Tag Archives: Event

Bring Back Tea Time – Bakers Delight

Happy Long Weekend for all my Dearest Readers who are lucky enough to get Monday off :) I’ve had a wonderful long weekend with Mr Bao and Cupcake on our first family trip to Mildura, can’t wait to share with you everything we did ~ But let’s just back track a little, a few weeks ago, I invited to Bakers Delight ‘Bring Back Tea Time’ event at Cristina Re ‘Where A Girl Goes’ tea salon in Collingwood.

Cristina ReI’ve visited Cristina Re before so I knew it was the perfect place to hold this event for Baker’s Delight. They are introducing the two new scone flavours and also trying to promote the motto ‘Bring Back Tea Time’ to get people to take a couple minutes of out their busy work days and enjoy a scone and a cup of tea with friends.

Cristina ReWe were so spoilt with the abundance of scones to choose from, I’ve walked past Baker’s Delight so many times and sure I see the scones on display, but I never knew there were so many favours to choose from!

Beautiful setting with an abundance of scones :)

Beautiful setting with an abundance of scones :)

There were towers of both sweet and savoury scones, I was really lost for choice. The morning tea was sort of like my brunch because I didn’t have much to eat for breakfast, so should I go for a savoury? The spinach, feta and parsley or the cheese and chive both sound like perfect breakfast scones to me ~

Savoury scones

On the other hand, I could jump straight into the sweet scones, I mean when was the last time you had a savoury scone don’t the Americans call them biscuits? :)

Chocolate Mud Scone

I definitely had my eyes and heart fixed on the chocolate mud scone! Great idea must try making at home ~

Jams and Lemon Curd For those who don’t like their scones plain, there was a good variety of jams, lemon curd, butter and clotted cream to serve. Personally, I’m a fan of the traditional cream and strawberry jam, yet I also get caught up in the cream first or jam first argument :P Either way scones, cream and jam are a match made in heaven in my opinion!

Champagne!

And for those who weren’t driving or simply wanted to indulge there was champagne to go with the delectable scones, unfortunately, I was driving and had errands to run after the event so decided to skip the bubbles that day.

Blueberry and White Chocolate Scone with tea

Blueberry and White Chocolate Scone with tea

I declined the champagne but definitely wanted tea, got my usual English Breakfast and sat down with Jenny (Ichigo Shortcake) and Joyce (Mel Hot or Not) for some Blueberry and White Chocolate scone. I was really impressed at how moist the scones were and had enough flavour that I didn’t need any jam or cream.

Chocolate Mud Scone

Chocolate Mud Scone

And don’t forget that Chocolate Mud scone I had my eyes on before, finally got to try it. Wasn’t as chocolatey as I expected but with the chocolate chips it still had enough flavour, having said that I do have a crazy idea and think these scones would have improved with a huge dollop of Nutella *GRIN*

Orange  Poppy Seed and Orange Chocolate Scone

We then got to try the new limited edition flavours and they are the Orange Poppy Seed with cream cheese frosting and Orange Chocolate scone with chocolate chips folded through with chocolate frosting.

Orange Poppy Seed and Orange Chocolate Scone

Orange Poppy Seed and Orange Chocolate Scone

Both scones had wonderful flavours and would have pleased all those orange lovers out there, I did find the Orange Poppy seed scone a little more moist. However, I did like the flavours from the Orange Chocolate scone more and one of the bakers told us that each scone over 100 chocolate ships, so it’s definitely packed full of chocolate ~ These scones are available for 3 weeks and if demand is high enough it will stay for a long longer so don’t miss out :)

I really enjoyed this event having time to sit down, enjoy a scone, have some tea and chat with some friends. I think we should all this more often.

