Friday, November 30, 2012

Sole Cafe - Geelong

1a Yarra Street
VIC 3220

Sole Cafe is associated with the Fisherman's Pier restaurant which is something of a Geelong institution, and stands across a pathway from its architecturally distinctive 'parent' on the foreshore.

The venue is casual in style and probably best suited to warmer days, as it was when we visited on a Sunday lunchtime. The design is modern and it felt clean and well looked after.

The menu included prawns, scallops or calamari with chips, but I went with the flake and chips for $14, which included lemon and an exploding tartar sauce container.The food was all fresh, the batter crispy and light, and the fish moist. It wasn't the largest portion, so I had room for all my chips.

The cafe lived up to it's name and served coffee, which we didn't try. The covered but outdoor setting make it a nice spot to eat and watch the world go by and the fishing boats bob in the harbour.

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Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Annie's Provedore

2/50 Hitchcock Avenue
Barwon Heads

We don't get to Barwon Heads that often, but didn't remember seeing Annie's Provedore before, although apparently it has been open for 6 years. It now serves pizza's in the evening, which suited us when we were looking for a bite to eat on a Saturday evening.

There were quite a few tables already occupied, but we got one outside under the vines and the sign.

We were soon brought bread with great olive oil and thick sweet balsamic.

The menu featured some traditional and some more adventurous combinations of toppings. I ordered the Quattro Stagioni, whose fantastic, authentic thin base was loaded with tomato, mozzarella, artichokes, mushrooms and olives. The only reservation I would have with the pizza was that the mushrooms didn't look fresh.

The porcini pizza also bore tomato, mozzarella, bacon & parsley.

There was a good range of local beers available to accompany the meal. The service was friendly, but it seemed to take a long while, maybe half an hour to be served after ordering, maybe we just overly hungry after a day outdoors! The bill was $68 including 4 drinks.

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Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Borsch, Vodka & Tears

173 Chapel Street
3181 Victoria

Just south of the junction with High Street Borsch, Vodka and Tears treads the line between restaurant, cafe and bar. When we visited on a Friday evening around 8 it was busy and pretty noisy. Inside it has a fairly European vibe which suits the Polish and Russian theme and menu.

Although we were near the front window, it was pretty dark, which meant the mobile snaps didn't turn out that well. I selected a couple of traditional eastern European dishes, the first being the vegetarian Polish borsch, a clear beetroot broth made using a vegetable stock, and was a lot thinner and less satisfying than the Russian variation I have tried before. 

The soup was served with a pancake, rocket salad and sour cream

My other choice was pierogi the traditional polish dumplings which were stuffed with a porcini mushroom and sauerkraut and coated with a breadcrumbs. These were fine but didn't quite live up to home made versions I've tried before!

I also got to try kopytka, the panfried polish gnocchi with a wild mushroom ragout and finished with truffle oil, possibly the best of the dishes I tasted. The service was reasonable given the venue style and the number of people in. The bill came to around $80 for two with a few drinks.

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Thursday, November 22, 2012


130 Little Collins Street
VIC 3000

I probably wouldn't have discovered Famish'd without the recommendation from Linda.

We had lunch there on a weekday and it was pretty busy.

There are plenty of options to choose from at the counter, the first between a spud based meal, a salad or sandwich.

We both opted for potatoes, Linda had cheese, beetroot, corn, JalapeƱo and coleslaw on top.

 I went with coleslaw, lentils, grilled pepper and lentils, which were stacked high and proved to be pretty filling.

The service was efficient ad as long as you can find somewhere to perch its a hearty healthy lunch option for only $11.

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Sunday, November 18, 2012

Bandstand Cafe

Green Park
301 Victoria Street
NSW 2010

Occupying an old Bandstand in Green park, in front of St Vincent's Hospital, the Bandstand Cafe was fairly quiet when we visited for a mid week late breakfast.

The coffee was fine.

The scrambled eggs, tomato, toast and salad with extra mushrooms looked nice but apparently the mushrooms were too heavily herbed.

I had the poached eggs, roast tomato, salad and toast. The eggs were inexplicably cold, something I've never encountered before.

The service was fine, but the cold eggs mean I wont be rushing back.

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Friday, November 16, 2012


155 Victoria Street
Potts Point
NSW 2011

A little way down the hill from the centre of Kings Cross, on the slightly seedy Victoria Street, Ms.G's is. It describes itself as: "Modern, decidedly Asian and unlike anything you’ve ever experienced before..."

