Thursday, June 30, 2016

Italian Chef's cheap Tuesday pizza with wine and dessert

Italian Chef is a new Italian place in South Yarra on Chapel st. They have just opened last year and they have featured in a few Italian festivals and Gusto Italiano event. This event is a special one celebrating all things Italian. Now you cannot not have wine when you are having a meal. So of course we order wine there.

Tuesday nights is when they have their $13 pizza nights which their pizzas are huge. But it wasn't very busy on Tuesday night at 6:30pm when we came. So there was not much of a reason to book. The service was a bit slow but friendly and the cellar room downstairs was really intimate. They have a lot of wines on offer.

And because it is truffle season here in Melbourne we had to have the truffle pizza which is normally $25 because truffle is expensive here. The truffle tastes a lot like mushrooms and the flavour was really subtle. This was really great with the red wine that we had. Red wine is good for a cold winter's night and it is great with all sorts of pizza.

The pizza was a thin crust one and it was lukewarm. Luckily there was no meat on this.

For dessert I had their homemade Italian ice cream which was nice and creamy. As the Italians would say "Who would say no to dessert"" we did not.

Rating: 13/20- can't complain unless we had to pay full price for the pizza. The other table's meals looked good and they brought out complimentary canapes for the other table with their drinks and I came within the Happy hour of 4pm-7pm.

Italian Chef Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Hawkers Bazaar Ramadan 2016

The Malaysia Hall has a free Hawkers Bazaar as part of the Ramadan period for all Malaysians. I went to the one this year and last year. Last year I remembered the amazing prawn fritters and yummy biryani. The market is cash only so do make sure that you have some cash on hand. The food is priced from $3-$10 and like last year it was really busy.

The aim of these markets is to educate people on the different foods in Malaysia.  It is also to connect all Malaysians who live in Melbourne together through food.

Last year the prawn fritters were amazing and so was the roti jala which is the roti with holes in it. This is not usually found at most Malaysian restaurants in Melbourne.

This year I had the mee ayam for $6.50 which is a piece of chicken with spicy vermicelli noodles. In any case they were not spicy at all so if you can't stand the spice then try this.

The peanut butter pancake was also great- it was very filling but yum for $3 a piece. They are not at many Malaysian restaurants in Melbourne.

The teh Tarik was $2 but I did want to try lots of other things which I have not heard of before such as the fish crackers and ayam.

Do come to the next one this Saturday at Malaysia Hall from 2:30pm-5:30pm.

The General Assembly

The General Assembly is a pub that serves American food. I have heard ok reviews from Pigging out around the world and others on zomato. Here I was invited by Dimmi so I did not have to pay for anything.

The place is a huge one showcasing beer.

They specialise in Matilda bay beers and old cans of beer. In fact they have a huge history of beers.

The service was quite slow even though the place was busy.  The guy that served me was attentive.
 Here I had two courses and bread and it was a filling meal. For the mains I had baby barramundi and for dessert I had the chocolate fondant

The fish was fresh and it was a small barramundi. It was not deboned but that is ok as Chinese we are used to eating the bone. Here it was cooked just right and it took fifteen minutes to cook. It came with lemon inside and lots of spring onion and coriander. The other table of eight didn't know what to do with theirs and they also didn't know it was quite small.

However a bowl for washing hands would be nice. In many Chinese restaurants bowls for washing hands are provided. Luckily though I was right near the bathroom.

The bread was small for $4 but I enjoyed their herbed butter very much so and the bread was chewy.

The chocolate fondant was a lovely way to finish off the evening. It was decadent and the ice cream was really good.

Rating: 15/20- good food but marred by the slow service.  I would just go there for a drink and not much else.

The General Assembly Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Mr Burger and the light in Winter event.

Mr Burger is a burger truck but they also have a few stores now. Here I love their Mr Veg burger as it is awesome. Here I also enjoy their chips as they are flavoursome and crispy. They are not too oily.

They cater for many events including the open houses. Here I have enjoyed their free burgers and drinks and hence didn't mind paying the $11 for the burger and $3.50 for the chips.

