Somewhere over the river

[Ray’s Cafe, 332 Victoria street Brunswick 3056]

Well hellooooo!,

You’re probably wondering who the hell this is??!!! yes, its been way to long, and I’m just about ready to burst at my seams with breakfasty goodness. My apologies for my extreme case of “cbf”…

This second part of 2011 seems to have been a slippery little sucker and time has got the better of me.

However!!!, I shall break that cycle today whilst I “break my fast”… (wow, I am in Dad joke mood!) 😉

So!, shall we?

Let me introduce you to Ray’s cafe:

[image below is from: http://www.yourrestaurants.com.au/guide/?action=venue&venue_url=ray]source: http://www.yourrestaurants.com.au/guide/?action=venue&venue_url=ray

You could probably tell from my very “south of the river focus” blog entries that I reside on the south of the River – that being the Yarra River for those of you playing along across the states or oceans. And yes, I know all the culinary excitement is all very much happening in the Brunswick/Fitzroy neck of the woods, however by the time I get ready and get over to the “other side”, I’m so ravenously hungry I could’ve eaten my arm! (so to speak)

So, about 450 odd days ago (not kidding, apparently its been about that long since I wrote anything!!!), I ventured out far and beyond to the lands across the river to test how long I can travel for without breakfast. I’m not going to lie, I had a mini meal before I left incase I turned into some sort of monster on PT.

[image below is from: http://www.yourrestaurants.com.au/guide/?action=venue&venue_url=ray]source: http://www.yourrestaurants.com.au/guide/?action=venue&venue_url=ray

I had the French Toast w/ sweet Labna and maple syrup.

The service was lovely and friendly, well presented, and great price… however it just wasn’t amazing. In hindsight, it would have been great to have some sort of compote or fresh strawberries, even orange and cinnamon to play with on this dish.

Mr “All sorts of lovely” had Poached eggs (perfect) on toast with capsicum and dukkah playmates. This is really what I should’ve orderd – hello food envy! lol!

It was fresh, balanced and owners of two very perfect poached eggs!

As Ray’s source their produce from local middle eastern suppliers, every dish had a unique middle eastern flavour that only a cafe off Sydney road could have.

Ray’s cafe offered great value for money and is tucked away off the buzzing Sydney road in Brunswick.

It however failed to completely excite me based on my dish alone, and with that I can only conclude will have to try it again 🙂

Hope you’ve been good to your taste buds and tummies, and stay tuned for the next update of “My life as a food junkie” lol! 😀

. . .

Tastefully yours,

Ray's Cafe on Urbanspoon

Third time’s a charm

[St Edmonds, 154 Greville Street Prahran]


Just over a month ago I finally got to try some of St Edmond’s finest breakfast offerings, however I’m not going to lie… I did have a few sneaky peaks prior to this visit….

My first cheeky visit was a very chilli Wednesday eve for German “class” with my beautiful tutor (which reminds me to book in for another sesh soon!) & I was pleasantly surprised with the lack of “hustle and bustle” that goes part ‘n’ parcel with “newest kid in town”

On that occasion, I had the Calamari, and it was delicious! (but not enough) I had thought THEN the portions were quite small for this “working mans all day eatery”

Even the second little visit I had before the big “breaky date with the fellas” was a little (very teeny) disappointing… not as bad as going to SAT2, but it was still a very teeny let down.

The foundations were there though:

a) Great buzz in and out of the eatery.
b) Adorable staff that are well-informed with the menu and the design (a la Scanlan and Theodore, Projects of Imagination)
c) Pretty excellent atmosphere and design (They were playing they very beautiful self titled Bon Iver and that made everything dissolve away into a buttery dream…)

*In case things got a bit heated during your breakfasting…. 😉

 

Third times a charm as they say, and it was surely a charm…

Breakfast was with the “fellas” and it was a feeding frenzy on/off chapel street that morning!! We had just missed the ravenous queue that we successfully ignored as we feasted, none of us were willing to sacrifice a “slow breaky” experience for that fast crowd.. sorry!

