Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Lauren's 21st

My little Lauren turned 21, probably my most anticipated 21st birthday.  Lauren gave me six boxes of food when I lived alone and had a spag bol malfunction... and how do you win Lily over? Food. Duh. 

I think we were equally nervous regarding my attendance due to my lack of conduct and my anti-social-ness. I had no knowledge of anyone else at the ceremony.


 I was fortunate enough to venture down the same route with screeching kids to Stereosonic. I met the girl I were to bunk with that night.We spent roughly an hour dressing ourselves and unpacking. My countenance made Lauren laugh as I drew on her face. She was wearing a red Zara dress, so decided on a 70s retro-pin up.


I love Lauren's household, the variety of personalities falls in both ends of the pendulum, yet there's a real balance. We arrived at the venue. It was at Dundas I think. Too foreign to me, I've never been to that end of Sydney.


The celebration commenced. The first 2 hours were based on socialising. Where was I? Doing laps to the bar. I think I was pretty incoherent before the lights even dimmed, however I held the mentality that I can get ruin anyone else's party with my misbehaviour... but not Lauren's... god, I'm such a good friend. So, I spent approximately 45mins doing relationship consultations, all good fun... what else would I use my Psych degree for?
I have no idea who they are. I think that's my intoxicated face.

 Then the dancing begun. As the night went on more of her relatives found themselves in deep intoxication. Her aunts were hilarious, boogie-ing to MJ and the Beatles with me on the dancefloor, one girl swirled me so much I couldn't see straight. Guess I've ignited some sort of passion, synchronicity or lack there of for ridiculous dance movements.
The Birthday girl and the magnificent profiterole cake that I didn't get a taste of.

By the time the night ended, Lauren sat on the chair smiling at me like an idiot as I knelled on the floor with my hands on her knees mumbling gibberish to her. We got the car back to her place, Elizabeth and I rushed up stairs. She actually changed into her PJs, I, on the other hand had work the next day, so why not just change into my work clothes, right? Seems logical to me. We both crashed and fell asleep as soon as our heads hit the pillow.
I had a great night.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Jamie's Italian - Martin Place

Undoubtedly, every time I see Jamie Oliver on TV he's ferociously sprinkling salt, pepper and drizzling olive oil; served with a slice of content.


My friend and I marched down Pitt Street on a cold Thursday night to assuage our crying stomachs and despondent taste buds. We arrived just before 6pm and managed to secure a table upstairs. Once we were seated, within 3minutes the lights dimmed as we browsed through the menus. It wasn't till then I realised that we were surrounded by "couples" "dates" whatever you wish to name them. It was a joyful observation as the male specie fervently attempts to impress his female counterpart... whether it was by dress code, his ability to express his dietary knowledge or nuptial gifts. Amusing.


The restaurant layout was unique, very long and narrow.. reminds me of Erskinville's terrace.
 
Well.. I didn't realise how blurry these photos were until I uploaded them onto blogspot. Sorry guys. I hate this phone too... it's slender exterior is rather deceiving. I will definitely take my REAL camera next time I go to Jamie's.





Drinks: Peach & Sparkling (Left); Strawberry & Sparkling (Right)
I couldn't taste the peach at all, I'm not too big on wine or champagne. However, there was a slight after-taste in the strawberry sparkling.


Oh, and complimentary bread in the middle. Rosemary focaccia artisan sourdough, ciabatta & tortano; served with extra virgin olive oil and balsamic. Good sourdough.




Above is the Crispy Polenta Chips with Rosemary Salt and Parmesan $8.50.  Cooked nicely, you can still taste the freshness of the polenta.








 I think this was my favourite, Truffle Risotto $17. I've never had truffle before. The taste was unique, savoury and a little pungent, but just right. That doesn't even make sense to me. Petite dish for $17 but I guess truffle is a delicacy so I guess I'll let that slip.






The classical sphagetti bolognaise (Small) $12.50 , mind you, everything was well salted... this was overly done for me. The saltiness and the red wine over powered the generous amount of pork, beef and tomato sauce. Nonetheless, I enjoyed the crunchy  breadcrumb, nice touch to the dish.






Italian Nachos, $7. This was a rather average dish for me.... didn't grasp my attention at all.... to be honest, microwaved doritos with woolworth's salsa and shaved cheddar is probably more flavoursome. It was apparently deep fried cheese ravioli... made no difference to me. Salsa was fresh with a hint of chilli.




 Meat Plank $13 per head.

Cured meats: San Daniele prosciutto, Wagyu bresaola, finocchio & capocollo --- All I can say is fresh fresh fresh, well seasoned, recc to eat this with the buffalo mozzarella

Cheeses: Buffalo mozzarella & pecorino with amazing chilli jam ---- The Buffalo Mozzarella was incredibly creamy but velvet smooth. Eat this in moderation with other antipastos otherwise you might feel slightly ill in the stomach. The pecorino was dull on it's own, but when paired with the sweetness of the chilli jam..."omg"

Pickles: Curly green chillies, green & Gaeta olives & caper berries --- I liked the green olives... that's about it.

