eating out

Estelle Bar & Kitchen

Many months ago, Alastair and I had lunch at the Estelle with Taz, Haz and Gazman, Kat and Josh plus Ashley. We’re talking middle of winter months ago.

I don’t know why it has taken me so long to write about it.

It wasn’t because we didn’t have a good time – we had fun.

It wasn’t that the food was bad – it was good.

It wasn’t that the service was lacking – the wait staff were friendly and perfectly lovely.

So why has it taken me so long? No idea bear!

But you know what they say about good things taking time. :)

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WTC Wharf Progressive Dinner + a competition

Sponsored by Nuffnang.

Why take a regular taxi to dinner when you can go via water taxi?

You can do that down at WTC Wharf, one of the latest precincts to pop up in Melbourne recently. WTC Wharf is accessible by Siddeley Street, and is located on the riverside of Melbourne’s World Trade Centre.

A bit of work has gone into making the precinct easily accessible: as well as the WTC Water Taxi service there’s also a new footbridge that links it from Spencer Street, around Crowne Plaza.

Several restaurants have opened in the precinct, and I went to check out three of the dining venues as part of a progressive dinner with a small group of other bloggers.

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Replete Providore: corn fritters

Rumour has it that the best corn fritters in Melbourne are from Shellie’s kitchen. This is currently unconfirmed because, despite my non-subtle hints (ie: “When are you making me corn fritters, Shellie?”) I haven’t been able to wrangle an invitation to trial them.

I had heard that Replete Providore in Hawthorn also do rather good corn fritters – apparently ones to rival my current faves at Mart 130. Alastair and I had a day off recently, and took the opportunity to try them out.

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Collins Kitchen, Grand Hyatt: afternoon tea

Note: this is a scheduled post while I’m on holiday. But I’m back really, really soon!

My gorgeous friend Hazzie is getting married this week. :) I’m REALLY sad that I’ll be missing her big day, but I have no doubt that it’ll be all things wonderful.

Before I went away, Shellie roped “the gang” (me, Taz, April and Kat) into a surprise bridal afternoon tea for our dear friend. I lied to Hazzie to get her to the venue by telling her I needed a lunch companion as Alastair was busy. Sneaky alert!

The six of us message each other every day, so it was really difficult to keep quiet about it – I think we only managed to keep it a secret by barely talking to one another leading up to the day.

Shellie did the set up and did an amazing job – she made sugar cookies and even put together show bags for us – check out her post. She had even thought of a hashtag #hazhightea :)

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Fonda Mexican

Note: scheduled post. Still on holiday. Back soon though. Boo!

I’ve heard that Fonda, a Mexican style cantina in Richmond, is always busy, with lines down the street. I don’t spend much time in Richmond, so I can’t confirm whether or not this is true, but with the popularity of Mexican food in Melbourne, I can believe it.

Before we went on holiday, Alastair and I had an early dinner with Hazzie and Gazman. We rocked up at 6pm and were seated straight away – hooray to not lining up. We quickly looked through the menu and ordered at the counter.

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STREAT

Note: this is a scheduled post while I’m away. Replies to comments/emails will be even slower than usual. :)

Streat is great. Here’s four reasons why:

1: Chipotle spiced beans with pork belly. For breakfast.
2: It’s a social enterprise and assists homeless youth with hospitality training.
3: They have a breakfast called Dogs breakfast that has hushpuppies. CUTE.
4: See reason 1 again (it deserves to be noted twice).

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Newmarket Hotel

Note: this is a scheduled post while I’m away. Replies to comments/emails will be even slower than usual. :)

Alastair and I are currently romping around South America – if everything has gone to plan, today we will be on the final leg of the trek to Machu Picchu. Before we left, we had a celebratory-hooray-almost-on-holiday lunch with Maztech and Dazzle at Newmarket Hotel. What better way to celebrate our impending visit to Latin America than a Latin American inspired feast?

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The Strand

While I’m on holiday, I’m taking the opportunity to clear out the posts sitting in my draft folder. This is a scheduled post – I’ll be back soon. :)

Sometimes I get a bit worried about restaurants with a good view. You know the kind I’m talking about: they boast gorgeous views, but serve mediocre food.

When my in-laws Annette and Terry were visiting earlier this year, they booked us a farewell lunch at The Strand in Williamstown, based on a recommendation from one of their friends. The restaurant covers two floors and we were seated on the bottom floor – I’m not sure if they regularly open the top floor or if it’s only a function room. Downstairs at least it’s fairly informal – wooden chairs, bare wooden tables, blackboards on the walls showing specials, and small vases with flowers on each table.

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Middle Park Hotel: Curly Flat wine dinner

Disclosure: Alastair and I attended in exchange for the photos from MPH’s last wine dinner.

Also, this is a scheduled post. Replies to comments/emails will be even slower than usual. :)

In mid-August, Middle Park Hotel held another wine dinner, pairing up with Curly Flat. Curly Flat winery is located in the Macedon Ranges, producing mostly Pinot Noir, some Chardonnay and a little Pinot Gris.

Just like the previous wine dinner, Alastair and I took seats at the bar. I’d had a very busy day at work and my mind was completely and utterly fried – so wine was VERY welcome. To start we were poured a glass of 2011 Curly Flat White Pinot. This was an interesting wine: I found it dry but with a bit of sweetness and fruitness.

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Shed 5

Disclosure: Alastair and I dined courtesy of Shed 5.

So. Fifty Shades of Grey. Unless you’ve just returned from a voyage from Mars (Curiosity!), you know what I’m talking about.

To be honest – I haven’t read it. I don’t have anything against it, I just haven’t read it. So I don’t know whether it’s good / bad / or worth two and a half spankings. However, I think I get the gist of what it’s about. And I love some of the parodies that have popped up (oh… pun so not intended…). One of my favourite parodies happens to be 50 Sheds of Grey, erotic tweets about sheds and other manly things.

Because there’s something about sheds that’s quite, erm, exciting, don’t you think? For example, I went to an exciting shed the other week – Shed 5 – and while it wasn’t exciting in *that* sense, there was definitely a happy ending.

Shed 5 is the latest restaurant addition to the South Wharf precinct, and while it IS in a renovated ex-cargo shed, there was no BDSM or power tools – just rather good food. The food is Greek / Mediterranean influenced, and there’s a wood fired oven behind the bar that gets used for a whole section of the menu.

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