26 April, 2014

D.O.C. Pizza & Mozzarella Bar

My friend and I were only in for a quick bite, but from the moment we set foot into D.O.C. Pizza & Mozzarella Bar, we instantly felt the electrifying energy - from the vibrant buzz of the open-kitchen, the exuberant Italian culture to the smell of fresh pizza wafting through the air. We could not wait for dig in.

Pizza Speck

The pizza was soft, foldable and satisfyingly chewy, whilst the flavours of paper thin smoked prosciutto, woody wild mushrooms, fontina cheese and thyme were all individually spot on. However, when combined, we found it far too salty - just one slice had me downing glasses of water. 

So overall, what did I think of D.O.C. Pizza & Mozzarella Bar ? The pizza was good - I can say that. They keep it simple here - offering a great range of wholesome pizzas topped with quality imported ingredients. Service was effiicient - loud and outrageous in the genuine style that is Italian hospitality. If only I hadn't left so extremely parched from all that accumulated sodium.

D.O.C. Pizza & Mozzarella Bar
295 Drummond Street
Carlton, VIC

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22 April, 2014


Positioned quietly on High Street  lies this lovely little Japanese restaurant, offering locals the fresh and light flavours of Japan. There was no doubt that Matsuri would be the destination for E's birthday dinner - mainly because E has been urging us to try Matsuri, for as long as any of us can remember.

Though a small space, we were presented with a full menu - there was definitely no lack of options here. We let Birthday Girl take full control.

Pork Gyoza

We kicked off with Pork Gyozas - crispy skinned dumplings with a juicy pork and cabbage filling.


The takoyaki octopus balls were a hit - a golden exterior encasing a wonderfully creamy and tasty batter. Lathered in takoyaki sauce and mayo, a sprinkling of aonori and finished with dancing dried bonito, these were demolished in no time.

Agedashi Tofu

Next up was the Agesdashi Tofu - which actually turned out to be deep-fried tofu with onion, broccoli and teriyaki sauce. Looking back on the menu now, it does indeed read that it comes with teriyaki sauce...but then why did they call it Agedashi Tofu ? Mind boggling. 

Vegetable Tempura

An array of vegetables deep fried in a light and crispy batter served with tempura dipping sauce - think your typical trusty vegetable tempura.

Salmon Avocado Roll 

This dish was probably my favourite for the night - creamy avocado and lettuce enveloped in nori and plump sushi rice, topped with fresh salmon, drizzled in mayo and finished alfalfa sprouts.

Prawn Tempura Roll

We also ordered the Prawn Tempura Roll - bread-crumbed prawns, avocado and cucumber sticks wrapped snugly in sushi rice, dotted with black sesame seeds. 

Uanagi Don

Glazed in a sweet and sticky sauce, the bite sized pieces of grilled unagi (eel) smelt and tasted amazing. On a bed of hot steaming rice, it was accompanied with broccoli and zucchini, drenched in the same sweet and salty sauce.

Pork Loin Katsu

Last, but definitely not least was Birthday Girl's most anticipated dish of the night, the Pork Loin Katsu. Breaded in panko, the crunchy outer casing gave way to a moist and flavourful piece of pork loin. The side serving of cabbage salad not only added a touch of color to the dish, but went incredibly well between bites of the pork loin katsu.

Despite a couple of misses among a handful of hits, Matsuri is a cozy little resturant serving up quality Japanese food that is inexpensive and stomach satisfying.

406 High Street 
Prahran, VIC

Matsuri on Urbanspoon

17 April, 2014

Fat Bob's Bar & Grill

Fat Bob's Bar & Grill really needs no introduction. You’ve heard it from The Burger Adventure, and you’ve seen it topping the charts on The Herald Sun, but what were my thoughts?

Gourmet Zucchini Chips

We started with the Gourmet Zucchini Chips, deep fried to a light and crispy finish, which contrasted nicely with the tender flesh of the zucchini. 

Jackie O

Juicy The 180g grass fed beef patty was cooked simply, just between medium and well done – juicy and meaty in the centre, though dry on the outer edges. The bun was soft yet solid, tomato and cos fresh, with slices of sweet Spanish onion, all smeared with squirts of tangy mustard, tomato sauce and Fat Bob’s special creamy tangy sauce. In size, it was a rather large burger, but taste-wise, nothing outstanding.

Fat Bob

My friend challenged himself to the Fat Bob – a true Aussie burger beefed up with a beef patty, beetroot, tomato, Spanish onion, tasty cheese, bacon rashers, a pineapple ring, fried egg, cos and tomato sauce. All of which he washed down with a creamy chocolate milkshake.

