway!

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I will be emailing you and sending you the gift pack very shortly.

THANK YOU EVERYONE who entered!

Up In The Woods – Piggery Cafe

Piggery CafePiggery Cafe, Shannon Bennett’s newest venture up in the Dandenong Ranges. I visited in late September with Sarah (Sarah Cooks), Sandra and Ashley (I’m So Hungree) and have been meaning to write about the event for the longest time.

Piggery Cafe

Sarah visited Piggery Cafe a couple months ago and has been raving about the cakes and also the $25 afternoon tea. So we promptly organised a girls day out and Sarah kindly offered to drive which is probably a great idea, as I am horrible with directions :P

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Piggery Cafe is only one part of the Burnham Beeches a historical mansion built in the 1930s and is now divided into different area such as the Burnham Bakery and also an Emu enclosure. There are also plans to open a Burnham Beeches hotel and steakhouse.

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We chose one of the best afternoons to go, as it was lovely weather not too hot or cold and we managed to grab a nice table outside. Ashley and I took a walk inside the cafe and was immediately mesmerised by the table full of scones, mini tarts, cakes and other sweets! I was in dessert heaven!

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Lemon Tart

Lemon Tart

I honestly couldn’t take my eyes off all the baked goodies! I wanted to try EVERYTHING the scones, lemon tart, mini chocolate cake! I’m practically had to drag myself out back to the table and waited patiently for the waiter to take our order. He explained to us that for $25 per person, includes a selection of savouries, sweet and unlimited flow of coffee, tea or hot chocolate.

Valrhona hot chocolate

Valrhona hot chocolate

They use Valrhona chocolate to make their hot chocolate here, so Ashley and I decided to get one each. It had great chocolate flavour, however, wasn’t the thick European type and was rather light and came with a little house-made marshmallow.

Piggery Cafe

Savoury platter

Next up was a large platter of savoury items, it was a huge shock the amount of food on the board. From the left was a puff pastry filled with mushroom, smoked salmon, seeded sourdough with some addictive garlic spread and also a little quiche. Everything was great and I enjoyed it all but the mushroom pie was definitely a winner with the super flakey and buttery pastry!

Scones with jam and whipped cream

Scones with jam and whipped cream

This was followed by these dainty scones half fruit (dried cranberries) and plain served with jam and whipped cream. I am determined to make my scones smaller at home next time they just look so much more refines and so damn cute when they’re small like this!

I slathered a very generous serving of whipped cream and I think it was apricot jam with a light citrus flavour which may have been orange. Scones had a good crust, but was still moist and fluffy inside thumbs up from me!

Chef's selection of sweets

Chef’s selection of sweets

The food doesn’t stop coming, it was then a full plate of Chef’s selection of sweets! A wide range of cakes such as pistachio canele, almond cake, mini macarons, chocolate tart and macaroon. The cakes did not only look good they tasted fresh and nothing was dry or felt like it has been left out for a long time.

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We then finished up with another round of coffee and tea. The afternoon tea here at Piggery Cafe is such a great value for money and I still can’t believe we got all this food for only $25! I guess it is a great way to attract patrons to visit in the afternoon which is usually quieter for the Dandenong Ranges when people are making their way home. I heard that Shannon Bennett wanted to create a space where he would like to visit with his kids on the weekend. He’s definitely done a great job to make Piggery Cafe very kid friendly and also pet friendly which is very important to me :)

Apple Danish and Lemon Merengue Tart $9

Apple Danish and Lemon Merengue Tart $9

Before I left, I went back inside to grab an Apple Danish and also Lemon Merengue tart for Mr Bao as he got quite jealous he wasn’t invited to come hehe I can’t wait to take Mr Bao and Cupcake with me next time and I’m tempted to try the Burnham Beeches picnic basket next time :)

Piggery Cafe on Urbanspoon

Garfield’s Birthday Dinner – Sapore

Hello My Dearest Readers :) Sorry I’ve been so quiet, but I promise I have a good excuse! For starters, I became an Auntie again my sister Win Win gave birth to a baby girl who is  our little angel! We don’t know her name yet, it’s been two months but they are still indecisive, so if you have any suggestions please share them in the comments below.