Crunchy salad: Shaved root veg with chilli, lemon & mint --- Bland, tasteless but earned it's place on the plank after heavy doses of flavours. Definitely a calm me down.







Tiramisu $9, strong doses of rum and expresso. True to flavour though. A little potent for my liking, wouldn't say it's my favourite dessert, you can probably get something similar from your local cake shop. Orange mascarpone was a hit though.






Here's a picture of consumers waiting outside the restaurant at around 8pm. Overall, nice hearty meals, wouldn't mind going back. I'm usually not much of a visible perve but one distinguishing factor about Jamie's Italian----- their male waiters were easy on the eyes.




Oh and the Christmas tree was up. There were carols outside Sydney Westfield and insane looking human reindeer + elves running around like crazy people. It actually felt like the festive season, it's usually never the time to be joyful (for me anyway) but it was an exceptionally cold and wet summer night.. like how real Christmases should be. I want a white Christmas!!!


I hate my phone for taking blurry pictures, but that's a masterpiece right there. Reminds me of an oil painting.

Jamie's Italian Website

 Jamie's Italian on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Concerto Restaurant Review - Sydney Olympic Park

Day two at stepford's wives-land, my apologies... that description doesn't do justice for Wentworth Point. Think of it as an artificial life size leggo land. The man-made everything is... madness. In the not so positive kind of way.


Anyway. I was craving pizza during the second day of training... but Lily is always craving pizza.
Alfresco dining... similar to Vucina Viscontini. Atmosphere and ambience of the restaurant was quite nice.


I didn't study the menu thoroughly as time wasn't a malleable factor. Though I knew the place was known for their pizza, so we dug in.


Reasonably priced for gourmet pizza, my friend and I shared a

The pizza was nice, thin based, crusty, topping was adequate but not generous. Flavour was true. Chicken was succulent and believe it or not, there were REAL mushrooms that I can see on the pizza without a magnifying glass. Kudos Concerto.


Again, it was a harsh Sunday morning, I wasn't nearly awake so I ordered a Capp. Worst coffee I've ever had. Watered down, no flavour... just.... some coffee and water. No froth.. just... blergh. Fail. 
Go for the pizza, not their coffees. They had a nice range of cocktails.. but after the coffee.. yeah... ambiguous. Might be watered down too.

On the flip side, service wasn't too bad.


Address: 21 Bennelong Rd  Homebush Bay NSW 2127

Monday, November 7, 2011

Cucina Viscontini Restaurant Review - Sydney Olympic Park

 I ventured to Wentworth Point for training a few weeks ago. My first time there and the place beats at the back of my head. It's similar to a compact life size resort in the middle of no where--- the vibe calls for stepford's wives, just replace the neat symmetrical houses with skyscraper like residency. To be blunt, it reminded me of a little secluded area/town for people who are attempting to shy away from the harsh reality of the outside world. Utopia? Not quite. Oh well, it's for those who are doing well, financially.


My friend and I came across Cucina Viscontini for lunch. There wasn't an abundance of options, it was either this or a dodgy looking cold sandwhich bar. 


The place possessed a friendly vibe, we were immediately greeted and seated. Customer service was at it's peak. Bread + Olive oil/vinegar dips (complimentary) were bought out for us to enjoy as we waited for our order. I must say.... it was good bread... coming from a person who hates white bread. Beats Xanthi's stale crisp of a bread. Olive oil was average, lacked the zing... perhaps more virgin next time?

Complimentary Bread (Sorry my crap phone was out of focus)



Complimentary Olive Oil & Vinegar Dip


Ravioli (Fetta & Spinach)
Cappucino

I had a spinch and fetta ravioli + a cup of capp. I'm not a coffee person but the capp was relatively strong, frothy and kept me awake, scold down after approx half a bowl of sugar. It was good coffee though.


My main was decent, but over priced. I would have preferred a thinner pastry for the ravioli but the meal sufficed, the favour was true. The tomato sauce possessed a hint of sweetness, went nicely with the savory taste of fetta and the sweet&sour of the cherry tomatoes. The prawns, or should I say... lack thereof....was indeed tender and succulent. However, out of the mere 4.5 prawns, one prawn was only partially de-shelled. I'm  not usually fussy about trivial things, I de-shell my own prawns at home. But since I was paying close to $30 for a small plate of food... I expect my prawns to be stripped naked.

Service is comparable to most top rated restaurants. Ambiance is not. Cafe/pub style... does not live up to the hefty price-tag.
Location wise, I wouldn't pick Waterfront for fine dining, but heck, what do I know? I'm just a broke, graduating uni student. 


Cucina Viscontini on Urbanspoon



Wednesday, November 2, 2011

AdiĆ³s.

This month marks the completion of my tertiary studies. I embarked on a 16-year-long educational journey at 7 different institutions.

That's 72% of my life.
I guess I'm not a stranger to goodbyes.

Today, I woke up and stepped into the harsh reality of adulthood. Life has been stagnant and ambiguous, like canned food, so I took a good look at myself.

I feel like this sentence calls for something profound but I really can't think of anything to say other than...
let's see how far we've come.

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