Thursday, 15 June 2017

Paul's Famous Hamburgers - Sylvania, Sydney

Sometimes you just want to ditch the fancy gourmet burgers and have an old school milk bar style burger with the lot. This is where Paul's Famous Hamburgers in Sylvania, a Sydney institution that has been around since 1957, comes into the picture. 

I'd say the tag of best burger in Sydney is a long bow to draw, considering the competition out there these days and the high standard of burgers on offer in Sydney. I definitely wouldn't call this the best burger, in Sydney but there is something charming about this slightly run shopfront, that appears to have remained the same over the years. On the day we visit, Paul is walking around and clearing the tables.   

Don't forget to grab a bottle of frozen pineapple crush to complete your Paul's experience. 

Burger with the lot

Be prepared for this to get messy; the burger with the lot comes with a onion, bacon, pineapple, egg, lettuce, cheese and beetroot which will most likely fall apart half way - the joys of eating a massive burger.

Paul's Famous Hamburgers Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Wednesday, 14 June 2017

4 days in Tasmania - Cradle Mountain to Swansea (Day 2)

Following on from my first post on my Tasmania trip (, here is day 2!

We decided to get up nice and early to catch some more of the amazing Cradle Mountain hiking trails, such as Crater Lake and Marions Lookout. The Cradle Mountain lodge page has a nice  summary of some of the Cradle Mountain walks. 

As you can see it was quite overcast and rainy. One tip to keep in mind when hiking in Cradle Mountain, be prepared for anything and everything. We encountered sun, rain and wind throughout our walk, and one thing I wish I had brought with me was cover for my face - I ended up very red and chapped from all the wind on the mountain.

After our walk, our next stop was the Devils@Cradle Tasmanian devils sanctuary, a conservation facility where you can see them up close and how they interact with each other.

Our final destination for the day was our accomodation at Swansea, with our drive taking us past Wilmot, the home of the letterbox trail. Wilmot is quite a scenic drive with a beautiful backdrop of Tasmanian's northern mountains and along the way are these quirky roadside letterboxes that the community has put together, mostly from scrap metal and other materials. 

Tassie devil mailbox in Wilmot

Minion mailbox

Wombat mailbox

It's a nice little distraction along a scenic drive - that's the thing about Tasmania, there's amazing scenery almost everywhere; think rugged mountains and lush greenery. We stopped along the way at a creek, hoping to spot some platypus but no such luck.

Next pit stop was Sheffield, better known as the town of murals for self-explanatory reasons. We grab some lunch here and walk around to see some of the cool murals around.

Sheffield is also one stop that you can stock up on groceries at the local IGA before heading into Cradle Mountain. 

We also take the scenic route (aka took a wrong turn and stuck with it!) which leads us to stop at Hillwood berry farm for a quick break and to try out the scones, of course. 

The scones are delicious, as expected. I don't think we had a bad scone during this whole trip and there were quite a few consumed. How cute is the raspberry tea cosy?

Hillwood Berry Farm Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Need more Tassie inspiration? Check out my other posts here:

Saturday, 3 June 2017

Saint Peter - Paddington, Sydney

Saint Peter in Paddington is the ultimate weekend brunch experience - it's a casual and relaxed eatery with amazing food made with quality produce. It's one for the seafood lovers, as the menu is driven by fish and seafood. 

It's also a nice revival of Oxford street, after seeing so many empty shops and for lease signs around.

Saint Peter is a popular restaurant during the weekends and seating is limited, so bookings are highly recommended. 

Saint Peter's menu is all about sustainably sourced seafood, with a changing menu depending on what is in season. I'm especially excited at the idea of a seafood brunch menu that is a bit creative and different.

Saint Peter brunch menu

One must order dish was the Pambula sea urchin crumpet; I'd be seeing it all over Instagram and had been having major food envy. It comes out in two components: the sea urchin in it's spiny shell and the buttery crumpet that smells amazing.

Pambula sea urchin

Salad of Tasmanian octopus, Fabrice's cucumbers and purslane. 

The octopus is cooked to perfection: the right balance of tender and springy. I love the cucumbers for the simple fact that they look like tiny adorable watermelons. 

The purslane adds a lovely green leafiness to the dish. with a slight lemon flavour. I've not previously heard of purslane prior to dining at Saint Peter, and upon researching it have discovered that it's actually quite nutritious, high in vitamin E and omega 3 fatty acid. It's commonly found across the world, but in Australian is known as a weed.

Potato scallops

The potato scallops took me back to the childhood days of walking to the fish and chip shop and getting $2 worth of chips and some potato scallops. These crunchy potato scallops were a thousand times better, definitely the best potato scallops I've ever had!

Sweet and sour blue Ulladulla mackerel on toast

Saint Peter's sustainable approach is showcased by their menu offering, which includes all of the fish where possible, including offal, roe, scales, and in this case the mackerel is served head and all. Mackerel is such an underrated fish and not often seen on menus; it would be great to see more of it as this mackerel on toast was delicious.

There were only two desserts on offer: a lemon tart and a chocolate slice. Nothing fancy, but a sweet way to finish off the meal. 

Lemon tart

Manjari chocolate slice

The lemon tart has a nice zest to it, balanced by the dollop of cream on the side. The Manjari chocolate slice is a dense and rich dessert, made with single origin chocolate chocolate and served with fresh raspberries, black fig and sour cream icing. 

Overall, Saint Peter was a fantastic brunch venue with great food. I'll definitely be back to try out some new dishes, and more of those tasty potato scallops.

Saint Peter Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Sunday, 21 May 2017

Yan Restaurant - Wolli Creek, Sydney

Yan Restaurant is a hidden gem amongst the concrete jungle of apartments in Wolli Creek. I've never really ventured around this part of town, but the promise of delicious smoked meats has my vote for a low-key birthday dinner.