Daisy@Nevertoosweet attended this even as a guest of Bakers Delight, KeepLeft PR and Cristina Re 

My Perfect Weekend – In Perth

Australia is a big country, and even though I’ve lived here all my life, there are still so many places I have yet to visit. One of these places is Perth :) I’ve visited along the coast such Sydney, Canberra, Adelaide, Brisbane, Gold Coast and Brisbane. But somehow I’ve never made it to Western Australia. But now I may have a chance! I was recently contacted by Digitaslbi to participate in a competition to write my perfect weekend in Perth staying at the Pan Pacific Perth hotel. If my post is interesting enough and I win the competition, I will win a free trip for two to go to Perth!!!

Photo Credit: Colliers

Photo Credit: Colliers

There are no rules or limitations and I can be as extravagant as I want so I’m really trying to make it as interesting as possible! So a weekend isn’t a very long time, so I’m going to pack as much as I can into 2 days! First we would arrive in Perth and because we’re travelling in style, I would love to picked up by a limousine :P

Photo Credit: Limohire

Photo Credit: Limohire

We would then be taken to the Pan Pacific Perth hotel and check into our River Suite with complimentary breakfast, access to the lounge, free WIFI and most importantly a massive room with our own ensuite bathroom and amazing view.

After checking in, I’d like probably to get a drink and just relax in our hotel room for a while. Before we head out to check out what Perth has to offer ~ I would like to pick up a rental car because I like the freedom of being able to drive and explore an area as I please.

Photo Credit: Hertz

Photo Credit: Hertz

 

I’m really into culture and history so I’d like to visit the Pensioner Guard to see the cottages there and be transported back in time to see how people use to live. Next would be to visit the Rail Heritage Museum because Mr Bao likes trains and will appreciate learning about the history of them.

Photo Credit: Railway Heritage

Photo Credit: Railway Heritage

After some sight seeing you know I’ll be hungry so it’s time for dinner and I’d love to visit Restaurant Amuse one of the top fine dining restaurants in Perth. I have done my research and it looks and sounds amazing! All the dishes look so intricate and interesting :) But will need to book in advance because I’ve heard it can get quite busy.

Photo Credit: Amuse

Photo Credit: Restaurant Amuse

I think after a degustation menu at Restaurant Amuse we will be too full to eat anything else. So we will head back to our hotel and relax and have an early night in. And prepare for the next day of more eating :D

Photo Credit: Pan Pacific

Photo Credit: Pan Pacific Perth 

With the River Suite will get complimentary breakfast, so we will head down to the Monterey’s Restaurant for a buffet breakfast. After that I’d like to head over to the Crown Casino in Perth to check it out to see how it differs from the one in Melbourne :)

Photo Credit: Crown Perth

Photo Credit: Crown Perth

I will gamble a little and hopefully win some money and have enough to pay for lunch, next stop will be Jamie’s Italian. I know they’ve opened up in Sydney for a couple of years now, I still haven’t tried so I think it will be a great opportunity to try them out in Perth.

Photo Credit: Jamie's Italian

Photo Credit: Jamie’s Italian

Taking into account that we are only staying for the weekend, we will probably have to leave at around 7pm so after lunch, I will visit Mary Street Bakery and get a range of cakes and pastries to try. It all looks so delicious but I particularly want to try the lemon merengue tart!

We would then head back to the hotel, pick up our luggage and be sent to the airport and make our way back home to Melbourne. That will concludes my perfect weekend to Perth! I have really enjoyed writing this post, because it feels like I have already gone to these places hahaha This is only a rough itinerary because I’m sure when I get there or have more time to plan, I will be able to squeeze a few catch up with friends in Perth and also find more DESSERT cafes :)

Photo Credit: Visit Perth City

Photo Credit: Visit Perth City

I hope my perfect weekend is interesting enough to win the competition and we will have the chance to visit Perth sometime this year!

Daisy@Nevertoosweet was not sponsored to write this post, however, is part of a competition run by Digitaslbi and Pan Pacific Perth Hotel. 

