Dear Liza

Dear Liza is a relatively new eatery on St Kilda Road demonstrating a unique dining experience that has left customers wanting more. 
Owner, Rochelle, makes a conscious effort to accommodate for a range of customers’ needs and aims to deliver a welcoming and friendly experience for anyone who walks through the door. 
The restaurant operates as a cafe by day with lighter options. By night, the restaurant specialises in ribs, seafood and salads with plenty of Build Your Own options.
Edamame: Chilli salt; Bacon; Lime zest and cracked pepper

Everything is made in house by a passionate team that aim to produce the highest quality of food coupled with exceptional service.
Grain & Seed Salad

The Grain & Seed Salad was an enlivening salad of quinoa, pomegranate seeds, slivered almonds, celery, pumpkin, pumpkin seeds, spring onion, feta, basil, mint and coriander was brought together with an OJ vinaigrette, the salad was a medley of exciting flavours and textures which will appeal to even the most carnivorous individuals.
Moreton bay bugs with garlic, chilli, parsley, lemon, crusty bread

The Moreton Bay bugs were stunning and cooked to perfection. The lemon beurre blanc with confit garlic accompanied the sweet Moreton Bay bugs perfectly resulting in a dish that was flavoursome, rich and complex.
Char-grilled smoky beef ribs

The beef ribs were tender, falling off the bone, juicy and packed with flavour. We loved the smoky flavour imparted.
Churros, Barbecued banana, 2 x char-grilled pineapple skewer, both dipping sauces and your choice of 1 serve of ice cream

A playful dessert platter concluded our evening. The churros were of particular note. Moist and light on the inside with a crispy exterior, we enjoyed dipping them in the 3 different dipping sauces before eating each bite with a mouthful of house made salted caramel ice cream.  
With good food, exceptional service and a touch of charm, Dear Liza ticks all the boxes and is more than capable of providing each diner with a memorable dining experience. 


Location: 181 St Kilda Road, St Kilda, 
Phone: 03 9534 5492
Cuisine: Seafood, Healthy Food, Sandwiches


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Gastrology bloggers dined courtesy of Dear Liza.

Meat Fish Wine

Gastrology bloggers dined courtesy of Meat Fish Wine.
The passionate restaurateurs behind Red Spice Road, Red Spice QV and Burma Lane have recently opened the doors to a brand new restaurant, Meat Fish Wine.
Meat Fish Wine’s dining room is relaxed, elegant and notable for its heavy use of warm hues and Tasmanian Oak tables. The wine bar area on the other hand is more casual and perfect for enjoying wine and nibbles from their bar menu. 
The wait staff ensure each table is diligently attended to. We found each highly personable, knowledgeable and purposeful in carrying out their duties. 
With Head Chef Malcolm Wright (formerly Head Chef St Katherine’s and Shane Delia’s Maha) leading the way along with Scott Horn (ex GM, three hat Royal Mail Hotel), the kitchen is in safe hands. The restaurant serves delicious fresh seasonal produce, grown locally and prepared to perfection by a talented team of chefs. 
Sophie Johnston (sommelier from Nobu and Press Club) and restaurant manager Stuart Quinn (Money Order Office) are also part of the outstanding team at Meat Fish and Wine. 
The menu features delicious farm to table inspired dishes which utilise the best of local produce and is complemented by an impressive wine list including over 500 wines from Australia and around the world. 
New wines will be featured each month with many available by the glass in the restaurant and wine bar. 
Of particular note was the dish of Pan Fried Duck Breast, Confit Leg en Croûte, Duxelles, Shallot Jam, Pink Peppercorn Jus. The slices of duck breast were cooked to a rarely found perfection. The accompanying Confit Leg en Croûte similarly well made (the pastry, wonderfully crisp while the duck leg within was tender and silky). The sweet and sticky jus provided the crowning element to a luxurious dish. 
We enjoyed every course we sampled at Meat Fish Wine. Clearly a very capable restaurant that offers a very solid dining experience, our recent experience reflected that very fact. With a focus on serving great meat fish and wine, Meat Fish and Wine pleases with some of the best food you’ll find in Melbourne, in a relaxed friendly environment.