It's all about share dishes at Yan, perfect as we are a group of nine, so we order one of everything on the menu, with doubles and triples of the ones we find most appealing. The dishes are in no particular order, they just come out all at once: the great benefit of sharing dishes amongst the table.


The silverfish or probably more commonly known as whitebait, are fried and seasoned with white pepper, sea salt and shallots. It's quite similar to what you can get at your typical Chinese restaurant: they are like tiny crispy chips.


Our next entree is the salt and pepper squid; it's a standard starter and the squid itself is nice and tender, but it's nothing extraordinary.


The tofu on the other hand is quite simple but is refreshing and has a tasty sesame sauce.


The fiery mussels come drenched in a house made chilli sauce, and come with a side of baos which are great to mop up all that sauce with.


Pear and cucumber slaw

The sides of edamame and slaw provide some much needed greenery to our meat heavy meal. I especially love the nashi pear and cucumber combination, it's the perfect combination of sweet and refreshing and is a dish I would love to try and recreate at home.


The chicken thigh fillet has is very juicy and has a nice smoky charred flavour. I find there's a generous amount of meat for each dish.


Lamb ribs

The highlight of the night were the flavoursome and tender smoked lamb ribs. Even though half the table were not usually fans of lamb, including me, we all throughly enjoyed these cumin dry rub ribs served with a chimmichurri sauce; it was a favourite dish of the night.

Olive rice

The olive rice is an interesting dish: steamed rice infused with olives. I'm not sure how I feel about this dish to be honest as I'm not the biggest fan of olives as it is; I think I would have preferred some steamed rice to have with the mains instead.

Wagyu steak

The grilled wagyu is 200 grams of wagyu striploin with a marble score of 7+, which as you can imagine was quite fatty and just melted in the mouth. The lime and salsa on the side aid in cutting through the richness.

We were pretty stuffed after such a feast, but decide to order a couple of the two dessert options to share. 

Fried birthday bao with condensed milk 

The Yan team brought out this special surprise as they knew we were celebrating my birthday, which was such a lovely surprise! Deep fried bun and condensed milk are a match made in heaven.

Coconut three ways

The coconut three ways is hands down the favourite dessert between the two - can never go past anything coconut flavoured for dessert! The dessert is served in a young coconut shell and has a layer of jelly, coconut ice cream, sprinkled with toasted coconut. If you enough muscle power, you can also scoop out the young coconut flesh for an additional treat.

Deconstructed pavlova

The pavlova has shards of airy meringue served with a pandan and ginger jelly and lychee ice cream. The desserts are light, which is perfect given all the food we had just eaten.

Yan Restaurant Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Friday, 12 May 2017

Berowra Waters Inn - Berowra Waters, Sydney

I recently had the pleasure of celebrating my birthday with a lunch at picturesque Berowra Waters Inn. The restaurant is in secluded location, only accessible by water with the short private ferry ride adding to the whole experience. 

I've enjoyed the view of Berowra Waters many times during my bushwalking expeditions, but this was completely another level - the restaurant, service, and food were all spectacular, making this my favourite Sydney fine dining restaurant. 

Berowra Waters Inn

We park near the public wharf and it's a short wait for the private ferry to come and pick us up for the five minute trip across. 

B and I are seated by the window, overlooking the stunning view. Our lunch was on an autumn day where it started out sunny and then started to rain; luckily it was light rain and it only started once we were inside. It was actually quite nice and therapeutic seeing the rain in such a idyllic location. 

Berowra Waters Inn offers a degustation menu only, which makes sense given it's secluded location, making it more of a special occasion restaurant. 


We start with these gorgeous canapés, which at first glance look like delicate desserts, especially the chicken liver parfait tart. It's a lovely introduction to the six course degustation to come.


Sourdough bread with salted treacle butter

The house made sourdough has a nice crusty and is a great pairing with the slightly sweet, airy salted treacle butter. It's a hard task not to fill up on bread when it's this good.

Trout, bergamot and shiso

Scallops, apple and bacon

The degustation begins with the trout; a delicate and light starter, with a nice zing of citrus flavours, followed by the next course of huge seared scallops served with apple and bacon pureé. The scallops were one of my favourite dishes of the degustation.

Pork, coconut and pear

The pork is an interesting mix of sweet and savoury, with the crisp, salty pork crackling marrying well with the refreshing sweetness of the pear, and creamy coconut. The pairing of the pear and coconut reminds me of an asian dessert.

Beef, onion and tarragon

The beef had an amazing slow cooked texture, which meant that the meat barely needed any cutting with a knife, it was so tender. The charred onion add a sweetness to the dish, and the acidic sauce helps to cut through the richness of the beef. 

Coconut and cucumber

The palate cleanser of coconut and cucumber was also a highlight; the coconut posset was creamy, but managed to remain light and refreshing with the addition of cucumber.

Almond and plum

Chocolate and beer

Petit fours

The desserts that followed the palate cleanser were very good as well, and the perfect way to round off the meal, with a syrupy almond cake and plum, followed by a unique combination of chocolate cake and stout ice cream. The flavours of the beer and chocolate worked surprisingly well.

Just when I thought I couldn't fit in another morsel, the plate of petit fours came out, and I order a coffee to accompany and slowly enjoy the sweets, enjoying the stunning view of course.

I loved the whole experience at Berowra Waters Inn - seriously, any excuse (anniversary or birthday coming up?) to escape to this beautiful and isolated location for a leisurely long lunch will do, it really is the perfect spot to treat yourself.

Berowra Waters Inn Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato