Monday, March 30, 2009


80 Stanley Street
Darlinghurst NSW 2010
Ph 02 9358 3415

Originally, we wanted to go to JAR (Just Another Restaurant) to sample their light lunch but they were closed. This majorly annoyed me since we drove all the way to the city to have it and didn't expect it to be closed on a sunday!

Instead, we walked up and down the street in Darlinghurst and ended up choosing Japanese after a lot of um's and ah's. The little restaurant is called Benboo. From the outside it looked like a little takeaway Japanese sushi place. Betty thought the food was going to be food court quality and boy was she wrong.

Well, we weren't too keen on eating too much so we ordered some edamame for starters, takoyaki and a crunchy salmon sushi roll. This looked great on the menu and we weren't disappointed.

To start off, we had our edamame with some genmaicha. It was savoury and went well with the tea, which had an aromatic roasted rice smell. We ate the whole bowl almost immediately since everyone loves edamame :)

Then our roll and takoyaki came out at the same time. The takoyaki I will have to say is better than any I've ever had. Forget all the other reviews I've done with takoyaki mentioned.

This one was the perfect takoyaki, with it's soft filling, crispy outer layer and diced octopus. The Bonito shavings on top were still curling when it came out, the thick sweet soy sauce and mayo were drizzled on to the plate in a nice zig-zag pattern and the taste was absolutely breathtaking. *drools*. I want some now...

After demolishing half the plate of takoyaki, we started eating our crunchy salmon roll. This was a new one for us and we couldn't work out what the crunchy parts were until half way through.

The sushi roll was fresh, the rice nicely mixed with vinegar and the crunchy bits of tempura on the outside added a nice crunchy texture. I liked this sushi better than the sushi we had at Sakae. The salmon was soft and buttery and the avocado melded with the texture and flavour of the salmon, like the way peas and corn go together.

This was supposed to be a light lunch. But like pringles, once you pop you can't stop. We didn't stop there and ordered a spicy tuna roll. This I have to say is the shiz. The tuna was mildly spiced with a little drizzle of chilli mayonnaise on the top. There was avocado in there too which made the flavour a mixture of buttery, spicy and that special taste fresh tuna has. It was a great sushi roll, better than a tuna roll with no chilli definately. *nods*

Sambath had ordered the bento box with fish katsu, salmon avocado roll, rice & wasabi mayonaise.

Spider roll Ordered by Julie.

This place was across the road, and was very packed & busy with a constant flow of customers coming in, and out, and waiting around for take aways. We'd like to try this next time :)

After stuffing our faces we decided we'd better head on over to centennial park to cycle our calories away after eating such a hectic meal. I'd have to say, this place has overtaken Sakae by a long mile. It's become our new favourite japanese restaurant.

Two thumbs up!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Macro Cafe - 2nd Review

I had already done a review on this place here, but after coming back again i just had to do a 2nd review i love this place :)

After finishing up on a photoshoot at Bondi Beach (piccies here) we drove to the junction to have breakfast @ our fav organic joint.

They opened at 8AM, we were the first people in the doors & the first to order, and luckily - the waitress gave me a free coffee for being the first customers!! So very nice :)

Rick had a rice milk coffee cappuccino, i had a *free* soy mocha. If you havent tried rice milk - do give it a go you can get it from woolies (not all coffee places offer rice milk actually, macro is the first that we found that did)

For breakfast i went with the wild mushrooms with goats cheese, wilted spinach, cherry tomatos & sourdough bread. The first thing i always do - is butter my toast while its still warm :) I like to watch it melt, and biting into the overly buttered spots to have butter ooze everywhere in my mouth yummy!

Oh i also ordered an extra poached egg - which was over poached (i should have specified i wanted them runny but oh wells)

The goats cheese was soft & salty, and went well with the soft mushrooms (i love mushrooms, the fungi lil critters)

Rick went with the big macro breakfast which had wilted spinach, 2 poached eggs, cherry tomatos & bacon. (and he scabbed some of my mushrooms!!) He said the bacon was salty yet soft yet crunchy at the same time, and he was lucky to get one half runny poached egg!

I love my eggs runny, and the way i eat them is to suck up the yolk like i'm kissing it *mwaH!* haha

Another happy experience @ Macro :)

Billu's Eatery

62-64 Wigram Street
Harris Park NSW 2150
ph: 9687 7785
fax: 9687 7789

We felt like Indian tonight, so headed over to Harris Park (home of authentic Indian food & sweets).

They have a really vast menu, it took our friends quite a while to decide on what to order (me & Rick already knew what we wanted - DOSA!)