Perhaps it was the hype, the reviews and the high expectations that I had gone in with. For me, Fat Bob’s just didn’t blow me away. Burgers aside, the neon signage, old tin cans and atmosphere were one of a kind, and overall I did enjoy myself. If you’re in the area - I’d happily point you in the right direction.

Fat Bob's Bar & Grill
80 Cochranes Road
Moorabbin, VIC

Fat Bob's Bar & Grill on Urbanspoon

12 April, 2014

Top Paddock

Top Paddock, you never cease to amaze me.

Today, I must simply rave about their Blueberry and Ricotta Hotcakes. We all know, I’m not one to order sweets, but these hotcakes - they're something different. They have been on my mind for as long as I can remember. Be it on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Urbanspoon or fellow bloggers’ posts, these hotcakes have been calling my name.

Blueberry and Ricotta Hotcake

The pillowy hotcake was light, soft and incredibly fluffy, whilst it’s edges had a nice crisp to it. Smothered in their delicious  organic maple, a dollop of mascarpone and spotted with crunchy pepitas, mixed berries and petals – it was almost too gorgeous to eat. What I loved most about this dish was that it wasn’t too sweet, with surprise pockets of ricotta that balanced out both flavour and texture.

How lucky I am, to work just around the corner from work.

Top Paddock
658 Church Street
Richmond, VIC

Top Paddock on Urbanspoon

08 April, 2014

Chocolate Truffles

There is really nothing quite like the silky sensation of rich creamy truffles - little pieces of heaven slowly melting on your tongue. And we all know, one is never enough. So I decided to go ahead and make a few dozen.

  • Recipe: 

  • ▢   200g good-quality milk chocolate, broken into small pieces

  • ▢   2/3 cup thickened cream

  • ▢   Icing sugar, to dust

  • ▢   Cocoa powder, sifted to roll

Step 1: In a large mixing bowl, break chocolate into small pieces. The smaller the pieces, the easier it is to melt the chocolate.

Step 2: Pour thickened cream into a saucepan and bring to the boil.

Step 3: Immediately pour cream over chocolate.

Step 4: Stir and mix until the chocolate has completely melted. At this point, you have now made ganache.

Step 5: Set aside at room temperature until it has completely cooled. Cover, and place in refrigerator overnight to set.

Step 6: Use a teaspoon to spoon out bite-sized pieces.

Step 7: Dust hands with icing sugar to prevent the mixture from sticking, and roll mixture into balls in the palm of your hands. Roll in cocoa.

Step 8: Share and enjoy !

04 April, 2014

Darac Grill & Bar

There are a few ways one can keep warm on cold Melbourne nights. Snuggling up with warm blankets, cranking up the heater, or piling on layers and layers of clothing are just a few of the options available. But, what better way to warm your body and get the taste buds going than a spicy Korean army stew at Darac Grill & Bar.

Cheese Kimchi Sausage Stew

Looking around, every table had an army stew going. Come to Darac and not order one ? Don't be crazy, Darac is particularly famous for their stews. 

Our pot bubbled and boiled, and minutes later, our stew had turned a bright fire-engine red - it was ready. It was jam packed with sausages, spams of all sorts, kimchi, cheese, macaroni, japchae, ddeokbokki, zucchini  cabbage, tofu and onions. The combination of cheese and kimchi was genius, resulting in a creamy, yet spicy and tangy concoction which we generously ladled over our rice.

Spicy Pork Bugolgi

We also ordered the Spicy Pork Bugolgi, D-man's go-to Korean dish. This pork belly dish was full of flavour, though we found the marinade was slightly sweeter than what we would have preferred.

Cheese Fire Chicken

Spicy Korean stir-friend chicken covered in a thick layer of mozzarella cheese which oozed into every nook and cranny. You can imagine how fast we demolished this dish.

Beef Bibimbap

For carbs, we had the Beef Bibimbap which I though was just your average bibimbap. Served in a hot stone pot, the rice was accompanied by beef, an assortment of vegetables and eggs which we drizzled in chilli sauce.

Seafood Spring Onion Pancake

Fluffy triangles of pancake stuffed with seafood, vegetables and spring onion. Great flavour, though would have appreciated it more if it was crispier.

With its cozy vibes and comforting food Darac Grill & Bar was just one of those places that leave you with a warm fuzzy feeling. With the cooler weather in full swing now, I know I'll be back.

Darac Grill & Bar
51 A'Beckett Street 
Melbourne, VIC

Darac Grill & Bar on Urbanspoon