Showing posts from April, 2016

Da Orlando Wood Fire Pizzeria - Wollongong NSW

This restaurant is a good recommendation from mates - and I loved this place from my first visit. Da Orlando reflects cuisine from Roman Italy  - and even if this Wollongong restaurant is located in unassuming surroundings, it draws its regulars and new costume.  There are two sessions for dining on weekend nights, something which I first observed in Asian restaurants in Sydney.   
I like the pizza making oven, just behind the counter on the right hand side of the entrance.  That evening A and I chose to sit outside, even if it was a coolish night  - but you do not sit on the pavement, like in some other Sydney places, but more in a brick fenced portion outside.  The buzz that evening visited was family, group of blokes, couples and lots of children, oh yes it was indeed the school holidays....
Blokes will return for the BBQ Meat Lover pizza (red base), laden as they are with Italian sausages, a BBQ sauce, ham, salami and Mozzarella cheese.  Ladies may want to go for the home madeGnocchi

Jasmin1 Lebanese Restaurant - Leichhardt NSW

Aubergines are served char grilled, served in a mash with Paprika, olives, lemon juice, Tahini paste, garlic, and coriander. We had this as starters and goes well with the breads or on their own.   It can be on the strong side in experience, this Baba Ghanoush, but worth trying!  Jasmine1 also has a meat version of the BG.

I did find the fried cauliflower better, light on the palate, with texture on the bite and simply clean cut delicious - and I normally do not eat this veg!  Served with a Tahini sauce.

When it comes to dips, I have a bad habit of just thinking about Hommous, Labneh or yogurt with cucumber.

At Jasmin1, I had my eyes opened with sampling garlic flavoured puree, lifted by olive oil and lemon squeeze.   This turned out to be less bold than the Labneh, which has yoghurt dressed with Za'atar  ( a blend of herbs, sesame and salt) and olive oil. 

There is both indoor and outdoor but covered seating.The restaurant is in a  quiet part of Marion Street and not far walking to t…

Groundbake - Cronulla NSW

The chicken pie with fennel and spinach had been sold out, so I settled for the option with mushrooms.  It a tad salty to me at the beginning but then the spread evened out. Nice chicken breast meat though and a good crust.   The size was just right for my needs.

I liked the veg pie better.  It has a spicy Mediterranean flavour and textured ingredients.  A nice change from a potato and carrot variety. A contrast to meat pies, although I hang on to my lamb and pork varieties when I am on the run. I was tempted to get a sourdough but ruled out on that eventually.  The Groundbake opens early and is  worth visiting when you are on the beach.I will have to check it out again for other than pies.....

Groundbake is a t 8 Surf Road, Cronulla NSW.
Opening hours are from 6am to 5pm every week day and from 6am to 3pm on weekends.
Contact + 61 2 9527 2253

The Urban on Lantana - Engadine NSW

I had a most delicious Eggs Benedict with avocado slices recently.  The usual combinations with ham or smoked salmon were there but this was the first time I could combine poached eggs with something more flora. 

 The Mayo was not over the top but more like subtle under, which I did not mind, when compared with some other places.  It was an easy morning though and the Urban is rather in the residential heartland of Engadine, a southerly suburb of greater Sydney.  I have heard this place was dishing up interesting items for brunch and even if located away from the business hub, it does have its charm, like a hide away on the edge of a forest.

Toby's Estate blends go with the cuppa.  The friendly staff suggested why not start with a cuppa.    I was captivated by the decor and look of the main counter, with unusual designs and colourful clutter.  Vehicle parking is street side and not hard. 

The variety on the menu appeals to all ages, with fair emphasis on salads, burgers and things fo…

Garrele Street Kitchen - Cronulla NSW

A refreshing clean look with pastel coloured floor boards. Sited at a buzzing foodie hub in South Cronulla Beach, the Gerrale Street Kitchen comes up with breakfast, lunch and dinner menus.   Greeted at the entrance,  customers are led to their seats, which can be in an inner chamber for groups, bar like tables for four and along the long but well designed counter for independent on the run singles. 
The restaurant runs deep inside, reminds me of a summery locale and the beach was within walking distance.   The menu has touches of California, Mediterranean, modern Australian.   The place was abuzz with yummy Mummies, day trippers and youngsters that moment.  
Favourites of mine that jumped out of the menu were Zucchini and corn fritters for breakfast; the French Canadian toast with pecan crumble (!!!!), smoked bacon, banana slices, maple syrup and Mascarpone, all carefully balanced on a Brioche French toast; the fig and goats Feta salad, adorned with orange, pomegranate and pistachio; t…

City Revitalised, Your Neighbourhood Vibrant

A city, town or village cannot remain the same as time goes on.  The nature of the beast or beauty, so to speak, is an ever evolving process towards a progressive future, or languishing in the past, or deteriorating due to socio-political forces at play. When time warps occur, the conurbation's parameters are frozen due to intended preservation of culture and lifestyle, or because of governing neglect or resource limitations or both.  

The viability of a city that is embraced passionately by its residents, whether local born or emigrated from other lands, can depend on several critical influencing factors.

Lack of cool.
Where people can congregate to sit outdoors, at cafes, markets, gardens and bars, especially on weekends, this significantly adds to human participation to the economy and unique culture of a city.  Are there leading edge events regularly organised to bring in tourists and yet celebrate what is important to the locals?  

Are there street parties and can you sun bath be…

Tama, Fungie and Shrek

Singapore has the imaginary Merlion, a lion and fish hybrid proudly promoted by the nation state. Various Australian towns, both inland and on the coast, build large stone versions of their produce and products, ranging from sheep to mangoes and pineapples.
Symbols and icons, whether for geographical places, sporting clubs or military regiments, can unearth much of history, native culture, local fauna and sense of humour. They also serve as mascots when in the form of animals. Forexample, the state of Western Australia features a termite eating marsupial, the Numbat, which can remind one of a alternative rock Meerkat with a striped coat.

Stateside, Floridians in Palm Bay are proud of their Manatee, an ocean swimming cow like creature that is so unique. Bat viewing tourism is significant for Austin in Texas - these nocturnal creatures fly from nearby Mexico.
Seoul has the Haechi, an imaginary fire eating dog offering protection from disaster and representing upholding law and justice.

Hoomiko Sushi Restaurant - Engadine NSW

My impressions of the Hoomiko Sushi Restaurant:
Ambiance: 3 out of 5
Customer Engagement: 3.5 out of 5
Culinary Delight: 3.5 out of 5
X Factor:  2.5 out of 5