Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Grace the Establishment

Now that I have completed more than half of my internship year, I can utilize my spare time to further develop my photography skills (not that I have any to begin with!). Henceforth, dining in a nicely decorated cafe/ restaurant/ bar would be an added bonus for this little foodie:)

Spring is the perfect season for outdoor photography as it's neither too sunny or too mono-tone. I wouldn't want to get a tan before summer arrives and I love how the vibrant floral colours lifts the mood of my pictures.

At Grace, I was able to capture some lovely (in my opinion) shoots and I am really happy to get a good spot to click away! When the sun goes down, this place certainly exudes a relaxing hangout spot and seems like a nice place for chilling with friends over a few cocktails (drink responsibly!!).

Ample of seating area but I was told that reservations may be necessary and I'm pretty sure most of you wouldn't want to wait to be seated!!

See what I meant by a relaxing hangout place? Even if you don't have a group of friends to gossip with, you can always bring a good book and soak up some good ol' vitamin D whilst you dine:)

Imagine this candle holder light up at night. A really dreamy and romantic sight indeed.

Express lunch tasting~ mini wagyu cheese burger, mini blue swimmer crab soft tacos and leek and gruyere croquettes.

Light and refreshing:)

I love these deep-fried prawns with homemade dipping sauce. Crunchy but not overcooked. Only downfall would be that there's not enough for me to binge on hehe.

The beef patty is still juicy and moist on the inside and the buns...fluffy with a nice toasted top. Mind you, these burgers can easily fit into one hand and it's not overstuffed with fillings (ideal for the lovely ladies out there).

Reuben sandwich~ corned coorong angus beef, sauerkraut, mustard, pickles served with chilli fries and aerated cheese.

A huge sandwich that I could barely hold. Generous portions with minor hints of acidity from the picked vegetables. Chilli fries were not spicy at all and were cooked well.

French fries with aerated tomato ketchup~ more fries for this tuber fan!

Grace The Establishment on Urbanspoon

Monday, October 29, 2012

Auge Ristorante & Spuntini Bar

Without a doubt, birthday events are a celebration symbol of that special moment when one enters the world and continuously undergo change to shape their individuality. Not only is it a significant event, but also a reason to get myself spoilt rotten by everyone around me!!

Not that I put myself under harsh military-lifestyle conditions but it does feel good to get pampered and just sit back whilst all your loved ones plan your daily schedule for you. I could get used to this;)

The boy managed to squeeze in some time to take me here for dinner and despite having to wait for at least 20 minutes at the bar section of the restaurant, Auge certainly lived up to my expectations. Mind you, we did arrive early for our reservations but it seems almost traditional that all diners would be initially seated at the bar before progressing to their designated tables.

A snapshot of the bar menu, I did not edit the pictures at all but I am obsessed with the black colour gradient that perfectly contrasts the metallic orange shade.

House bread served with olive oil and balsamic vinegar. I love bread but I love it even more with balsamic vinegar. The vinegar's sharp, fruity acidic taste goes well with the yeast infused bread and it was indeed a delightful combination.

A mini sample of their pumpkin soup~ I love pumpkin and this little cuppa has certainly inspired me to attempt making some pumpkin soup to help me get through next year's winter!

Saltimbocca di quaglia~ quail breast wrapped in proscuitto, confit quail leg, mandarin gel served with smoked almond and endive. Fruity flavours seems to work really well the the gamely taste of the meat.

Salmone marinato e sorbetto~ cured Tasmanian salmon with fried silver fish, mascarpone and bloody mary sorbetto. I opted for a lighter entree as I didn't want to be overly filled before my main arrives and I was glad I got this. Compliments to the chef for executing a few different cooking techniques here and overall, it was a refreshing entree.

The entire restaurant was buzzing with chatter and giggles from the diners but who can blame them when you have a fascinating array of alcohol to choose from?

Mint sorbet to cleanse your palate.

Filetto di manzo con sformato di patate~ black angus beef fillet with thinly sliced layered potatoes, saffron caramelized shallots and red pepper puree. Delicious and as a whole, a balanced dish.

