Brisbane River Grill, Brisbane Airport 

It’s high time someone opened up a decent restaurant at the Brisbane International Airport and Brisbane River Grill has come to the party!  On my way to NZ I stopped in for dinner and enjoyed a beautiful red wine chosen by the staff, the most delicious soft shell crab burger with chilli kimchi and asian slaw and some perfectly fried chips. Sold and sold. The prices are very reasonable, it was only about $23 for my burger and chips and the wine was about 12$ a glass and well worth it.  The fit out is great, I managed to nab a booth with a charger so I could get my phone topped up pre-flight.  I will be eating here everytime I fly!        
Click to add a blog post for Brisbane River Grill on Zomato

Arriba Grill, Morningside, Brisbane 

It’s a shame, as the customer service was wonderful but to get straight to the point, I could have made better at home.

When I walked in I was greeted like an old friend and told how to order – by filling in the piece of paper with all the options.

I chose a wholemeal burrito with beef and blackbeans, with lime rice, mild tomato salsa, cheese and lettuce. $13.50.

It was huge, and I was excited! But the reality was, the rice was flavourless and in clumps, the beef was average, the salsa was barely there and the lettuce was limp. Gag.

Has Guzman Y Gomez ruined Mexican for me? I adore their burritos but this was seriously average.

I’ll be driving further for my Mexican in future.


  

     Click to add a blog post for Arriba Grill on Zomato

Chameleon Restaurant, Wellington

I have long been a fan of Chameleon Restaurant in Wellington, in fact, my Uncle took me here for lunch to celebrate my 16th birthday, oh so many years ago. Rather fitting then that I was joining the very same Uncle for breakfast all these years later.

Chameleon (along with the Intercontinental Hotel it sits inside) has recently undergone a massive facelift. The interior looks much more modern and has some awesome touches added, like the hand wall.

The menu was great, I had trouble deciding but ordered smoked salmon with truffle-scented scrambled eggs on toasted brioche. Yeah, truffle-scented, you read right! They were absolutely scrumptious. My soy chai latte was on point, so much so that I had two.

The service was great and they were happy to accomodate my Uncle with his request for a plain omelette with hashbrowns.

I’ll be back again on my next trip to Wellington.


Click to add a blog post for Chameleon - InterContinental Wellington on Zomato

New Shanghai, Brisbane 

Want delicious, cheap, handmade dumplings?
In Queens Plaza you’ll find this gem.

I’ve been here twice lately – it’s that good. So good, that the friend who came with me the first time, she’s been three times! All within the space of a week.

On our first visit we had pork xiao long bao with the pork and Chive steamed dumplings and both were incredible. Juicy and fresh – you can’t get enough of them! The shepherds purse and pork wontons with chilli, peanut and sesame sauce were different, I had heard through UrbanList to give them a whirl. The chilli and the peanut sauce are a unique combination and one to be tried for yourself!

Round two we went to town. Two lots of xiao long bao juicy dumplings, shepherds purse, wok sautéed spinach with garlic and pork pan fried pork pot stickers.

Both times we washed everything down with chrysanthemum tea, the perfect combo.

Service is good, food comes fast and there is a humming atmosphere.

Highly recommend. Plus they just opened in Myer centre!


         Click to add a blog post for New Shanghai on Zomato

A quick jaunt over the ditch 

I managed to find flights back home for the long weekend for only $305 return – I’d have been crazy not to go home! 

I love going back to NZ and even though I was only back a month before this trip, I hadn’t been back to my home since Christmas. That’s 6 months without cows – sorry about all the photos. 

I got in at midnight thurs/ fri morning and stayed at my brother, Daniel’s place in Welly. I walked to work with him in the morning & was lucky enough to get a glimpse of the Club Lounge at the Intercontinental in Wellington where he works in marketing. I met my Uncle at Chamelon Restaurant there for breakfast before jumping on a bus back to Palmy. 

Mum met me at the bus stop and I was straight home to see my Dad and then out to the paddock to see the calves.  That was pretty much all I did over the whole weekend – spend time with my family and the cows. 
Friday night I was lucky enough that my fave NZ band, Six60 was playing at my hometown. I went to the gig with my good friend Emma. The crowd managed to drink the bar dry by 8.30. Before the band even came on. Kiwi’s aye?! Not really – it was just piss poor planning by the organisers. Gig was awesome though. 

Sat my friend Kim arrived to stay with me for the rest of my time at home and my brothers, their GF’s and some mates came over for a BBQ. 

I FORGOT ABOUT THE OYSTERS. How dare I. I ate three dozen Bluff oysters. BEST oysters in the world and worth every penny. Yummmm.

The rest of the time we all just hung out. It was just what I wanted. 

Ha! Funny story. So… Kim & I left Mum in Palmy where we left for Wellington ready for my flight and Mum went home. By the time we got to Shannon Dad called. 

D: ‘Did you forget something?’ 

R: ‘Obviously I did but I have no idea what..’

D: ‘Your entire handbag AND PASSPORT is in your Mother’s car. 

R: ‘F#%k.’

So we had to turn around, drive back to palmy and wait for Mum to get back over from our place. Oops. 

Made it to Wellington in time for my (rescheduled) dinner where a fee of my lovely friends came out for a quick chat & Japanese. 

I was up at 2am Aus time to get to the airport and at work by 9.30am. That was a looong day. But definitely worth it. 

   
                                 

Sol Natural Food, Fortitude Valley, Brisbane

Fat, burnt and slack would probably make an appropriate title.

I was excited to eat here, lots of good recommendations & a new menu to try out.