Service can vary. For a start sometimes they are not so friendly and other times they are quite alright.

But at least the truck is at Fed Square every Thursday through to Sunday. They are only there for lunch on Thursdays and are there for dinner and lunch on Fridays though to Sunday.

The Light in the Winter is a fun and free event in Federation Square where you can warm up by the campfire. Every Friday and Saturday nights there is entertainment and it varies from week to week. And there is the dome for fun as well

St Gerry's

St Gerry's is a food truck/stall which sells Greek donuts called Loukmedes. Here Loukmedes are big and sweet and without milk. I remembered Curious Charlie saying good things about them as well as Olive Sundays. They also were a huge hit at the night markets and the Asian Noodle market last year.

So much so that they decided to come to Melbourne Central in the middle of winter to promote them to International students who study at RMIT and at Melbourne. They have been to RMIT before for their orientation events.

Here it was $5 for three doughnuts or 8 for $10. They fry the doughnuts fresh (it takes about 3-4 minutes) and then once after it is deep fried they put some honey on it as well as the topping you want. I chose matcha.

The matcha one is soooo good. I can now see why a lot of people queued up for this at RMIT when they were giving them out for free.

Do come on by to St Gerry's and follow them on Facebook for their whereabouts.
St Gerry's Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Thursday, June 23, 2016

The Churro Van at Victoria Market

For sometime now I wanted to check out the churro van but they were never open whilst I was around which was early in the morning. They are at the Queen Victoria Market on the Peel st side.

Here they have churros for $1 and hotdogs for $5 with the lot. For the hotdogs you can choose between pork or chicken and I chose pork. I love my pork hotdogs.

You order and then you pay and then you have to wait ten minutes whilst they cook the hotdog. But if you want a really quick snack then the churros are a good thing. The guy that served me was really friendly.

They are cash only.

I really enjoyed this and it kept me full for a while. There were no onions though but that's ok. The sausage was just cooked and it was piping hot. Note: I made a bit of a mess though so don't wear white as they won't put the hotdog in a paper bag. The sauces squirted everywhere.

La Camera's truffle offerings

RNIS was invited to try the truffle pasta and tiramisu for free as well as play the card game and only paid for the salad which was a mere $9.50.

It is truffle season now and La Camera has an amazing offer of truffle pasta. We have been here before and really enjoyed these timeless classics. We have enjoyed pizza and pasta here and the owner was a lovely guy.

The Italians are known for their friendliness and the owner had a very friendly charm which delighted most people. But some people had to go somewhere in a hurry and complained about their slow service as such. The place was busy but relaxed which we liked.

The truffle pasta was good but some of the pasta was clumpy. The pasta is handmade which is great and the serving is small but the truffle butter flavour was darn good. Those porcini mushrooms worked a treat.

The pasta worked well with the salad. The salad was a apple and walnut one and the sweet, tangy flavour worked well with the truffle butter and the bitterness of it. The salad was fresh and not too over dressed.

The tiramisu was the bomb but it had a lot of coffee in there. It was a good thing though that they have the meringue to break up all that coffee

Rating: 16/20-do come for that truffle pasta and do expect the service to be quite slow at times as Italians love to enjoy their food and wine whilst relaxing. I hope La Camera does more exciting things with their truffle this month as it is truffle month

Old Town turns one

Old Town Kopitiam turns one and this time they gave away fifty serves of Nasi Lemak to those that waited in line around 5:30pm. Traditionally the party didn't start until 6pm and many others waited in that line to be told that there were no more free nasi lemak. Coincidentally others went elsewhere as this version of Nasi Lemak was on the pricier side at $14.50. For those that paid by card it was $15.

But this Nasi Lemak was rather sad. It was served tto me within five mintues of ordering and it had two sad small pieces of chicken, two sad (and lukewarm) chicken satay skewers, not enough anchovies, ikan bilis and sambal. Coincidentally Sambal Kampung has a much better version of this where they had lots of everything.

The only thing that they had lots of was the egg. Its hard not to like the egg or the pappadum.