Gnocchi con manzo al ragu~ Gnocchi with red wine marinated aged beef brisket served with garden peas, heirloom carrots and rosemary cream. The perception that food portions at fine-dining restaurants are pathetic does not apply to this gnocchi dish. I have a huge appetite on most days but I was defeated by this dish, I could barely finish it. Beef brisket had the desired melt-in-your-mouth texture and gnocchi pieces were nicely pan-fried whilst carrots were not overcooked. However, the standout ingredient would be the beef brisket. Not overly intoxicated but rather, well caramelized.

Patate fritte con aglio e rosmarino~ fried potatoes and polenta with garlic and rosemary salt. Crisp on the outside and soft on the inside. Just right for me.

Funghi saltati con pancetta~ mushrooms sauteed with pancetta piecces. The mushroom slices had a juicy consistency and the saltiness of the pancetta added a nice contrast to the herb-infused dish.

Panettone all' augeana~ De-constructed panettone, almond sponge, honey anglaise, orange jelly, apricot puree with rum and raisin gelato. I can't say not to a fruity dessert and I enjoyed every bit of it. The sweetness of the honey anglaise against the acidic taste of the fruits went well with the fluffy sponge piece. If you want to end your night with a bit of alcohol, the gelato was packed full of it but was still delicious as a whole!

Semifreddo di arachidi, in cioccolato fondente, e caramello salato~ peanut butter semifreddo coated in dark chocolate served with peanut brittle and caramel fudge. I'm not a big fan of excessive chocolate intakes after a hearty meal but I could not reject peanut butter desserts. A childhood favourite of mine (eating from the jar!) and the added crunch from the beanut brittle blended well with the creaminess of the semifreddo. A recommended one in my book!

Auge Ristorante & Spuntini Bar on Urbanspoon

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Steven Ter Horst revisited

I like chocolate, no doubt about that. But I especially like chocolate on chilly, cold days because it's just warming for the soul. I used to love white chocolate but as I grew older, I developed an affection for the more intense flavoured dark chocolate pieces. At Steven Ter Horst, I am spoilt with choices. Just too many to choose from!!

Worst of all, macarons are now available!! I might need to spend more time on the running track:/

Don't you just adore a shiny piece of doesn't bite!

Can't  go wrong with a steaming cup of hot chocolate!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Chatime and mother's milk

Summer is just around the corner and I think this shop on Grote Street may be the answer to everyone's prayers when the temperature rises to 40 degrees! Located nearby the market and bus stop, this is a very convenient spot to grab a quick, refreshing drink whilst waiting for the bus or even whilst wandering around the market.

Chatime has been around for ages but it was just recently made commercialized in a more global setting with shops opening up in Malaysia, Australia and even Canada! I can still remember how crazy everyone went when they first opened doors on Rundle Mall. The waiting line was unbelievably long but customers still queued to get their hands (or mouth) on this drink!

I particularly like their tea drinks and I was once addicted to their green tea and taro milk bubble teas. Nibbling on those chunky red bean pieces which are added to the green tea drink was sufficient to keep me fueled up throughout the day:)

Just next to Chatime is Mother's Crepe, a crepe shop which allows you to be more adventurous with your crepe filling. Customers can choose to have savoury or sweet items and the crepe would be freshly made right before your very eyes:)

Because we had a filling lunch, we decided to take it easy with the tea time snacking and opted to have a scoop of green tea ice cream with our crepe:)

This place does open up until 10pm on certain days and it's an ideal resort for just hanging out with friends.

Mother's Crepe on Urbanspoon Chatime on Urbanspoon

House of Pearl revisited

I will always have cravings for Malaysian food until I can completely please myself. It is indeed a terrible deed of mine but luckily, there are a few decent Malaysian outlets in Adelaide to quench my appetite.

I frequent this restaurant whenever someone suggests Malaysian for dinner. This place does open for lunch and if I am not wrong, you may be lucky enough to obtain some special offer for your meal.

Sambal kangkung~ hints of prawn essence in the vegetables and fortunately for some, it isn't a spicy dish:)

Green curry duck~ at first glance, I was skeptical but after crunching into the crispy roast duck's flesh, I changed my mind. A really lovely dish and good use of spices to concoct the curry. Once again, it isn't spicy at all.