Ice-cream creation – Harry’s Ice-Cream

Because I’ve been absent for so long, two posts in a row for my My Dearest Readers! For those who are in Melbourne are you prepared for another hot week? It’s going to get up to 40 degree this weekend. But I guess it’s still better than a couple of weeks ago when it was over 45 degrees Celsius. I don’t do very well with heat… so if you’re like me, remember to drink more water, keep hydrated and eat loads of ice-cream :P

Harry Icecream

Harry Ice-cream

That reminds me, at the start of summer, I was invited to Harry’s Ice-cream to visit their factory in Brunswick and was also asked to create my own ice-cream flavour! That is like any ice-cream lovers dream because I mean who doesn’t like ice-cream and to put all your favourite things in to create your own signature one, that sounds pretty awesome to me :)

Owner & Founder Lawrence Harrison

Owner & Founder Lawrence Harrison

I always assumed the Owner and Founder of Harry’s Ice-crema, first name would be Harry. But turns out Lawrence Harris is his name and they shortened it to Harry and used it as the brand. Harry’s ice-cream is their own brand of ice-cream but they also do private labels of Coles and Aldi, so you never know when you’ve purchased a tub of their ice-cream.

Blueberry Lemon Cocktail

Blueberry Lemon Cocktail

We started the fun event with a cocktail each served in these pretty and trendy Mason Ball jars which I adore. It was a blueberry and lemon cocktail with some vodka, the girls at Keep Left PR actually hand squeezed over 40 lemons themselves, now that’s effort. It was quite sour but a great way to clean our palettes and prepare us for the savoury and ice-cream tasting.

Sovoury Canapes

Savoury Nibbles

We were offered some savoury nibbles with mini bagels with smoked salmon, a spinach ricotta cheese tart, mini chicken sandwiches and puff pastry with blue cheese and dried figs. They were all freshly made and very good, but the spinach ricotta cheese was definitely my favourite.

Zumbo Macaron Tower

Zumbo Macaron Stand

Super spoilt, there was also a 3-tier stand full of macarons from Adriano Zumbo with nearly all the flavours you can think of, salted caramel, milo, popcorn, violet, finger bun and many more. I may have had one too many :P

Where the magic happens!

Where the magic happens!

After some savoury dishes we were then given a tour around the factory to see where the magic happens. It is so amazing how quickly it is for ice-cream to be made, filled into a tub and sealed and have it ready for delivery! I felt like I was in Willy Wonka land but for ice-cream hehe

Tony Senior Technician

Tony Senior Technician

We met Tony who is the Senior Technician and has been working alongside Lawrence for several years. He showed us how ice-cream was made from scratch, where a mixture similar to a custard is firm made with additions added to it and then churned in an industrial ice-cream maker. By the way, hygiene is taken very seriously here so we were all in the same gear as Tony, with a hairnet, lab coat, shoes also had to be covered lol no sorry no photos because I look simply too weird haha

Freshly churned ice-cream

The ice-cream is all churned and ready to be placed in the plastic tubs. I was really surprised with the texture and flavour of the freshly churned ice-cream it felt like whipped cream, it was so light and not very cold. Flavours were also more prominent because it wasn’t as cold.

Now it’s time for tasting and judging! So there were quite a few of us – Lianne, Sofia, Ling, Gastrology and Prue. We didn’t only get the chance to create our own ice-cream, it was also a competition where we got to judge each others ice-cream. Gosh I was nervous hehe because not everyone has a sweet tooth like mine :D

Our ice-cream creations

Our ice-cream creations

We had a good range of flavours amongst the bloggers, we had a carrot cake flavour, chocolate caramel slice, pistachio honey and rosewater and coconut cheesecake with biscuit.

My Creation

My Creation

Now do you want to know my creation hehe it took me a while to get it but I came up with a super sweet (duh) flavour haha with white chocolate ice-cream base, Mars Bar, Roasted Hazelnuts and Peanut Butter. Thinking back I probably overloaded my ice-cream but it was everything I like all in packed into one ice-cream.

