Isola di Capru, Phillip Island

Hi everyone,

This is my last restaurant review from my time in Melbourne and is for Isola di Capru on Phillip Island. We came to Phillip Island for the penguin parade which occurs nightly on the island. As we had to wait until sunset for the penguins so we ended up in the town of Cowes for dinner.

IMG_1344

One of the adorable penguins from Phillip Island.

We settled on Italian as I had been craving Spaghetti Carbonara ($19.50 main) for the week before the trip. Mum settled on a simple bowl of Spaghetti Bolognese ($12 entree) and my cousin had a Chicken and Mushroom Risotto ($24.50 main). The full menu can be found here. The Carbonara was a little disappointing compared to the rich sauces that I create when I make it at home this meal seemed less flavoured and rich as well as a thinner sauce. The Risotto on the other hand was well received and so filling that my cousin was unable to finish it. We also had another friend from Perth come along for the meal

IMG_1713

Carbonara.

Bolognase.

Bolognase.

Risotto.

Risotto.

Side of Chips.

Side of Chips.

To go with our meals my cousin and I ordered glasses of wine each. I had a glass of 2009 Serafino Chardonnay ($8.5) and my review of the wine can be found in this post. My cousin selected a glass of the 2012 Grant Burge Moscato from the Barossa Valley ($8.5).

The atmosphere of the restaurant was bustling and relaxed. Service was quite hard to come by when we had our meals slowly trickling out of the kitchen. The gentleman who I believe was the owner was a delightful man to meet and had such a cheeky and vibrant personality that drew us into the restaurant. For being seated right by the kitchen and bar and next to the main thoroughfare in the restaurant it was hard to get a waiter to ask for the rest of our dishes and some parmesan for the pasta.

Overall I was disappointed by my meal and the service, others that I was dining with were content with their meals however.

Until next time!

Isola di Capri on Urbanspoon

Advertisements

Melbourne Snacks

Hi everyone,

This post was one that evolved as I took numerous photos of all the little snacks and food stops I had along the way while in Melbourne and realised at the end that there was no way I could do a post for each and everyone single one, even though many deserved it as I would be writing those posts until almost the end of time. The solution to this was to collect them into one post, and hopefully one which is not too haphazard.

Queen Victoria Markets

IMG_1243

One of the mornings in Melbourne was spent wandering around looking at all the different stalls with things for sale at the Queen Victoria Markets. Before we could do so we went and had breakfast in the food section of the market. There was such a great selection of foods not only for breakfast but also for lunch and dinner options that I wish we had a spare night or two in the schedule to wander over to the markets and pick something that caught our fancy before going home straight away to have it for dinner. For breakfast I settled on a homemade toasted bacon and egg roll with a berry smoothie from Cafe Reń. The toasted roll was quite nice and very fresh unlike their usually thought of counterparts from McDonalds… The smoothie on the other had was such a disappointment. Stick to buying your smoothies from the stalls that specialise in them as the bakery I went to gave me a cup of watered down berry flavoured yogurt. My cousin on the other hand had one of my all-time favourite smoothies – think jam-packed with fruit and ice from Juice Haven. The other standout from our market experience was the African Chicken Piadina, which Mum selected from a pizza shop a few places down from Cafe Reń. I had been eyeing off this particular item but decided against it as avocado and coriander are not favourites of mine however mum loved them and loved it.

IMG_1235

Toasted Bacon and Egg Roll.

IMG_1236

Smoothie.

IMG_1233

African Chicken Piadina.

Lord of the Fries

IMG_1367

I was sold from their name, and from my first bite of their deep friend chicken nuggets and hand cut fries I was in fast-food love! I didn’t realise until after the guy had coated my meal in tomato sauce that they have a selection of special sauces – something to save for my next trip to Melbourne I guess!

IMG_1368

Little Cupcakes

IMG_1389

Giant selection of mini cupcakes… need I say more?

My selection of cupcakes (mint, raspberry and white chocolate, Cookie Monster, Chocolate fudge brownie, red velvet).

My selection of cupcakes (mint, raspberry and white chocolate, Cookie Monster, chocolate fudge brownie, red velvet).

Macaroons

IMG_1384

small selection of the available macaroon flavours.

I found out while in Melbourne that my cousin had never tried a macaroon before. I rectified that immediately the next time I saw a macaroon stall upon finding this out. I grabbed a rose macaroon for myself while my cousin had the Chocolate Fudge. The rose macaroon was different and unusual in flavour, and in comparison to the heavenly chocolate fudge macaroon it stood no chance. Must have these more often as the flavour selection at the shop was so tantalising but it would have hurt the bank and my stomach as I was carrying around 5 mini-cupcakes already at this point.

IMG_1387

Until next time!