And this Old  Kopitiam didn't even have the rose tea :). But it had $1 or free Teh Tarik and their own coffee.

Rating: 9/20- never again even if it is free. But Happy Birthday to Old Kopitiam though.

Monday, June 20, 2016

Time out

Time out is a place in Federation Square which attracts tourists and families alike. Here they are featured in the Entertainment book. They are a Modern Australian café which is said to serve good food.

The place is relaxing inside with the TV showcasing the news and the AFL sometimes.

The nachos were basic but the service was good. It was $16 and normally other places charge about $10-$12 a bowl. The nachos were your basic Dorritos chips and the salsa was your basic Dorritos one which is canned. But the guacamole was good.

The place is on Federation Square where the Light in the Winter event was taking place. Here the place was full inside but not so on the outside. At the Light in winter event outside was full.

I was full afterwards.

Rating: 10/20- don't bother unless you want to order pasta which is expensive as and the pizzas on the other table looked really small.
Time Out Fed Square Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Sunday, June 19, 2016

Tommy Tucker Fish Bar

This bar is in St Kilda and I had just finished my run. I have seen this bar a few times before but always thought that it was expensive.

That was until I saw the menu on Zomato. Here they had burgers for $7.50-$10.90. Not something that I see in the hipster places places such as Grill'd which charge nearly $12 for a substandard burger (depending on which Grilld). Here they also had sides for $3. Pickled onions were $2.

They have been here for a little more than a year now and their burgers were really good. It was massive but the fish (I think its flake) was fresh. They had two pieces of fish in there as well as red onion, tartare, tomato and lettuce all in a bun.

The bun was just a normal white bun, one which you can pick up at Coles. I like these old school buns as they are delicious and healthier for you.

The onion rings were soggy though. Freshly made these were a hit with me whilst I waited for my burger to cool down a bit.

Rating: 14/20-cheap eat yum.
Tommy Tuckers Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


RNIS was invited to dine here and did not have to pay

Bagelicious is a bagel shop in Hawthorn which caters for students. They had just opened last year and already they are buzzing with students and office workers alike. Here they have all sorts of student deals and if you show your student card you will get these deals during lunchtime. They have $10 and $15 lunch deals for students which includes drinks.  They are very close to Glenferrie station.

They are a tiny place so the closest clean bathroom is in Glenferrie station past the MYKI barriers. But there is a public toilet which is always dirty or broken.

But Joni and the other lady were lovely to me and the others all wanting takeaway. The place was clean, open and inviting and Joni offered a sample of the ice chocolate to everyone. He was trying to get customers through the door.

They do healthy food and juices all of which are good for the Run Melbourne marathon. Here I had a watermelon juice which was freshly squeezed and I devoured this in no time.

The Haloumi bagel was good but I was easily full afterwards. I loved the haloumi and the very thin spread of beetroot dip. I thought it was meat at first. I loved the croutons but I think there was too many of them for one person.

During the wintertime they have released a new snack known as potato wedges which were lovely.

Rating: 17/20- it was a lovely lunch. Pity there weren't as many students around as it is exam time.
Bagelicious Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Salsa's in Southbank

Salsa is a chain store and after running I really wanted to go to the Salsa in Southgate. I had never been and have always wanted to try it ever since their $2 taco days. Well they are gone now but in place is a taco meal.

Here this Salsa's was clean and this time all the staff were wearing gloves. There was one at the till and the rest were at the back making the order.

The guy at the counter was friendly.

This time I had their burrito in a bowl which is vegetarian. And then I added inn their habenaro sauce for an extra $1. It was the stock standard shit that you can find in good Mexican places for free such as Taco bill. For the price of $1 I was expecting something extra ordinary.

And the mexicrinkle chips were lukewarm. The ones at Melbourne central were much better. At least these were spicy.

The burrito in a bowl had so much lime juice in there and the zucchini had not been cooked properly. Now look I don't mind raw zucchini but some people hate it. I loved all the beans in there.

Rating: 9/20- would not return. I prefer Guzman Y Gomez any day where all the condiments are free and the burritos are bigger in size.
Salsas Fresh Mex Grill Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


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