Disclosure: I attended courtesy of Storm in a Teacup and Zilla & Brook.
The story goes that the origins of tea began about 4,700 years ago. It’s said that Chinese Emperor Shennong was drinking a bowl of boiled water when some leaves from a nearby wild tea tree fell in.
What would you do if leaves fell into your cup of water? Would you go ahead it and drink it? Emperor Shennong must’ve either been a very brave or very curious man.
Whether it’s true or not, it’s a cute story. And even if that particular story is just a myth, tea does have a long and complex history. And at Storm in a Teacup, a small tea bar in Collingwood, you can try some of the results of this history.
Disclosure: I attended courtesy of Bursaria and Zilla & Brook.
I seem to be going to a few afternoon teas lately – and I am certainly not complaining! It’s such a lovely thing to do – sip tea or coffee while nibbling little morsels of food. I love it.
One of the ones I attended lately was by Bursaria at the Abbotsford Convent. Bursaria are holding a series of high teas on the third Sunday of each month (until September) in the Rosina function space for $55 per person.
Masak Masak is a newish Malaysian eatery in Collingwood. They describe their food as “Malaysian hawker food with a twist”.
Hazzie suggested it as a dinner outing, and since I never say no to dinner out, along I trotted with Shellie and Daisy and Mr B. Huzzah. I like going to these types of places with a decent amount of people because it means getting to try more stuff.
Proud Mary has been around for a while, and from the beginning it’s been hot.
And on a particularly hot Friday temperature wise, I was there for breakfast with my friend Em (Random Friday Off Work – huzzah). It was our second attempt for Random Friday Off Work breakfast there – our first attempt was derailed by Em’s toddler being sick and having to tag along. Proud Mary was a bit too busy for a little kidlet with lots of energy, so we headed somewhere a bit quieter.
I keep mine very quiet, but when it comes to someone else’s… I’m that annoying person who goes around telling EVERYONE that someone’s birthday is coming up (tick), or who’ll bake a cake and make everyone sing happy birthday (tick), or even decorate someone’s desk with a massive Happy Birthday banner and balloons (tick).
Bro’s birthday was earlier this month, and apparently his gf likes birthdays too, because she did so many amazing things to celebrate. He was whisked away on a surprise weekend to Sydney, there was a birthday dinner, a birthday party AND an epic hamburger cake. Talk about spoilt!
On his actual birthday, Bro’s gf booked dinner at Gorski and Jones, on Smith Street in Collingwood. They open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, in a rather industrial, funky looking, bare bricked room that is unfortunately (for food photography anyway) rather dark in the evening.
Bro and I had been speaking about checking out Gasometer for a while. Located in Collingwood, they’re a pub that serves American style diner food. Bro loves American food, and I’m a food enabler, so ever we found out Gasometer serves chicken and waffles, it has been on our “to visit” list.
It was my birthday on Tuesday (thank you thank you) and I wanted to go somewhere casual and not too pricey. So I figured we may as well cross Gasometer off the list.
About a billion years ago – or a few months, depending on how much you like hyberbole – we had dinner on Smith Street with Maria and Daz.
Dinner was okay, but wasn’t quite satisfying enough for us to want to eat dessert there. So when Maria suggested we head to Charcoal Lane for dessert, we packed up and headed down.
When there, the boys selected individual desserts (priced at $16-$17) while Maria and I decided to share the dessert platter for two ($34)
Let me tell you – if you’re ordering dessert and there’s two of you – order the dessert platter. Because we basically received three full sized desserts in all AND we got to try all the sweet desserts (there was also a cheese option that wasn’t on the platter). Win win! (more…)
In May, Provenance in Collingwood held one of their semi-regular seasonal produce events. The latest was an autumn degustation to celebrate local pears, held over three evenings, with 7 courses for $75 and matched wines for an additional $22. Alastair and I rounded up Dany for a peary peariffic evening.
The first course was a Gorgonzola dolce pannacotta with salt pear coulis and crispy prosciutto. Interestingly, the panna cotta was fizzy on the tongue, which was a bit distracting. Apart from the fizziness, it was rich and creamy and sharp with the Gorgonzola, which I really enjoyed with the sweet pear coulis.
Next up was a pear tarte tatin with parmesan crisp, watercress, and rocket pesto. This was a gorgeous little tart – good flakey, buttery pastry and sweet pear. While the pear was sweet it wasn’t a dessert dish and managed to find that balance. The rocket pesto was a tad too bitter for my tastes, so I left most of it.
After the tarte tatin, we received a whole quail that had been partially boned, with a pear and pecan farce on cavalo nero and jus gras. This was the best savoury course of the evening. Thankfully the quail had been partially boned, so it was tender and easy to eat. The pear and pecan stuffing was great and the cavalo nero helped cut through the richness of the meat and jus.
This was a pear and Roquefort millefeuille with walnuts. Instead of pastry layers, slices of crunchy pear were used, with dabs of Roquefort in between and a bit of lemon zest on top. This was fantastic, and yet so simple.
The final savoury course was described as a partridge in a pear tree. On the plate was partridge breast that had been braised in pear cider, served with pear confit, and a few pear and ginger tortellini. The partridge wasn’t quite as nice as the quail, and the pear was strangely salty. I quite liked the pear and ginger tortellini.
The first of the desserts was a caramel pear pudding with double cream. This was a wonderful dessert, perfect for winter and cold nights and deserved to be eaten while sitting by a fire. Gorgeous! It was a real comfort pudding – soft, cinnamony goodness in a cup.
And finally, our last course and second dessert was coffee assiette – espresso poached pear, a rich, dark chocolate espresso mousse, and “pear-fogato” (ahh, we love a pun in this house. Sad but true.).
The espresso poached pear was decorated to look like a Xmas pudding, with the white chocolate and fried mint leaf on top – ahh so cute! It was a bit hard to eat with a spoon though as the white chocolate was very hard to break. And the espresso for the pear-fogato was REALLY strong. I wish I hadn’t poured it over the ice cream and just eaten the ice cream plain.
We had a great time, although at four hours it was a long night. The timing at the beginning seemed a bit slow, but thankfully things picked up at the end.