We also ordered a samosa, and rose lassi.

WE LOVE ROSE LASSI : it's a yogurt based drink, which you can have salty, sweet or spicy. In our case, the rose is the nicest as it's beautifully sweetened with sugar and rose water. It's very refreshing, and is great to cool down your mouthif you're eating something really hot & spicy :)

The samosa, was $2 and was more then its value worth. It came with a sweet & sour dipping sauce, the samosa here is the nicest i've ever had. Big chunks of potato, mixed with onions, spices & chilli, wrapped in a crunchy pastry.

Both Rick & I ordered dosa's (me the Paneer dosa, Rick the Masala dosa)

The picture below was Rick's one, mine looked the same pretty much except had a different filling.

Dosa is a vegetarian dish, so Rick's one had potato, fried onions & spices, mine had paneer (which is an indian type cheese) with tomato and spices aswell.

Both were served with coconut chutney (this was DIVINE i would love to have this with every meal that i eat), and some curry soup which was mildly hot.

The Dosa's were humungous, we had trouble finishing it ended up eating just abit over half of the whole thing, and it only cost about $11 each - super duper bargain :)

i LOVED the crunchy batter that was wrapped around the fillings, i could taste the ghee (oil), it was just super crunchy but surprisingly not too greasy.

Danny was my bestfriend back in highschool, we lost contact after school, and found each other again last year (thats like 5 years of no contact!!)

We've started hanging out more often the four of us i really enjoy their company!!

Billu's - come here if you want a cheap, authentic, indian meal. Servings are huge so share around (don't do what we always do and over order lol)

Crust Gourmet Pizza Bar

751 - 753 Smithfield Rd, Bonnyrigg, N.S.W. 2177
(on the corner of Elizabeth Drive and Smithfield Road)
ph: (02) 9610 3333
fax: (02) 9610 0133

Twas a Friday night, met up with our new foodie buddies Sam & Julie. Julie finished work late so we ended up ordering our pizza's @ 9.30PM!

Crust had recently opened up, situated 3 streets away from my house, where VIDEO EZY used to be. Next to the Healthy SUBWAY, across from McDonald's, and a Kebab shop within metres as-well. So this joint was a meeting point for car hoons, young hooligans, bikies, & delinquent teens.

Since Rick & I had already had browsed the menu online, we knew exactly what we wanted (and also what we wanted the time after and the time after that - there are soooo many pizza's to choose from - quite overwhelming for the typical Friday night -take-away pizza. But it's not just any normal pizza take out, its G-O-U-R-M-E-T pizza :D

We chose the 'White Anchovy Pizza' : premium italian white anchovies, caperberries, cherry tomatoes and bocconcini, garnished with fresh basil. It was a fairly fishy-tasting-not salty enough- affair. The caperberries added a nice touch though, i don't usually like capers- but having a caperberry in your mouth along with anchovies completely masked out the fishy flavour. I liked the cherry tomatos, how they were cut in half, and the skin kind of crinkled up at the top, and the tomato was cooked through. There was just enough cheese to cover the base, and the base itself was light, crispy at the edges & delicious. It was a nice contrast between our usual fare from Pizza Hut, which was a pleasant surprise since we're used to the fatty-heavy-oily-stomach-bloat-inducing- pizza's from the usual fast food joints.

Our friends chose the Mexican pizza. It had chorizo, spanish onions, roasted red capsicum, jalopenos, & chilli on a refried bean base, topped with fresh avocado salsa. We didn't try any, so no comment. But they did say it was 'not bad'.

WIth one pizza between each couple, we were so far from satisfied, so we ordered another pizza, this time it came out quicker because it was nearing 10.30PM.

Smoked Salmon Pizza - smoked salmon, spanish onion, brie, avocado, caper berries, with a wedge of lemon, cracked pepper, & seasalt. This was the first ever time i had lemon, salt & pepper on my pizza - it was WONDERFUL - i was so amazed by Rick mixing the salt & pepper, in this cool little black device-y thingio (i wish i took a photo of it). This was the best pizza i've had to date, they had just the right amounts of each ingredient per slice, Each bite I had had a bit of everything, the buttery smoked salmon, smooth cheesy brie, onion and caperberry all mixed into one mouthful. It was absolutely fabulously fantastic in my mouth... The salt and pepper made it more flavoursome since I like eating my food with lashings of flavour, the lemon gave it a bit of an extra kick which removed the slightly fishy smell smoked salmon usually emits. This was the perfect pizza, I'm drooling now thinking about it...

