Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Kingston Hotel, Richmond

55 Highett Street
Richmond
VIC 3121



After a disappointing result at the footy we headed to the Kingston Hotel in Richmond with the the better half's family. The smart old building sits on a quiet street not far from West Richmond station. The front bar area is fairly traditional too and you can also eat here.


We headed down to the restaurant, which has a more formal feel and views into the garden area. We ate fairly early and alone for the first part of our meal. The menu is the same as that in the bar area.


We took advantage of the 3 entrees for $30 offer, and Stuffed mushrooms were tender, moist and flavour filled.


The chicken wings were much brighter than the photo suggests!


DUMPLINGS
pan fr ied pork & g inger, sp icy d ipp ing sauce
 14


I had the fish and chips. The beer battered flat head tails had a great crisp batter encasing perfectly cooked fish. Both the chips and  mixed leaf salad also worked well.


The 350 grams of Black Angus scotch fillet came with kipfler potatoes, green beans and a red wine jus and seemed to go down well.



The bangers and mash featured local pork and fennel sausages, creamy mash, onion gravy and green peas kept Bruce happy.



Stu enjoyed his chicken parma, which also came with chips and a mixed leaf salad.


I don't re-call the fish of the day, but the better half wasn't a massive fan.


The mains were in the $25-$35 range, which seemed like fair value in quite a swish environment. The service was friendly and the dishes came out at a good pace for our group. It is somewhere we'd go back to if we were wanting to eat in Richmond again.


Kingston Hotel Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Monday, August 14, 2017

Thai Riffic Randwick

46 Parouse Road
Randwick
NSW 2031

BYO

We'd been to Thai Riffic in Randwick a few years ago when visiting the in-laws and decided to try it again on a Saturday while staying down the road in Coogee. It was pretty packed when we got there with our BYO beers from around the corner.


We kicked off by sharing the tofu satay, which was fresh out of the fryer and super hot. The exterior chewy rather than crisp, with a tender and soft interior. The satay sauce was suitably peanutty.


The veggie and tofu green curry was good without being exceptional.


The better half had the Chicken Pad Thai which came with some unusually large slices of meat and more veggies than I'd normally expect.


The bill for our food came in came in around $45. The service was OK given how busy it was. Our table did have a whiff of having been cleaned with dirty water which was a bit off putting. Overall the experience wasn't amazing and I don't think we will be rushing back.

Thai Riffic Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Pizza D'Asporto

2-6 Ballarat Street
Yarraville
Victoria 3013

After watching a film at the Sun Theatre, we headed next door to Pizza D'Asporto. The venue is actually quite small, with a heated outdoor area featuring shared tables...


...and equally cosy interior. There is also another space upstairs, but that was occupied by a function on the Saturday evening we were there. We'd enjoyed coffees from the Kiosk at Williamstown beach, but hadn't tried the original branch in the Rifle Range shopping centre.

Given how busy the restaurant was, it turned out that the reservation was a good move, our spot was on the heated and semi closed in terrace on a large table shared with another 4 diners. Once we got settled we had enough room, and set about perusing the menu. Despite the indications that we needed to order at the counter, our waitress was happy to take our orders for food and drink.


Phil selected the pork and fennel ragu which arrived first, several minutes before our other dishes, It featured casareccie pasta with a braised pork and fennel ragu, and was enjoyed, although the rich pork flavours pretty much drowned out those of the fennel.


My Ortolana Pizza was topped with San Marzano tomato, mozzarella, grilled eggplant, roasted peppers, mushroom and olives. The base was great, authentic with big soft crust and a thin centre. The veggies were flavoursome and perfectly cooked.


The daily 'special' came with the better half's favourite, anchovies, along with olives, onions and fresh basil. The salty fish were noted as being particularly good.



Including 4 drinks, the bill came to $89. The service was great given the crowded venue, the only small gripe being the dishes arriving with a slight gap. There are so many great Pizza spots in the inner west these days, but this must be up there in terms Yarraville options!

  Pizza D'Asporto Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Friday, July 21, 2017

Okami


84 Hopkins Street
Footscray
VIC 3011

Okami appeared in the place of 1+1 Dumpling Noodles a while back, so when I spotted a groupon deal for their all you can eat option, we decided the time had come to pay a visit. We booked for the 7:45 sitting on a Friday evening, the alternative being 5:30pm. On arrival a couple of minutes early there were people waiting inside and out in the cool winter air.


It took about five minutes for us to get seated once the doors were thrown open, and most of the tables were soon full. Inside the decor had changed in the new incarnation, with new lampshades, carpet and furniture. We picked a few dishes from the menu and ordered fairly quickly. We didn't have to wait too long until our dishes appeared.


The Edamame was first to arrive, the boiled soy beans with tehir sprinkle of salt were fine, without being the best we'd ever tried.


The prawn gyoza had a tasty filling, but the skins were tough rather crunchy on the base.


The Seafood Tempura featured prawns and veggies in the eponymous batter. The coating was light and crunchy without any greasiness, and the content all nicely cooked.  


The sashimi was the most impressive looking of the dishes we chose and he fish and seafood was fresh.