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Unfortunately, after giving my birth my sister had a hard time coping taking care of a very curious 4 year old and also a new born. So I decided to go back to Hong Kong for a week and spend some much needed time with family. I’m not very good with babies and trust me when I say I respect all mothers! It requires so much unconditional love to take care of babies and children, and I am definitely not ready for this responsibility yet. But I was glad to be home to spend time with them and do anything I can do to help :)

Sapore

Anyhow, in this post I wanted to share with you another birth and that is the birthday of my high school friend Garfield. If you’ve read my previous posts, you will remember Garfield only really likes Thai food, but I think he should try something else for his birthday! So he compromised and said he’ll be happy to go somewhere that makes good calamari. He has pretty high standards so I had to search high and low for a good place. I then remembered last year, when I visited Sapore they did a very good calamari and coincidentally they were doing a 50% off offer on Dimmi.com, so that’s how we ended up there on a quiet Monday night.

Beer $9

Beer

I have visited Sapore before and for those who are not familiar, it is at the end of Fitzroy St near the Esplanade and in summer it would be lovely to sit outside. Garfield started off with a beer imported from Italia and described it as rather dry.

Cider

Cider

While I stuck with a pear cider which was quite sweet to begin with, however, the aftertaste is sweeter. A shame Mr Bao couldn’t join us because I knew he would’ve enjoyed this.

House smoked salmon, asparagus, baby beet and cos salad $18

House smoked salmon, asparagus, baby beet and cos salad $18

 

The 50% offer was very generous everything on the menu including entrees, mains and desserts were half price. We quickly decided on the entrees and this was the house smoked salmon with an asparagus, baby beet and cos salad and also a horseradish mayonnaise. The smoked salmon had a much softer texture than the store bought salmon and not as salty which was quite pleasant.

House smoked salmon, asparagus, baby beet and cos salad $18

Don’t worry the salmon is there :) It’s just hiding behind all the salad hehe

Salt & Pepper Calamari with aioli, bitter leaf salad and a lemon dressing $18.5

Salt & Pepper Calamari with aioli, bitter leaf salad and a lemon dressing $18.5

Next up was the salt and pepper calamari, the main dish I wanted to bring Garfield and get him to try. Even though the calamari is on the entree menu, the waiter said next time if we wanted to we can also make it a main meal size.

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Garfield had a couple of bites and started to slowly nod his head. And I started smiling because I knew that meant he approves! The calamari is lightly battered in what I suspect to be polenta as it is quite light but still soft and tender in the inside.

Barramundi with mashed Potato and clams $32

Barramundi with mashed Potato and clams $32

Moving onto our mains, Garfield surprised me by ordering the Fish of the Day which was the barramundi with potato mash and clams. I didn’t expect him to order the fish, as I’ve alway seen him as 2 meat 1 veg sort of guy and would go for the steak :) I stole a bite and the barramundi was cooked very well with a good crispy crust. I would have liked a little more sauce, other than that it was very nice dish.

Twice cooked pork belly with confit celeriac, apple and a balsamic glaze $36

Twice cooked pork belly with confit celeriac, apple and a balsamic glaze $36

I ordered the 12 hour twice cooked pork belly with confit celeriac, apple and balsamic glaze. The pork belly was cooked until it is very soft and I really enjoyed the apple and balsamic glaze. But the confit celeriac was actually quite sweet and caramelised.

Vanilla donuts with strawberry jam and custard $14

Vanilla donuts with strawberry jam and custard $14

Garfield was complaining he was so full he couldn’t eat anymore, well too bad I want dessert so he got no choice :P We tried the vanilla donuts with strawberry jam filling and also custard. The donuts were quite small and dainty with a slightly doughy texture.

Chocolate and pistachio slice with salted caramel, honeycomb and passionfruit $14

Chocolate and pistachio slice with salted caramel, honeycomb and passionfruit $14

Last but not least is this chocolate and pistachio slice with salted caramel, honeycomb and passionfruit. It was rich and decadent with a smooth texture. I really enjoyed the homemade honeycomb and also the pistachio. However, I found the passionfruit a little too tart and didn’t quite match the rest of the element of this dessert.