Location: 31 Artemis Lane  Melbourne
Phone: 03 8660 6333
Cuisine: Wine Bar, Steakhouse, Seafood

Meat Fish Wine on Urbanspoon

Shinwa Izakaya - Japanese Bar & Restaurant

Gastrology bloggers dined courtesy of Shinwa Izakaya.
Shinwa is an izakaya-style establishment located on Brunswick’s bustling Sydney Road, dedicated first and foremost to the art of Japanese eating and drinking, offering a laid back environment for catching up with friends and family with a focus on quality food designed to share in stylish but comfortable surroundings.
Accompanying the wide range of sake, Japanese beers, umeshu and shochu is a smorgasbord of Japanese small eats comprising of skewers, gyoza, okonomiyaki and the like.
Gyoza Teppan – fried housemade dumplings with special ponzu sauce
Yakitori

Shinwa boasts some of the best yakitori that Melbourne has to offer. We absolutely loved their range of grilled skewers. Without exception, each skewer had been sufficiently seasoned and was wonderfully flavoursome and displayed a delectable outer charring courtesy of having benefited from the perfect time on the grill.
The eggplant skewer was of particular note. Complemented by a delicious sauce and dried bonito flakes, it was a memorable treat for its beautiful texture and burst of umami.
Shinwa tempura set

The Shinwa tempura set featured deep fried king prawn and fish fillet and assorted vegetables (black mushroom, pumpkin, eggplant, sweet potato) served with grounded ginger and meshed radish and tempura dipping sauce. The tempura batter was ethereally light and crispy. The ingredients inside the batter were fresh and pleasing - the eggplant and king prawn were the most memorable.
Housemade Japanese curry sauce served on top of rice and garnished with red pickles

The Japanese curry was outstanding. The beef was perfectly cooked and the curry was robust, fragrant and had just the perfect amount of spice. Together with steamed rice, it was an addictive and comforting dish.
Nigiri selection

The sushi platter of assorted nigiri sushi boasted a tenderness exhibited by high quality produce. The seared salmon nigiri was our favourite - this melt in your mouth nigiri combined the best of both worlds (partially cooked, partially raw).
Japanese greentea cheesecake
Kokutou manjyu

Our dinner ended on a sweet note with the Kokutou manjyu, a delightful Japanese brown sugar and red bean cake. Shinwa’s rendition of this traditional dessert was beautifully light and fluffy and when eaten with the creamy sesame ice cream, was a little piece of heaven.
Fairly new to Melbourne’s culinary scene, Shinwa Izakaya already has a band of loyal followers and it is easy to understand why.  Unblemished execution of Japanese food in light of its vibrant atmosphere, desirable beverage selection and overall dining experience, Shinwa has certainly earned our stamp of approval.

Location: 139 Sydney Rd  Brunswick
Phone: 0412 705 314
Cuisine: Japanese, Bar, Seafood, Tapas, Asian


Shinwa Izakaya - Japanese Bar & Restaurant on Urbanspoon

Mr Claws pinces a new home in time for Christmas

Gastrology bloggers dined courtesy of Mr Claws.
After being so well received at Taste of Melbourne, the trio behind Huxtable and Huxtaburger have finalised a short-term home for their newest delectable morsel, a lobster roll by the name of Mr Claws.

The team behind Huxtaburger and Huxtable, Daniel Wilson, Dante Ruaine and Jeff Wong have noticed the popularity of similar buns in parts of London and wanted to welcome one into their fold, a way of making a luxury product accessible to everyone.

The tantalizing Mr Claws is filled with generous pieces of lobster meat from a sustainable North American fishery, coated in a choice of three sauces: miso and wasabi, Sriracha spiced mayonnaise or buttermilk ranch, served up in a soft roll. Each roll costs $18 with potato sticks and pickles.
Miso and wasabi lobster roll

We loved both the rolls we tried. Sandwiched between buttery brioche buns are substantial portions of tender lobster meat, complete with indulgent sauces. These rolls wantonly disregard the current trend towards healthy eating and, as a result, are abundantly flavoursome – the slightly sweet flavour of the brioche is enhanced by the butter and the intense lobster flesh is accentuated by the liberal helpings of the sauces. 
Sriracha spiced mayonnaise lobster roll

We particularly loved the Sriracha spiced mayonnaise which added a mild chilli kick without overpowering the subtle sweetness of the lobster.  As a new addition to the Huxtable and Huxtaburger family, these lobster rolls are a triumph.
Snapping up its place next door to Huxtaburger at 104 Smith Street, the popup will also offer a range of drinks, such as beer, Pimms, and Gordons Elderflower Spritz. Some more permanent sites will be considered for 2015.