Harry Icecream

This was the scoreboard! Congratulations Lianne for winning! Her flavour pistachio, honey and rosewater was fantastic and I’m a fan of pistachios too so it won a vote from me too :)

As for my favourite Harry’s Ice-cream flavour from their range of ice-cream would definitely be Sticky Date Pudding with toffee and fudge pieces through the ice-cream. Delicious! Thank you Harry’s Ice-cream and Keep Left for the invite to such a fun event, now time to go home and perfect my own personal flavour!

Daisy@Nevertoosweet attended this event as a guest of Harry’s Ice-cream and KeepLeft PR 

Birthday Celebrations – Ganache High Tea

Yesterday was an important day, it was my BIRTHDAY hehe :) I admit my Dearest Readers, I’m one of those attention-seeking friends and love celebrating my birthday with all my loved ones! Usually my birthday celebrations last for at least a week…but it’s quite often that they will last for a month :P

Ganache high tea

I got lucky and my birthday was a public holiday, because Australia day landed on a Sunday so we got the Monday off as well YAY! So i definitely made the most of this long weekend, the first birthday celebration started with a high tea with my fellow blogger friends at Ganache on Toorak Rd. It’s one of my favourite chocolate cafes in Melbourne so I was thrilled when they told me, they could do a high tea for me in their back room.

For $30 each we all started with a glass of champers followed by a traditional high tea set with savoury and sweets and of course a choice between the famously delicious hot chocolate, tea or chocolate infused chai tea ~

Look at us with our cameras hehe

Look at us with our cameras hehe

Ta Da! This was our high tea set, with a full plate of freshly made sandwiches on the bottom with roast chicken and smoked salmon. It was then followed by quiche with goats chesse and another with tomato, it had a smooth texture. But what we all really enjoyed was the Parisian tea cake which is an almond topped with chocolate, hazelnuts or cranberries. It was so moist and lightly dense and not too sweet for my blogger friends :P

Ganache high tea

On the very top layer was a range of they signature gateaux cakes with hazelnut fan slice, brownie mousse slice, rapsberry chocolate mousse and passionfruit and mango. They’re all so delicious but the hazelnut fan slice was by far my top pick.

Gateaux YUM!

Gateaux YUM!

As if we didn’t have enough food, there was also two stands full of macarons, chocolate pralines and Swiss chocolate muffins. The texture of the macarons were wonderful, especially the dark chocolate macaron. We had so much food, we were all given paper boxes to take things home, so even though Mr Bao didn’t come he tried a little bit of everything hehe

Macaron Ganache

Macarons goes best with hot chocolate :) They actually make the hot chocolates using a Ganache base which is why it’s super smooth, rich and utterly wonderful!

Ganache Hot chocolate

I was honestly so spoilt that day, because I outsourced my camera duties to Agnes who took all the photos for this post thank you! And then BBFF Shellie totally outdid herself again but making an AMAZING Thai Milk Tea crepe cake!!!

Thai Milk Tea Crepe Cake

Thai Milk Tea Crepe Cake

There were so many layers, I swear there’s at least over 25 crepes to make this cake!!! I can’t thank Shellie enough I’ve been gushing over this cake since she’s made it and posted it on her Instagram :)

Thai Milk Tea Crepe cake

If you like Thai Milk Tea you’ll definitely like this crepe cake, especially when paired with the Thai Milk Tea drizzle, if you’re game enough and have the patience Shellie has already blogged the recipe here ~

IMG_0367

Absolutely loved the cake and thanks Ash for taking this photo for me :) One of my favourite birthday photos yet!

My Dear Blogmily :)

My Dear Blogmily :)

Awwww Thanh closed his eyes in this pic! But this is my blogmily :) Thanks so much everyone for coming! Hope you all had fun and I still think starting my blog and getting to know you guys was the best decision I’ve made!