My almond chai was alright and my peanut butter on toast wasn’t bad either. The only problem was that the bread was too thick. Chunky. Fat. Whichever way you wish to describe it. About 3-4cm a slice and there were two of them – for a natural foods place with a focus on healthy eating I found this to make quite a contrast. I left about 40% of it and scraped the peanut butter and banana etc off the rest.

Phoebe waited a LONG time for her toasted banana bread. And I think I know why… It was burnt to cinders. The top was a little burnt but the bottom was hard and black. Not edible. Not something you wouldn’t notice as a server. They had also forgotten her ice cream and when they realised they said they had none so she would have to have coyo instead.

When the replacement meal came out the banana hadn’t been grilled, it was just chopped up on top.

Slow service and no attention paid to the details. Disappointed and wouldn’t go back again.


    
Click to add a blog post for Sol Natural Foods on Zomato

Noodles and Dumplings, Palmerston North

I never knew this place existed so close to home! Probably lucky as I would be twice my size if I had! 
Noodles and dumplings is on the Square tucked in by Trumps, my brother’s girlfriend recommended it otherwise I would never have known. 

The five of us ordered:

  • 2x leek & pork steamed dumplings 
  • Pork & vegetable steamed dumplings 
  • Pan fried pork dumplings 
  • Pork buns 
  • Sweet & sour pork 
  • Chicken fried rice 
  • Bok choi in garlic 

So upon reflection I can see that I did order too much. At the time though, it seemed like the right amount. Little did we realise that each plate of dumplings had 16 of them on there… We massively over ordered. But damn were we happy!! 

Dumplings for days! And at $9 a plate super cheap. 

They were all delicious. The steamed pork and vegetable were probably my faves. We ate and we ate and we ate.

There’s free (weak) Chinese tea, average service and decor but it’s cheap and the dumplings are awesome. I will be back here each  time I go home from now on! 

   
       

Click to add a blog post for Noodles & Dumplings on Zomato

Noosa Madness

Last time the four of us (Ka Lei, Kieran, Jacinta & I) got together was in Whistler for my last weekend in BC and it was madness. Last weekend in Noosa was no different. 

Let me recount the highlights… 

Costco stop on the way down. This place excites me exponentially. 3 dozen oysters, beautifully thick cut steak, a ready made salad and we were on the way! 

-Side note, Ka Lei & I both finished work early only to manage to only leave by nearly 7??

We booked an apartment through AirBnB (contact me if you’d like details) which turned out to be in the Outrigger Resort on Hastings Street (main street of Noosa) which was fantastic. The lovely lady had left us champagne, chocolate, nuts and lots of other great touches. We settled in, had our amazing steak cooked by Chef Kieran, 2 dozen of the well shucked oysters and a lot of champagne and vodka. Somehow we ended up watching the spelling bee finals and while the others were riveted, I fell asleep on the couch.

Saturday morning was glorious and I was straight to the pool. I had a refreshing swim, worked on my underwater handstands and lazed about. Soon after hopping out of the pool an attendant told us not to go back in. Upon asking why, his answer was simple. Faeces. Right. So now I have shit in my hair. Well everywhere actually. I was straight to the bar to negotiate free drinks (at 11.58am) to get over the situation. Or as Jay aptly named it – the shituation.

We were able to negotiate a decent package, we started with a double shot, followed by mimosas and caprioskas. Two hours later at the pool bar and we were best mates with the bar staff, attendant staff and the people lounging (but definitely not swimming) in the pool area. Jay managed to face plant off her stool before 2pm. We were doing well. We even managed access to the VIP infinity pool.

Back upstairs we raced to get Ka Lei wedding ready and then subsequently crashed for a few hours. Upon waking I moved my phone charger only to accidentally smash two large vases to pieces. It was like slo-mo. Felt terrible so I popped a new bottle of champers and started on that with a dozen oysters. Tough life, I tell ya!

Jay and I went for dinner and drinks in town then met Ka Lei & Kieran when the wedding had finished to party into the wee hours. 

Sunday was spent recovering. A lovely brunch at 10 Hastings followed by a nap on the beach and poolside lounging.

Kieran drove us home where we stopped for dumplings. Best idea ever! Hope to get back to Noosa again soon. 

   

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

  

Cafe Le Monde, Noosa

Lovely service, decidedly average food. 

Probably should have checked the rating on this one before I ate there – it would have swayed my mind. 

Matt, our waitor was fantastic. Very chilled and attentive. He even negotiated that I could order off the lunch menu with the kitchen. 

The food came out super fast. I had ordered a fish burger and being in Noosa expected a decent one. Wrong. Two pieces of bun, two leaves of lettuce, one slice of tomato, some Mayo and (an assumably frozen) deep fried fish patty. 

Jay ordered a GF pizza which she quite enjoyed. 

The cashier was again lovely and when I explained the burger was average when she enquirered how the food was, she gave us a 5% discount. 

Wouldn’t eat there again but go say hello to the lovely employees. 

Oh! And to the guy I caught lurking out in the car park on Tinder in the floral shirt, you were definitely too young for me. But very cute all the same! 

   
 
Click to add a blog post for Cafe Le Monde on Zomato

Yum Yum Gyoza House, Bulimba, Brisbane 

Yum Yum Gyoza House, yuck yuck everything else.

I wouldn’t eat here again. We ordered edamame, pad thai prawn, dumpling soup and gyoza to share. The only plate worth eating was the gyoza. Maybe they should just stick to that!

Pad thai was gluggy and lacked flavour. The duming soup was more like a bland cabbage soup with a few gyoza chucked in & the edamame was over salted.

Can’t fault the water.

    

Yum Yum Gyoza House on Urbanspoon