Tag Archives: Restaurant

That Beef Brisket – Meatmaiden

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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

Suburban Thai – Som Tam

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Good afternoon my Dearest Reader’s hope you’re all enjoying your weekend :) I’m not sure if you remember my friend Garfield, we’ve been friends since high school and he LOVES Thai food. We have gone to countless Thai restaurants and without fail he will order the same items from the menu! That’s why when I got an offer to review Som Tam a new Thai restaurant in Thornbury, I knew it was the perfect excuse to catch up!

Garfield (nickname of course) hates photos but I managed to snap this one and he allowed me to post it as long as it was black and white :P This guy has not changed at all! Just wondering my Dear Readers do you still keep in contact with your high school friends?

Chang Beer $8

Chang Beer $8

Mr Bao came with us as well and the boys decided it was a good night to have a beer or two or actually make that three. And they also stick with a Chang beer when we’re dining at a Thai restaurant.

Complimentary Som Tam

Complimentary Som Tam

The restaurant itself is called Som Tam, and for those who don’t know it mean Green Papaya salad in Thai. We were all given a small dish of complimentary Som Tam which I thought was a nice gesture and palate cleanser.

Son in Law Eggs $7.9

Son in Law Eggs $7.9

I’m a huge fan of Son in Law eggs which are soft boiled eggs fried to give it a crispy skin, topped with caramelised red onion, chilli and herbs. The eggs were cooked well and still remained runny inside, I did find it to be a little under seasoned and would’ve liked some more chilli or onion flavours.

Roti Bread and Peanut sauce $4.5

Roti Bread and Peanut sauce $4.5

Garfield and I are huge fans of roti bread and he’s introduced me to peanut sauce and now I can’t seem to get enough of it. The roti bread was fresh and warm, while the peanut sauce had more pronounce curry flavours than peanut, they paired each other quite well.

Roti bread peanut butter

Thanks Mr Bao for being my trusty hand model. But perhaps next time I can paint your nails too? Hahaha just kidding!

Som Tam  with Soft shell crab $12.90

Som Tam with Soft shell crab $12.90

I am a huge fan of Som Tam so since its their signature I had to try. We chose the soft shell crab salad as I find that more interesting. The Som Tam was made well fresh and crunchy, however, I found it too sour and not as spicy as I’ve had it in Bangkok. The soft shell crab was deep fried, it could have probably stayed in the deep fryer for a tad longer to make it extra crispy especially the thicker parts.

Tom Yum Soup with prawn $9.5

Tom Yum Soup with prawn $9.50

Mr Bao and I also shared the Tom Yum soup with prawns mushroom, lemongrass and kaffir lime leaves. Once again I found it to be amore sour than spicy, but the prawns were very fresh and had good texture.

Pad Se Ew $15.90

Pad Se Ew $15.90

Garfield was the first to introduced me to Pad Se Ew which is a stir fly noodle with beef slices, Chinese broccoli, pepper with a sweet soy sauce. This is his ultimate favourite dish out of all the dishes in Thai cuisine, he can eat this literally every day! He gave a big smile and nod to this Pad Se Ew as it was done right in his books made with beef and we could tell that it was freshly made and still piping hot. His only comment it that there was a little too much pepper for his liking.

Kana Moo Krob $15.90

Kana Moo Krob $15.90

I’m so glad I was dining with the boys, so I can try more dishes, we then shared a stir fry and curry dish. This is the Kana Moo Krob which is a stir fry of Chinese broccoli, crispy pork belly and garlic chilli oyster sauce. I could really taste the “breath of the wok” meaning the wok was heated to a high heat to cook this dish.

Red Curry Roast Duck $18.90

Red Curry Roast Duck $18.90

Mr Bao finally ordered the Red duck curry, he’s been talking about it for a while, but the last couple of Thai restaurants we visited either didn’t have duck or red curry. I was quite impressed that the duck is roasted in house with berries and longan added to the curry sauce to give it some overall sweetness.