January Favourites

Hi everyone,

The blog has been going for just over 3 weeks and it has been such a blast and also introduced me to some wonderful people and led me to learn so many new things. This month also saw me hit the 100 post mark.

1. Favourite wine of the month?

This is a tough one especially after spending some time in the Yarra Valley. I was able to narrow it down to my top 3 wines of the month all from my time in the Yarra Valley. I would have loved to include a Curvee Riche from Domaine Chandon, however the second bottle I had of it this month in Perth was disappointing and quite bitter in comparison to the bottle I had over in Melbourne.

In no particular order:

1. Yerling Station, Yarra Valley, 2004, YarraBank, Late Disgorged Sparkling.

2. De Bortolli, Yarra Valley, NV Este Sparkling.

3. De Bortolli, Yarra Valley, 2012, Bellariva Moscato del Re.

2. What has been the best value wine of the month?

2008 Barrel Selection Shiraz from Domaine Chandon in Melbourne – review can be found here.

IMG_1653

3. What has been added to my to-try wine list?

The rest of the wines at Yerling Station in the Yarra Valley.

4. What restaurants do I want to return to?

The Mailing room in Melbourne to try their lunch and dinner menus along with hopefully a tour of their roasting room.

5. What was my favourite meal this month?

Buffet at Melba Restaurant in Melbourne – review linked here.

6. Upcoming events for next month?

FeBREWary

Twilight markets

Toast to the Coast

Valley and Vines festival

Tropfest Screening at Madfish Winery

Spanish Sundowner at Cheese Barrel

spanishsundowner

7. Favourite wine packaging?

La Boheme.

IMG_1668

8. Best service?

Melba restaurant – pasta station.

9. Restaurant I am most keen to try next month?

Recently opened Midnight Fox in Melville.

10. Wine Century Challenge.

Total: 29 varietals.

Favourite = Gavi (Tried at Lamonts Wine Store in Cottesloe)

Until next time!

Melba, Melbourne

Hi Everyone,

My last night in Melbourne this month was spent having dinner at Melba Restaurant located in the Langham Hotel. The restaurant was buffet styled, however the food on offer ranged from seafood, to pasta prepared to order, roast station, Indian station, made to order sashimi station to a wide selection of cheeses, salads and cold meats. This link will take you to a sample menu for what could be offered for dinner in the buffet at Melba.

IMG_1537

Their selection of cheese’s reminded me of the cheese platter I had at Quarter on Hay in Perth. I thoroughly enjoyed myself with a sample of a small selection of these for a starter while I eyed off the different buffet stations and planned my dinner.

Selection of cheeses.

Selection of cheeses.

I started at the Roast Station where I had a selection of pork, beef, chicken, lamb, vegetables and a selection of sauces to accompany. The meat was cooked well and the selection available led me to grab a small piece of everything I could so I could try as much of what they had as my stomach would take.

Roasted meats station.

Roasted meats station.

There was a sashimi section where you could select from a range of fresh raw fish to have sushi made for you on the spot. I tend to avoid raw fish and so was a little disappointed I could not try any of the tantalising sushi, which I had seen at other tables in the restaurant.

Seafood.

Seafood.

While I was sampling from the roast station others dining with me had headed off to the Indian station for tandoori chicken, saffron rice and naan cooked to order.

After finishing our first plateful we discovered the pasta station where you saw your pasta being cooked in front of you with ingredients of your choice. I wish I had filmed the guy as he casually created a delicious masterpiece for me all the while conversing with me.

IMG_1538

After we had our fill of pasta we intended to get another plate of food however we wandered past the desert station and didn’t manage to make it any further. The variety of deserts available for selection made for a very tough decision, especially when a chocolate fountain was included – I was in desert heaven!

Deserts galore!

Deserts galore!

Selection of deserts from Melba plus cupcakes from Little Cupcakes.

Selection of deserts from Melba plus cupcakes from Little Cupcakes.

For those who love their seafood then this restaurant is one to check out while you’re in Melbourne. There was also a selection of prawns, oysters, crabs, you name it included in the buffet. I’m not a big fan of shellfish and seafood in general so I passed on this selection however the presentation looked fantastic!

Last was the cocktails that we had over the night. While their wine menu had many interesting options I had a quick flick through the cocktail list and saw an Apple Crumbletini and was instantly sold. We also ordered their Strawberries and Cream cocktail and their Passionfruit Mojito. All three cocktails were delicious and a good way to end our time in Melbourne.

IMG_1529

Apple Crumbetini and Strawberries & Cream

Passionfruit Mojito.

Passionfruit Mojito.

Thoroughly enjoyed the meal and will have to return next time I am in Melbourne so that I can attempt to make it to every single station in the restaurant as well as getting the chance to try a few more of their cocktails which looked very tantalising on the menu. Service was also fantastic and the view over the Yarra River and Melbourne at the sun was setting made for a perfect and relaxing end to a quite hectic trip to Melbourne.