Ganache Chocolate on Urbanspoon

HK Style BBQ – New Year Eve Party

Happy New Year my Dearest Readers :) 2013 was a rough one for Mr Bao and I, many ups and quite a few downs. But now that’s gone, I am ready to take on 2014 and can’t wait to see what it has in store for us all!

Happy New Year2014

How did you spend New Years eve? Did you have a party? It might be surprisingly to many but this year is probably the first year I’ve spent New Years in Melbourne because in the past I am always in Hong Kong wit family. Alas with work it’s a little hard to take time off during this period so Mr Bao and I decided to stay here instead. You know we had a Christmas Eve party, so initially for New Years eve we wanted to go away on a short trip. Unfortunately, because of the car accident that happened and a few others mishaps we left it too late and it was too hard and expensive to plan a getaway :(

HK Style BBQSo instead we decided to do it the Aussie way and have a barbeque at my parents place because its more spacious ~ and since they’re not here they couldn’t really object hehe. Even though we wanted to do a BBQ like locals do, we wanted to put a twist to it and do the HK style way. Instead of using a weber barbeque, have an open fire with charcoal and cook the food on long forks.

IMG_8793

We just assumed our friends knew what to do but hahaha turns out they haven’t seen or had this type of barbeque. It’s basically a DIY you need to choose what you want to cook, put it onto the fork and then go to the fire and cook it. Some of my friends were quite alarmed because they’re use to all the food being cooked at once ~ Nope you’ve gotta feed yourself :P sorry friends but that’s why it’s fun hehe

IMG_8693

Once again I think we over catered for 16 people haha we got 2kgs of beef marinated in Korean bulgogi sauce, 4kg of chicken wings marinated 2 ways with a special BBQ rub Mr Bao made, 2kg of chicken thighs marinated 3 ways and we marinated that in some Nandos marinate sauce which was actually quite tasty.

Honey marshmallow toast

I also made dessert using those forks, using a piece of bread spread butter and honey over it, toast it using the open fire remember to turn it frequently so it doesn’t burn. And then top two marshmallows and wait patiently because it will start to melt you then fold it into and eat it :) Its such a simple but delicious little sweet treat hehe next time I think I’ll put a little chocolate in it to make it into a Smores toastie :D

Apart from a BBQ party I also wanted to make it an ice-cream party where we blind tasted ice-cream to see which brand we liked the most. I got this super fun idea from my fellow blogger friends :) I asked my guests to all buy chocolate ice-cream because I mean who doesn’t like chocolate and that was probably the most readily available flavour hehe. We ended up with 7 tubs and ready to serve and taste!

Ice-cream party1. Movenpick Swiss Chocolate
2 Connoisseur Belgian Chocolate
3.Killeigh Farm Triple Chocolate with chocolate swirl (Aldi)
4. Indulge Chocolate ice-cream (Aldi)
5. Ben & Jerry Brownie fudge chocolate
6. Blue Ribbon Triple Chocolate
7. Sara Lee Ultra Chocolate

Ice-cream party

Can you guess which 3 brands was top three choices amongst my friends and I? hehe
First Choice – Ben & Jerry Brownie fudge chocolate
Second Choice – Connoisseur Belgian Chocolate
Third Choice – Movenpick Swiss Chocolate

I can’t say I’m surprised that Ben & Jerry won this blind taste because it was so decadent, moreish with brownies pieces through it just made you want to eat more :) I was surprised though Movenpick was only the third choice because it’s actually Win Win (my sisters) favourite.

Mixed berry coffee trifle

Mixed berry and coffee trifle

I was a little sad I didn’t get to make dessert for the Xmas eve party soooooo I promised to make a dessert for this party…flipped through so many recipes and finally decided to make a trifle since I’ve never used my trifle bowl (I bought it last year! :P) I ended up adapting the a few recipes and came up with this massive mixed berry and coffee trifle. It’s actually quite easy to make just need a few ingredients not baking or cooking required hehe please let me know if you would like the recipe! I’ll blog about it.

