Friday, 21 November 2014

4Fourteen, Surry Hills

4Fourteen was a great venue for a large group of friends for a lazy lunch on Sunday. The best way to describe the experience would be sharing plate degustation in a warehouse setting, 4fourteen certainly delivered when it came to good food, atmosphere and customer service.  While the portions to share are small; there are several dishes that come out that will satisfy.  It's set in a trendy warehouse in Surry Hills.

The meal started beautifully with very tasty bread, soft butter and olives. The "chips" pictured below were beautifully tempura vegetables with an aioli like sauce.

The other great dishes included the cured King Fish and Miso Smoked Salmon. All the ingredients were fresh and perfectly presented. I enjoyed all the different textures particularly in the salmon dish.

The croquettes were yum. All the other meat dishes were perfectly cooked including the lamb which was very much melt in your mouth, the chorizo was spicy and we got a bonus pork dish which was delicious.  For an array of dishes, I would definitely recommend the $65 collective menu experience. The above picture was the menu that I got to experience.

The absolute highlight of the menu for me was the white chocolate sandwich. Everything was perfect about the sandwich. The ice cream was super creamy, the chocolate crispy "bread" provided crunch and the perfection of caramel was amazing. I loved it. That's why it gets it's own special black square.

Location: 414 Bourke St, Surry Hills. Roughly a 10 minute walk from Central Station.

4Fourteen on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, 18 November 2014

Gelato Messina, Surry Hills

All the hype of the Mushroom cake at Gelato Messina means heightened expectations of this elusive and infamous cake. Gelato Messina is very popular for their gelato but you will often see that the foodies will also blog about their cakes.

So what is this mushroom cake all about? Well first of all its formal name is Dr Evil's Magic Mushroom Cake. The image below from the Gelato Messina website explains the deliciousness very well. The glossy red glaze with white chocolate button cleverly disguises what lies beneath.

The chocolate cake, chocolate gelato and magical green bits all worked very well. My favourite part was definitely the clash of green bits and ice cream. The green bits were crunchy, delicious and exploded (well popped). This Dr Evil Mushroom cake is definitely an experience. It also makes me think of Mario kart.

So if you have a birthday coming up and you want something different and delicious - I would definitely recommend the Gelato Messina Dr Evil Mushroom cake. Yum!

Prices: $85 for the mushroom cake

Gelato Messina on Urbanspoon

Monday, 17 November 2014

Pizza Hut, The Works, George St, Sydney

I must confess the works at Pizza Hut is a guilty pleasure. It's great when you're broke and with a brother who can eat endlessly. The atmosphere is a bit stale and some of the food is dry when it's been out for some time but there's something homely about memories of my youth.

If you get the pizza fresh out of the oven, with a side of chips, pasta and my random favourite of corn mixed with pasta salad; you may be experiencing what I call the ultimate plate. The CBD restaurant is one of the very last standing restaurants and I wonder how long this could last.

I must admit I had a sneaky bowl of dessert as well of brownie, ice cream and chocolate sauce. Come here once every few years... to relive your youth and shout your kid brother when you are broke.

Prices: $18.95 for dine in, works dinner or weekend lunch/dinner

Location: 630 George St, Sydney

Pizza Hut on Urbanspoon

Thursday, 13 November 2014

Provence By Antoine, Concord

Provence by Antoine is a slice of posh in the suburbs. Tucked away in a quiet street in Concord, you could say it's a hidden gem. The food absolutely exceeded my expectations and I had a great time.

With French cuisine expect very rich flavours with a touch of fat. I started the meal with the roasted garlic and herb baguette at $7. Ton the bread was soft on the buttery herb-like areas and perfectly crunchy on the outside.

For mains, there was the Pork Belly at $32. The confit cooked Pork Belly was served with apple and sweet onion puree, granny smith and celeriac remoulade. The Pork Belly was perfectly cooked and the rich puree just added that special touch. A great dish.

I also ordered the Lamb Shoulder. From Riverina Region, the 12 hours slowly braised lamb shoulder was accompanied with carrot and star anise, mint relish and reduced jus. A little bit of posh at $32. The lamb naturally melted in my mouth and there were delicious fatty lamb parts. A touch of rich but yummy.

Prices: $ 32ish for mains

Location: 50 Mortlake St, Concord in Surburbia

Provence By Antoine on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, 12 November 2014

Belluci's, Dickson (Canberra)

I'm surprised at the 53% like rate on Urbanspoon.  I thought the rating was a bit harsh.  Belluci's must be doing something right in the Canberra area as they have expanded over the years into a number of different restaurants. I went to the Dickson restaurant which is attached to the Sub-Urban Bar.

My work colleague ordered the Vitello Saltimbocca (above) which he ordered 10 years ago and wanted to come back.  He profoundly claimed it was just as good as it was 10 years ago. The dish was pan fried veal medallions with prosciutto, sage, soft polenta, asparagus and pan jus. The Vietello Saltimbocca was $32 and seemed a very small price for a decade of waiting of deliciousness.

I ordered the Spaghetti Marinara (above) which was good. It was a solid pasta dish, Not the dish I would be waiting for 10 years but it was a good dish. The linguine in tomato based sauce was accompanied by selection of prawns, squid and mussels. It was a fresh tasting dish topped with parmesan cheese.

Check it out.

Prices: $30-35 for mains

Location: Corner of Cape St and Woolley Street in Dickson, Canberra

Sub-Urban By Belluci's on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, 11 November 2014

Bacino Bar Il Caffe, Kirribilli

Bacino Bar Ill Caffe is perfect for a casual lunch in Kirribilli and the is best coffee around (a big claim by one of my friends who is a local). It's well deserving of it's 93% liking rating.  With the Harbour bridge a short walk away, it was a really nice and relaxing area to have lunch.

It's a small cafe with some chairs and tables at the front. The food tastes fresh and the sandwiches are full of flavour.  No stale, flavourless sandwiches here.

The Italian Meatball sandwich was full of herbs and was well rounded with a nice blend of cheese and meatball on turkish bread. Equally, the roast beef sandwich with onion relish, tomato and lettuce was delicious. I quite enjoyed this lunch.  I felt like a lady of leisure.

Try it out and let me know what you think?

Prices: Sandwiches are $8.5 to $10, Coffees are about $3

Location: 31 Fitzroy St, Kirribilli

Bacino Bar il caffè on Urbanspoon

Monday, 10 November 2014

Element 6, West Ryde

Element 6 is a hidden gem in West Ryde. I love it here. The atmosphere rivals many of Surry Hills or Newtown cafes. The Chai Latte is the real good stuff, the honey soaked chai tea leaves are brewed with milk. It's delicious with a few more tea spoons of honey.

The Bacon and Egg Roll with rocket with onion relish is delicious at $9. It would be perfect pick me up on a sleepy weekend. For a slightly healthier option. you could sour dough toast, poached eggs with tomato and rocket at $10.  The eggs are perfectly cooked and all the other ingredients are fresh and tasty.

Prices: $10 to $15 for mains

Location: 65 Ryedale Rd, West Ryde. About 2 minutes from the train station. 

Element 6 on Urbanspoon