We had a wonderful dinner and enjoyed all the dishes, it was also at great value with the 50% discount from Dimmi.com. Garfield really liked the calamari and said that he’ll return even without the discount so that’s definitely a win :) Recommend anyone else who has calamari cravings and would like to dine near the Esplanade in St Kilda.

Sapore on Urbanspoon

New Friend Leaving – Lucy Liu

Lucy Liu

Mr Bao laughed and rolled his eyes, when I told him, “I’m going to start my blog post with the following statement – I am a social butterfly”. I’m not sure what’s so funny about this statement, because it’s very true! I love socialising, meeting new people, making new friends:) Fellow Wong (that’s our nickname for each other since we have the same surname haha)  is one of these new friends I have made, we met through another friend last year and have kept in touch since then. If it wasn’t because of a busy work/life schedule and distance of where we live, I’m sure we would met up more. 

Lucy Liu

Anyhow, the sad news is Fellow Wong is relocating again, he is originally from Sydney, this time he is moving to Singapore. It’s a great move for his career and he’s definitely someone who likes a new challenge so we’re very happy for him, however, at the same time it’s sad to see a new friend leave. There’s a few more weeks before he moves, but we wanted to catch up a few more times. That’s how we ended up having lunch at Lucy Liu Kitchen and Bar, which is the new venture from Michael Lambie (The Smith, Circa), Smith Borg and Zac Cibbes. 

Kirin Apple Cider

I had a look at the menu before booking, and it gave me the impression of so modern Asian with Thai and Korean fusion. It seems to be on the rise with the number of modern Asian restaurants in Melbourne. The boys both shared a Kirin Apple cider, I didn’t know that Kirin produced ciders because I’ve always associated them with beer hehe I had a sip and found it to be quite crisp, but not too dry. 

Koh Tao Cooler - Apple, honey, apple juice, crushed ice top with soda $8

Koh Tao Cooler – Apple, honey, apple juice, crushed ice top with soda $8

I got a mocktail the Koh Tao Cooler with Apple, honey, apple juice, crushed ice and topped with soda. Really enjoyed this refreshing drink and paired quite well with our dishes with such rich flavours.

Freshly shucked oysters with red nam jim sauce $4 each

Oysters with red nam jim sauce $4 each

As a little starter we tried a freshly shucked oyster with red nam jim sauce. Haven’t had it with nam jim sauce before, found the slightly sourness helped bring out some of the sweetness from the oyster.

Barramundi & Scampi Dumplings with chilli, ginger and spring onions $14

Barramundi & Scampi Dumplings with chilli, ginger and spring onions $14

We then shared these Barramundi and scampi dumpling with chilli, ginger and spring onions. I’m usually sceptical of fish dumplings as they’re often quite fishy, but I was very impressed with these dumpling. They had a decent amount of filling and was actually quite tasty! Especially with the chilli sauce!

Crispy Pork Bun $8

Crispy Pork Bun $8

We then ordered a couple of buns to share, this is the Crispy Pork Bun with spicy kimchi and kewpie mayo. It’s so nice to see that Kewpie mayo is used more widely now and not only available in Japanese groceries. I’m addicted to it haha :) The bun itself was soft and fluffy, however, I found the crackly wasn’t as crispy as we would have liked and found the pork to be slightly bland.

BBQ Lap Cheong Hot Dog $8

BBQ Lap Cheong Hot Dog $8

This was my favourite! BBQ Lap Cheong ‘Hot Dog’ in a toasted milk bun with wombok coleslaw. A yum cha you can find Lap Cheong buns but they’re definitely not as indulgent as this one with that wombok coleslaw which I’m pretty sure has egg and more kewpie mayo! I really enjoyed this and would recommend you trying it!

Rare Breed Sticky Pork Belly $20

Rare Breed Sticky Pork Belly $20

This reminds me very much like that signature pork dish they have at Taxi Kitchen . I did find $20 for only 2 pieces of pork belly to be on the dearer side. It was also served a young coconut salad and red chilli. Unfortunately, we were a little underwhelmed as the pork was a little tough and once again under seasoned and not very sticky.

