Monday, December 9, 2013

Jamie's Italian @ Pitt Street

I seem to be posting one post per year these days. Hopefully things will change in the coming year. Yep, that should be my New Year's resolution (that I hope I won't break in coming months).

I have seen Jamie Oliver's restaurant for a while now and it is always packed and there is always a line. Today, we wandered into Jamie's due to a slight hiccough in Fratelli Fresh (we greedy buggers were way too early).

Nice little signage in front.

Internal decor made out of various hanging spices and I believe a haunch of pork (fake I hope). 

Drinks for us. Since it's a Monday, we went totally virgin. On the left is a ginger mojito and the right is a mixture of soda, cranberry juice and other delicious fruity goodness that right now escapes my recollection.

We started with a selection of anti-pasti.

This is the three cheese gnocchi. I, for one, hate gnocchi after an ill made choice in Il Divo back in KL. However, this proved that not all gnocchis are made equal. It is soft chewy and cheesy. A definite win in my books.

This love morsel if call aracini which is basically deep fried rice balls the Italian way. Delicious and soft.

Fennel salad with blood orange. My first time eating fennel and I think it's forgettable.

Here come the mains. Linguini Vongole. It's light and fresh with a flavourful broth finishing off the dish.

Black angel, squid ink pasta with scallops. Stronger taste than the linguini and I am totally in love with it. I finally know what fresh pasta taste like.

Blue cheese ravioli with walnuts and pistachios. This is the best dish of the night but of course with the strongest flavour. I will definitely come back for more of this in future.

We finish off the night with a light dessert of trifle. It packs a fruity punch and not overly sweet.

Walking away from Jamie's Italian,I can only wonder how could I have missed fresh pasta. How did I survive before I met you??

Address: 107 Pitt St, Sydney NSW 2000
Phone:(02) 8240 9000
 11.30am to 11.00pm daily

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Bayside Lounge @ Darling Harbour, Sydney

Today, we are off to high tea.

And our destination is Bayside Lounge at Darling Harbour. It was a really hot day and getting out of the sun while still being able to watch what's going on outside was lovely.

We started off with a glass of fine sparkles. Lovely sparkling white wine what was fruity and flavourful. Great start and promise.

The main platter arrives!! Three tiers of loveliness! Let me break it down for you from the top:

White Chocolate Pistachio éclair, Berry Macarons and Brownie with Clotted Cream. The brownie wasn't what I expected. While it was rich, I didn't really like it that much. The berry macaron was lovely, without that sticky texture I had gotten used to in Malaysia. The eclair was perfection. The white chocolate wasn't too sweet. 

The second tier was crystal bay prawn and cucumber bruschetta and orange and vanilla crème brûlée. The prawns were fresh on a layer of crispy cucumber. Lovely! My favourite of all was the creme brulee. It was not too heavy with the right amount of citrus that balanced out the sweet. I was literally moaning through it.

The last layer was:  smoked chicken and asparagus finger sandwich and duck confit pie with eschalots and merlot jus. The sandwich was good but not particularly memorable. The duck was lovely with the duck not too stringy.

Let's have a closer look at my lovely creme brulee. I had already cracked the top a little bit with my spoon.

To finish off a wonderful meal was your choice of numerous types of coffee or tea. I chose mocha while my dining partner chose tea. 

Definitely worth a trip back!

available 1pm - 4pm wednesday to sunday
Bayside Lounge
Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre
Darling Drive
Darling Harbour

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Marigold Restaurant @ Chinatown, Sydney

Here we are again and so soon. New colleagues loves the whole yum cha scene and quite honestly, in the last 4 months I've been in Sydney, I've only had one other time of yum cha. It was a restaurant in Rhodes that only allows patrons 2 hours at the table. After watching the ridiculous line building up when we left, I think I can understand why.

This time, we went to Marigold Restaurant along George Street in Chinatown. I furiously looked up reviewed prior to going there and noted they were quite famous. That is to say there aren't bad reviews thrown at them ranging from tasteless food to bad service, but overall, I was quite optimistic about what I was about to partake.

Let's start with the typical Har Gao. Well, it is typical. The prawns were fresh but I think the skin is a little thick. Otherwise good.