The restaurant is split over a couple of levels, off the street the first area was dominated by a bar and large table, we were offered a tiny table by the wall we we arrived on a Monday evening. There weren't many other tables on either level available. The look of the place was fairly trendy bar like, including lots of mostly empty jars on the ceiling.

 The grilled corn on the cob with parmesan and lime was rapidly devoured.

The D.I.Y. Sang Choy Bao featuring Sichuan chilli lamb, smoked eggplant and sambal was full of interesting flavours.

The stir fried greens in oyster sauce and shallot oil arrived next and alone, which seemed strange to me, eventually our rice came after we asked for it. The greens were fine but a bit boring on their own.

The Vietnamese snapper curry was nicely flavoured but didn't feature that much fish.

I found the service off hand and unfriendly, and didn't like the atmosphere, but I'm sure others may feel differently. The food was fine, but I'm probably a bit spoiled by the great Vietnamese and Asian food available on my doorstep in Footscray, this meal seemed overpriced at $80 with a couple of drinks.

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Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Manly Wharf Hotel

Manly Wharf,
East Esplanade,
NSW 2095

The Manly Wharf Hotel is situated meters away from the ferry terminal on the harbour side of Manly.

We visited on a sunny spring Monday lunchtime,  and while it was fairly busy, there were still plenty of tables available. We got a table inside with a view across the deck to the harbour.

 The salt and pepper calamari was fine but a bit bland.

I had the fish and chips, which were the Monday special, $16 with a drink... The batter was crisp and the fish moist and flavoursome, the chips were good too.

The chilli prawn and salmon fettuccine with cherry tomatoes, mint, parmesan and lemon, had nearly tempted me and certainly looked good and substantial when I collected the meals. It was too much for Annabel to finish, but she seemed to enjoy what she did eat.

The service was pretty efficient and friendly for a larger establishment, and with its spectacular location it is understandable that it is popular, the meals are good value and I'd happily go back if I was in the area.

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Tuesday, November 13, 2012


Shop 2 22 Allowrie Street

After a walk to the falls in the beautiful Minnamurra rainforest we stopped at Oggis on the main street of Jamberoo for lunch.There were a few other patrons around enjoying coffees and lunch.

I had the soup of the day, which was minestrone, and proved a popular choice on our table. The soup was packed with veggies and was nicely flavoured, but I missed  the beans that are often an ingredient, the serving was on the small side too.

The service was OK if a little on the basic side, and an omelette didn't come with the requested ingredients.Not a bad spot if you are the area though.

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Friday, November 9, 2012

Seascape Cafe

91 Foreshore Road
Port Kembla,
NSW 2505

We were taken to Seascape Cafe while visiting some locals, and probably wouldn't have found it tucked behind the maritime centre at Port Kembla without our guides. It must be fairly well known, as it was pretty busy when we were there on a Saturday lunchtime.

Three of us ended up choosing the Salt and Pepper squid salad, which pretty much delivered what was expected, although the squid was a little more nugget style than usual.

The steak sandwich was a decent size and kept Bruce happy, the chips came in pseudo paper wrapping and looked great.

After a neighbouring group of dinners left we soon had some new company, watch out for the gulls!

The best thing about the cafe in the location, with fantastic views to the north, we even spotted whales to the north while we were dining.

The service was pretty prompt and friendly, and the location and views certainly make it worth while checking out.

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Thursday, November 8, 2012


355 Exhibition Street

I spotted Thailicious while riding home one night, it has opened in the last 6 months or so and it is situated on Exhibition Street near the edge of the CBD between Victoria and La Trobe Streets. The reviews on urbanspoon were mixed, but being nearby it seemed like being worth a try! Inside the decor was modern and still felt new and fresh.

Brendan and I both took advantage of the lunch special on offer, I had the Pad Prik Gang which feature stir fried chicken and vegetables in a home made sauce. Having chosen the spicy option when asked, there could be no complaints when the dish lived up to the billings, whilst I still enjoyed it, perhaps medium is the optimal heat for me! The portion was a decent size and all the ingeadient fresh and well prepared.

Brendan had a mild chicken green curry which was the heat level of heat for him, and really enjoyed the dish.

The service was efficient and friendly and the lunch specials starting from $10 were good value. It certainly compares well with other Thai options in the area.

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