Black Sticky Rice $4

Black Sticky Rice $4

The red duck curry sauce went very well with the Black Sticky rice. I’m not sure if I’ve told you this before, but I’m not really a fan of rice, never liked it or enjoyed it. However, I do like glutinous rice and when it’s black it’s even better as it’s got that nutty oat flavour to it. I also found that not many Thai restaurants serve black sticky rice so I was happy that they do here :)

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After all that food I needed a break…so here is a picture of the interior, I believe Som Tam is newly renovated and has a modern casual dining atmosphere.

Sang Ka Ya $6.90

Sang Ka Ya $6.90

The boys downed another couple beers while I was busy choosing what desserts I wanted to try. I couldn’t decide between two or three…so what the heck…I’ll just get all that I wanted! Starting with this Sang Ka Ya which is a egg custard pudding with pumpkin, taro and shredded coconut on top and served with Mango ice-cream. I wasn’t sure how Garfield would take this dessert, as it is a very Asian style and flavoured pudding to my surprise it was his favourite! I really enjoyed the smooth texture of the custard and also the little pieces of taro through it.

Black Sticky Rice with coconut ice-cream $6.90

Black Sticky Rice with coconut ice-cream $6.90

Yay! More black sticky rice for me! This is a very traditional Thai dessert and I remember eating numerous plates of this in Bangkok, however, it was often served with slices of mango, which is what I found missing from this dessert. And perhaps some coconut milk to poured over the black sticky rice would have added some more flavour.

Banana Roti $6.90

Banana Roti $6.90

Then the final dish for the night was this Banana roti with the same fresh buttery flaky roti bread sandwiched with slices of banana, whipped cream and a drizzle of maple syrup. This become my favourite!

I will be honest before visiting Som Tam I was a little wary as I have read mixed reviews about the restaurant. It appeared to be either really good or not so great at all. Even though I do find some dishes lacked chilli and spice. I understand that the chefs are trying to accommodate to the tastes and preferences of locals. I am very glad I came and tried, as we all enjoyed ourselves. I actually found the price of the dishes to be very reasonable, with nothing even mains over $25 while service was quick and pleasant. I would happily return to Som Tam more often if it was closer to where I lived, but I’m sure if I wanted to Garfield would drive again!

Som Tam on Urbanspoon

Daisy@Nevertoosweet and guests dined at Som Tam as their guest all opinions are my own. 

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

Fried Chicken & Waffles – Mr Big Stuff

Mr Big Stuff

My sister Win Win and I are very close, but given that we live 9 hours away from each other by plane it’s not easy for us to catch up and have a girl’s night out. I have been quite lucky and saw her a couple more times this year, and even though she was 5 months pregnant she still came back to visit me and meet Cupcake for the first time :) Now that’s what I call #sisterlove hehe Anyhow, I got an invite to visit Mr Big Stuff a new American Soul inspired restaurant on Meyers Place. I ditched Mr Bao and decided to bring Win Wing with me.

Mr Big Stuff

I’m a granny eater meaning I like to eat early to give myself enough time to digest and eat two rounds of dessert. We arrived at just past 6pm and it was good, because there was ample street parking and also a large parking station right across the restaurant. As soon as I walked in, I really like the atmosphere with a live DJ playing music in the background playing music that wasn’t too noisy you had to scream on top of each other’s voices to hear.

Wicked Watermelon (Non Alcoholic) $8.5

Wicked Watermelon (Non Alcoholic) $8.5

The menu is designed for sharing with drinks on the first two pages, then entrees, medium dishes and larger and finishing with desserts. We were recommended the cold pressed juices, which can be mode with non-alcoholic or alcoholic. We both ordered the non-alcoholic drink so we can share and try. I chose the ‘Wicked Watermelon’ with cold pressed watermelon, fresh lemon juice and soda water. Usually I steer away from watermelon juices, because they’re always grainy and have a lot of added sugary which makes it taste artificial. However, this one was different, it was fresh and refreshing and tartness from the lemon.

Soarin Strawberry Lemonade $8.5

Soarin Strawberry Lemonade $8.5

Win Win got the Soarin Strawberry Lemonade which is the same with me, however, replaced cold press watermelon with strawberry. It was just as thirst quenching and we both enjoyed it. I think I prefer the watermelon but for strawberry lovers you must try this~

Cheers to girls night out!

Cheers to girls night out!