There will be some seating available for peckish patrons. Updates on the duration of the pop up can be found on the Mr Claws Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/MrClawsMelbourne.

Location: 104 Smith Street, Collingwood
Phone: 03 9417 6320
Cuisine: Seafood

Mr Claws on Urbanspoon

New Spring/Summer menu @ The Emerson Rooftop

Gastrology bloggers dined courtesy of The Emerson.
Located on Commercial Road South Yarra, The Emerson is Melbourne’s first destination that allows you to play on a rooftop day or night in winter or summer.
The rooftop, known as the jewel in The Emerson crown, sports a first-class retractable rooftop with motorised runners designed by the project architects at Newline Design.
We loved the rooftop area at The Emerson. It is a breathtaking space that boasts stunning views from South Yarra to Melbourne’s CBD skyline. The rooftop space boasts two large bars areas, an extensive food and drink menu, a live cooking station as well as a cushion lined deck and enough space for all night dancing and relaxing with friends.
Head Chef Jeff Trotter (ex-Royal Mail Hotel, Dunkeld) has carefully crafted a produce driven menu with a selection of dishes designed to be shared and enjoyed on the rooftop. 
Foreground: Tempura soft shell crab, chilli, coriander caramel
Background: Zucchini flower, feta, thyme, black olive tapenade

Our meal began with the simple, yet ever so enticing, soft shell crab. The deep fried crustacean pieces were coated in a semi-thick crisp batter that encapsulated firm, sweet flesh. Similarly the accompanying fried zucchini flowers, stuffed with goats curd was an excellent dish.  The batter encasing the zucchini flower was ethereally light and very crisp while the stuffing was rich and flavoursome.
Prawns, toasted garlic, spring onion & parsley

The dish of Crystal Bay prawns arrived as a stack of peeled and cooked prawns, toasted garlic and julienned herbs - spring onion and parsley.  The prawns were very fresh and the herbs provided punchy fragrant flavours. 
Flinders Island lamb rack, zucchini, almond, yoghurt & mint

This dish was simple, homely and well executed. The lamb was roasted to a tender and juicy pink and was exceedingly flavoursome and "melt in the mouth". 
Greenvale pork belly, spiced date puree, pea, rocket and radish

The large nuggets of moist pork belly, which contain the perfect amount of unctuous fat, are encased in a crisp outer crust and went superbly with the spiced date puree and roasted cauliflower.  Having been succulently roasted to retain a porky juiciness and achieving a healthy layer of melt-in-the-mouth fat in the process, each bite truly gratified the palate in both texture and taste. 
Asparagus, pea, lemon, goats curd, poached egg

We adored this well formulated salad of bold and vibrant flavour combinations. It was an enlivening salads with a medley of exciting flavours and textures which will appeal to even the most carnivorous individuals and was a lovely thing to throw in the mix amongst the heartier dishes we sampled.
Led by Head Chef Jeff Trotter (ex Royal Mail Dunkeld), the kitchen is in safe hands. The menu features a carefully crafted selection of dishes designed to be shared. We especially loved the use of fresh and seasonal produce and their excellent execution of it. 
Be it the middle of Winter or the stroke of Summer, The Emerson’s rooftop is fit for all seasons with its custom, advanced designed retractable rooftop The Rooftop features an extensive beverage list including a range of cocktails designed to be shared.