Until next time!

Melba Brasserie on Urbanspoon

The Mailing Room, Canterbury (Melbourne)

Hi everyone,

Sorry to everyone for not getting this post up on Thursday but here’s the first instalment of Melbourne meals.

While in Melbourne we saw a tv show which featured Mailing Road and some of the stores along it. One of the places featured on the show was The Mailing Room a cafe that is located in the old post office on the street. The Mailing Room’s focus is on their coffee, which they bring in and roast on site.

IMG_1354

Their menu features fresh and seasonal breakfast along with coffee that impressed a seasoned coffee addict. The coffee (pictured below) was served at a temperature perfect for drinking it straight away, something that was definitely welcomed.

Mug of Coffee.

Mug of Coffee.

Hot Chocolate.

Hot Chocolate ($4.8).

I opted for a hot chocolate with Colombian inspiration. It was quite mild on the chocolate but there was something very unique about this hot chocolate. Possibly not enough chocolate in it for me personally but it was a drink I think I could get used to quite easily, especially with the breakfasts that come out of the kitchen!

Eggs Florentine.

Eggs Benedict ($16.5).

Chorizo Breakfast.

Chorizo Breakfast ($17).

Summer Brekky.

Summer Brekky ($16.5).

We each ordered a different breakfast dish off the menu and all of us were very impressed on the meals, both on quality, quantity and freshness of ingredients as well as their relative cost for a meal in comparison with Perth. Their 63 degree eggs which were a signature of theirs and were delicious. Very impressed with the service and we left this place stuffed and very satisfied!

If this place ever considers expansion, I do hope they make it to Perth!

Until next time!

The Maling Room on Urbanspoon

Halliday Day: Week 12 – Yering Station

Hi everyone,

There will be no Wino101 post this week, instead for you I have yesterday’s Halliday Day post.

Yering Station is rated solid 5 star winery by James Halliday in his 2012 Australian Wine Companion. Yering Station was established in 1988, on land that had vines planted on it since 1838. Yering comes from the Aboriginal title of the land. The wine makers consist of Darren Rathbone of the Rathbone family which purchased Yering Station in 1996 and Willy Lunn (since 2008) who is well known for hist cool-climate wine making experience and knowledge.

YARRABANK

Champagne Devaux in 1996 signed a deal with the Rathbone, the same year they bought the Yering Station property which lead to the production of Yarrabank Sparkling. I had the chance to try the 2004 Late Disgorged Yarrabank Sparkling along with the 2008 Yarrabank Curvee, while both were exceptional cool-climate sparkling wines however the 2004 was clearly the superior wine of the two and one I wish I could have had room to bring back to Perth with me.

Cellar Door.

Cellar Door.

While I was at the cellar door at Yering Station I also tried a selection of their red wines including their Pinot Noir’s which the Yarra Valley wine region is well known for. Yering Station’s two Pinot Noir’s included one which was light and easy to drink like a Rose while the other was filled with dark berries, and a good weight on the palate to please any lover of red wine. My full review of their wines which I tried can be found in this blog post.

This winery is one not to miss to see quality wines showing common characteristics of the Yarra Valley region. I thoroughly enjoyed the cellar door and if I had more time in the area the Chateau on the property would have been a nice property to look at along with the restaurant on premise.

Until next time!

Wine(s) of the Week: University (week 1)

Hi everyone,

Sorry this post is a day late, I was in need of some well deserved sleep over the weekend and forgot to upload this post. I’ve been hitting the books all week having been accepted into my graduate degree and had not had the chance to drink anything besides a celebratory bottle of bubbly with BF on Friday night. I grabbed a bottle of wine which I first sampled over at Chandon in the Yarra Valley last week to show to BF as I felt it was right up his alley as a sweeter styled traditional methode sparkling wine.

IMG_1565

Survival Wine.

This bottle of Chandon Curve Riche was a little disappointing in comparison to what I had while in Melbourne. The wine improved as I let it chill longer, perhaps my impatience got the better of the wine.

Chandon Curvee Riche

Chandon Curvee Riche

My main drinks over the past week and likely this week as well will be lots of cups of tea. I have been enjoying Aroma Cafe at ECU’s campus – the selection of breakfast sandwiches, muffins and snacks are so tantalising that I plan to try one of almost everything over he course of my graduate degree.

One of many cups of tea to be consumed over the course of this year.

One of many cups of tea to be consumed over the course of this year.

Lastly there will be changes occuring with the postings on this blog. I will be writing as much as I can and I endeavour to get out my Melbourne posts in the next few weeks but I have to put my studies first so there will be a decline for a little while in consumption of wine as well as posts.

Have a good week everyone!

Until next time!