Mr “wrapped to be back” and I ordered “Spanner Crab, Chilli omelette and Sesame crumble”:

It was delicious and crisp like a fresh winter’s morning:

Mr “I eat for two, but don’t look it” ordered the big breakfast with a perfectly poached pair of eggs:

Mr “good, thanks” ordered the scrambled egg and bacon (in a very teeny teeny) roll:

Someone once described Melbs to be like one big “small-town”… and I’d have to agree – I was discussing the very ups and some downs of St. Edmonds, and it wasn’t until I had spilled my guts to a particular waiter at my local lunching hole (aka urbanspoon’s “worst server ever” haha!! :)) he decided to advise of his connection to the all day eatery *insert embarrassment here*

Bother dinners were lovely, but not amazing…
Price vs Portion vs wait time was a little imbalanced, however not worth disregarding a repeat visit for.

Breakfast with the boys was a very excellent combination of Great food/friends/vibe.

The food was fast and delicious much like the waiting staff 😉

Don’t let my inconsistent experience deter you from trying the cutest little hangout south of the river. Much like any great eatery, the menu is ever evolving and they are amongst a handful of “new kids in town” so give ’em a chance and hit it up next time you’re in the Prahran area!! 🙂

Tastefully yours,

St Edmonds on Urbanspoon

D) All of the above

. . .

[St Kilda Pelican, 16 Fitzroy Street St Kilda, Melbourne]

Food envy for me is part and parcel of my dining experience, that’s why I love when its tapas style – “mi casa es tu casa” (so to speak) & I’ve been to Pelican on numerous occasions, ironically never for breakfast and it’s always been on a warm summers eve getting amongst the warm summer vibe…

I know, I know, Melbs hardly experiences a TRUE winter (we’re currently sitting on 12.5 degrees….however, I AM COLD! …How did I ever survive a German winter…?

In this instance, I once again pretended it was summer and we sat outside… rookie error! Who can concentrate on pretending its summer, sipping a pretty summer drink when its freezing??

So we migrated to the cosy comforts of the indoors, surrounded by the aromas of the kitchen and the light hum of the conversation, normally quite busy – it was intimately quiet. 🙂

As I was too preoccupied trying to get my gear off at pretty much every mouthful and every drop of wine, this unfortunately hasn’t been properly visually documented.

However, I do have a little mish mash of photos from previous visits….(excuse the bad lighting and flashless phone camera)

Arancini balls lying on a bed of “heart attack” 🙂

(Fcking delicious)Moroccan lamb meatballs in sauce with yoghurt:

Char-grilled Calamari with a side of rocket drizzled with “delicious”

The one thing I couldn’t help but document was the dessert.

My English teacher taught me once that DESERT (as in “Bear Grylls stuck in the middle of a…”) has one “s”, and the other-DESSERT (the sweet delicious kind) has 2 “s” because you want more.

Fair enough.

And boy did I want more! We in fact went for an option called “All of the above” – I thought it was a joke, and cross my heart (Burz, this is for you beb) this was no joke!.

Please see below for “how I got diabetes”: (clockwise)

1) Creme Brulee with short bread (O.MY……..sweeeet Jesus, Mary and Joseph…..)
2) Minted lamington (hmmm, could’ve gone without)
3) Peanut brittle ice-cream (I went to the bathroom, and came back to find it mysteriously gone….so the verdict is good 🙂 )
4) Rich chocolate mousse cake (heavens above!!)
5) White chocolate Rocky Road with pistachio (mmmmmm)

Excuse the commentary, but seriously?? What in the world of decadent, moorish heaven was that??

I suppose “all of the above” options eliminates any chance of “food-envy”, it did however leave me in a severe sugar/life high.

(Pinky promise, my next Pelican visit will involve breakfast :))

. . .

Tastefully yours,

Pelican on Urbanspoon

Satisfy the “bodhi”, mind and soul.

. . .