Location: 143-145 Commercial Road, South Yarra
Phone: 03 9825 0900
Link: http://www.theemerson.com.au/
Cuisine: Modern Australian, Seafood


The Emerson on Urbanspoon

Man Mo Completes Dining Precinct at WTC Wharf

Gastrology bloggers dined courtesy of Man Mo.
The newest addition to the northern banks of the Yarra River, Man Mo WTC offers traditional Chinese cuisine at its best.
Upon entering Man Mo, we were captivated by the restaurant’s plush dining ambience.
Designed to capture the bygone era of Imperial China in a contemporary fashion, the expansive dining room is adorned with traditional Lucky Charmed Tassels and paintings, and with red and gold lashes of colour throughout the restaurant. The restaurant’s dining space is further enhanced by the mood lighting.
The menu features traditional and modern Chinese dishes. Unlike its sister restaurant in New Quay, which has a more Malaysian fusion offering, Man Mo WTC provides a more traditional Chinese cuisine including a strong focus on live seafood and clay pot dishes. 
Left: Scallop & Egg lettuce leaf
Right: Baked Crab Shell

We loved the cheesy baked crab shell which featured deliciously sweet blue swimmer crab meat with onion, bacon and mushroom. 
Peking duck

A highlight of our meal was the Peking duck with pancakes. Each portion was carefully prepared to ensure that each was fresh and warm when consumed. With a generous slice of duck breast, fresh spring onion, warm pancake and ample sauce, it boasted a crisp skin and unctuous fat.
Garlic butter and king prawns with jade noodles

The prawns were very fresh and the herbs provided punchy fragrant flavours.  The accompanying noodles were slippery and coated in a delicious garlic and butter sauce. It was a good dish that was highlighted by the natural sweetness of the prawns and complimented by the noodles which retained a pleasant elasticity. 
 Cape Grim tenderloin with truffle oil and special fried rice

The eye fillet was delicious, exhibiting the characteristic charred flavour that normally accompanies a wok-tossed item.  Well-seasoned, the warming pepper was very welcoming on a cold Melbourne day. 
Crème brulee 

The consistency of the custard in a crème brulee was velvety smooth and delicate and featured atop the decadent custard, the requisite sugary hard shell.
Banana fritter with ice cream

Man Mo’s take on the traditional banana fritter was delicious. The banana had an ethereally light and crispy batter and was soft and sweet inside. Served with a creamy vanilla ice cream, this was a pleasant end to our meal.  
Man Mo is a brilliant addition to the WTC Wharf dining precinct, sitting perfectly alongside the existing premium restaurants and further enhancing WTC Wharf‘s position as a world-class dining destination for Melbournians and international visitors alike.

Location: River side of World Trade Cntre, 38 Siddeley Street, Docklands
Phone: 03 9077 9598
Link: http://www.manmowtc.com.au/
Cuisine: Chinese, Seafood

Man Mo @ WTC on Urbanspoon

Autumn @ Rochford Winery Restaurant

Gastrology bloggers dined courtesy of Rochford.
Rochford possesses all of the requisite elements to deliver an enchanting experience not found in the hustle and bustle of Melbourne. Our expectations of Rochford are fostered not only by its excellent reputation, but by our own experiences on each of our previous visits. Our unwavering eagerness to return speaks volumes about how highly we regard this wonderful winery restaurant.
As the winter month approaches, the Yarra Valley is transformed into a stunning scene with golden autumn leaves adorning the vines.
Despite having eaten at Rochford countless times already, it continues to draw us back time and again and has rightfully claimed a spot in our favourite restaurants of all time.
The dining area is spacious, modern and elegant, exuding an air of calm. The glass windows encasing the dining area allow the sun to trickle in and present magical views out to the Rochford vineyard and the broader Yarra Ranges.

The sense of true hospitality is palpable, echoed in the modern Australian menu prepared using high quality, fresh ingredients which are often locally sourced. The service is always friendly and efficient.
 
We decided to share a bottle of the 2010 YV “La Droite”. A 50% Merlot 50% Cabernet Franc blend named with reference to the Bordeaux “Right Bank”, it was a beautiful drop.   
Not only does the arrival of the autumn season mean the beginning of Vintage harvest at Rochford Wines Yarra Valley, but it also marks the arrival of a new menu at Isabella’s Restaurant created by Head Chef Ciaran Butler. The menu is extremely well-priced. From $55 for 2 courses, the value proposition is compelling.
Galway born, Ciaran has worked in several Michelin star restaurants throughout Europe and Asia. His experience extends from working under the great John Kelly at Ardilaun House Hotel in Ireland to time spent at Crown Casino and the Yarra Valley Grand Hotel.

