Monday, September 15, 2014

Eureka 89

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Happy Birthday to me! This year I wanted a simple birthday but I received way more than what I expected. Jan was extra sweet this year that my friends mentioned that they might be developing diabetes anytime soon. He made reservations for a romantic dinner at Melbourne's tallest building, Eureka 89. Not only that, he surprised me with a little something the next morning, delivered all over from Bristol, UK. It was something that I have been eyeing on for quite some time now but never actually bought (Visit my instagram page to see what he bought!). Followed by a totally unexpected party at his place, decorated with balloons and a banner, where our closest friends were waiting to surprise me and see me in shock. Seriously you guys... managed to make me tear a little. Went for a scrumptious dinner at Red Hot Wok before blowing the candles. Jan also pre-ordered a cake from my favourite cake shop, Burch & Purchese, and we popped a bottle of Moët & Chandon reserve imperial to end! During the third day of celebration, I knew I had to have an intimate brunch session with friends, who matter. We had the most amazing brunch at one of Melbourne's most beautiful brunch places, The Stables Of Como. Stay tuned because I would be blogging on that real soon. I ended up celebrating the whole weekend in glee, bottled up with love and feeling grateful for friends I have made in the short period of time I have been in Melbourne. Most importantly, I would never be as happy as I would or be the person that I am if it weren't for Jan. And Jan, if you are reading this, its a little thank you to tell you how truly grateful I am, because I know I can never thank you enough.


So.. back to blogging on my wondrous experience at Eureka 89. Jan booked a five course degustation course meal and we dined for almost four hours. We looked out on the vast open districts of lights and Melbourne's dazzling skyline, as we indulge on the most amazing dishes, while enjoying each other's company. It was fun trying to spot where within the darkness were our apartment buildings hiding at.



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The bar sits on the center of the restaurant, illuminating a glowing red of lavishness. Dinner costs 100AUD per person for the five course meal, 135AUD for seven including an additional foie gras entree, and a selection of cheese platter to end. Jan knew I was never a fan of foie gras so we sticked to the five course. 
Again.. I'm not an alcoholic drinker and Jan needed to drive. But if you'd like, pay additional fees (155AUDpp for the five and 215AUD for the seven course meal) if you want to pair each course with specialised wines.



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The dainty looking square of art wasn't a part of the five course meal. Courtesy of the kitchen, we got to try a unique taste, merging corn, goat cheese and cauliflower into a delicious compound. It was a soft, sweet and cheesy corn snack.



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Berry Blush


I ordered a mocktail consisting of black currants, cranberries, pineapple and fresh lime. It was a refreshing drink, something I would love to drink all day during the summer. We also asked for breads with a block of butter. It was simple, presented warm, and simply, one of the fluffiest white bread ever. It was definitely superior to other typical white bread loaves because the exterior of this one was crusty.



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Kingfish


The actual first course was the Kingfish with tartare, seaweed, avocado and umibudo. Umibudo is also known as sea grapes or green caviar and it has a soft and succulent texture. The horseradish greens were decorated beautifully with tobikos and some cheese drizzles. My favourite part was the kingfish itself. It was exceptionally fresh and I definitely tasted a bite of the ocean. First course devoured and I'm already hooked for the next.



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Potato


Cheesy taleggio baked potato with artichoke and leek bits. When cut opened, the cheesy liquid flows out, boy... it was incredibly delicious! I love how simple everyday ingredients can be made exquisite.



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Its another experience to see the CBD area from high above. You could truly see how neat and systematic the rectangular city formation is from up here. Can you spot Flinders Street Station, Federation Square or the St Paul's Cathedral?




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Murray Cod

Smooth and melt-in-your-mouth roasted Murray Cod laid in bed with a tasty special sauce. My favourite was the Southern Rock Lobster placed surrounding the cod. It was mildly chewy and absolutely fresh. I am not the biggest fans of clams but the few bits on this plate were marinated with some unique black ink sauce that was seriously addictive. This dish was the epitome of pure excellence, and one of my favourites of the night.



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Flinders Island Lamb

We moved on to the next main with three pieces of gently seared Flinders Island Lamb topped with mushrooms, stinging nettle, and lets face it, we all love a good spray of truffle! The pea puree underneath was a nice balance to all that savoury goodness. And small turnip on the side never hurt.



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We also received a complementary mouth-washer pre-dessert cup of blood orange jelly and some ginger foam on top. Jan thought it was a little too sour but I didn't think so.