Cheers to a girl’s night out!!! We should definitely try and do this more often :D

Jumbo Prawns $6

Jumbo Prawns $6

We then shared a couple of small stuff from the menu, this is the Jumbo Prawn dusted with corn meal, cajun spiced and prawn head mayonnaise. The prawn was cooked until tender and I completely understand why people say the flavour is all in the prawns head now! The mayonnaise was so delicious, Win Win asked the to leave it even after we’ve finished so she can use it for other things lol

Grilled Corn $5

Grilled Corn $5

I only recently realised I like corn so much hahaha I probably eat it every day or at least every second day, we tried the Grilled Corn here with garlic and black pepper butter. Let’s just say I regret sharing and wanted one whole cob to myself.

Pork Slider $9

Pork Slider $9.5

*palm face* I had to explain to Win Win what sliders were she couldn’t get the concept of mini burgers haha we shared the Pork Slider with braised pork shoulder and pickles. I felt the pulled was a little under seasoned and would have been better with some more salt and perhaps pepper.

Hot sauce!

Hot sauce!

I added some of the Hot Stuff hot sauce on the table and that really helped bring out the flavour of the pork.

Fried Chicken and Waffle $19

Fried Chicken and Waffle $19

It was then time to move onto the more substantial dishes and I knew I absolutely HAD to order the Fried Chicken and Waffles dish. I have heard and seen this dish in so many American TV shows, it’s always intrigued me, how does it work waffles which I associate as breakfast or dessert with fried chicken.

Mr Big Stuff fried chicken and waffle These waffles were also served with spiced maple syrup so it was definitely a combination of sweet and savoury. So how did my virgin fried chicken and waffle experience go? It was awesome! The fried chicken was crispy and juicy, but what really impressed me was the waffles! It had the perfect texture which I look for in waffles, where it feels light as a feather on the outside, but still retaining its slightly doughiness inside. Highly recommend anyone who would like to pop their fried chicken and waffle cherry to come here!

Tongue & Cheek $34

Tongue & Cheek $34

From the Big Stuff section of the menu, we tried the Tongue & Cheek – veal grilled tongue, braised cheek, sweet potato puree. This was a dish Win Win and I both enjoyed, the braised cheek was melt in your mouth type tender and I really liked the sweet potato puree which added some sweetness to the overall dish.

Corn Bread $6

Corn Bread $6

I know this is a little strange to rave on about the corn bread, and trust me I am no expert but this corn bread served in a little skillet really impressed me.

Mr Big Stuff corn bread

It was so moist that it felt like a freshly baked oven muffin and because I love the flavour and smell so much, I could honestly eat a whole one by myself. Win Win didn’t really understand why I made such a fuss about the cornbread but it’s good! Please try and let me know what you think!

Buttermilk Caesar $12

Buttermilk Caesar $12

My sister will never pass on the chance of ordering a Caesar salad, I’m pretty sure it is the only salad she eat…the rest she calls bird food. Yes we’re very similar yet different haha! The Buttermilk Caesar salad had crispy bacon, white anchovy and buttermilk dressing topped with what I assume to be parmesan cheese. Worked as a good palate cleanser for the other richer foods were consumed, and I liked the lighter how the white anchovy wasn’t as pungent.

Quince & Rhubarb Cobbler $10

Quince & Rhubarb Cobbler $10

They don’t have a large dessert selection here at Mr Big Stuff, which is a shame because I would’ve loved to see a sundae or a cheesecake on the menu. They only have two desserts, first was the Quince and Rhubarb cobbler topped with Vanilla ice-cream. I haven’t had many cobblers but this one felt more like a pudding with not much of a cobbler topping.

Apple pie $10

Apple pie $10

Can’t get any more American than Apple pie in my opinion and these had spiced rum and also cinnamon sugar dusted all over it.These were shaped like little dumpling which I found that they’re called hand pies.

*Warning* Super HOT!

*Warning* Super HOT!

Warning everyone!!! These were super piping hot inside so because when eating them, I couldn’t really taste the spiced rum in the filling but it was warm and comforting none the less. They were also a good sized not too big or small, a good bite size.