Char kuey teow~ a typical hawker fare in Malaysia and although it did cost twice as much as the Malaysian one, it was still a delicious main meal with a generous proportion of seafood and vegetables used.

Braised oxtail~ not really something I would order at any restaurants but it wasn't as bad as I have expected. Everyone at the table seemed to enjoy it so it must be good!

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Petaluma's Bridgewater Mill

After enduring what seemed like months of freezing weather conditions, I am extremely grateful to be able to enjoy some much needed sunlight. Would not trade this moment for anything else in the world..well, except for world peace, I'm doing my bit for the world even as I dine!

Upon entry, we were immediately greeted by a moderately busy wine tasting counter and definitely did not try to resist the temptation to sample some for ourselves. Fortunately for us, we got to taste a few newly opened bottles of wine and despite trying not to squint my eyes, which I tend to do whenever I have a bit of alcohol bathing my throat, I squinted before confirming that the sampled wine was good. I'm not a wine connoisseur but I do recommend giving it a go, especially when you are waiting for your meal to arrive.

We sat at the patio and had a good view of the mill and the surrounding flora, a refreshing affair if I have to admit so myself. Choosing my entree, main and dessert wasn't a problem as I had done a bit of homework prior to arrival. Nevertheless, you can be assured that the waiting staff would not hassle you for an order and that you do have plenty of time to decide.

Housebread is a must have in my dictionary, regardless of whether it be served with butter or olive oil or vinegar.

Green pea falafel, compressed melon, asparagus, pickled onion and yoghurt dressing~ a good vegetarian option to get the ball rolling.

White rabbit loin wrapped in prosciutto, soya bean, smoked leg, parsnip and mustard seeds~ a good contrast to the vegetarian option, this dish is packed with meat-y scents and is well complimented with the usage of mustard seeds and parsnip to enhance and tone down the dish's robust spell.

Scallops baked in half shell, red curry, shaved squid, cucumber and shredded pork~ I liked this Asian inspired dish a lot. It reminded me of a certain hawker fare from back home, except that this is probably a much more refined version of it. I had to resist myself from eating too fast so that I can appreciate those individual flavours better. A recommended entree if you love spicy seafood dishes.

Crisp duck breast, green lip abalone, leek, cucumber and Adelaide hills honey. Another Asian inspired option but this time round, with the incorporation of spices.

Pan fried potato gnocchi, Taleggio, grapes, rainbow chard and hazelnut~ all my favourite ingredients in a plate! Crispy on the outside and soft on the inside gnocchi pieces, lightly caramelized grapes, blanched rhubarb fragments and sweet hazelnuts. I want more.

Cardamom spiced Coorong Angus beef fillet, potato, cavalo nero, shitake and pork jowl consomme~ no heavy sauces but rather, a much lighter method of adding taste to the medium rare steak pieces.

Green beans~ dining here makes me miss my hometown more than ever and I can't wait to get my feet back to Malaysia hopefully by next year!

Dessert time is anytime for me but it has to be every time I visit somewhere foreign, a sweet memory that would linger on whenever I browse through my photo albums.

Liquorice ice cream, caramel braised pineapple, coconut jelly and pineapple crisp~ I can still recall my first bite into liquorice during my initial year in Adelaide and I immediately swore to stay away from it. Funny how it seems that I have begun to appreciate it more these days. The ice cream was more liquorice-ish than ever and I really did enjoy the cubes of coconut jelly which went pretty well with the sweet and sour pineapple. I would love to know how the chef brew up this quirky formulation!:)

White chocolate mousse, blueberry, dark chocolate shard and chocolate anglaise. I'm glad this dessert is bigger than what I have expected because I loved every single scoop of it. The white chocolate mousse was not overly sweet and dark chocolate shards were not as bitter as I have expected. Overall, a really good dish.

Petite fours~ honeycomb pieces, marshmallow, chocolate brownie with nuts, pineapple panna cotta and a miniature caramel tart. A good way to taste everything without feeling excessive guilty! The fluffy, light marshmallow, sticky honeycomb pieces, tangy panna cotta were all lighter flavours to savour whilst the brownie and caramel tart were richer in terms of flavour and texture. A pretty and delicious dessert platter!!

Petaluma's Bridgewater Mill on Urbanspoon