Koren Fried Chicken Ribs $14

Korean Fried Chicken Ribs $14

But then I was blown away again by the Korean Fried Chicken Ribs with kewpie mayo :) The ribs were not greasy with the flesh still tender, it was slightly spicy probably because of the marinate, and dipped into Kewpie mayo perfect!

Korean Style Crispy Pork Hock $38

Korean Style Crispy Pork Hock $38

Just in case I forgot to mention, the menu here is designed for sharing as most places are now! We’ve had a fair amount of food, so we decided to only get one dish from the ‘Larger’ section of the menu. We decided on the Korean Style Crispy Pork Hock with apple kimchi salad, pancakes and hoisin sauce.

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I would describe this dish like it a peking duck, but instead you replace the duck with pork! It’s quite simple, you hack into the pork hock, rip pieces off it, wrap it into the pancakes add a bit of the salad. Here comes some action shots for you!

Lucy Liu

Step 1

Lucy Liu

Step 2

Step 3

Step 3

Oh yeah last step is to wrap it and put into your mouth!!! We all really enjoyed this, the pork hock was tender with great smokey flavour, with a drizzle of hoisin sauce to give it some sweetness and the green apple for crunch! It’s also a very generous serving that could easily feed 3 to 4 people! I also liked the super thin paper like pancakes which means it’s less filling and you can eat more of it :)

Chocolate Dulce De Leche with blood orange foam $15

Chocolate Dulce De Leche with blood orange foam $15

If I had it my way, I would’ve forced the boys to have 3 desserts! But they were too stuffed, so I settled for only 2! Starting with the Chocolate Dulce De Leche with blood orange foam. I’m a little perplexed because I really liked the bottom layer with the dulce de leche, how sweet and rich it was. But then I’m really not a fan of blood orange, while it was the opposite for the boys they liked the foam more because it wasn’t as sweet :P

Crispy Banana Fritters $15

Crispy Banana Fritters $15

To make it easier for sharing, we got the Crispy Banana Fritters with coconut ice-cream and syrup. The batter in which the banana was coated in was thicker than I expected and not as crispy. Felt like a modern take and wasn’t as oily as the traditional one. Coconut ice-cream was creamy and nice with a sprinkle of toasted shredded coconut.

It was such a great catch up with Fellow Wong and as a side story, I’ve already introduced him to my good friend Ms S who will take care of him when he lands in Singapore. See I’m such a good friend haha I go to great lengths to take care of them. Back to Lucy Liu, I think it had some hits, but also some misses. I think some dishes they executed so well, however, lacked some flavour in some others. However, if you’re looking for a new place to have lunch or dinner with friends who take bookings, I think Lucy Liu is a good option. Plus the name is quirky :P

Lucy Liu Kitchen and Bar on Urbanspoon

That Beef Brisket – Meatmaiden

Meatmaiden1

My Dear Readers, do you remember the short lived restaurant Little Hunter? It had some great success but after only what felt like 6 months, it closed its doors due to financial issues. This great space was then forgotten for a while but it has been brought to life again! It has been taken over by the same owners as Meatmother in Richmond and now transformed into Meatmaiden.

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Meatmaiden is on the basement of a commercial building, and since it’s Little Hunter days, it has changed a little with more seats at the bar, not as dark and I love those dark grungy photos of girls holding a knife haha that’s the evil side of me when I don’t get what I want :P

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To celebrate the opening of the restaurant, Meatmaiden decided to organise a bloggers/media night, which I thought was very generous as all guests were also asked to bring a plus one. Even though it was a large event, we were all placed our own tables and I had Shellie (Iron Chef Shellie), Michelle (The Bakeanista), Katey (TinkPR) and Mr Bao on our table, so it was still intimate.

Negroni

Negroni

So what if it was a Tuesday night, it was going to be an awesome night filled with food and catching up with my fellow blogger friends so I was determined to drink! Plus Mr Bao was driving haha so lets start with a Negroni! Definitely not for the light drinkers it was quite strong indeed!

