Can the cold weather, hurry up and leave Melbourne, pretty please? It’s not the optimum time to swap the winter Uggs for Havaianas, but Spring and Summer has at least, arrived in St Kilda. With buckets of Nam Jim and zesty spice, the goosebumps are kept at bay. If you suffer from the ‘Asian flush’, the dainty cocktails will redden those cheeks (guilty). Ex Kong Chef aka Golfy, provides an eclectic mix of Thai, Korean and Japanese cuisine. From Matcha panacotta, to sashimi and grilled pork neck – the menu showcases Asian cuisine. The Thai influence is strongest, creating a balance of sweet, sour and spice. I hate to use the ‘F’ word, but Asian fusion continues with its popularity. The beachside suburb joins the club with Spring and Summer on Barkly St. Continue reading Ex Kong Chef Opens Spring and Summer in St Kilda
Who stole the Spring sunshine? Okra, returns the heat, with fiery Malaysian. Literally – with flaming oysters and figuratively, with fragrant spices. Malaysian cuisine is heavily influenced by a number of Asian flavours – predominantly Chinese, Thai and Indonesian. You know what they say – ‘Malaysia, truly Asia’. Malaysian food in Melbourne is dominated by a handful of franchises. Okra is independently owned, with head chef Michael Tiu heading the kitchen. The recipes may span a continent away, but ingredients are sourced locally. On a dreary miserable day, the warm embrace of Malaysian is required for the winter blues – or rather the cold spring showers. Continue reading A fiery Malaysian experience – Okra Hawthorn
RACV Torquay Resort is perched on the beach front town of Torquay. The surfing and beach capital of Victoria, is a fitting escape from the fast pace of city life. The ho-hum daily grind and dreary ‘Spring’ weather, means wander-lusting is inevitable. It’s a first world problem, where planning for holidays is a form of escapism. The anticipation builds, as the Type A personality has the spreadsheet, satisfyingly fill up with activities and bookings. A weekend getaway is no less exciting. The best thing about resorts – no matter the weather, there’s always an endless stream of activities. Admittedly, when we visited it was raining cats and dogs. The facilities at RACV Torquay are top notch – the rejuvenating One Spa, the lush greens of the golf course to a dainty High Tea at Hardings Lounge. Bring on the relaxation! Continue reading A Relaxing Escape to RACV Torquay Resort
Once upon a time, three hungry bloggers entered the grand white doors of Fourth Chapter. They were hungry for waffles, french toast and caffeine, to refuel after a less than exciting work week. You’d be mistaken in thinking the door leads into a luxury boutique – perhaps dolce and banana or chan-nel? On the other side, lies the latest venture from Sarah Whitfield (Trei – Glen Waverley). Diversity in menu, differentiates Fourth Chapter from its east-side sister. There’s something for everyone – from the activewear paleo dieter to the ‘treat yo’self’ ladies. Don’t want to state the obvious – but we are of the latter. Fourth Chapter gets an distinction for its light airy decor. The best part is the courtyard, with a pond full of fishes, looking out into the neighbouring park. During colder weather, cozy grey blankets shield you from spring breezes. Nothing will come between us and our waffles! Continue reading Enter the Grand White Doors of Fourth Chapter
Hail Mary, full of grace, may the brunch be with thee. Dear Abbey resurrects the former Weslayan church on Gladstone St, integrating the old and new. The red-brick, Gothic revival exterior is distinguished by the tall spire. Reaching for the sky, the same sky, that locals admired in 1890 – the church retains its historical significance in modern times. Sure, instead of coaches, there’s your local Coles across the road. Instead of repentance, there’s indulgence and gluttony. At my former University, it was disheartening to see beautiful old buildings, get knocked down for cold glass walls. At Dear Abbey, the juxtaposition of the old gothic red brick, with expansive glass, is beautiful. Amongst the warehouse and minimalist interior that dominates Melbourne, Dear Abbey’s interior is unique. Continue reading Have brunch in a church- Dear Abbey, Moonee Ponds
Juno & May opens in Camberwell, with an endearing back story. Do you remember the times you saved pocket money for the latest fad? Perhaps, a tamagotchi or the ancient nokia 3310? When Juno & May were lil’ ones, they wanted nothing more, than a TV. Growing up on a farm, the kiddies worked out that milking the cow after school, would earn enough money for a spanking new TV. The entrepreneurial spirit, continues into adulthood. Now, its about saving money for a restaurant. Naturally, the fairy tale has a happy ending, with Juno & May opening in Camberwell. The farm aspect, translates to Juno & May’s menu, with Victorian produce featuring heavily. Continue reading Juno & May Opens in Camberwell!
Breathe a collective sigh of relief. It’s the weekend and indulgent brunches are on the agenda. At Collective Espresso there’s the warm and hearty, the colourful and fresh and the favourite classics. Owner Julian Moussi purchased the Camberwell cafe in 2013 and judging by the crowd of locals, its still an east side hang. The monochromatic entrance says ‘ Meet me here’. The cosy space with communal tables, a scientific looking contraption and outdoor dining is for meeting friends. Be quick on rainy days, I did say its a cosy space. Coffee is Collective Espresso’s own unique Cookson St blend. For Camberwell, Collective Espresso is the go-to for locals. Continue reading Collective Espresso – Camberwell
Hot Mama, there’s a newbie in town! Follow the pink fluorescent signage and head into Spare Me Kitchen. Glamorama – the late night venue on Brunswick street, welcomes executive chef David Stewart. Best known as head chef and owner of Ascot Food Store – aka the original place for syringe doughnuts. Dave’s re-imagined menu is inspired by the ‘paddock-to-plate’ philosophy. The Gippsland region, along with knowledge passed down by granny, is Dave’s inspiration. These days, sustainability and reducing mileage is on trend, but you’d never know, at this funky venue. Continue reading Hot Mama! Spare Me Kitchen Opens In Glamorama
Location, location, location. Number One Restaurant is aptly name, with the address – No.1 Great Ocean Road. Located within the luxurious confines of the RACV Torquay resort – admire views of Bass Strait and the lush greens of the golf course, whilst dining on Modern Australian cuisine. RACV Torquay marks the starting point for the iconic drive, with the Great Ocean Road stretching along the South Eastern coast of Victoria between the towns of Torquay and Warrnambool. With the temperature gauge dropping, it wasn’t beach weather, but rather a weekend of gastronomic indulgence. Continue reading Dining on the Great Ocean Road – RACV Torquay Resort
‘Doughnuts is there anything they can’t do’, says the patriarch of the Simpson family. Doughnut Time puts the Doh in diets, with quirky, colourful creations that awaken the inner child. From Pokeball doughnuts, filled with indulgent Nutella, to vanilla glazed doughnuts speckled with M&Ms – it puts a smile on the dial. Arriving from the Sunshine state, the much-loved franchise now has 4 locations in Melbourne. You can get your doughnut fix amongst grafittied alleyways (Degraves), shiny shopping centres (Emporium), the beard capital of Melbourne (Fitzroy) or Chap laps central (Windsor). The original has a continuous stream of people, with batches selling like hot cakes. Flavours are consistent between stores. Continue reading Doughnut Time in the CBD, Fitzroy and Windsor!