After all that, we divided up a little aero chocolate bar for dessert. I haven't had an aero bar in so long. It was so so good to eat those chocolate bubbles!

This finished off our evening of gorging ourselves with pizza. I'd definitely come back again and try each and every pizza I saw on the menu at home with Rick.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Orchid House

Edensor Park Plaza
Shop 2, 207-215 Edensor Road
Edensor Park NSW 2176
Phone: 9610 0182

We wanted to try out the Thai restaurant near my house (practically walking distance), so we went for a walk!

It was a Sunday night, and the place was quite busy, mostly families, few couples.

We opted for the Prawn Pad Thai, and some fried button mushrooms with plum sauce as an entree.

The mushrooms muchly reminded us of the ones you get from chicken express (this is not a bad thing, hahaha). The sauce that came with it - nothing special there, it was very sweet and me being a sweet person i liked it alot.

The Pad thai - was below average. It lacked the tamarind flavour that you get in a authentic pad thai, and the prawns texture was so rubbery and there was no trace of the original flavour left. Pretty much straight from the freezer.

This restaurant, and another one up the road are pretty much the only thai restaurants in the area, so i'd say it was very westernised, and the locals wouldn't know authentic from westernised. But the price was cheap - mushrooms were $650, Pad thai was $12.80

Healthy Lunch

One weekend quite a while ago, decided to make a quick & healthy lunch for Rick & his parents!

Cream cheese & smoked salmon sandwiches (on wholegrain bread, Dad needed the extra fibre), followed by slices of pairs and bite size chunks of strawberries.

Nick's Seafood Restaurant

The Promenade, Cockle Bay Wharf 
Sydney NSW 2000 

T (02) 9264 1212
F (02) 9264 8686

Recently heard from Leona that Nick's Seafood no longer had their seafood pie on the menu anymore (jaw drops, shock horror). So frantically dug into my old photo's to find these. This would have been more then one and a half years ago... I remember it was towards the end of winter, the sun was out warming our cold hands & faces.

Second time eating here, i ordered something out of the norm, (fish & chips) and chose this seafood pie, thinking to myself (it's just a pie, nothing special).

It came out next to a plate of soft potato mash with a hint of garlic. I was expecting a good ole aussie pie, but this was on a small baking dish (very hot, right out of the oven) and to my delight the pastry on top was sooo flaky, crunchy, buttery .. i peeled off the top bit and had this first, left over with a thin layer on slightly less cooked pastry (but still very edible). I dug into the pie, cream sauce oozed out, this was creamy delicious and it coated various pieces of seafood including fish, squid, lobster (or crab, its been a while i don't remember)

This was THE BEST pie i'd ever eaten, and its such a shame that its not on their menu anymore :(

For desert, i chose the same desert i always have - sticky date pudding. Again, this is the best ever sticy date pudding i've had in my life. It wasnt dry, tasteless, lacking flavour of dates, or stinged of caramel sauce.

It was moist, warm-hot temp (not too hot that it burnt your tongue or anything), came with the right amount of caramel sauce, creamy vanilla icecream, & a piece of ... peanut toffee ?? Yummy in my tummy it was, never ceases to amaze me now wonderful the pudding here is and since then i havent had anything come as close to it.

Will come back here again, as we have never been disappointed. It's got a great view, plenty of seating (get a seat outside you are covered from sun/rain), & lovely wait staff.

Macro Cafe

31-37 Oxford Street
Bondi Junction NSW 2022

Tel: 02 9389 7611               Fax: 02 9389 0707

Parking: 1 hour meter parking in surrounding streets

After googling 'Organic restaurants' I decided to come here for breakfast. The morning sun fills the front shop with warmth & light, you can choose from outdoor or indoor seating. (note, it can get VERY hot sitting outside, even in slightly cool weather)

Started off with a rice milk mocha - this was by far the BEST mocha i've had, using rice milk TOTALLY transforms the taste, rice milk is not very milky, more sweet and watery (but not lacking any flavour at all). Also what i loved was that it was drinking temperature (not ouch-burnt -my -tongue -need -to -wait -10 -minutes -before -drinking -temperature)

I decided on the sour dough bread with poached egg, baked beans, grilled tomato, wilted spinach & button mushrooms (i think this was called the big breakfast) & big it was indeed. Rick had the same but with just only eggs & mushroom (he snitched some of my spinach & tomato hehe)

The sour dough bread here - is to die for it is mega crunchy, slightly warm so that the butter slowly melts into the tiny little holes, & to know that each ingredient is organic - makes you feel good all over.

