Thursday, 30 January 2014

Rainford Street Social - Surry Hills, Sydney

Eat, drink and be merry. I love the sound of that promise from Surry Hills neighbourhood bistro, Rainford Street Social. The restaurant has a casual vibe about it, and is quite lovely on a warm summer night.

To be fair, we dined here the night before we flew out on holidays. I had my Christmas party lunch that day and had been drinking and eating a fair bit, so didn't exactly bring a healthy appetite for the meal to come.

Cute dog design on the wine glasses!

Grilled scallops

Served with apple and orange relish and avocado puree. I always have high expectations for scallops, as this is my must order when I spot it on the entree menu. I did like the idea of pairing it with the apple and orange relish, very refreshing and summer-like.  However the dish did not quite hit the mark as the scallops were overcooked and dry. 

Prawn cocktail

Served with Marie rose sauce, salmon roe. Luckily, this entree was fantastic - fresh and juicy prawns paired with a spicy sauce, and generous chunks of avocado. A great take on a classic.

Glazed lamb ribs, pomegranate and baby gem salad

This dish is visually so appealing - rustic lamb ribs, glazed with a sticky sauce and then paired with a pretty salad, scattered with pomegranate. Unfortunately, I found both the glaze and salad dressing to be overpowering and acidic. 

Pan fried barramundi, olive oil potatoes and grilled kale

Chocolate delice

Cookie crumble base with cherry sorbet

Marinated summer fruits, banana yoghurt ice cream

The desserts are simple, and a nice finish to the meal. I'm not sure if I would classify orange and apples as summer fruit (in my mind it is more like mango, lychee, nectarine, peach etc) though it is a refreshing end to the meal nonetheless. 
Rainford Street Social on Urbanspoon

Saturday, 25 January 2014

Dessert-ing in Hong Kong

I'm already missing the ability to stroll downstairs at midnight and having a plethora of dessert options at my disposal.

On our first couple of nights, we found this little dessert shop a quick stroll from our initial hotel in Mong Kok. It was packed out most of the time, getting busier as the night progressed - not to worry though, as more customers came, the staff simply added more tables and chairs outside. 

Honeydew melon and grass jelly sago

Mango and passionfruit cheesecake

Mango napoleon 

Mixed fruit sago with ice cream

Mango and coconut rolls

These were like a dessert version of the steamed rice rolls that you get in yum.

Mango and pomelo coconut sago

This is probably my favourite asian dessert of all time - can't go past the mango and coconut combination, with a hit of pomelo!

Another dessert place I frequently visited was the ever popular Hui Lau Shan. Since it was located almost everywhere, it was a great option for a much needed sit down, after walking all day.

Watermelon and aloe jelly drink

Mango mania

This was a nice little sampler of everything mango - basically what you go to Hui Lau Shan for, anything mango!

Another popular chain we went to a few times was Honeymoon dessert. Not as numerous as Hui Lau Shan, the only ones I noticed were in Harbour City in TST and Langham Place in Mong Kok.

Mango and grass jelly sago

Strawberry sago

This one was a bit too artificial tasting for my liking. 

I didn't realise that I had actually eaten so much dessert until after reading this post, considering that there a handful of ones that I didn't post - I pretty much had dessert every day! (sometimes twice) I think the great thing with Hong Kong is that you can pick almost anywhere to eat and it will be guaranteed to be fairly good.

Tuesday, 21 January 2014

Three Williams - Redfern, Sydney

One of the things I've missed whilst on holiday were the fabulous cafes Sydney has to offer. My new favourite has to be the increasingly popular Redfern addition, Three Williams. With a tempting all-day menu, friendly service and a bright, open space, it's the perfect spot for a leisurely weekend brunch.

Three Williams menu

There are so many choices that look good, it's hard to narrow down my pick. Luckily, my dining companions are usually more than happy to share, so it makes the choosing easier. One sweet and one savoury it is!


But first, a much needed pick-me-up coffee to wake up. 

Crunchy brioche french toast, blueberries, yoghurt, roasted pecans and maple syrup

This was the dish that instantly caught my eye. Who with a sweet tooth can go past the promise of decadant crunchy french toast?! Nobody, that's who. It's as good as it looks, the perfectly crisp brioche and pecans, with the sweetness offset by the slightly tart yoghurt and blueberries. 

Fish croquettes

Cutest presentation! I love how these can be individually ordered, perfect for when you feel like a little something deep fried with your meal. These are fried to perfection, biting in to reveal deliciously creamy innards. Next on my hit list are definitely the much raved about chips! 

Beef brisket narnie

Glazed beef brisket with slaw, gherkins and chipotle mayo. Torn between the narnie choices, we were swayed by the suggestion of the friendly waiter, saying that the beef brisket was his favourite. He wasn't wrong! The beef brisket was tender and flavoursome. I have since been back and have ordered the other narnies for a takeaway lunch, and cannot pick a favourite. They are all seriously good!

There are also daily baked goodies to tempt you even more as you waddle your way out to the front counter to pay your bill. I don't even try and resist, and walk away with this beauty.

Grapefruit doughnut

I may or may not have scoffed this one hour after the brunch. Though not that different to your regular doughnut, I enjoyed the tangy, sweet grapefruit icing. 

I can see why Three Williams has become such a hotspot. Fantastic food and a great space. One to add to your regular brunch rotation! 

Three Williams on Urbanspoon

Sunday, 19 January 2014

Tim Ho Wan - Sham Shui Po, Hong Kong

Back to reality after my month long holiday to Hong Kong, Macau & Tokyo. It was a fabulous trip jam packed with lots of delicious eats! 

Despite the stories of the notoriously long queues at the ever popular one Michelin star dim sum restaurant, Tim Ho Wan, we were lucky with both our visits - only having to wait 5 minutes the first time, and got in straight away the second time.

The Sham Shui Po branch is a hole-in-the-wall restaurant, situated on Fuk Wing street, a small walk  from Prince Edward or Sham Shui Po MTR station. 

Tim Ho Wan is famously known as the cheapest Michelin star restaurant in the world - most dishes range from $10HKD to $24HKD. We over-ordered the first time, with our bill adding up to the grand sum of $170HKD. Ridiculously cheap! 

The counter at the front of the restaurant has menu cards which you can fill out whilst you wait in line. There are english ones available too. The service is quick and efficient. The seating is cramped but serves it's purpose of allowing fast customer turnover. 

Fried stuffed eggplant

 Prawn dumplings

Vermicelli roll stuffed with shrimp

Glutinous rice

 Siu mai

Steamed beancurd roll with meat and vegetable

Baked bun with BBQ pork

 Sweet pumpkin cream with sago

Rock sugar stewed pear and white fungus

 So how does the dim sum rate? The highlight was definitely the signature dish of baked pork buns - crisp, flavoursome, without being greasy. I could eat a plate (or two) of these to myself! The other dim sum dishes were also good quality, made with fresh ingredients.

Tim Ho Wan - Sham Shui Po

G/F, 11 Fuk Wing Street, Sham Shui Po, Hong Kong, Ph:  2788 1226 

Other locations:

Shop 72, G/F, Olympian City 2, 18 Hoi Ting Road, Tai Kok Tsui, Hong Kong,  Ph: 2332 2896 

Shop 12A, Hong Kong Station (Podium Level 1, IFC Mall), Central, Hong Kong, Ph: 2332 3078 

Shop B, C, & D, G/F, Seaview Building, 2 Wharf Road, North Point, Hong Kong, Ph: 2979 5608