 As usual, each dish was cooked perfectly.
Kingfish ceviche 
a ceviche of Australian kingfish with sea grapes, pickled radish, yuzu jel & seaweed powder 

We commenced our dining experience with a beautifully presented ceviche. The citrus cured fish was embellished with sea grapes. The pickled radish added a wonderful touch to what was an enlivening combination of ingredients.
Local beetroots & Goats curd 
Local beetroots, with Yarra Valley goats curd foam, pine nuts 

The entrée of goat’s curd and beetroot had perfectly balanced flavours. Each element of the dish matched the other. The slight acidity from the beetroot brought a lovely tanginess that cut through the creaminess of the cheese. It all came together beautifully.
Tasmanian salmon fillet 
Oven baked fillet of salmon with Port Phillip Bay mussels, Rochford Chardonnay Marinières sauce, potato stones & sea asparagus 

The salmon skin was beautifully crisp and the flesh was deliciously moist and tender. The accompanying sea asparagus was a delicious addition. A coastal succulent, the sea asparagus provided delicious bursts of saltiness.
220g Wagyu Rump
Marble score 9 rump with horseradish potato puree, baby leeks, pearl onions and Rochford Pinot Noir jus 

The accompaniments of horseradish potato puree, baby leeks, pearl onions and the famous Rochford Pinot Noir Jus worked wonderfully to draw out the robust beefiness of the Wagyu. A light searing ensured that it was lined with a thin crisp layer packed with caramelised beef flavour. The meat was intense with characteristic wagyu notes and a deep earthy richness. Texturally, it was sublime with a decadent melt in the mouth, almost buttery, consistency.
Death by chocolate 
chocolate sponge, Belgium chocolate ganache, griottine cherries, hazelnut praline powder 

The visually attractive “Death by chocolate” was a magnificent layered creation. The mixture of the light chocolate sponge, together with the intense richness of the ganache and the tartness from the griottine cherries produced a balanced and delectable dessert.
Yarra valley apple pie 
Warm individual apple pie with crème anglaise, vanilla bean ice-cream & toffee apple 

The apple pie was a decadent end to our visit. The soft centre of caramelised apples combined with the perfect biscuit pastry and decadent vanilla ice cream was simply stunning. Served with crisp toffee apple, this dessert was sublime. 
Rochford Yarra Valley's delicious menu which showcases the freshest and finest Yarra Valley produce provides the perfect excuse to escape to Victoria’s Yarra Valley and enjoy the views overlooking the vineyards.
Location: 878 - 880 Maroondah Hwy Coldstream
Times and Prices: 
  • Monday – Saturday Two course meal ($55) or Three Courses ($63)
  • Sunday and Public Holidays Two course meal ($65) or Three Courses ($73)
Phone: 03 5962 2119
Cuisine: Modern Australian, French, Seafood

Rochford Winery Restaurant on Urbanspoon

Hooked Healthy Seafood opens a new Hawthorn location

Gastrology bloggers dined courtesy of Hooked.
Gastrology was recently invited to attend a night of tastings and nautical themed body art at Hooked Healthy Seafood's recently opened Hawthorn store.
Hooked is inspired by owner Ray Good’s childhood summers by the seaside in the UK, where his parents worked at his Uncle Johnnie Fish and Chip shop. But it was while travelling the world as an internationally recognised DJ that he realised the lack of fresh food offerings on the road, and the importance of healthy eating.

Spotting a gap in the Australian market for healthy fish and chips, Ray launched Hooked, delivering the convenience and old-school taste of traditional British fish and chips with all the benefits of super fresh and healthy produce.
Ray opened the first Hooked in 2006 on Chapel Street, Windsor, with its success leading to him opening a second on Fitzroy’s Brunswick Street in 2010. Now, with the newly opened Hawthorn venue, fresh fish fans will no longer have to cross the river to get their (two to three times, recommended) weekly seafood intake.

Available for both dine in and take away, daily fish specials (e.g. certified-sustainable blue grenadier, snapper, salmon and barramundi) are sourced from the market and cooked fresh to order, while the store’s famous potato chips are hand cut by the kitchen.
It’s not all fish and chips; the menu boasts interesting items like the Baja Fish or Grilled Prawn Tacos, Grilled Calamari, Fish Burritos and Seared Tuna Burgers.
The menu also includes scrumptious salads. We particularly enjoyed the Superfood Salad: quinoa, broccoli, rocket, spinach, mint, semi-dried tomatoes, and toasted pumpkin and sunflower seeds topped with a drizzle of yoghurt lemon dressing. 