New Years 2014

We didn’t want to watch the fireworks on TV so we all headed over to Westfield shopping centre and parked at the highest car park. It was actually a great view we could see so many fireworks going off, they were not all close to us, but it was just as spectacular. I also bought us fire crackers/sparkling candles to play with. Yes I still act like a child hehe

Love 2014

We also drew words with this them :) I hope in the new year we will all learn to love ourselves and the important people around us more! May 2014 be the best one yet for us all!

Hope you all had a – Merry Christmas 2013

Merry Christmas my Dearest and most amazing Readers :) Sorry I’m a couple of days late, but still I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas with your loved ones, family and friends. As for what we got up to, Mr Bao and I have started to make it a tradition to have a Xmas eve party at our place. My parents never really celebrated Christmas, so I’m definitely making up for it now.

Xmas Eve Feast

Xmas Eve Feast

We went for a full traditional Christmas menu where we did the Turkey and Ham and everyone else was to bring a dish. Look at what a feast we had! So much food! I didn’t expect everyone to bring something but everyone bought something spectacular over.

Mr Bao and the 9kg turkey

Mr Bao and the 9kg turkey

Let’s start with the amazing Turkey Mr Bao made, we did it last year and found Heston’s recipe to be the best to ensure the meat is moist and succulent. The secret to this recipe is to brine the turkey in salt water for at least 9 hours or overnight. Last year the turkey was got was only 5kg so it wasn’t hard to find a bucket to brine it in. But this year we went for a 9kg turkey! We had no idea what would fit such a large bird so eventually I came up with the idea of the turkey in the eksy :)

You must watch this video because it is honestly so funny, Mr Bao putting the turkey into the esky and the strange noises it was making hahaha

After brining the turkey, the next step is to soak it in ice water for an hour, changing the water every 15 minutes. I’m not quite sure what this step does, but Mr Bao said that the cold water will extract the unnecessary salt in the turkey and also help crispy up the skin. Once this is done, you can stuff the turkey with any filling you like – we used a bacon, leek, prune and walnut stuffing.

Roast Turkey

It then took about 4 hours to bake depending on the size of the turkey. The best way to test if the turkey is cooked is to use a meat thermometer and if the thickest part reaches 70 it’s ready :) I am so proud of Mr Bao, he absolutely nailed it! The skin was nice and crispy but most importantly it was super moist and succulent! Highly recommend this recipe next time you want to make a roast turkey!

Maple Glazed Ham

Maple Glazed Ham

We also doubled the ham this year a 6.5kg hehe we used a Valli Little maple glazed ham recipe, I know ham is often served cold but there is something so nice about warm ham. We had a lot left over but everyone was happy to take it home in takeaway containers because they wanted to make fried rice with it :)

Sticky Ribs

Sticky Ribs

Thanh brought over sticky ribs not sure what sauce he used but it was spicy, sticky and yum!

Sushi, Curry and Sausage rolls

Sushi, Curry and Sausage rolls

Dave who I’ve known for so many years was awesome and brought over so many dishes, sushi, curry puffs, and sausage rolls. He also helped me cater for Miss D who is vegetarian. Hmmm the curry puffs reminded me of the ones we get at yum cha delicious!

Sides

Apart from all the mains, we also so many other dishes, Mr Bao made Nigella Lawson’s pea, mint and pancetta side, I made a vegetarian capsicum and corn salsa, Chris made a prawn and chorizo dish last but not least Jason made a macaroni salad with perfectly soft boiled eggs.

Heston's Hidden Figgy Sauce Pudding

Heston’s Hidden Figgy Sauce Pudding

Mr Bao banned me from making dessert because he knew I would stress out having to help make the turkey, ham and sides so we decided to cheat and serve Heston’s Hidden Figgy Sauce pudding with warm custard instead. It’s quite amusing it only took 3 minutes in the microwave and all the sugar in the middle started to melt and became so molten inside. This was well received and I wished I had bought more when it was still available at Coles.