Mr Big Stuff 2

 

It was a fun night catching up with my sister, chatting about bags, clothes and random things :) We enjoyed most of the dishes we tried. I think if you’re looking for a place for casual dinner with friends or your partner, Mr Big Stuff is a great place. It’s relaxed and chilled where you can let your hair down, have a drink, enjoy the music and most importantly the fried chicken and waffles!

Mr Big Stuff on Urbanspoon

Daisy@Nevertoosweet and Win Win dined at Mr Big Stuff as their guest. 

Newly Revamped – Taxi Kitchen

When my office was in the CBD of Melbourne, I had a pretty good view of the Yarra River looking across from South Bank. And on level 26 I would always see Federation Square and Taxi Dining (recently changed names to Taxi Kitchen) and it has been on my list for the longest time, but again never had the chance so it was so nice for them to invite Mr Bao and myself to go visit :)

Federation Square

Federation Square

We decided to go on a weeknight and make it a date night as we haven’t had much quality time with each other lately. I’m sure I’ve said this before but look how pretty Melbourne is! Don’t think I could ever fall out of love with this city ~ By the way, for my Readers in Melbourne what are your views of Federation Square? Because I know there is a huge divide between those who like the design and those who don’t.

Taxi Kitchen

 

As I previously mentioned Taxi Dining has recently changed their name to Taxi Kitchen and revamped their concept, moving away from the fine dining to more sharing and casual dining. Which I also think is a trend we can see across the food scene in Melbourne. I’ve never been inside, but they have a great space with natural light coming through and one of the best views of the city.

Gin and Tonic

Gin and Tonic

It’s been very busy at work so to unwind Mr Bao and I both started with a Gin and Tonic. Cheers! :)

Bread and Butter

Bread and Sriarcha Salt

It was followed by some sourdough and Sriarcha salt for those who don’t need Sriarcha is a hot chilli paste often used in Thai Cuisine. I expected it to be more spicy but it did give the butter some extra flavour.

Scorched oyster, salt & vinegar pork crackle $3.5 one piece

Scorched oyster, salt & vinegar pork crackle $3.5 one piece

The menu is designed to share, so our lovely waiter Vincent recommended us order a couple of small plates, medium plates and maybee one or two large places and of course save room for dessert :P This is the scorched oyster, salt and vinegar pork crackle, we popped the whole thing into our mouths and the magic just happened. All the flavours melded so well with each other and I particularly liked the pork crackle which was light and not the least greasy.

Seared scallop with red reddish, smoked chill mayo and kataifi $4.5 one piece

Seared scallop with red reddish, smoked chill mayo and kataifi $4.5 one piece

I a a huge fan of scallops so I had to order the seared scallop with smoked chilli mayo and kataifi which I only just realised its very reasonably priced only $4.5 a piece and it’s so nicely cooked perfectly golden on the outside and still tender inside. This was easily one of my most favourite dishes that night!

Candied pork with coconut, red chilli dressing $16

Candied pork with coconut, red chilli dressing $16

This candied pork with red chilli dressing would have to be Taxi Dining’s signature dish, I have heard so much about this dish and even though I never got to try it back then. I am so glad they haven’t taken it off the menu now that they’ve changed to Taxi Kitchen. And undeniably it was another winning dish for me, the pork was lightly caramelised on the outside but still so soft and with that melt in your mouth texture inside. The sauce is also so additive slightly sweet, slightly sour and slightly spicy! I spoke to one of their staff before leaving and they said that they would be in a lot of trouble if they removed this dish from the menu hehe I say it’s a must order when you visit!

Sake washed Tuna with soy bean pesto & kohlrabi remoulade $22

Sake washed Tuna with soy bean pesto & kohlrabi remoulade $22

Now moving to the medium plates we ordered the sake washed tuna with soy bean peso and kohlrabi remoulade. Look at that vibrant colour of the tuna, it was so pretty I didn’t really want to eat it ~ The tuna was fresh and even though not mentioned in the menu there was a sauce made out of yuzu which really complimented the sake and the saltiness from the soy bean pesto.

Country style terrine with foie gras parfait & rhubarb compote $21

Country style terrine with foie gras parfait & rhubarb compote $21

In recent years, I have become a huge fan of foie gras and will not pass any chances on ordering it, if it’s available on the menu. Ash (Im So Hungree) visited a week before us and I remember seeing this lovely dish on her Instagram, so knew I wanted to try as well.