[Monk Bodhi Dharma, Rear 202 Carlisle Street, Balaclava]

Open: Mon-Fri, 6.30am-4pm; Sat-Sun, 8am-4pm

I’m not vegetarian, but don’t really eat that much meat (unless of course its JamĂłn ibĂ©rico, then its all a bit of “excuse me while I undress”) and Vegan? I doubt I could ever go there as I get my “bake on” way too often, and you have to agree almost everything that makes you go “mmmmm” has butter in it. (mmm butter…I’m really a heart attack just waiting to happen)

However, I will be honest say that and didn’t even notice Monk was a culinary heaven sensation for vegans anonymous. (what a mouthful, could’ve just gone with “vegan cafe”)

I often find Vegetarian/Vegan food and menus to feel like they are “missing” a key ingredient (derr, obviously), however on this day my eyes feasted, and my tummy left feeling loved, nourished and super satisfied. (yes, SUPER satisfied :))

Good deed for the day? *tick*

Juxtaposed on this beautiful day for breakfast lovers was my “newest cafe find”coupled with my oldest friend in the world!

I met this man when we were children – I was 5, he was 6, and it was lovely to see him again. It’s always surreal to reminisce about yesterday, be in the moment for today and ponder about tomorrow with someone who knew you a lifetime ago.

Lots had changed, and change is a beautiful element of life. Nothing is permanent, and we are ever evolving.

For instance, when I was 5, I hardly spoke any English and articulating my thoughts into words was a challenge… (I still find it difficult to say EXACTLY whats on my mind…pictures help :))

Today, I write this without much thought as to the words on this electronic page, but to the story I wish portray…(yes I waffle on a bit)

So…on to the main attraction, the food and coffee? Here goes:

No ridiculous latte art, just a beautiful creamy latte made with love:

Yucatan “peasant” beans, toasted carbs and vibrant Chilli jam that kicks a punch:

This deceivingly petite dish is a reminder not to judge a breakfast by its portions. It was very filling, and satisfying, and you have to say the colours were delicious!

Marlo sweetcorn ricotta hotcakes:

These were perfect balance of flavours, and were visually exciting too-I’m one to eat with my eyes first, and little Mr Marlo Sweetcorn here was easy on the eye ;).

Some cafes are great, but there is no urge to work your way through the menu from start to finish. And some – like Monk, are a real treat and keeps you coming back to try new dishes and/or relish in your “sunday favourite”.

Breakfast lovers beware, it is a little hard to find (in an alley, behind a carpark….very Melbourne) But I assure you, whether you are Vego/Vegan or not, you will enjoy every minute of this beautiful little hideout and will leave having satisfied your “bodhi”, mind and soul…

Tastefully yours,

Light reading:

About the Monk “Bodhi Dharma”: click here
Broadsheet review: Click here
Age review: Click here

Monk Bodhi Dharma on Urbanspoon

TWEET-a-licious!

. . .

[Yellow Bird, 122 Chapel Street Windsor]

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There is just SO MUCH variety and choice on Chapel street and any time of the day for any of your food related needs!

Yellow bird exites me!! – birds do not!
I have an odd fear of birds, or rather the weird movements they make and the flapping of their wings.

One time, I woke up fresh as a daisy to the odd sound of the “trapped bird in my fireplace” sound.. YES that EXACT sound…. Lets just say it wasn’t one of my finest moments… 🙂

So, this is the shining beacon of scariness that I have to endure whilst breakying it up that day… ONLY for you Jessica Allergory! (and the awesome fritters!!!!)

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Jess ordered a heart shaped love breaky, b/c she is just so in it right now 🙂

Green eggs and ham, yes m’am!

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It was just a BIG plate of lovely – much like Miss Allergory. (you like that Jess???)

I ordered a big FAT plate of F*CKING amazing!

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oh! and take a look at this “poached-poke-ooze”:

sooo good!

Crunchy, flavoursome fritters smothered in avocado and overflowing with delicious egg yoke!. This was also accompanied with a moorish dollop of sour cream and fresh tomato salsa. The combination of the gooey egg, creamy sour cream and nutty avocado married together with the crunchy and moist corn fritter is bloody awesome! The fresh tomato relish/salsa is fresh and is a nice break from the heavy flavours of the Sunday bliss.