Organic tomat0 - is so unbelievably sweet, texture is soft and it was ripened to perfection. The mushrooms were sautéed in some kind of sauce.... we're guessing it was worstershire sauce, very yummy!

I would definitely come back for brunch (they stop serving breakfast at 11.30). I didn't see anything nice on their lunch menu .. but might try it next time.

Next door is a grocery store that only sell organic & whole foods fruits & vegies - worth a browse! We scored some organic corn chips & hommous - the best snack ever!!

There is also a Macro Cafe in Newtown (But no grocery store)

146 King St
Newtown NSW 2042

Tel 02 9550 5747               Fax 02 9550 5748

Shaheen's Biryani

My work mate Naveed's Wife - Shaheen - makes a KILLER indian Biryani. I actually havent tried it anywhere else before, but they keep telling me you won't find it any nicer is any restaurants in Sydney. (Back in their home India though, there probably is some stiff competition)

Wikipedia says:
Biryani, biriani, beriani is a set of primarily south asian rice based foods made spices, rice (usually basmati) and meat or vegetables. In persian it means 'fried' or 'roasted'.
The spices and condiments used in biryani may include but are not limited to: gheepeasbeanscuminclovescardamomcinnamonbay leavescoriander and mint leaves, gingeronions, and garlic. The premium varieties include saffron. For a non-vegetarian biryani, the main ingredient that accompanies the spices is the meatbeefchickengoatlamb, or shrimp. The dish may be served with dahi chutney or Raitakormacurry, a sour dish of eggplant (brinjal) or a boiled egg.

Every now & again Shaheen will cook this up on a Sunday (the process takes about 2-4 hours, i have yet to come over for a cooking session to learn it). She packs me a container for Monday lunch time and i am forever grateful :) 

Saffron makes the rice the orangey red color that it is, and there are pieces & sticks of clove, cardamom & cinnamon (that i happily chew & swallow, i love all of these flavors in indian cuisine)

It is BEST eaten with onion raita (at restaurants they make it with cucumber instead). Basically it is chopped raw white onions mixed with a bit of plain yogurt. (always chew some gum after eating, or you'll scare everyone away with your onion breathe haha). And for that extra something - add chopped chilli's YUMMY.

I will NEVER get sick of this, despite its high content of fat, having it once or twice a month won't budge my waist measurements!!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Jazushi - Valentines Day Set

145 Devonshire Street cnr Clisdell Street, Surry Hills, 2010, NSW, Australia
Phone: 02-9699-8977
Phone(direct reservation):0417406928
FAX: 02-9699-8973
Office Hour: 12pm~late

Valentines day. It's such a commercialised celebration day for love. Betty and I decided we're going to be different and celebrate it four days early so we beat the rush of people going here and there.

We loved Jazushi so much that we decided to come back for the valentines day special. The chefs were kind enough to specially make us the valentines special on a tuesday night, where we were the only ones in the restaurant that had ordered it. I'd give the kind people at Jazushi a big hand for this & also for keeping my jacket there for two weeks before I had time to come back and pick it up.

Like last time, there was a live jazz artist playing not too loudly in the corner. We were given a little bowl of edamame. This is our new favourite entree / snack! They're so nice to snack on and a hell of a lot healthier than salted peanuts.

After finishing off our edamame, we were served a sushi plate called a rainbow sushi plate. It had two sushi pieces specially made with salmon, tuna and avocado rolled on the outside to give it a more colourful appearance. Inside were salmon and more avocado. Accompanying this was a fresh oyster and smoked salmon wrapped around watercress and spanish onions. Also, served in a shot glass was a puree of tuna sashimi with Jazushi's special sauce and nori strips on top.

The sushi was a mixture of creamy avocado flavours mixed in with the buttery flavour of raw salmon. I'd say it was better than the last time we came around. Smoked salmon up next, there wasn't anything outstanding with the smoked salmon but the addition of the onions in the centres gave it that extra kick in the nuts for flavour. As usual I can't really comment on the oyster because it's how an oyster is supposed to be. Yummy. After that, we ate the tuna puree in the cup. This was the Crème de la crème of the plate. The tuna was marinated in Jazushi's secret sauce, it was savoury with the flavours just melting in my mouth. In my humble opinion, it was fan-fucking-tastic!

Next up was the crispy skin salmon with Jazushi's special miso sauce. This one was a major improvement from the last time we were here! The salmon was cooked to perfection with the skin on the crunchy side, but the salmon steak crispy on the outside but nice and soft on the inside. The special miso sauce drizzled on top gave enhanced the flavour of the salmon without being too overpowering.

