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Quay

Quay

Quay is the first to be named restaurant of the year twice in the same year – first by the Australian Gourmet Traveller 2009 Restaurant Guide and then by the 2009 Sydney Morning herald Good Food Guide.

Quay is set in one of the most beautiful spots in Sydney. Located at the end of Sydney’s International Terminal, the Harbour Bridge and the Opera House provide backdrops on either sides.

Chef Peter Gilmore has introduced a set price four course degustation. Each course offers four or five dishes to choose from, essentially allowing the diner to design their own degustation.

Edible flowers and baby vegetables – a mix of pink and white radishes, turnips paired with tiny spring onions, native violets have been grown for quay alone . It tastes just as good as it looks.

Amuse Bouche

Starters : Jellied consomme of smoked salmon topped with salmon roe and creme fraiche.

Sea Pearls

First Course : Sea Pearls, French aquaculture caviar, sea scallop, smoked eel, octopus, sashimi tuna, abalone, pearl meat ( $25 supplement)

Sashimi

First Course : Sashimi of Blue Fin toro, Spanish mackerel, Yellow fin loin, Hiramasa kingfish, horseradish cream, baby radish, green almonds, white tea and seaweed jelly

Southern Rock Lobster

Second Course : Gently poached Southern rock lobster, lobster and tapioca dumpling, lobster velvet, almond cream ( $25 supplement )

Confit of shaved Australian squid

Confit of shaved Australian squid

Second Course : Confit of shaved South Australian squid, octopus coral, garlic custard, baby radishes, native violets, roasted squid consomme

Two kinds of duck with abalone

Third Course : Two kinds of duck with abalone. Look how small the baby turnips are!!!

Slow-braised lamb

Third Course : Eight hours of slow braised milk fed Suffolk lamb, baby carrots, Arbequina olives, nasturtiums, capers, calendula, sheeps milk fromage, coriander flowers

Snow Egg

Dessert : White peach snow egg – Fine shards of white peach granita served atop creamy vanilla ice cream while nestled at the peak is the ‘snow egg’ – a ball of white peach ice cream wrapped in fluffy meringue, coated in toffee then dusted with icing sugar.

 Eight texture chocolate cake

Dessert : Eight texture chocolate cake, featuring Amedi ‘Chuao’ chocolate

Petit Fours

Petits Fours – The little chocolate cylinders filled with caramel cream are amazing and can top anything on the menu. It’s an exaggeration I know, but it’s that good.

Quay at night

4 Course Menu $145

Summary : Quay has spectacular views and great food. It’s inspired modern Australian food which is exciting but not overdone to the point of being trendy. The uniqueness of the self-grown produce is an added bonus as it added a dimension of adventure and discovery to the dishes.

Subtle flavours and texture were heavenly and stood out in the dishes. The slow braised lamb was unlike anything we’ve had. The duck was cooked to perfection. Crisp on the outside and melt in your on the inside. The white peach snow egg was heavenly. Each layer of the dessert a new sensation in the mouth. A very elegant dessert.

Post dinner analysis would have us say the dinner was good but…  There were times when the muted flavours, overall lightness and restraint of the dishes were not what we wanted but it’s probably a matter of personal preference. Quay is a restaurant where subtleness and restraint of flavours reign supreme. Visit with an open mind and enjoy.

Quay
Overseas Passenger Terminal
The Rocks, Sydney 2000
Tel :   61 2 9251 5600  
www.quay.com.au

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I’ve read so many great reviews about C’ Italian that I just had to try the place during my Pampanga trip.

The place itself is located along the restaurant row of Fields Avenue.

C' Italian Bread

C' Italian Bread

They served complimentary bread with pesto in olive oil for dipping.

Panizza Kristina

Panizza Kristina

We ordered the Panizza Kristina – Bacon and Ham, caramelized onions and mushrooms Php 570. Panizza is a thin crust pizza-like dish rolled and eaten with arugula. The panizza is a house favorite.  A very thin crust with good quality ingredients for the topping. But I guess I had really high expectations for the panizza since everyone was raving about it. It was good but I actually liked the chicken more.

Tuscan style chicken

Tuscan style chicken

The wood fire roasted whole tuscan style chicken infused with lemon white wine and virgin olive oil served on onion, roasted potatoes and garlic roated italian broccoli Php 750 was a very good. The chicken was moist and succulent. It had marinated well and the flavors had infused into the chicken. I would highly recommend this dish.

Tiramisu

Tiramisu

The tiramisu wasn’t that great. More of a sponge cake with cream filling and wasn’t authentic at all.

Summary : I would come back. The panizza was good and the chicken superb. I would definitely look forward to trying out more of the dishes from the menu.

Rating : Like It

Food   : Tuscan Style Chicken

C’ Italian

Fields Avenue, Pampanga

http://www.citaliandining.com

Bagoong Club

Bagoong Club

Bagoong or shrimp paste is made from tiny fermented shrimps. Flavour is then added by sauteing the shrimp paste with various condiments. Bagoong is very much part of Filipino cooking and well loved by Filipinos.
Traditional Bagoong with Singkamas

Traditional Bagoong with Singkamas

Bagong Lipunan – Traditional Bagoong with Singkamas is served instead of the usual complimentary bread.

 

Bulalo sa Monggo

Bulalo sa Monggo

Bulalo sa Mongo Php 250 – The beef broth mixed well with the flavor of the monggo. Really really good soup. Must order this dish.