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Chocolate


My plate of dessert has that 'Happy Birthday' sign written on it. It made me feel a little more special. The chocolate stand was a lava cake with vanilla cream and orange sorbet scoop on the side. It was incredible and I thought it tasted better than eating it with a regular gelato. I have been eating so much these days especially bingeing on at least a piece of cake everyday trying to just finish up with what was left on the fridge. But hey, its my birthday! I can eat whatever the hell I want right?!



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Finally, a dark chocolate crust with hazelnut chocolate filling and a raspberry jelly to end.




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View of Southbank and the iconic Crown Casino




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Thank you Jan for this night and thank you Eureka 89 for the most amazing food and view. I had one of the most memorable birthdays this year. Thank you friends and strangers for the heartfelt Birthday messages on my Facebook wall, phone call, texts, whatsapps, tweets, Insta messages and so on. I really appreciate each and everyone of them! Finally, thank you everyone for just simply reading and being a supporter of this blog. I am truly grateful. Cheers!







Eureka 89
Level 89, 7 Riverside Quay, Southbank
Melbourne, Victoria 3006
Australia

Tel: +(61) 03 9693 8889






Eureka 89 on Urbanspoon



Sunday, September 14, 2014

Nine Taiwaneses Dessert House

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Snow Ice No.3 Red Bean Matcha

Having desserts at Nine Taiwanese Dessert House after dinner at an Indo food restaurant, Garamerica (which I blogged about before). Everything but the Matcha snow ice itself was decent. Our favourite part was the Jasmine Jelly, which reminded us of a good old sweetened Indonesian Teh Botol. The matcha flavour was rather faint and powdery, not as good as we expected it to be. The green tea syrup was what complemented the green tea shaved ice, which we were given very little of, and we desperately have to request for more.



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We also ordered the large Double Taro Sago Milk Tea for 5.50AUD and a large Japanese Matcha Pearl Milk Tea at 5.20AUD. Both weren't sweet, and both flavours were bland, more watery than thick. The worst part was that it was not cold at all with the lack amount of ice inside. You could tell because there wasn't any liquid condensing that was surrounding my cup.  Meh, didn't like it.






Nine Taiwaneses Dessert House
268 Swanston Street, CBD
Melbourne, Victoria 3000
Australia

Tel: +(61) 03 9663 3305





Nine Taiwanese dessert house on Urbanspoon





Saturday, September 13, 2014

Cumulus Inc

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Burrata, Date, Watercress Vinaigrette & Grilled Sourdough, 20.90AUD

Cumulus Inc does breakfast up till 11.30am in the morning. For lunch and dinner, it evolves into a fine dining facility specialising in Modern Australian dishes that are designed to share. Food was served plate, by plate, by plate, not altogether. We started with a comestible Burrata, a fresh Italian cheese formed with the combination of mozzarella and cream. The outermost layer was hard shelled mozzarella but within was mushy mozzarella cream. Its not as good of a dish to eat it on its own. The sourdough served on the side made it tasteful. I enjoyed the soft mushy cream paired with the watercress vinaigrette. The tough shell layer.. not so much.




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Complimentary Bread

Serve time at Cumulus Inc was pretty long. The idea of the restaurant itself was to share food while engaging in conversations with your buds. Bread is always a good start while we wait for our food. And it kept me at least a little bit more filled up after an hour of wait in the queue, as it was almost seemingly implausible for me to cave in to patience.




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Baked Mussels, Potato Chips And Lemon, 15.40AUD

We moved on with Baked Mussels hidden in crumbs. Scoop up a single mussel on top of a slice of chips. It was very well seasoned and the crisp made it all the more scrumptious.



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Whole Slow Roast Lamb Shoulder To Share, 75.90AUD


Live a little and order the lamb shank shoulder, seriously. Alas, serve time was about forty-five minutes to about an hour from the time we finished our previous dish. That took awhile.. but was well worth the wait when our 2.5kg worth of lamb shoulder was put to the table. The meat was juicy and full of tenderness in all parts of the shoulder. The Whole Slow Roast Lamb Shoulder is also Cumulus Inc's signature dish and it serves up to four to six people. How pleasing is red meat with red wine in hand?