Foie Gras

I didn’t expect the terrine to be so solid, the foie gras was whipped to a nice cream like texture which was great for spreading on toasted bread. Don’t be followed by the size of this dish, it was actually very filling so by all means share the dish or order something lighter afterwards :)

Braised rabbit, mushroom, fennel & silken pasta $22

Braised rabbit, mushroom, fennel & silken pasta $22

We actually didn’t order this dish because I don’t really eat rabbit because I was born in the rabbit year haha but the kitchen made a mistake and made this and insisted that we try it anyway. It wasn’t an easy dish to photograph because of the green fennel sauce. The waiter advised us the pasta is made in house and that Taxi Kitchen try to do everything from scratch. I was impressed that the rabbit didn’t really have much of a gamey flavour and actually resembled a cross between chicken and beef. Mr Bao particularly liked the eggy flavour and texture of the pasta.

Crispy snapper, warm sea lettuce & zucchini salad with a black garlic dressing $34

Crispy fish, warm sea lettuce & zucchini salad with a black garlic dressing $34

We also ordered two ‘Large Plates’ because Mr Bao was hungry haha yes that man can eat! The menu wrote ‘crispy salmon’, however, that was not available that night so it was substituted with a another type of fish which if I’m not wrong was either a snapper or cod either way no complains from me. Because it was cooked wonderfully with a good crust on the outside of the fish but not overcooked. Mr Bao did find it to be slightly salty but I like my food well seasoned so that was fine for me ~

Crispy confiit duck with beetroot puree, watercress and orange salad $36

Crispy confiit duck with beetroot puree, watercress and orange salad $36

For Mr Bao’s main he ordered the Crispy confit duck which resembles a more modern take on Duck A L Orange ~ We were both impressed with how crispy the duck skin was and it had sort of an Asian twist to it with the use of wombok. I think our only complaint was we wanted more duck hehe

Mini doughnuts with caramelised milk jam $12

Mini doughnuts with caramelised milk jam $12

Now after all that food..you might be wondering if we still had room for dessert. Don’t worry I definitely have a separate stomach for dessert ~ There were quite a few options and they all sounded so good such as the Bitter chocolate marquise, coffee crumble and tonka bean ice cream. But Ms Ihua posted the mini doughnuts on her post and I was immediately sold. The mini donuts were made to order so they were piping hot when they arrived at our table, I probably would’ve liked more caramelised milk jam because they weren’t as sweet as I’d like but you all know I like my desserts super sweet hehe

Taxi's famous passionfruit soufflé & banana ice cream $15

Taxi’s famous passionfruit soufflé & banana ice cream $15

Another signature dish here at Taxi is their famous passionfruit soufflé with banana ice-cream. I haven’t seen such a high and proud soufflé for a long time, and I was getting so nervous trying to get the best shot before it collapsed.

Passionfruit Souffle

The texture of the soufflé was really nice, it was too airy but had some substance and even though the passionfruit made it quite sour. I really liked the banana ice-cream and the sweetness balanced out the sourness. If you like soufflés I definitely think you should try this one and let me know what you thought.

Mr Bao and I thoroughly enjoyed our date night at Taxi Kitchen and would like to say a huge thank you to them for inviting us. We enjoyed all the dishes and it was hard to pick a favourite but I think the scallops and pork belly definitely impressed us! Looking forward to coming back to Taxi Kitchen another time and order these dishes again and possibly try some new ones :)

Taxi Kitchen on Urbanspoon

Daisy@Nevertoosweet and Mr Bao dined at Taxi Kitchen as their guest. 

 

Simple and Traditional – Mr Collins

Hello to my Dearest Readers :) I am writing this post in the plane as I’m going to back to Hong Kong for a couple of weeks to visit family, friends, shop and most importantly EAT! Follow me on Instagram and you’ll know exactly what I get up to. Anyhow, a couple of weeks ago I was invited to Mr Collins in the Docklands for lunch and was asked to bring a friend as well.