The next dish was the deep fried tempura selection. We had soft shell crab, camembert cheese and a prawn. The camembert cheese wasn't as good as the last time since they put some dim sim pastry on the outside of the cheese before frying it. The original tempura camembert was much better, but it was still good nonetheless. I ate the whole prawn in two bites including the shell on the tail, it went well with the creamy sauce on top. The tail reminded me of eating prawn chips off the barbie :) Lastly there was the soft shell crab, they were nice and crispy on the outside but the inside were still moist and juicy, just the way I like my soft shell crab.

Since we've already blogged about the green tea noodle salad and the teriyaki duck, I'll skip over them. They were just as good as the last time we had them!

To end the night, our dessert came out three hours since we arrived (it's a great place to just sit and chat so we didn't mind). There was crème brûlée & ice cream served on top of crunchy nut corn flakes. I dare say that ice cream served on top of crunchy nut corn flakes is the next best thing since sliced bread. It was the shizzle! Outdoing the crème brûlée by a mile. Think of having the creamy sweetness of ice cream and then having crunchy bits of corn flakes mixed with honey all in your mouth at the same time... *drools*
The crème brûlée was pretty average though, the top didn't really require too much effort to break open but the inside was actually more like a chocolate mousse which was a surprise.

I said this the last time and I'll say it again. I loved the food, music and lighting at this place. I'd come back again and again and again!!

We're actually planning on having our joint birthday party here, they have a room upstairs that can seat 35 people :)

Bankstown Sports Club - La Piazza

8 Greenfield Parade
Bankstown NSW 2200
tel. 02 9722 9888
fax. 02 9793 9355

Bankstown sports club is the place to meet for us westies. It beats mounties, cabravale diggers and cabramatta leagues hands down. We tried the pizza and pasta on the other side the last time, so we decided to try out the Spanish Tapas on the far end this time.

We ordered a mixed plate of seafood, a dozen mornay oysters, a big bowl of chips, salad, bbq baby octopus, stuffed button mushrooms, deep fried fish cakes, gnocchi in a creamy white sauce & mussells.

The waitress asked if we wanted parmesan cheese on the gnocchi, Betty and I both answered yes straight away. We then realised the rest of the table didn't like parmesan. How bad is that? When in Rome.... haha. We all dug into random tidbits here and there but barely touched the salad. Probably because the rest of the food was so appealing and so much better than a plain old salad.

I think the mixed plate of seafood for seven people was definately not enough to have it evenly divided between all of us so we all had to sacrifice ourselves and have little bits only. Apart from that it was a pretty decent plate with balmain bug, bbq octopus and beer battered fish. It's what you can expect from a club but with a bit more flavour.

A dozen mornay oysters is definatly not enough for seven people. I reckon I could finish the whole platter on my own! The cheese on the outer layer was nice and stretchy, much like the cheese you get on the top of the lasagne from pizza hut. Inside was a creamy, creamy cheese with a yummy oyster underneath.

Surprisingly, the chips here are completely different to any chips i've ever had. There are little crumbs on the outside, I'm not entirely sure what they are, but they add so much extra flavour to the chips! You could easily eat these chips without any added salt or sauce.

The bbq baby octopus were my favourite for tonight's dinner. They were barbequeued perfectly with the little tentacles curled up into slightly crunchy little pieces. The sauce added an extra savoury taste to the octopus completing what I think is an awesome plate of baby octopus.

The button mushrooms were stuffed. I don't know what with but I do know they were stuffed. It was a little bland but the butter it was drenched in made up for the blandness. Next to the mushrooms we had the deep fried fish cakes. They were pretty average when compared to the thai fish cakes we've had in Newtown, although they are a pretty good attempt.

Thinking about the gnocchi makes my mouth water. They were light, fluffy and swimming in a creamy, creamy sauce. I loved this the most out of the whole selection of food we had tonight! The parmesan cheese made it even better, but our friends would insist otherwise... *death stare* =P

LAstly, the mussels were cooked in a slightly spicy tomato based sauce. They were cooked quite well without being too rubbery. The chilli in the tomato based sauce made it a very good dish. I especially liked having more sauce than mussel in my mouth at the same time. Awesomeness.

Overall I'd say that the Bankstown sports club is a great value for money place to come to eat at. The food is good for the price and the service is fairly quick depending on the amount of people in the club at the same time. I'd come back with friends any time! (since I'm a member, I might as well use my card haha!)