Scallop version of the Har Gao. I honestly couldn't taste much in terms of scallops here. Will be a miss in the future.

My favourite in pork spare ribs. I can't wax poetic enough about this. Juicy and well marinated, I whacked nearly all of it myself. Definitely will call for seconds next round.

Supposedly Lor Mai Kai, but looks like Hor Yip Fan instead,

Let's have a peek inside. Not too bad. Not exactly memorable though.

Nice lovely and juicy Siew Mai. Right mixture of pork and prawn. Lovely.

I haven't had Kai Lan with Oyster sauce in ages. This is a simple dish but it's one of those comfort food that reminds me of home. Lovely. Not to mention provides you with your daily dose of greens.

Char Leong. This was rather hard to make I feel because if not freshly made and served, the Yao Char Kwai will be soft and therefore totally disgusting. This was warm, with the Yao Char Kwai crispy to taste. Served with dipping sauce, it made for a satisfying crunch.

The egg tarts were were good, but a tad sweet. I like the smoothness of the egg and the crumbly texture of the pastry. Less sugar and it would have been a winner.

Ham Sui Kok. My colleagues loved the mochi texture of the 'skin' that had a slight touch of sweetness but not overpoweringly so. Coupled with the savoury filling, it made for a lovely dish.

This was the favourite of both my colleagues, the famed 'Durian Sou'. I expected something along the lines of Yik Kee Durian Bomb, so I was really disappointed when the result was a filling that was rather not creamy with it tasting barely like durian. 

Marigold Restaurant
683-689 George Street  Sydney NSW 2000

Saturday, December 1, 2012

The start of my Australian adventure

Munchie has had a hectic couple of months. Munchie has left the warm shores to Malaysia behind and has relocated to bright (sometimes too bright), sunny (nowadays TOO sunny) Australia.

I've been going around doing the touristy things and learning about what's good in the land Down Under. This will be a collection of my foodie adventures up to now.

Let's start with something quintessentially Australian. I was taking a walk to get to know the Sydney beaches and landed in Manly. Feeling peckish, I found a cafe opposite the beach which right now the name completely escapes me. But the above is two things that I have always wanted to try: Kangaroo and croc. Yes, you read correctly, meat from the tail of a crocodile. 

The kangaroo tastes like a milder version of beef and the croc has a clean palate, like white chicken breast, thought less stringy. Definitely a must try.

After my first ever paycheck in Australia, a couple of new colleagues and I went to try Max Brenner, the almighty chocolate and dessert cafe. This one was situated along George Street right at Wynyard Station. The top was Belgian waffles with chocolate ice cream, bananas and strawberries. While I love the ice cream, the waffles was just pedestrian. It's not mind blowing and it's something that I've had before.

Have anyone ever tried chocolate pizza? This is definitely a must have in Max Brenner. Crunchy with cornflakes and chocolate cereal with marshmallows masquerading as the cheese in a normal pizza. It gave this dessert that 'stringy' quality cheese had in a savoury pizza. Fabulous and unforgettable.

This was supposedly another must have at Max Brenner, their chocolate sandwich. Chocolate (or any other flavour ice cream) sandwiched between two soft cookies... Only the cookies weren't exactly so soft. I definitely did not like this at all. The cookie was so hard to get through and ended up stuck in my teeth because it was too chewy.

This was something I tried around a week ago. There is something called the Eat Art Truck going around Sydney serving food from a brightly art-decorated truck. They had a few dishes only but the line waiting was long, a testament of good food. This was the beef with kimchi salad. The bread was soft and warm while the beef was succulent and well stewed.

Chicken wings with mayo. Very addictive actually.

Pulled pork. My colleague complained that it was too sweet but I found it fine. Very nice.

This is supposedly the best macarons in all of Sydney. Since I've not tasted any other and I generally don't like macarons, I give this my special thumbs up. 

A little box of five different flavours. Soft and yummy, not too sweet and doesn't get stuck in your teeth like the Malaysian versions I have tried. Flavours from top: Chocolate, strawberry, caramel chocolate, passionfruit (I think) and caramel.

Well, that's a short one from me for now. There should be a new post up in a jiffy!!

