La Boheme, Balmain

A good meal ought to begin with hunger". (French Proverb)

Finally, I'm back to our Saturday routine...catching up with friends and trying out new place to eat. My husband and I are glad to find another new food enthusiast couple (T and L) to join our dining adventure. Last Saturday, we left the honour of picking a place to them. They decided on La Boheme, a Czech restaurant located in Balmain. T said it's the restaurant that he's been wanting to try.

Hidden inside the Heritage listed Working Men's institute. La Boheme provides a unique and intimate European dining experience the moment you walk in. The interior recreates an atmosphere of the old-world Europe. Their menu is extensive and they have a great selection of European beers to choose from.

Apart from the stunning interior, there are many other reasons to visit this restaurant:
- If you are very hungry
- If you want the best value for your money
- If you want to try Czech beer (or if you simply love beer)
- If you want a fast and attentive service

Minutes after we made our order, the staff came with a complementary bread rolls and dip, that tasted a bit like pate. We had no idea what the dip called but we all enjoyed the bread rolls and the pate like dip to start our meal.

Entree 1:
We ordered some entrees to share. First entree we had was the Escagort. The French snails were so rich in goodness of almond and garlic butter. There's only one way to describe it "C'est si bon!!!" (It's so good!!!).

 French Snails $ 24.90 (one dozen)  $13.90 (half dozen)

Entree 2:
Second entree we had was the Almond, paprika and herb cheese balls. When this dish arrived we were a bit dissapointed with the size. We thought  the 3 cheese balls were pretty small, but after we tasted it, the three were definitely enough for the five of us to share. It was really rich, perfect with the crispy toasted breads.

Cheese Balls $11.90

Entree 3: 
The last entree we had was the Homemade Duck Pate. The Pate was reasonably fine, not overly strong in flavour. Complemented with a homemade cranberry sauce and rye toast. It was perfect as an entree as you don't want it to be too strong that it might ruin your taste bud before you start the main dish.

Duck Pate $13.90

Main 1:
Most of us wanted to try a bit of everything, so we ordered the Bavarian Feast Platter. The platter includes chef's selection of Duck, Schnitzel, Pork ribs, Sausage with Saurekraut, Red cabbage and Mixed dumplings.
The platter was huge! None of us could actually finish the whole thing. I've done pretty well by finishing the quarter duck and Schnitzel (these two were my favourite). I found the duck meat really tender and flavourful. The Scnitzel was thin and cripsy. The pork ribs tasted like smoked bacon and the sausage was pretty ordinary.

Bavarian Feast Platter $29.90 (for one)  $58.00 (for two)

Don't forget the platter comes with mixed dumplings too. How could I possible feed in all these? I might if I didn't have the entrees. Overall, it was still a pretty good platter.

Main 2: 
Grilled Pork Knuckle. My husband will never go pass pork knuckle when it's available on the menu. He should be happy because like the platter, the pork knuckle was huge (although it might not look as big in the photo). T who claimed to be a big eater couldn't even finish it, but my husband happily polished the whole thing. I had abit of it and I have to admit, it was really good!

 Grilled Pork Knuckle  $24.90

Didn't know what to expect from the main dishes, we even ordered some side dishes to share.

(Left) Mushrooms  Risotto $ 6.50
(Right) French Fries $6.00

Before we started our meal, we were saying that we have to try the desserts. But by the end of the meal, all of us were too full to have anything else. After we left the restaurant, T even suggested that we should take a short walk and for the first time, we did! We actually walked along Darling street for 15 minutes before heading back to the car. That night we went home satisfied and happy.

332 Darling St (rear of the Institute Arcade)
Balmain NSW 2041
Ph: (02) 9810 0829

Wow Bulgogi, Kensington

When it's so cold outside, there's nothing more comforting than having a sizzling hot meal. So on Friday night, me and my husband decided to try out the new Korean BBQ restaurant in Kensington. As explained in the menu 'Bul' means fire, 'Gogi' means meat.  Bulgogi is a unique way to have Korean style barbeque which has been enjoyed by the korean people for thousands of years. Also, they named the restaurant 'Wow Bulgogi' because they want to hear the word "Wow" when the customers experience their food and services. So far service was a Wow, the staffs were very fast and attentive.

My husband and I settled with their BBQ set menu A. For $45 you will get SoGalbi (marinated beef ribs), Bulgogi (marinated tender sliced beef), Samgyubsal (pork belly), Ox tongue and Jelbi (lean beef skirt). Everything was good except the Ox tongue, the cut was too thin and hard in texture.

Set menu A $45.00

To balance our meal, we ordered the Haemil Soon Dubu. A hot and spicy soup made with tofu, seafood, egg and vegetable. The soup was thick and pretty rich with seafood flavour, with lots of ingredients to be found.

Haemil Soon Dubu $12.00

Like all Korean restaurants, we were served with array of condiments and sauces to compliment our meal.

When we came, the restaurant was half full, but by the time we finished our meal it was a full house. I guess Wow bulgogi has become the local's favourite Korean restaurant, not that there's many to be found around the area. But is always good to have an additional restaurant to choose from. Just remember, not to wear your best dress here.

Wow Bulgogi
174 Anzac parade
Kensginton NSW 2033
Ph: (02) 9697 9282

Mum's cooking

"Home cooked meal is the best because it's full of love and nutrition".  