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Just posting this entry now is making me crave a nice dose of Yellow bird’s finest….

Totally tweetalicious!! 🙂

. . .

Tastefully yours,

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Yellow Bird Cafe on Urbanspoon

“Poached-poke-ooze” (in that order)

. . .
[Whyte kaffe, 1122 Glen Huntly Road Glenhuntly 3163]

Tel: (03) 9569 2212

Outside we were in the middle of the full throttle Vietnam style torrential pour down! No joke, the weather was psychotic and raining without warning. Actually let me rephrase….. SH*T pouring down without notice.

Inside however, we were warm and toasty and surrounded by the aroma of coffee beans and eggs.

There was the light buzz of conversation, and was surpisingly busy for a friday morning.

Weekday breakies often attract the “ladies of leisure” or young mum types, however today there was a nice healthy mix of ‘cbf going to work on Friday’ folk.

This little cafe is a pretty much the only one of its kind Glenhuntly (that I’m aware of), and one of only a handful in the Carnegie/Ormond/Glenhuntly area.

Daniel ordered the most amazing looking portobello mushies with poached eggs – which was causing some food envy on my part!

Soooo exciting to see the perfection of the “poached-poke-ooze” shiver. Yes, it gives me a thrill to see the oozing golden lava flow over the meal.

Although the presentation was appealing, there is something about seeing Rocket on everything that urks me…. I think I’m pretty bored with the same green everywhere I go….I think I’m craving some ‘pushing of boundaries’ when it comes to leafy greens. (Portulaca would be not only visually playful but a varied addition to the breakfast flavour.)

I ordered corn fritters which originally came with bacon, but thought I might mix it up and alter to come with smoked salmon:

I added the salmon instead of bacon b/c I secretly think I was craving corn fritters from Yellow bird.

What I had failed to foresee was the intense Morrocon infusion of flavour in the fritters….and the Salmon didnt play well with that.
It in fact was really disappointing – but totally my bad. (sad face)

I ordered my usual soy chai, and ate away my troubles. At least I didn’t alter that order, and it was beautiful and creamy and sprinkled with cinnamon love dust!

As a result of my bad first experiene – totally my fault for changing a good menu, I think i’ll need to try it again.

For a “kaffe” trying to be a little different in a very “sameness” area, they were doing a good job, and wouldn’t hesitate going back for a second try.

. . .

Tastefully yours,

Whyte Kaffe Bar on Urbanspoon

Polished it all off.

. . .

[Borsch Vodka and tears, 173 Chapel St Windsor]

tel: (03) 9530 2694

Boasting more than 50 different types of vodka, this Polish Vodka bar and restaurant offers the best of the southside of Chapel street in a perfectly polish themed destination.

Whether you are a vodka fan or not, I’m postive either one of the following will win you over: Vibe, knowledgable friendly staff and amazing food – the kind of food that would give your grandma a run for her money!

We tried some flavoured vodka, some clear vodka and some truly amazing homely food.

Ang ordered “beetroot soup”…. I was dubious about this as I’ve never heard of it before, and couldn’t get the taste of canned beetroot soaking through bread out of my mind.

We were in for a surprise!

First, the colour was amazing and vibrant, and the aroma of the soup was overpoweringly goooood!

Most importantly, the taste was amazing. It was light and full of beetroot flavour, but not in a canned way.

Laura ordered Goulash, which was again amazing…. moorish, and full of flavour.

And I ordered a Polish style gnocci in broth which was also out of this world.

We had polished it all off in true Polish style, and sat back to enjoy the warmth of the food and vodka as we caught up on each-others lives.

(Yes, I have a tendency to add ‘non breakfasty’ type entries… In my defence however, I really think breakfast can be enjoyed many ways including last night’s leftovers or a traditionally ‘lunch type’ food. Breakfast is what you make it. Technically the first meal of the day, and I would be more than happy to enjoy a warm hearty soup some melbourne mornings 🙂 )

. . .

Tastefully yours,

Borsch, Vodka & Tears on Urbanspoon