The Hooked style fish and chips are a twist on that old classic; an attempt to appeal to a more mature, refined audience and make fish and chips ‘trendy’. The ambience of Hooked is inviting, the decor is funky and relaxed and the service warm and prompt.
The tempura batter used to coat the fish is lighter and to a slight extent, less greasy than the offerings from your average ‘run of the mill’ fish and chippery. The “house” fish is blue grenadier instead of flake which, considering the rapidly dwindling numbers of gummy shark around the globe, is definitely a good thing. 
The hand cut chips were addictively good - beautifully crisp on the outside and fluffy on the inside. 
What Hooked does, it does well. The third instalment of the gourmet seafood eatery, Hooked Hawthorn is a welcome addition to loyal punters and fresh foodies north of the Yarra.

Hooked on Urbanspoon

Recipe: Maggie Beer’s Crispy Skin Salmon with Pea Puree | Tips from Aussie Farmers Direct: 10 good reasons to eat seafood this Easter

Gastrology bloggers sampled the new range of seafood  courtesy of Aussie Farmers Direct.

This Easter, Aussie Farmers Direct is working to put the ‘good’ back into Good Friday by partnering with Maggie Beer to release a collection of Easter seafood recipes as part of a move to encourage Australians to include more seafood in their diet this year. We thought we would share our favourite recipe with you...

Recipe:  Maggie Beer’s Crispy Skin Salmon with Pea Puree

 Ingredients 

Aussie Farmers Direct Salmon fillets ($13.79 for two 180g fillets)
1 tbspn unsalted butter
4 thick salmon steaks, skin on
To taste salt flakes
1 tbspn Extra Virgin Olive Oil
4 wedges lemon

Frozen pea salsa
1 1/2 cup frozen peas
15g unsalted butter
2 tspn Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 golden shallots peeled and chopped
3/4 cup Chicken Stock
1 sprig chervil
1 tbspn lemon juice
To taste salt flakes

Method

For The Frozen Pea Salsa:
  1. Spread peas on a tray to thaw for 10 minutes.
  2. Place a large frying pan over medium heat, add the butter and melt with the Extra Virgin Olive Oil. Add the chopped shallots and sauté until soft.
  3. In another small sauce pan, bring the Chicken Stock to the boil.
  4. Add the peas to the shallots along with chervil and lemon juice.
  5. Pour the hot Chicken Stock over the peas and quickly bring up to the boil again, then remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly.
  6. Pour the pea mixture into a blender or mouli and process until fine. Taste for seasoning and adjust if necessary.

For The Salmon:
  1. Heat a large frying pan over a moderate heat with half the butter.
  2. Season the salmon on the skin side with sea salt.
  3. Once the pan is hot, add a dash of Extra Virgin Olive Oil and place the salmon steaks skin side down in the pan. Cook for about 2 minutes or until the skin is crisp. Putting the salmon aside, quickly wipe out the pan with a paper towel.
  4. Return salmon to pan, add the remaining butter and return to heat.
  5. Once melted, turn the steaks over with tongs and almost immediately take the pan off the heat and allow to sit in the hot pan. The centre of the fish should be a little rare.
  6. To serve, pile a layer of salsa on to a plate and place the fish on top. Squeeze a wedge of lemon over each piece of salmon, sprinkle the herbs on top and dress with a drizzle of Extra Virgin Olive Oil.

Aussie Farmers Direct brings back Fish on Fridays

Aussie Farmers Direct is working to put more 'good' back into Good Friday by offering Australians ten good reasons to eat seafood on Good Friday...or any Friday!  Traditionally, seafood was consumed on Good Friday in place of other meat. Though over the years this seems to have fallen by the wayside. Fish and other seafood are highly beneficial to our health, so perhaps it’s time to revisit the tradition and bring back fish on Fridays. 

Essentially, here's why we should bring back fish on Friday:
  • Low in unhealthy saturated fat and high in protein
  • High in Omega-3 fatty acids which are great for heart health
  • Prevents inflammation and reduces the risk of conditions like arthritis
  • Assists in proper foetal growth and development during pregnancy
  • Associated with positive brain health
  • High in iron and vitamin B12
  • It's easy to prepare and cost effective
  • And most importantly, it's deliciously versatile!

