Monday, January 31, 2011

Nelsons of Trafalgar

15 Contingent Street
Trafalgar, Vic 3824

We visited Nelsons on a Friday evening around 8:30, it was pretty quiet, although apparently it had been busy earlier.

Having heard recently that I have high cholesterol means changes to my food selections. Generally foods high in saturated fats are now  avoided. This was a difficult prospect at Nelsons, where most of the pasta dishes seemed to involve cream. I went for the Vegetarian pasta in the non-creamy tomato sauce. The meal was very basic with what could have been frozen veggies in a basic tomato sauce for $22! The scallop pasta dish was apparently better, with scallops being plentiful and good.

Not a great success, but the menu was really suited to my diet...
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Saturday, January 22, 2011

Wye Beach Hotel

Great Ocean Road
Wye River
The Wye Beach Hotel sits in a gorgeous spot a little up the hill overlooking the beach at Wye River. We'd eaten here before and returned to meet up with friends staying in the area.

I went for the Whole Snapper with rocket and fennel salad. This was well cooked, fresh and tasty.

The fish and chips looked great, although I didn't try!

The Prawn and chorizo linguine looked good and went down well.

This was probably our best meal on our summer holiday, and reasonably priced too, with meals mostly in the $20-30 range. Although the pub was busy, and there was a wait to order meals, the service was generally good and friendly, almost surprisingly, they seemed prepared for the holiday business!

Not a bad view either...

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Great Ocean Road Deli

141 Great Ocean Road
Apollo Bay

The Great Ocean Road Deli sits on the road it takes in name from, across from the beach. We sat outside for dinner, at this time of day it seemed to be mainly operating as a dinner venue. After we were seated we were informed that about a third of the dishes on the menu were unavailable.

We shared the Dips & Olives for 2 to start with, described on the menu pretty accurately as a cool mint tzatziki dip & a chilli, tomato & onion dip served with marinated olives, toasted pita bread & a shaved prosciutto salad. The only issue with the dish was the small size of the dips.

The "Oven roasted Monkfish wrapped in pancetta served with pont neuf potatoes, pea puree, homemade sweet tomato relish & a lemon parcel" was a bit of a disaster, the fish was undercooked to the point of being raw and the pancetta wasn't fresh, the relish even turned out to be identical to one of our dips! Other than the chips and peas it was inedible, fortunately after complaining we didn't pay for it.

The salmon Linguini was OK, but swimming in too much oil.

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Unfortunately our experience means we are unlikely to return, in fairness the staff didn't their best in the circumstances, this was at the end of the New Year long weekend and it was busy.

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Tuesday, January 18, 2011


1 Moore Street
Apollo Bay
Vic 3011

We dined at Casalingo with friends over the holidays. We'd booked and were advised to arrive on time as there was a largish table arriving at a similar time, which seemed slightly odd. As well as being a restaurant Casalingo is also a takeaway, with two parts being reasonably separated, although the entrance/counter area felt a bit busy. The restaurant was pleasant inside, with a fairly formal set up.

The menu had a variety of pasta dishes and several specials, the service was very friendly. We went for the bruschetta, which took a little while to arrive.

It was nicely presented and did the job.

There was another pause before the mains arrived, the fish with salad was nice.

The Marinara was a little disappointing, as only 2 of the 5 mussels had opened, and the flavours weren't great. When we mentioned the mussels, nothing was done.

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I enjoyed the Otway Light beer I had with dinner.

We were persuaded to order deserts which then took ages to arrive, so when it came to the bill we eventually went up to the counter to pay. The bill had missed a few items, but considering the waits we'd had, and the unexceptional meals, we didn't feel like pointing it out. Maybe it would be better on a quieter night.

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Friday, January 14, 2011

Apollo Bay Hotel

95 Great Ocean Road
Apollo Bay
Vic 3233

The Apollo Bay Hotel sits on the Great Ocean Road in central Apollo Bay, and has a menu full of standard Aussie pub favourites along with a few Asian dishes. We visited over the busy holiday period, but the pub wasn't full when we arrived around 7, it did fill up though.

We ordered a trio of dips to share to start, unfortunately these didn't arrive, our friends garlic bread did. I eventually has to go to the counter about this and got a refund.

I went for the fish of the day on mash with salad.

The meal was a little cold when it arrived, but tasty with a decent salad. The meals our fellow diners had were fine without being exceptional. I guess the service can be explained by the time of year, but it was disappointing and ended up being the thing that stuck in the memory.

Updated 1/2012:

We ate at the pub again on a recent visit to Apollo Bay.

The Seafood risotto was uninspiring and runny.

The fish curry was an usual mix of south and east asian flavours and ingredients, with coconut southern Indian style sauce for the fish topped with bean shoots and bok choy! It didn't really work for me.

Perhaps we should have stuck with more traditional pub dishes.

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Thursday, January 13, 2011

Wye River General Store

35 Great Ocean Road,
Wye River
Vic 3221

We stopped for lunch in the Wye River General Store on a drive down the Great Ocean Road. It's in the centre of Wye River, and the township was packed as it was summer holiday time. The 'Store' has been renovated relatively recently and has a large cafe/restaurant area as well a store/deli, it's certainly not your typical seaside grocery store now.

We got a table inside, as it was a hot day. The fit out is modern and stylish, but still reasonably casual and beachy, orders are taken at the counter.

We shared an anchovy and olive pizza. It was medium sized with a few great tasting olives and little salty fish. It just about did the job of filling us both up and was a good pizza overall, with good dough if a little light on toppings.

Overall the experience was good, with decent service and good coffee, however $22 for a small pizza is a lot, even on the Great Ocean Road...

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Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Angaan Again

559 Barkly St
West Footscray, 3012

We were back at Aangan on Christmas Eve, and sat out in the courtyard again, as with our previous visit.

We shared the Tandoori Mushrooms to start, which were more spicy than I've had elsewhere, but very good all the same!

We went for the Goan fish curry, Daal Makhani and Baigan Bhartha (Roasted eggplant, mashed & tossed with onions & Tomatoes) along with rice and roti. They were all good, well spiced and left us very satisfied.

As always the atmosphere was great with a mixed group of diners. The service was a little slow at times, but it was busy.

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Monday, January 10, 2011

Ants Bistro

9 Corrs Lane
Melbourne, 3000

We visited Ants Bistro with friends for a post cricket dinner.

Actually we tried Supper Inn first, but we didn't fancy waiting for a queue half way down the stairs... Despite there being six of us we were seated quickly. I'd had lunch at Ants before, but never dinner.

We ordered a dish or so each, the first to arrive were the salt and pepper calamari, which went down well, and the spring rolls.

The dumplings were good.

The Peking Duck came pre-wrapped, probably more efficient, but a little less fun!

The "Steamed Broad Bean Fish" was probably the highlight for me, delicately flavoured and something I hadn't tried before. From the menu I now see it is described as "Wunan style, steam fish fillet with homemade broad bean (grounded and roasted soy bean)", which explains my surprise at the absence of European style broad beans!
We had a couple of other dishes, the spare ribs weren't that special, the others slip my mind.

With a drink each the bill came to $25 a head for what felt like quite a feast... I enjoyed the dinner, although that might have been due to England having a good day at the MCG!

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