Beef Jerky, Pickled Heirloom vegetables and Kipfler chips

Beef Jerky, Pickled Heirloom vegetables and Kipfler chips

Ok now we’ve got drinks covered let’s move onto the starters, here we have beef jerky, pickled heirloom vegetables with chilli and goats cheese and Kipfler chips. The beef jerky with their homemade BBQ sauce was delicious! Then we also had the insider joke that Shellie pickled her stomach that night with all the pickled veggies she ate haha they were a great to prepare us for all the food that was coming!

Oysters with Smoked Fennel Dressing

Oysters with Smoked Fennel Dressing

Next was the freshly shucked oysters with smoked fennel dressing, I’m pretty sure these Oysters were from Tasmania and had a creamier texture. I haven’t had smoked fennel dressing with oysters before and found it very refreshing.

Southern fried chicken with tequila mayo

Southern fried chicken ribs with tequila mayo

I think I forgot to mention that Meatmaiden focuses on American BBQ so it also makes sense that they would have Southern fried chicken and to make things more interesting it was served with tequila mayonnaise. I couldn’t really taste the alcohol but it had all the rich and creaminess expected from mayo and the chicken ribs had such great flavours! I think more places should do Chicken ribs instead of wings, it’s easier to eat and more meat!

Lobster Mac and Cheese

Lobster Mac and Cheese

Some of the bloggers have visited on another event before, and they haven’t topped telling me about the Lobster Mac and Cheese, so I was very excited to see it on the menu. We all agreed that we could all have one serve each, it was very rich but was actually quite light on the cheese. The lobster just made it even more indulgent.

20-hour Rangers Valley Wagyu Brisket with Native Tassie Pepper Berry Rub

20-hour Rangers Valley Wagyu Brisket with Native Tassie Pepper Berry Rub

Now this is the BEEF BRISKET I am going nuts about, it’s Wagyu brisket from Rangers Valley and takes 20 hours to make paired with that aromatic Native Tassie Pepper Berry Rub. It is the most tender piece of beef brisket I’ve ever had! I’m going to be pushy and recommend you go and try for yourself :)

O’Connor Pasture-fed Flat Iron Steak

O’Connor Pasture-fed Flat Iron Steak

This flat iron steak from O-Connor was another winning dish that night, it had such intense buttery beef flavour. It had such good flavours no condiments or sauces were really required.

Lamb ribs

Lamb ribs

Last savoury dish we tried was the Lamb ribs, I don’t eat lamb so I skipped and gave my piece to Mr Bao. He commented that it was so succulent with great smokey flavours, we also got a variety of nods from the other people on our tables ~

Sundae with Peanut Brittle

Sundae with Peanut Brittle

All good meals must end with dessert! This was the Ice-cream sundae with chocolate and vanilla ice-cream, chocolate sauce and peanut brittle. A simple American classic dessert, just needed more chocolate sauce hehe

Chocolate Bar with Raspberry Sorbet

Chocolate Bar with Raspberry Sorbet

Something a little fancier was the chocolate bar with raspberry sorbet, its like a chocolate fondant with a soft gooey centre. I found the raspberry sorbet a little too tart for my liking and would’ve proffered something like butterscotch ice-cream but I’m sure you all know the way I like my desserts ~

I enjoyed the meal here at Meatmaiden and found it more refined than Meatmother but still retaining that casual bar type atmosphere. Their prices are also reasonable with a $49 meal with so much food my friend had doggy bags to take home with her last time she went with her hubby. Definitely recommend Meatmaiden if you’d like a place to visit with friends and trust me you must order the beef brisket and lobster mac and cheese!

Meatmaiden on Urbanspoon

Mr Bao and Daisy@Nevertoosweet dined here as guests of Meatmaiden and TinkPr

Lady of Leisure – High Tea Sofitel Melbourne

I think it was last year or year before was when I first heard of this term ‘LOL’ but not the average ‘Laugh Out Loud’, it has another meaning and it is ‘Lady of Leisure’. How cool is that! I’d love to be a lady of leisure, not have to work and just spend my husbands money (no no I’m not getting married anytime soon) hahaha but I would still like to be this type of ‘LOL’.