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We did not make any reservations and ended up waiting for about an hour for a table. I spent that hour reading Andrew McConnell's cookbook. Other than being a renowned chef, Andrew is also the owner and mastermind behind Cumulus Inc and Cutler & Co. I was pretty inspired with some if the dishes on the book, but figured it was easier to spend bucks and have a romantic affair at such restaurants itself. Or to simply admit, throw me in the kitchen and I'll set it on fire. I am just kidding! Simple meals are my forte, not ones that require lots of intricate finesse. Nonetheless, the star dish of the night was the Lamb Shoulder and we all would return for it.





Cumulus Inc
45 Flinders Lane, CBD
Melbourne, Victoria 3000
Australia

Tel: +(61) 03 9650 1445

Mon to Fri: 7am-11pm
Sat to Sun: 8am-11pm





Cumulus Inc. on Urbanspoon


Thursday, September 11, 2014

Rare Steakhouse

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Eye Fillet (200grams) With Baked Potato, 36AUD + Mushroom Sauce, 4.50AUD


Rare Steakhouse is a white-tablecloth restaurant serving 15 various different cuts of quality grain fed beef. We made reservations at about 7.30pm and by the time we arrived, I was ascertained it would be difficult to get seats for those who didn't book a table. 
Steak goes a long way with wine and we all had a glass of the red Sommerville Cabernet Sauvignon to pair our grilled pastured beef. A pity I only drank a sip because you know me and alcohol don't symphonize. Jan had the Eye Fillet, a thicker cut than the others. He's quite adventurous to ask for medium rare considering that it'd be best to ask for a medium or medium well since its hard for Eye Fillet to cook through. Indeed it was a little too rare for his liking, the mushroom sauce was his saving grace to pull through with the whole meat down his throat. The baked potato was amongst the softest we have ever tasted, it was truly amazing!



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Ciabatta 


Before our steak was served, we had a board of complementary Ciabatta bread with soft and almost-melted butter. Bread is my favourite carbs option and don't mind me, I have to eat bread almost everyday. With this one, I could go on and on and not get sick with it.




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Scotch Fillet (300grams) With Baked Potato, 38.50AUD + Café De Paris Flavoured Butter, 1.50AUD


Of course Prime Rib Eye would be the most ideal but that's too far from par and overly costly. My favourite usual cut is the Ribeye (or you could call it scotch fillet if you live in Australia or New Zealand). I always get my steak in medium, this one was cooked on point and it cannot be faulted. My Scotch Fillet was a black Angus Beef with the fat content dispersed evenly within the center. It was tender and perfectly juicy, one of the best steaks I have eaten in awhile. I didn't ask for any sauce because I have always felt that sauces would overpower the real taste of the steaks itself, so I am perpetually inclined to always avoid it. Well of course unless, its a cheap T-bone, then yes, bring me some sauce! However, butter is always a complementary ingredient that to me, enhances the flavour, not hide it. The Café De Paris that I picked was exceptional.



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Rump (350Grams) With Chips, 36AUD + Black Pepper Sauce, 4.50AUD + Garlic Butter, 1.50AUD


Rach on the other hand, chose the Rump cut extracted from the Rump cap. It was tasteful and cooked superbly as well. She picked the best side, chips! You know those crispy chips with its insides potatoey in texture? Those chips aren't my favourite. But this one, oh my god within those crunchy exterior were softly mashed potatoes, unbelievable. Plus, the black pepper sauce were stellar, the perfect dipping sauce for them chips.



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Rare Steakhouse
on King Street is huge with tall facade and high ceilings to display. The first floor has a more casual vibe, perfect for Friday night dining with a couple of friends or colleagues. The second floor is more sedate and private, it suits for a larger group of people to bond together whilst eliminating noise and all clutter. There is one other Rare Steakhouse branch on Little Collins Street, tucked at the other end of the city center. Previously we wanted to book reservations at the other but it was fully booked for the night so we ended up here. Not that I'm complaining... I admit, I love being spoiled to a good meal, Rare Steakhouse is without question, the real deal.






Rare Steakhouse
42-44 King Street, CBD
Melbourne, Victoria 3000
Australia

Tel: +(61) 03 9620 9888

Mon to Fri: 12pm-3pm
                         5.30pm-10pm
Sat: 5.30pm-10pm
Sun: Closed





Rare Steakhouse King St on Urbanspoon




Tuesday, September 9, 2014

A Dash Of Red

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Took a stroll with James around the neighbourhood to take a shoot of today's outfit. I have been wearing a lot of black lately to wallow the romanticism of the dark winter. But today, with a dash of fresh blood red with my skirt and on my lips. This is not just a boring black sweater as it has embellishment details on the collar, making it look more interesting. The skirt is tight on the hips and sculpted with an A-line flare. Wearing this skirt was a fun affair as I can't stop twirling as I walk. An overall good investment because both pieces can be worn in so many ways individually.