Mr Collins at Collins Square

Mr Collins at Collins Square

Since it was in the city, I decided to ask my colleague Yue to come, it would be a great chance for us to catch up before I headed off and was still quite close to our office. In the past couple of months, I’ve heard of so many new cafes/restaurants popping up in the Docklands, which I think is really nice because a lot of my friends work there and use to complain about the lack of eateries ~

Mr Collins

Mr Collins is located inside an office building (not sure which one) and adjacent with a modern food court. I really liked the seating they had outside the restaurant which had a lot of natural light coming through. The concept here at Mr Collins is to serve homemade style Italian dishes and where possible they make all their pastas and sauces from scratch.

White Wine

We started the luncheon with some white wine and prosecco, who said you can’t drink on a work day lunch even though I did turn quite red :P It was then followed by a charcuterie board with a good range of salami, bresaola, various cheeses and brae cheese with pear and honey drizzled over which was my favourite. Great way to start our meal, but I had to pace myself because I knew there was going to be a lot of food coming our way!

Charcuterie board

Charcuterie board

Frank Nesci introduced himself to us and explained that he has been in the hospitality industry since he was 12 years old at his parents restaurant. Before Mr Collins, Frank and his family owned and managed Healthy Habits, Sputino and Fancy Fillings. Many of these outlets can be found in food courts in most shopping centres.

Bruschetta

Bruschetta

I know bruschetta sounds like a very simply dish, but this one at Mr Collins was probably one of the best I’ve had for a long time. I’m not sure if it’s the housemade bread or the fresh tomatoes, the flavours just melded without each other very well.

Mains - Squid ink pasta, gnocchi and ravioli

Main – Squid ink pasta, gnocchi and ravioli

There was then a short wait for the mains, which I understand as there were quite a few of us, and normally we wouldn’t have mind, just Yue and I had a meeting so we had to rush back ~ We all got our own plate of pasta with squid ink garlic prawn pasta, gnocchi in a tomato base sauce and ravioli. the prawn pasta was the most flavoursome and the prawner was cooked well. I found the gnocchi to be a little soft while the ravioli was nice with a soft cheese filling, sorry guys forgot what it was exactly.

Pizza - prosciutto, mozzarella cheese, rocket

Pizza – prosciutto, mozzarella cheese, rocket

The food kept coming, we then had two pizzas to share. The first was the proscuito, rocket and mozzarella cheese, my type of pizza. Really liked the topping and the flavour in the dough, not sure if they use a wood fire oven but it sure had that texture. Yue did find the base of the pizza a little wet, but we think it might be because we were at the end of the table and the last to take the pizza.

Pizza - Mozzerella cheese

Pizza – Mozzerella cheese

The second pizza had a drier base and that was the simple tomato base mozzarella pizza. Like the bruschetta it was simple but very tasty.

Tiramisu

Tiramisu

Would have loved to stayed and chat to everyone, but we had to rush off. Just before we got up, Ashleigh from Harvey PR made my day by bringing over the dessert tiramisu in a tall glass jar. I’m definitely no expert when it comes to tiramisu but I really enjoyed the strong hit of coffee and the creaminess from the mascarpone cheese.

How cool is this loaf of bread?!

How cool is this loaf of bread?!

Overall, I like how Mr Collins focuses on making traditional simple dishes and not overly modernising the dishes. Think Mr Collins is a great addition to the growing number of restaurants in the Docklands providing people more lunch and dinner options. I know they make all their cakes and sweet in house as well, so next time I’m going to have to come back and try some of the cakes :)

Mr Collins Cafe on Urbanspoon

Yue and Daisy@Nevertoosweet dined at Mr Collins as guests of Harvey Publicity 

Casual French Bistro – La Cassolette

I’m not sure if I’ve asked My Dearest Readers before, but what’s your favourite cuisine? :) Mine would definitely be French! I mean of course I would love French food because of their pastries, cakes and desserts. But I also like their slow cooked and comforting meals like a beef bourguignon.

La Cassolette

Mr Bao and I recently visited La Cassolette on Rebecca Walk, it might look familiar to some because it use to be a Roule Galette. The well known crepe store which I have previously blogged about here ~ The owner Michel Dubois has decided to transform Roule Galette into a modern casual French bistro serving traditional dishes at affordable prices.