After polishing off the first 4 plates we tried to order more dishes, but it took quite a while to get the attention of a waitress. We then faced another lengthly wait before any more dishes appeared. The Agedashi Tofu of crisply fried served with fish broth and bonito flakes, delivered a crisp exterior with around the soft tofu inside. We also had some more gyoza and sushi which I didn't manage to snap. We ended up leaving before the final tempura arrived as there seemed to be some confusion after further delay, and we'd been there for nearly an hour and a half.


The normal price for the all you can eat menu is $29.80, our groupon was $55.50 for two with a small flask of Saki. Given the deal, the meal was reasonably good value, but the slow service probably due to how busy it was frustrating. I'd think about going back on a week night if it was looking quieter, but wouldn't be keen to tackle it on a busy night, or if we did would make sure the first order was big enough to avoid the need to have to put through a second. I'd be interested to hear if anyone else has been on busy or quieter nights!

Okami Japanese Restaurant Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Monday, July 17, 2017

Sankranti

250 Barkly Street
Footscray
VIC 3011


We'd been meaning to visit Sankranti for a while and got around to it on a wintery Saturday evening. The long windowed frontage faces on Barkly Street. Inside the fit out is bright and modern with some Indian touches. We were sat fairly close to the entrance and waiting area for take away and delivery pick-ups which saw some traffic while we were there. Otherwise there were several other groups of diners, but in a big space, it didn't seem busy.


The menu is extensive covering western and Indo-Chinese dishes as well as plenty from north and south India. We stuck to the Indian options the first to arrive being the smooth and flavoursome Dal Makhani featuring its black beans in a creamy onion and tomato sauce. The Gutti Vankaya wwas a new dish to us and turned out to be a winner with tasty eggplants stuffed with onion, peanuts and spices.


The naan and rumali roti both hit the spot.


The Murgh Saagwala combined boneless chicken cooked with spinach and fresh herbs and spices lived up to our expectactions.


The meal came to $74 including a couple of drinks. The service was efficient and courteous. Although we enjoyed our meal, it seemed a little more expensive than some of the competition in the 'scray or in wefo, and the atmosphere was a little flat. Maybe a visit with a bigger group would be better to generate more of a vibe.


Sankranti Australia Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Sunday, June 25, 2017

Gong De Lin

264 Swanston Street
Melbourne
Victoria 3000


I met up with Brendan below the sign for Gong De Lin on bustling Swanston Street, before taking the lift up three floors and stepping into the smart and tranquil environment of the restaurant. Most of the tables are in booths and we were seated at one of these. There weren't too many other diners on the Tuesday which complimented the peaceful vibe. The menu is large and features a range of vegetarian dishes, we both picked ended up picking from the noodle and rice dish section which worked well for lunch.


Brendan doesn't normally pick out veggie meals when we head out for lunch, but was happy to give it a whirl on this occasion. He went for the vegetable dumpling noodle soup which looked the part and he enjoyed.


I had the vegetarian shredded pork in Szechuan style on rice. I've enjoyed a few mock meat dishes in the past and was ken to find out how this version measured up. The mock pork was closer to shredded ham in my opinion, but pretty close to the mark. The sauce was spicy without being overpowering and the ingredients worked well together.


The service was friendly and efficient. Each of the dishes came in at $12.80, although there are dishes on the menu that go for quite a bit more. If you do decide to take the elevator up to check out the vegetarian choices on offer, there should be something to take your fancy.


Gong De Lin Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Seasons of Gold preview at Burma Lane

118 Little Collins Street,
Melbourne,
Vic 3000

We were invited to the 'Seasons of Gold' preview at Burma Lane as members of their 'bite club' which promised an evening of 'food, beer and wine combined with art and creativity, showcasing four up and coming Australian-Asian photographers'. The works were projected onto an interior wall alongside the Mike Eleven mural, and we managed to catch glimpses from the upstairs mezzanine were the event unfolded. Whilst we enjoyed a range of the current entrees, the group executive chef John McLeay chatted with the guests. We spoke about Footscray, visits to Myanmar and other South East Asian adventures, both culinary and otherwise! He certainly seems to have packed alot into his time... He mentioned that the menu has diverged from the original Burmese focus, but is one of his favourites.

The dishes we tried included the delicate Shan tofu which was topped with smashed tomato, radish, herbs and peanuts.


The smoked eel with fennel, herbs and roe on a crispy potato cake tasted as good as it looked.


The green pea fritter with tomato curry and roasted carrot yoghurt wrapped in betel leaf is a favourite of mine and hit the spot as expected.


The Duck, shiitake mushroom and water chestnut doughnut with chilli rock sugar salt and sour cherry is flavour combination like nothing I'd experienced before and is certainly worth a try!


It was a very enjoyable event and I'm sure we'll be back again for a meal soon...

Burma Lane Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Grandma's Dumpling

311A Exhibition Street
Melbourne
VIC 3000


Grandma's Dumpling seems to be a new addition to the group of eateries at the top end of Exhibition St. The interior featured bare brick walls and dark wooden tables and chairs. I visited with a vegetarian friend and we stuck to the dumpling and wonton section of the menu, which also features plenty of other options.


The steamed veggies dumplings arrived first, they didn't look particularly exciting but were tasty and not too doughy.


The pan fried vegetable dumplings came out a bit later, and the crispy skin was more visually appealing and added a crunch to the texture.


The two plates came to $18, the service was fine. Grandma's Dumpling doesn't stand out from the crowd, but seems like a fair option if you are in the area.

Grandma's Dumpling Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato