And the KitchenAid winner is…

Win a KitchenAid mixer in the colour of your choice thanks to Kitchenware Direct Songs, poems, pictures. And ideas for parties and blog redesigns (coming soon, which I’ve been saying for two years). It’s been two long months since I launched my win a KitchenAid kindly donated by KitchenwareDirect – with a bit of self interest to promote this blog, my Twitter profile and Facebook fan page. First I’d like to thank everybody who has entered, getting into the spirit […]

coffee, Melbourne

Everything you wanted to know about coffee (but were afraid to ask your hipster barista) part 2

Check out Everything wanted to know about coffee (but were afraid to ask your hipster Barista) part 1 I‘m drinking coffee made from beans that are one month old. The beans are from the Bambito estate in Nicaragua. They are arabica, from from a mutation known as Caturra. It’s here in Australia because Nolan Hirte, owner of Proud Mary in Collingwood, brought them back to be followed shortly by 450kg he sourced directly. It’s the big change in coffee locally […]

Flinders Lane, Melbourne

Chin Chin: feel the heat on Flinders Lane

That’s the door Ho in the foreground. Two of the hottest restaurant openings in the last fortnight are Golden Fields and Chin Chin. The punters have packed both places and the brains behind each – Andrew McConnell and Chris Lucas – both say that for the first time they are seeing the message spread through social media. In the case of Chin Chin, I should declare I have a conflict of interest in writing this review as I helped Lucas […]

Drinks, Melbourne, Wine

Last of the summer winemaking

It’s the dream of many to buy a cute little vineyard somewhere and start making wine, good wine hopefully. It’s the sort of hobby that sends people broke with high entry costs and often inferior wine produced. But oh what a joy to drink something you’ve made yourself, even though all your friends just want to spit rather than swallow. The sensible way to make wine is not to own a vineyard. All you need is access to good grapes […]

Exhibition St, Melbourne, Restaurants

The chaos that is Misschu

Order at the tuckshop window Click through to the MissChu website at your peril. It’s noisy, just like the restaurant, if you can call it that. The vibe is exactly the same as the crowded chaos of a SE Asian city at this joint at the top end of Exhibition St, between Lonsdale and Latrobe. The walls are pasted with refugee-style imagery. The crowd at lunch is largely office with guys in shirtsleeves wearing lanyards, groovy Asian guys in beanies […]

Baking, Easter, Melbourne

The great Easter bun hunt

I love this time of the year because I can indulge in hot cross buns. I love their spiceness combined with the sweetness of raisins on soft buns. Naturally, things have come a long way since I first ate them as a kid toasted, spread with a thick chunk of butter (we always at Lurpak slightly salted in those days) with home made blackberry jam and indoctrinated by Catholic brothers. Nowadays there are so many variations from chocolate chip to […]

Chinese, Crown Casino, Melbourne, Restaurants

A Temple that needs more spice

It’s very hip. It’s dark like a nightclub with individual lamps over each table illuminating the food. Not so dark that you could get away with the kind of nefarious under table hand shuffling that was reported in the defunct Bistro Guillaume bar that previously occupied the basement space. But dark enough to make any food photography futile. I could be anywhere in the world, but I’m in Melbourne in the basement dining room in Crown Casino insulated from the […]

Bourke St, cafe, coffee, Melbourne, Restaurants

Busting the great Pellegrini’s myth

People love Pellegrini’s Espresso Bar. It’s because of the atmosphere and the 1950s charm. It’s a great place to hang out and watch the top end of Bourke Street go by – as long as you are not eating or drinking coffee. If you have anything more ambitious than a glass of water (alcohol isn’t served) you’ll be disappointed because the food and the coffee are also both stuck in the 1950s. But the place is packed, so why would […]

Chefs, Melbourne, Restaurants

Albert Roux respects bugs

Albert Roux: respect for the bug I‘ve often wondered why so much food is so bad in Queensland. According to Heston Blumenthal we need moist nasal passages to taste best, which is partly why food tastes of nothing on planes. Queensland being so humid should mean that everything tastes better than in the drier humid Melbourne. There’s plenty of great produce up in Queenland, especially the fruits of the sea. Take the Morton Bay Bug, for instance, an ugly critter […]