Aussie Farmers Direct has launched a new range of Australian seafood including Natural Calamari, a Half Side of Huon Salmon, Honey Soy Flathead Fillets, crumbed White Fish and Lemon Myrtle Blue Grenadier Fillets, which will soon join Aussie Farmers Direct’s existing range of Aussie prawns, salmon and barramundi. 

This Easter, Aussie Farmers Direct will be delivering a range of freshly caught seafood including:    
  • Natural Calamari, $7.99 for 300g
  • Half Side of Huon Salmon, $19.99 for 500g
  • Honey Soy Flathead Fillets, $14.99 for 300g
  • Crumbed White Fish, $8.99 for 250g
  • Lemon Myrtle Blue Grenadier Fillets, $8.99 for 300g
  • Salmon Fillets, RRP $13.79 for two 180g fillets
  • Barramundi Fillets, RRP $12.99 for two 180g fillets
  • Smoked Salmon, RRP $6.69 for 100
  • Plain Unmarinated Prawns, RRP $10.99 for 300g

To enjoy a wholly Australian Easter this year, visit AussieFarmers.com.au 

Restaurant Review: Pure South

Gastrology bloggers dined courtesy of Pure South during our Good Food Month visit.
Location: Shop 2/3 Southgate Avenue, Southbank
Phone: 03 9699 4600
Cuisine: Modern Australian, Steakhouse, Seafood
Overall Impression: 9/10
Pure South is a restaurant that offers exceptional modern Australian cuisine to the Melbourne dining scene. The restaurant serves superbly fresh produce, all sourced directly from Tasmania, King Island and Flinders Island.
With Head Chef Ashley Davis heading the kitchen, it is no wonder the food is amazing. Having spent the last decade manning the kitchens of Michelin star restaurants in the UK, Ashley Davis brings a world of culinary expertise and love of Tasmanian produce to his role as head chef at Pure South.
We began our meal with beautifully fresh oysters.  
Both our mains were delicious - showcasing premium ingredients; each perfectly executed with expertly balanced flavour combinations. 
 The premium nature of our Pure South meal was reinforced at its conclusion with delicious desserts.
Our dessert of bay leaf panna cotta, strawberries, strawberry sorbet was of particular note. The panna cotta was a well-executed and enjoyable dessert that was notable for the fresh and sweet fruits and its flawlessly smooth and creamy texture.
Pure South's exceptional menu of fresh and flavoursome cuisine will take you on a culinary journey across the southern islands which will leave you wanting more.

Pure South Restaurant & Bar on Urbanspoon

Tasting plates at Southgate: Tutto Bene | Waterfront

As part of the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival, we were invited to discover a couple of delicious tasting dishes at Southgate’s participating restaurants, inspired by the festival theme of water.
Tutto Bene
Location: Shop M28 Southgate Plaza, Southbank
Phone: 03 9696 3334
Cuisine: Italian

“Tutto Bene” is an Italian phrase that translates literally to “everything’s good”. Our previous visits to Tutto Bene suggest that it is a highly appropriate name - one which evokes memories of the warm familial atmosphere, of the consistent excellence of its cuisine and, inevitably, of their revered risotto.
As part of the Southgate Fiesta, Tutto Bene served up their interpretation of Acqua Pazza. Meaning ‘crazy water’, this dish originated from fishermen of the Neapolitan area, who would sauté their catch of the day in seawater together with tomatoes and extra virgin olive oil. 
Tutto Bene’s version of Acqua Pazza was stunning. Living up to its picturesque presentation, each element of the dish was perfectly cooked and absolutely delicious – the seafood tasted fresh and the light, fragrant broth had a lovely depth of flavour. 
Acqua Pazza - a selection of seafood poached in a lightly herbed broth.