Ice-cream pudding

Ice-cream pudding

I also outsourced dessert to Iola who made a massive and delicious and ice-cream pudding. The inside was strawberry and raspberry ice-cream with fresh berries and topped with chocolate sauce and pop rocks.

Ice-cream pudding

Ice-cream pudding

I am definitely stealing this idea next time I’m invited to a party :) Its easy to make and definitely a crowd pleaser.

Drink Station

Drink Station

I also tried to deck out our study desk and transform it into a drink station with a homemade sangria on the left and a berry ice tea in the small drink dispenser.

Photobooth

Photobooth

To give the guests something to do, I stole this DIY Photo booth idea from BBFF Michele using my Macbook and putting it on a bookshelf there was our photobooth. Mr Bao and I ordered some Christmas photobooth props and we were ready to go :D

Xmas Party 2013

Here are some of the photos we took at the photo booth. Clearly I need to learn how to make funnier looking faces hehe oh and just in case you haven’t met Shy the cute Miniature poodle, Mr Bao and I are dog sitting him for a month while his parents go back to Hong Kong to visit family ~

KK Time

KK Time

After all that food and fun, it was time to open out KK presents! Yue introduced a new way of organising the KK presents and that is we draw the number of presents. Then the person with No 1 will choose a present and open it, then No 2 will have the opportunity to either choose an unwrapped present to take No1 present. We keep going until no presents are left, so it’s always the best to be last, because you basically know all the presents and which one you’ll like :P I got a popcorn making machine, while Mr Bao stole a mug warmer from Iola hehe

Santa Clause!

Santa Clause!

Then out of no where SANTA CLAUSE aka Mr Bao appeared from no where :D This is definitely a modern Santa with those sunnies and he swapped Rudolf for Shy a poodle instead hehe

Mandatory photo with Santa

We then all took a mandatory picture with Santa with our KK gifts hehe I think next year I’m going to make it a costume party and everyone will need to dress up!

Merry Christmas from Mr Bao, Me and Shy  :)

Merry Christmas from Mr Bao, Me and Shy :)

That sums up our super festive and fun Christmas party. It was a lot of effort and work to make everything but it was definitely worth it. I hope you had a wonderful Christmas and please leave a comment and tell me how you celebrated! xx

Preview Dinner – Is Fine Dining Finished?

Melbourne’s food scene is constantly evolving and in recent times we have seen many trends come and go such as the Mexican trend we previously had and a shifts towards more casual dining. This has then sparked the discussion of whether fine dining is becoming obsolete. As part of The Age Good Food Month, The Point’s Executive Chef, Justin Wise has teamed up with Luke Croston from Gazi to host a ‘Is Fine Dining Finished?’ dinner next Tuesday (26th November).

The Point

I was very lucky to be invited to the preview dinner held on Monday at The Point in Albert Park. I’ve heard many good things about the point, but haven’t had the chance to dine there especially on such a beautiful day!

AMAZING MELBOURNE

We headed up to the second floor where the restaurant was and I kid you not this was the stunning view we had :) Not a cloud in the sky, wasn’t too hot or cold it was just perfect!

Karpouzi Kup

Karpouzi Kup

We started the wonderful night with a Karpouzi Kup one of the signature cocktails from Gazi with Aperol, Jin, lemon juice, soda water and some mint. It’s a very light tasting drink and made me forget all the annoying things that happened at work that day.

Soft Shell Crab Souvlakakia

Soft Shell Crab Souvlakakia

We then moved inside to the private dining room where we were surrounded by an abundance of wine bottles. The first two dishes we tried were from Gazi (George Calombaris new restaurant) and the first was the Soft Shell crab souvlakakia, it had freshly fried crab with a honey and lemon mayonnaise wrapped in a thick pita bread. This is by far the fanciest souvalakia I have had and it was wonderful!