Crispy Pork Binagoongan

Crispy Pork Binagoongan

Crispy Pork Binagoongan Php 220 – The pork was very tender and crispy on the outside.
Bagoong Varieties

Bagoong Varieties

Bagoong Umaga Php15, Bagoong Club Special ( has crab fat ) Php 15, Bagoong Europa Php 25 – For a restaurant named Bagoong club, the bagoong itself wasn’t anything special. They lacked flavours which comes from sauteing shrimp paste with various spices. The bagoong Europa was an interesting variation though since it mixed shrimp paste with pesto.

Pastillas de Leche Cheesecake

Pastillas de Leche Cheesecake

Pastillas de Leche Cheesecake Php 130 by Chef Pixie Sevilla-Santos – It’s like having pastillas in a cake form with a nice biscuit bottom layer.

Rating    : Like It
Food       : Bulalong Monggo

Summary : A very nice concept with a lot of food served using bagoong. The bagoong itself isn’t outstanding but the food is cooked well. Prices are also affordable. A refreshing alternative to the normal Pinoy grill restaurants in the QC area.

Bagoong Club
122 Sct Dr. Lazcano Sacred Heart
Quezon City
Phone : 632 9290544

North Richmond is the ‘Little Saigon’ of Melbourne. You know you’re in North Richmond when you see Vietnamese words on all the signboards hanging. There’s also asian bakeries and groceries after every few shops. People visit this side of town for the cheap and satisfying bowls of pho and spring rolls from any of the rows of Vietnamese restaurants lining the road  down Victoria street with names like Tho Tho, Thy Thy and Minh Minh.

Thanh Ha is one of the more popular Vietnamese restaurants in the area. How do we know that? There’s Thanh Ha and Thanh Ha 2 a block away from each other and both are packed. We’re talking about laminated tables, large food pictures and food menus pasted on the wall here. Food is cheap, hearty and good. The menu is quite extensive and aside from the standard pho and rice rolls, try out something from the specialty part of the menu.

 Rice Paper Roll
The Rice Paper Roll with pork and shrimp  $8.50 are made with the freshest ingredients. Large prawns and fillings which show the rolls bursting at the seams.

 Vietnamese Pancake
Thanh Ha is popular for their vietnamese pancakes ($13). It’s wafer thin, crispy and stuffed with beansprouts, meat and prawns. It comes with a plate of lettuce and mint leaves, with a small bowl of chilli dressing. You basically tear off a bit of the pancake, some mint, wrap it in the lettuce with dressing and take bites from it. Almost all the tables have a plate of this pancake which amusingly is larger than the plate it comes in!

  Tomato Rice with Crispy Chicken
Tomato Rice with Crispy Chicken Aud 9.50

Summary : Food is cheap and authentic. Surprisingly, vietnamese food I’ve tried in Australia are much better than what I had in Vietnam. A lot comes from using fresh and quality ingredients on the food.

Rating : Like It
Food   : Vietnamese pancakes

Thanh Ha
172 Victoria St
Richmond 3121 VIC
Phone :  (03) 9429 8130      

I’ve lived in Sydney for two years and love the city dearly. This time, I would be staying for awhile in Melbourne and though it does not have the famed harbour and opera house which greets me everytime the plane comes in to land, I’m sure Melbourne would have it’s own charms. Melbourne is renowned for its food and shopping and I am looking forward to exploring her nooks and crannies.

 Melbourne early morning
Melbourne city early morning.

Yarra River 
Yarra river – looks so charming and peaceful. This is actually in the city.

 Melbourne trams
Melbourne’s famed trams – the new solar-powered ones

 Melbourne at dusk
Melbourne at dusk

 Melbourne trams
The leaves have nearly all fallen, it’s officially winter now.

Charcoal Roasted Coffee 

This charming coffee shop is found in the center of the Tiendesitas food village. I enjoy dropping by this place whenever I’m in Tiendesitas ( for dog stuff =) ) to have a cup of local coffee and a snack.

The shop sells four types of brews – Kalinga, Tagaytay, Malay Balay and Kanlaon. I always go for the strongest brew, Kalinga. It’s a good cup to enjoy with a pick of their homemade snacks.

                     CRC Cookies 

CRC cupcakes CRC Croissant

               CRC Ensaymada

My perfect Tiendesitas snack. Ensaymada with Guava jam and Cream Cheese Php50 with Kalinga coffee Php50.

Summary : Charcoal Roasted Coffee is a welcome sight in Tiendesitas among the row of inihaw kiosks which offer the same kind of food. They serve local coffee beans and enjoying a cup of their brew also help support the local Philippine coffee industry.

Food   : Local coffee and Ensaymada with Guava jam =D
Rating :  Like It

Charcoal Roasted Coffee
Tiendesitas Food Village

This Vigan Empanada shop can be found in Tiendesitas. They also have a branch in MOA.

Vigan Empanada wrapper is made from rice flour mixed with atchuete to give it a little color. The filling is made of mixed veggies ( green papaya, monggo), longganisa and a piece of fresh egg right in the center of everything.

 Empanada making

The manangs were quite efficient with the first manang kneading the dough and the second manang spponing the filling on the dough and shaping it into an empanada.

 Empanada making

The empanada piece is dropped into the oil to deep-fry and…

 Vigan Empanada
Voila, Vigan Empanada. I had broken this piece into half. Goes really really well with native vinegar. I piled up on the chilli.

Rating : Like It

Vigan Empanada by Mac’s Deli
Tiendesitas Food Village
Tel : 6342893 / 6353152
Another branch at SM Moa

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