Today's post is about my appreciation to mum's cooking, not only to my mum, but to all the mums/dads out there that always try to provide a homey comfort to their family simply by cooking a meal.

The world's best meal for me is definitely my mum's cooking, because it's full of love. Mum's cooking always shine as the best. Today is my first night without my parents' company (after one and a half month) as they left Sydney this afternoon. It was hard to come back to an empty house once again. I know I'm going to miss their company and of course my mum's cooking too. 

I believe my love of food came from my mum, she introduced me to the wonderful world of food. I still remember when we were young, she tried to handmade everything we wanted to eat just because it's healthier, from donut to burger, from biscuit to cake. She also taught me to be creative (not that I am), as she invented so many dishes that only can be found in her kitchen.Thanks to mum, I grew up to appreciate food even more, both the enjoyment of it and the social aspect of it. 

 Only in my mum's kitchen: Radish & Shrimp Ball

 One of the great things about mum's cooking is, there's never rush or panic. She always make it looks so easy.

Giorgios, Melbourne


Finally, I'm back!!! Having been missing in action for so long, I'm finally back with this very special post. The main reason for my absence is due to the hectic workload during this financial year end, where I unwillingly put a temporary stop on my food/culinary adventure. But, I was lucky that even during this busy season, I managed to fly down to Melbourne last week to witness and celebrate my sister and her fiance's ROM (Registration of Marriage). I couldn't ask them for a better place to celebrate their special day. Giorgios is one the few places where I like almost every single food being served. Of course, the credit goes to my sister and her now husband, who picked the perfect selection of food for us to choose from.

My sister told me that she always come here for their dessert and after savouring them...I fully understand why.

Starter: Freshly Baked Garlic, Herb & Cheese Foccacia
A crispy mix of garlic and herb bread is always a great starter for Italian food. As a garlic lover, I really like the heavy flavoured garlic and cheese combination.

Selection of Entrees
Entree 1: Salt and Pepper Squid
The squid was lightly fried, marinated in lemon pepper served on iceberg lettuce, spanish onion, tomato, carrot and aioli. The squid was soft, with the perfect amount of salt and pepper that wasn't over powering. 

Entree 2: Vegetarian Thai Rolls
The rice pastry of the spring rolls is perfectly thin and crispy, with savoury filling of julienne vegetables, rice noodles and Thai spices. 

Entree 3: Souvlaki Mezza
The cubes of lamb are marinated with Mediterranean herbs, garlic, spring onion and served with fetta, diced tomato, black olives and cos lettuce with pita bread. For a lamb eater, you will definitely appreciate the tender lamb that's bursting in flavour. 

So far, the selection of entrees have been pleasant, I was looking forward for the next course.

Selection of Main course
Main 1: Spatchcock
We were impressed by the generous size of this twice cooked whole organic chicken. The moment this dish was placed on the table, we found the aroma really alluring. With the marination of paprika and lemon, the flavour was second to none. Served on the side were kipfler potatoes, orange, red onion & mixed Asian cress salad with orange jus.

Main 2: Prawn Risotto 
Cooking risotto is never simple, it requires perfect skill and a bit of practice to achieve the perfect texture, I dare say the risotto here is perfectly cooked! And Giorgios has make its mark by choosing the best type of rice for cooking risotto, the Aborio rice. This rich and creamy risotto was cooked with shallots, cherry tomato, napoli & marscapone. I also found plenty of tiger prawns in it. As much as I like to finish the whole plate, It was absolutely impossible. The serving was HUGE!

Main 3: Eye Fillet Steak
This was the highlight of the lunch for me and my husband. When the steak was served, I could smell the strong aroma of truffle. The truffled mash potato with char grilled vegetables were really delicious. The highlight was not only the truffled potato, but also the tenderness of the beef and the exceptional flavour of the porcini demi glaze sauce that drawn out the best of the beef. 

Selection of Dessert
Dessert 1: Pear & Lime Tart
The tart has a soft, smooth and tangy lemon filling. The balanced palate of pear and lime flavours, with a sensuous sweetness of the fruits left my mouth feeling refreshed.

Dessert 2: Tiramisu
When done correctly, Tiramisu makes a very impressive dessert. I found the mascarpone cream here really light, which is always a good thing.

Dessert 3: Sticky Date Pudding
Now, the highly recommended dessert by my sister, also her favourite here. The sticky date pudding was served warm with butterscotch sauce & double cream. I couldn't agree more with my sister. Their sticky date pudding is no doubt one of the better one I have ever had.This winter favourite cake reminded me to the one I had at Zellini's cafe in Randwick (Sydney). The moist muffin-like pudding is accompanied with the perfect butterscotch sauce that has a hint of salty after taste. This is one of those times when I couldn't stop stuffing myself until I clean the whole plate.

Gosh, what have I done? I can barely move after the meal.
Apart from my mum's cooking, this is undeniably the best meal I had lately.

Thanks to my beloved sis and her hubby for this wonderful meal. 
This has been the most unforgettable meal I had in Melbourne.

"This post is especially posted for you guys!
Hope you guys have a Happy Marriage!!!"

You can find out more on their menu here

1235 High Street
Armadale- 3143
VIC, Australia
Ph: 03 9822 4664