Beef Brisket Souvlakakia

Beef Brisket Souvlakakia

The next was the beef brisket souvlakakia with tender and succulent beef pieces, chips, aioli and a little parsley another really delicious souvalakia. These two dishes definitely represent what casual dining has become in Melbourne lately, modern takes on traditional dishes or interesting filling in breads, buns or rolls that are not commonly used.

Fresh bread and butter

It was then time to switch to the fine dining part of the dinner, and that included warm bread and butter. During dinner we were discussing that these all the little things that you get at fine dining such as the white table clothes, the nice cutlery and fresh bread that accentuates the whole dining experience.

Pan seared foie gras, pear and walnut

Pan seared foie gras, pear and walnut paried with 2007 Max Ferd Richter Brauneberger Juffer Sonnenuhr Auslese, Mosel Germany

The entree was a pan seared foie gras, pear and walnut. A simple and elegant dish that used a luxury product. I am a fan of foie gras, I simply love the richness and smoothness from it. I took a small bite and knew my sister Win Win would love this dish so much! The slight tartness from the pear also helped cut through some of the richness of the foie gras.

Macleay Valley rabbit, guanciale, pithier and broad beans

Macleay Valley rabbit, guanciale, pithivier and broad beans paired with 2010 Domaine Geantet Pansiot Bourgogne Rouge, Cote d’Or France

Our main was a more traditional fine dining dish Macleay Valley rabbit, guanciale, pithivier and broad beans. I have only recently started eating rabbit, and this is probably the first time I have had so many parts of rabbit in the same dish. In many aspect I found rabbit meat to resemble a similar texture as chicken meat with a slightly gamey flavour.

The Point, Albert Park

Out of all the components of the dish, the pithivier was my favourite as it had what I assume to be a rabbit meat filling, the puff pastry was buttery and flakey while the filling was warm and comforting. It may not be one of the dishes that I would personally order, but I think that’s another aspect fine dining offers to diners, and that is the chance to try something using more unique ingredients or methods of cooking.

Mastic musk stick, loukoumi, loukoumades, honey and sunflower

Mastic musk stick, loukoumi, loukoumades, honey and sunflower

Dessert was once again provided by Gazi which was a Mastic musk stick and loukoumades (Greek donuts) with a honey syrup and sunflower seeds. The loukoumade was similar to the ones they serve at Jimmy Grants but I find these to be lighter and the syrup wasn’t as sweet, while the sunflowers gave it some nuttiness and texture. I have never been a fan of musk sticks but it did bring back old memories,  Thanh and Shellie were talking about how milk bars use to sell these type of lollies for 1c or 2c :)

Petit Fours

Petit Fours

Back to fine dining and that is the meal always ends with Petit Fours and you bet it’s one of my favourite ways to end a meal. A warm inviting cup of tea and some sweets to nibble on. The jelly which I think was elderflower was delightful, while the shortbread and chocolates were addictive.

After such an interesting meal and all the discussions we’ve had, I have come to the conclusion that there is a place and time for all types of dining. For a Tuesday night dinner, I may prefer to go to a casual restaurant where the atmosphere is more casual and relaxed, food arrives quickly and not too expensive. However, if it’s for a special occasion such as an anniversary, wedding or birthday I would like to dine at a nicer restaurant with better service, ambience and not have to scream across the table to talk to each other :P So no I don’t think fine dining is finished, it may not be as ‘trendy’ as it once was, but I believe there will also be a place for them in the market and especially in the ever changing food scene here in Melbourne.

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If you would also like to participate in this discussion and try the dishes I did, please visit The Point website and book your seats now.

For another take of this event and discussion please visit:
I Eat There I Blog 
Iron Chef Shellie 

Daisy@Nevertoosweet attended as guests of TinkPRn and The Point

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