Sofitel Melbourne

So even though I’m not quite a full time ‘Lady of Leisure’ yet, I sure know how to be one on the weekend, I ditched Mr Bao and Cupcake for day. First I had brunch with a girlfriend then I organised to have High Tea with another girlfriend Kaylee. We are both High tea fanatics, when we were both in Hong Kong we use to go all the time, I’ve lost count the number of times we’ve gone to high tea.

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I’m pretty sure this is the first time we’ve had High Tea in Melbourne together, so I decided to choose something nicer and came across Sofi’s Lounge at the Sofitel Hotel. I’ve heard mixed reviews about their high tea so wanted to try for myself. They have 4 options during the week the Devonshire and Afternoon Tea option which is the standard 3 tier tower. On the weekends they have the Morning Tea which is the standard in this photo and also the High Tea full buffet which is the one we did. It is $69 per person with a class of complimentary champagne and unlimited tea and I think she said coffee.

Sandwich station

Sandwich station

Kaylee and I actually weren’t expecting a full buffet, so I think we were quite impressed with the two large sandwich stations and also the mini quiches and pies. Thanks for being such a great hand model hehe your pink jacket gives the photo some colour :)

Scones - Vanilla whipped cream, strawberry jam and honey lemon curd

Scones – Vanilla whipped cream, strawberry jam and honey lemon curd

There are of course scones, plain and fruit ones served with vanilla whipped cream, strawberry jam but what caught our eye was the honey lemon curd. It wasn’t tart and loved that honey flavour through it. Also how cute is the presentation with the scones in a ceramic bowl, it’s like having high tea in a garden outside.

Dessert buffet!

Dessert buffet!

And of course there was the Dessert buffet section with a good selection of mini cakes and tarts, I would say there were a total of at least 12. Which is a really good variety and I could tell that they were freshly made and not pre-made and have been left outside for a long period of time.

More cake!

More cake!

The sticky date pudding cake on second from the right was definitely my favourite!!! It was moist, sweet and sticky, but I know many will probably say it’s too sweet and rich for them :P

Sofitel high tea

So this is how we did it, first we got some sandwiches and mini quiche, then we moved onto the scones, pistachio pana cotta and also that lovely strawberry cheesecake with a strawberry jam filling. But we very quickly moved onto the desserts, and there you can see that delicious sticky date cake on the right again!

Crepe and pancake station

Crepe and pancake station

In between the two sandwich stands, there is also a crepe and pancake station where a chef is there to reheat some pre-made crepes in caramel source and also some freshly made mini pancakes. The salted caramel sauce was delicious, however, I would’ve preferred freshly made crepes and pouring some sauce on top with some ice-cream. Nom Nom!

Crepe and Mini Pancakes

Crepe and Mini Pancakes

We didn’t have ice-cream so served it with some whipped cream and more salted caramel sauce ~

Chocolate fountain

Chocolate fountain

Any high tea, buffet or restaurant that has a chocolate fountain with gain brownie points in my books! Now ready for the action shots?!?

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First its putting the strawberries on the skewers, I’m glad Kaylee did this and not me, as I’m rather clumsy and would’ve made a mess and not have been too elegant.

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Then it’s the KODAK moment! This is actually my favourite shot!

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Question time, what do you like dipping into chocolate? I’m actually a huge fan of dipping bananas into chocolate but I guess that would make the chocolate unclean as bananas are quite sticky and turn brown very quickly.

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I really enjoyed the High Tea here at Sofi’s Lounge and it definitely exceeded my expectations. Something I really liked was that the whole experience didn’t feel rushed and that we had to be out by a certain time. Even though the High Tea is only served from 2:30pm to 5pm, no tables were asked to leave or that they must finish in the next half hour. I’ve experienced some other high teas in Melbourne and they have very strict timings, which sort of takes the fun of out sitting around hours on end chatting with friends. We did find the tables to be a little small and it was difficult to fit all our plates, tea pots and cutlery. Thankfully, there was space next to the tables and put our bags there. At $69 per person, it may seem pricey, but I actually used the discount from the Entertainment Book which bought it done to $50 per person which I thought was more reasonable.

Sofi's Lounge on Urbanspoon

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