As much as I hate to bid goodbye to the cold winter, I am delightful to welcome spring as it is my favourite season of the year! You know what they say, spring is when life's alive in everything. With that I can't wait to be wearing lighter pieces, and I assure you there would be more colour of course.





Outfit: Embellished Sweater, H&M // Skirt, Thrifted (Jakarta) // Bag, Karen Millen // Shoes, Dotti // Rose Earrings, Thrifted // Fedora Hat, H&M // Sunglasses, Quay Australia





Photographer: James Juranke











Sunday, September 7, 2014

Breakfast Thieves

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I had a beautiful feast at Breakfast Thieves with my boys. The perfect way to bid goodbye to me has always been through a good heartwarming feast. It was Marcus's last day here in Melbourne and we were assured Breakfast Thieves wouldn't disappoint. Service was also attentive and quick. I have a certain weakness that, I get drawn to flower blooms especially when natural sunlight basks through Breakfast Thieves' transparent glass windows. Not only were these efflorescent flowers pretty in pictures, but it also was a great accessory to vamp up food plates. Va va voom, so easy.



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Probably repeated too much by many, but surely, this photo assured you no one else does brunches like the Melbournians do. Overseas readers have I converted you?



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The decor was fairly simple taking Scandinavian aspects making it look modern. Wood and white tiles are its central focus.



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Mocha, 3.50AUD + Flat White, 3.50AUD + MOFO Deluxe Hot Chocolate, 3.50AUD

I like how the hot chocolate drink is written as MOFO Deluxe Hot Chocolate on the menu, ties in so well with the theme of this place.



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The Breakfast Chain, 18.50AUD


If you are a criminal, you'll be chained in prison, get it? The Breakfast Chain was something different than what Jan would usually order but he did. Taking the English cheddar melted soldiers, dip it on the soft boiled eggs and we were all swooned to the taste of bliss in the mouth. A small glass of triffle berry yoghurt was light and heartening, and the quince, apple and almond crumble would lead you to wanting more, and more.



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My P.B & J, 17.50AU


Breakfast Thieves' My P.B & J was one of the most beautiful and delicious French Toast dish I have ever seen and tasted. A thick slice of brioche was cut in cubes, apportioned with some peanut butter soil, candied bacon, peanut butter soil, raspberry jelly and a blob lemon curd. The best part of the dish was unmistakably the crispy candied bacon. I get way too much happiness from that single ingredient alone. Even so, the whole plating ensemble was food art in the highest form. Applause for this one everybody!



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Robin Hood, 18AUD

If you want something more Asian, or Japanese to be precise, Robin Hood comes with a chunkful of pu-erh tea smoked trout with soba noodles. Some shiitake mushrooms and tempura pearl mushrooms with edamame beans and plum wine consomme. No idea why there are red dates involved, maybe just to add more colour. This was a white-washed soba dish and it had an interesting flavour which is worth the try.



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The Legend, 18.50AUD


The boy who was leaving tried The Legend spicy baked eggs. Underneath was Spanish chorizo, mushrooms, green peas, corn, with fetta drizzles on top. More thoughtful than the usual plain sourdough, he received two slices of herbed garlic toast here.


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Leprechaun, 18.50AUD

Three crispy fried corn fritters lies in a bed of roasted fennel purre. Not everyone loves brussel sprouts but I do! These ones was caramelised with butter giving the vegetables juices a slight sweetness. I especially love the avocado mousse and wished there was more of it, and maybe a little more pomegranate and raisins too. Likewise, two poached eggs on the plate added a great balance to the whole dish. Who says vegetarian dishes are boring?



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Good food always ends up in good talk with the company. So long pal, hope to visit you in the UK before you graduate.



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Breakfast Thieves set up the bar pretty high
for its competitors to run the race, mainly challenging its level of tasteful dishes and beautiful plating. You don't need a silver fork to eat good food, just head over to Breakfast Thieves.







Breakfast Thieves
420 Gore Street, Fitzroy
Melbourne, Victoria 3065
Australia

Tel: +(61) 03 9426 4884

Mon: Closed
Tue to Sun: 7.30am-4pm





Breakfast Thieves on Urbanspoon



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