La Cassolette

I definitely appreciated Michel’s efforts because even though I love French food, I find most of my favourite restaurants are quite expensive and its hard to find casual bistros here in Melbourne. They have fully refurbished Roule Galette, with new tables, chairs and I feel it’s also brighter letting a lot of natural come through. Rebecca Walk is a quieter side of the city which I think many people forget, but the view is actually stunning overseeing the Yarra River and also Crown Casino.

Sparking water and marinated olives

Sparking water and marinated olives

We got there at around 6:30pm and were the only table, we were offered some Sparking water and marinated olives to start our meal. I’ve never seen this brand of sparkling water before called Cape Grim where they collect the water from Tasmania, Mr Bao liked the water so much saying that it was the best he’s had ~ I think it’s because it wasn’t over carbonated, and didn’t have that aftertaste some sparkling water has.

Crab salad and quinoa taboule $16

Crab salad and quinoa taboule $16

We were suggested to order a three course meal, for my starter I chose their recommended dish which was a crab salad and quinoa taboule. I wasn’t expecting a square shaped bar, on the bottom was the quinoa and on top was the crab salad severed with baguette and some greens. I really enjoyed the crab salad with the mayonnaise dressing and the quinoa made it a rather filling dish and probably didn’t need the baguette bread :)

Smoked salmon with French dressing $15

Smoked salmon with French dressing $15

Mr Bao is a fan of smoked salmon so he ordered the entree size with French dressing and baguette for his starter. Another generous serving with quite a few slices of smoked salmon, don’t think we’ve had it with French dressing before, but was a nice addiction and helped cut some of the saltiness from the smoked salmon.

Scotch Fillet Black Angus 220g $25

Scotch Fillet Black Angus 220g $25

For his main, Mr Bao ordered a Scotch Fillet Black Angus that was 220g for $25 which we think is quite reasonable for a good piece of steak. It was nicely cooked to medium rare but we found it to be a little tough and paired with a spicy Cajun sauce.

Mash Potato $6

Mash Potato $6

We also added a side of mash potatoes to go with the steak, it was fluffy and butter topped with herbs and cracked pepper. I probably shouldn’t have ate so much of it!

Seared scallops and creamy sauce served with mash potato, parmesan and green salad $25

Seared scallops and creamy sauce $25

For my main, I chose another one of their speciality dish, seared scallops with creamy sauce. These dishes are cooked in front of customers where the scallops are cooked in a hot pan with Cognac then seasoned with salt, pepper and herbs.

Seared scallops

It’s so nicely plated with the seared scallops arranged around mashed potatoes, parmesan cheese and a green salad. Scallops are one of my favourite types of seafood and these were cooked perfectly, not at all chewy and still soft inside.

Seared Scallops

Nearly forgot we also had some white wine to pair with our meal. It was particularly nice with my scallop dish. I found it to be more on the drier side and prefer sweeter wines, but Mr Bao really liked it.

White wine

Who says you can’t have a drink on a Thursday night? :P

IMG_0494

I already had my eyes on the ‘I Feel Sweet’ section which is their dessert, I got the chocolate pear fondant cake. I was surprised to see it served in a tea cup, a great way to serve fondants and makes it less messy, will need to try this next time at home ~

Chocolate Pear Fondant $12

Chocolate Pear Fondant $12

On top of the fondant was vanilla ice-cream, I really enjoyed the oozy centre this is definitely my type of dessert!

Maki Roll sorbet $14

Maki Roll sorbet $14

We were intrigued by the Maki Roll sorbets on the menu, when we asked the waitress she said that it’s a fun dessert that their chef has created. They were shaped like sushi with a sweet fruit syrup centre sorbet on the outside, the thin slices of sorbet melted quickly and reminded me very much like the Sugus lollies which are chewy lollies quite famous in Hong Kong :)

We really enjoyed our meal at La Cassolette, food was made well and comforting and service was warm and friendly. It’s nice to know of a new place to get casual French food at very affordable prices. Would recommend it to anyone who likes French food and haven’t been able to find a casual place in Melbourne ~

La Cassolette on Urbanspoon

Daisy and Mr Bao @Nevertoosweet dined as guests of La Cassolette

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