Sunday, June 3, 2012

Chatterbox @ Bangsar Village

I have been a bad Munchie, I know. It's been a long time since I've posted anything on here and I shall endeavor to be better from now on.

Today, I bring Chatterbox, which I had written off earlier during a visit a few years back. However, since they have moved to a more central location opposite Toys-R-Us on the first floor of Bangsar Village I, I am happy to say that I have been proven wrong.

It sounds like your basic Char Chan Teng but I'm pleased to say that their food differentiate them from the likes of Kim Gary and its ilk.

Their Yin Yong is good, with just the right amount of tea, the right amount of coffee and not too sweet. I have a problem with my Yin Yongs tasting a little too tea-ish, if that makes any amount of sense.

The Coz, wanted something light so we went for their Club Sandwich. Let's put it this way, there is no way you can go wrong with a sandwich.

My Cheese Baked Rice with Red Sauce came and I expected something like Kim Gary's version. However, upon cutting through the yummy layer of cheese, this was revealed:

That's right, not normal tasteless white rice, but lovely fried rice. The rice perfectly fried and tasty.

When you're around that area, stop by for a quick snack and I am sure you, like me, won't be disappointed.

Chatterbox @ Bangsar Village

Monday, August 29, 2011

Grand Imperial @ Bangsar Shopping Centre

I haven't been to Bangsar Shopping Centre in quite a bit. I was pleasantly surprised at the facelift that they had done. Everything looks new and shiny right now.

The family met up at Grand Imperial recently. They were serving Chinese food with a slight fine dining twist to it.

Nice flatware for everyone. They even have knives and fork that I ended up using more than chopsticks because I failed.

Additional dish of Peking duck that was ordered. Look at the glossy, crispy roasted duck prior to being molested by hungry family.

Post molested duck wrapped up in little rice pancakes with sweet sauce, cucumber and spring onions. Yum.

Deep fried rice paper lotus root with salted fish accompanied with steamed marrow melon stuffed with prawn paste and button mushroom. I love the white almost mushroom soup sauce they used for the stuff marrow melon.

Braised Vietnamese-style shark's fin soup in claypot. Thick broth that's filled with seafood such as scallops, prawns and pieces of sharks fin. It came with fresh basil leaf to be added to the broth should you so desire it.

Roast whole suckling pig. Poor piggy, life ended at such an early stage, but damn tasty sacrifice actually. However, they did serve it too us a little late so it was not as hot as we wanted it to be

Steamed 'Turbo' fish with chef's special preserved olive and black bean sauce. This was an odd dish as I found it slightly fishy while the rest of the family said it tasted just fine. Perhaps I have a love hate relationship with fish in general. The meat was perhaps a little too firm than what I'm used to with fish as well.

Sauteed red sandy clam with fresh lily bulb and fresh yam root. The clams were very fresh and tender and I love fresh lily bulb.
Braised bean stick with sea cucumber cube in meat ball. Very delicious and thick broth covering a well prepared meat ball. I couldn't really taste the sea cucumber though, as I think it was smothered by the stronger tasting meat ball. To me however, that's a good thing, since I'm not too much of a fan of sea cucumber.

This was the rest of the duck meat from the Peking duck earlier, since only the skin was used. They gave us fresh, crunchy lettuce to wrap it in.

Fried egg noodles with cuttle fish in superior soya sauce. This is probably hands down the favourite dish of the entire night as voted by the family. It was perfectly fried with a right balance of flavouring and texture. The noodles used are different from what's available in the market. We only had complains that we couldn't have seconds. Excellent.

Double boiled mountain snow seed with lily bulb. The sweets were alright, and not too sweet. I wouldn't give it rave reviews as they were perfectly adequate.

I'm not really sure what they were but the fried one had a slightly sourish filling that made me think it wasn't lotus paste but sweet potato paste and the other was just sweet. I would give it a miss if I had to.

Additional sweets one of the cousins brought. Jelly mooncake with various fillings. They were seriously delicious. I love the chocolate one (surprise, surprise), the black sesame one as well as the coffee one.

Overall, this was a good place to have a nice reunion with family and enjoy a good meal. I think I will try their dim sum there one day. It's supposedly very good.

Grand Imperial
Bangsar Shopping Centre
Tel: +603-2283 1118/3366/3389