Tuesday, 27 June 2017

Devon Cafe - Barangaroo, Sydney

Having visited Devon Cafe in Surry Hills many times before, I was pleased to find out that they had opened up a branch at Barangaroo. The cafe is located one block back from the main waterfront strip and is quite busy when I go with my mum during Saturday brunch rush hour. 

There's a number system where you write down your name and number of people, and then take the number. We waited about 10 minutes for a table, which wasn't too bad.

Cold pressed juice

My mum orders one of the cold pressed juices: it's an earthy blend of beetroot, cucumber, carrot and green apple; with the addition of lemon and ginger, it's the perfect blend to ward off the winter nasties. 

Devon affogato

I go all out and order the affogato with a mix of the black sesame and matcha soft serve. Let's not lie, it's pretty much a dessert disguised as a drink, but it's damn good! It's the first time I've had an affogato served with soft serve. The matcha flavour is standard, with the other flavour changing on a seasonal basis.

Crab pasta

I think the crab pasta was one of the first dishes I tried at the original Devon in Surry Hills. The squid ink angel hair pasta, crab served with sugo al pomodoro has a nice chilli kick to it. 

Devon Waldorf

We order the Devon Waldorf as a lighter dish to compliment the pasta. It's a fairly big serving with a mix of lettuce celery, slices of Fuji apple, grapes, walnuts and poached chicken; all tossed in a creamy goma dressing. 

A few weeks later, we're in Barangaroo to catch some of the Vivid lights and drop into Devon again for a small bite to eat before tackling the crowds. I was pretty keen to try out the sandos as they are usually only offered on weekdays, and I never get a chance to make it over during weekday lunches.

Ebi katsu sando

The prawn katsu sandwich is simple; ebi katsu, cabbage and yuzu mayo, but is done really well. The panko prawns are lightly crumbed and have that fresh from the fryer crunch. 

Purple Haze sundae

I also can't resist getting the special Vivid dessert, the Purple Haze. It's a delicious ube soft served topped with taro chips, coconut strips and cubes of leche flan. Here's hoping the ube soft serve sticks around for a while! 

Devon at Barangaroo Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Sunday, 25 June 2017

Sasaki, Surry Hills, Sydney

Restaurant Sasaki is a not so hidden gem from chef Yu Sasaki, the man behind the ever popular cafe with the matcha goods, Cre Asion. The restaurant is intimate with a handful of seating; we booked weeks in advance for a weekend dinner. The food is homely and pays homage to Sasaki's Japanese hometown of Shimane. 

The entrance to Restaurant Sasaki is literally located just behind the cafe. You can't miss the noren (Japanese fabric curtain) that is at the entrance of the restaurant. There are several tables situated in this little entrance area, and whilst it would be lovely in summer, I'm very glad that we are going to enjoy our dinner inside.

The menu is designed, like all good things in life, to be shared. There is one exception though - the desserts which are mostly bite sized, so you can basically order one each of everything.

Yuzu umeshu

There's a nice wine list at Sasaki with plenty of sak√© too. I go for the refreshing yuzu umeshu. 



Egg and crab

Chicken and mushroom rice

Pork, salt and daikon

The eggplant comes out first and it's a surprise as we didn't realise it would be served cold. The smoked eggplant is paired with buckwheat and a dashi and plum jelly. I found myself wanting a bit more texture halfway through the dish. 

The egg and crab chanwanmushi is a silky smooth steamed egg custard. Sasaki's version is very satisfying and one of the best versions I've had to date.

My favourite of the night is the pork cooked in a salt crust; the pieces of pork are so fatty and juicy. It's the perfect comfort food when eaten with the delicious takikomi gohan: a mixed rice. The variation of the rice on the night we visit is chicken and mushroom. 

Mandarin and pomelo

Caramel and nuts

For dessert, I order the mandarin and pomelo, a refreshing and light, palate cleansing dessert, followed by the caramel and nuts, thin and crisp wafers sandwiching mixed nuts, soy caramel and caramel cream. Do yourself a favour and order one (or even two) of these babies, it was so good! The greedy guts in me was secretly wishing I had ordered another one. 

Sasaki Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

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 (http://missklicious.blogspot.com.au/2017/04/4-days-in-tasmania-day-1-launceston-to.html), 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?

Tasmania is truly stunning no matter where you go. I was smitten by the gorgeous sunsets we had from our waterfront Swansea beach chalet. We managed to grab some cheese along the road trip and a bottle of red wine, just in time to enjoy the sunset from the balcony.

There are a couple of restaurants options in Swansea; we decide on a takeaway pizza from the Swansea hotel since we already had wine and snacks.

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