As always, our meal at Tutto Bene was of excellent quality. With a commitment to sourcing organic and biodynamic fresh produce and wine and brilliant execution, Tutto Bene showcases traditional Italian cuisine with stunning views of Melbourne’s skyline. 
Tutto Bene on Urbanspoon


Waterfront
Location: 3 Southgate Avenue, Southbank
Phone: 03 9686 9766
Cuisine: Seafood, Modern Australian
The latest restaurant to have opened at Southgate, Waterfront, is a restaurant with a fantastic ambiance located on the ground level opening to the river promenade.
Waterfront’s four tastes of the sea

As part of the Southgate Fiesta, Waterfront served up a tasting plate consisting of Pacific Oysters from Coffin Bay SA, tempura Queensland tiger prawns with romasco mayonnaise, sashimi salad and a seafood chowder. The seafood chowder was well-made and the seafood was very fresh.
Waterfront is a restaurant which focuses on the fresh 'from the sea' and 'from the farm' to the plate philosophy.
Waterfront on Urbanspoon

Find out more about what's happening at Southgate here!
Gastrology bloggers dined courtesy of Tutto Bene and Waterfront.

Restaurant Review: Spirit of India

Location: 401 Clarendon Street, South Melbourne
Phone: 03 9682 6696
Link: http://www.spiritofindiamelbourne.com/
Cuisine: Indian, Vegetarian
Overall Impression: 5/10

Spirit of India is a reliable eatery with a vast dining area and friendly wait staff.

The food served is of an average standard and quality although their beef vindaloo is a particular stand out. If you’re looking to take-away we recommend calling in advance as there is usually a 30-40 minute wait on take-away items.

Spirit of India on Urbanspoon

Oyster Frenzy #7 @ Albert Park Hotel

Location: 83 Dundas Pace, Albert Park
Phone: 03 9690 5459
Link: http://www.thealbertpark.com.au/
Cuisine: Pub/Bar Food, Seafood, International
Gastrology bloggers joined Melbourne’s seafood enthusiasts at the Albert Park Hotel last Thursday to pay homage to Australia’s wonderful oysters in all of their briny glory at Oyster Frenzy #7.

Upon arrival, the mood was set by a glass of Laurent Perrier champagne provided to every guest. 
The Albert Park Hotel provided the perfect setting for this spectacularly indulgent, all you can eat celebration of the freshest mouth-watering molluscs from some of the best regions in Australia. 
Whilst every guest was there to slurp the freshly-shucked oysters, the event also showcased some of the finest and freshest produce the Albert Park Hotel has to offer. The seafood canapés were beautiful and complemented the oysters wonderfully. 
It was certainly a brilliant celebration of everything seafood. There was also a pop-up Cider Stall and James Squire Craft Beer Bar. 
The final number of oysters eaten on the night was a staggering 11,720! 

Get in before the frenzy's over! 

If you missed Oyster Frenzy this time, hope is not lost! The FINAL Oyster Frenzy at Albert Park Hotel is on Thursday the 22nd of August. Tickets cost $75 and include UNLIMITED oysters, Laurent Perrier on arrival, seafood canapés, unlimited Jansz wine and boutique beer. 

  Oyster Bar & Grill on Urbanspoon

Images courtesy of Anthony Licuria of APL Photography.
Gastrology bloggers dined courtesy of Albert Park Hotel. 

Restaurant Review: Sails on the bay

Location: 15 Elwood Foreshore, Elwood
Phone: 03 9525 6933
Link: http://www.sailsonthebay.com.au/ 
Cuisine: Seafood, Modern Australian
Overall Impression: 8/10
Sails on the bay is quite the function venue. Mere minutes from Melbourne CBD, the venue is situated upon beautiful Elwood beach and Foreshore Reserve. 

Ravioli of blue eye, crab and ginger, wakame, lemongrass and mirin
Crispy pork belly, sweet potato mash, baby spinach, caramelised soy and ginger dressing 
Mustard and herb crusted sirloin of beef (med-rare), red wine sauce and boulangere potatoes
Grilled Snapper fillet, shiitake and ginger soy broth, bok choy and green beans, crushed potato with soft herbs
Baked lemon tart, fruit compote and cream

The food served at the function was of a great standard. Each dish was executed very well and the service was faultless.
J and I were at Sails on the bay recently and enjoyed how the large glass walls allowed us to bask in the beautiful summer sunset. 

Sails on the bay is certainly one of the best function venues we’ve experienced in a long time!

Sails On The Bay on Urbanspoon