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Fi Fi La More

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Posts posted by Fi Fi La More

  1. Was a relatively high profile chef in London in the mid-90s. Cooked at L'Odeon and Bistro Bruno, published a cookbook. Middling * food and decent notices, if I recall, but a bit before my time.

    Didn't know he'd resurfaced



    Bruno is quite famous in Australia or at least Queensland as he is a former Michelin-starred chef. He had a wonderful restaurant in Brisbane. It was a fine dining French style restaurant which I believe was quite successful but would have been fairly tough going in Brisbane. I imagine Berardo's will give him a lot more scope due to the dining dollars available in Noosa. If anyone has eaten at Restaurant Atelier in Sydney, the chef, Darren Templeman used to work with Bruno in London.

  2. Sorry to hear about you bad experience at the Chelsea tea house. We have been going for a drive up there about once a month and have only ever been looked after and feed with the most delicious food and coffee. A few weeks ago we thought we’d give somewhere else a try and went to the foodie café/deli across the road. All I can say is never ever again the service was atrocious. Why do these cafés start business and then employ 15 year olds to serve people. I suppose that’s another thread.

    For consistently good coffee and food we go to Houlahans in Spring St Chatswood. Sam’s the barista there and he has won many awards for his coffee. The service and food are always good. What about delish in Lindfeild the quiche is devine. :raz:

    Thanks for the Chatswood tip. I have been struggling to find a place for coffee at Chatswood for some time. I am already a regular at Delish. They have so many lovely treats.

  3. FiFi La More I will agree that the north shore may seem like a desert as opposed to a dessert if you dont know where to look. There are lots of offerings to be had. Last week I dined at Tables in Pymble for the 4-5 time. The quality of the dishes are truley 5 star without the price. Check before going if Dan is on. We spent $220 for two which included wine, appertiffs, entree, mains and desserst. Corkage was $8 for the bottle. Sydneys northern beaches also offer great fair. Try the cafe at Avalon "Chealsea Tea House for a beautiful breakfast or lunch. Baristas very good. Try it out

    Yes there are some good places on the North Shore but they are still far and few between. Tables is excellent. I used to love the Chelsea Tea House especially when they had the brisket roll. But last time I went there it was terrible. I had been raving about it to one of my foodie friends from Melbourne so we took the drive up there. The service was so incredibly rude that I believed the place had changed hands. At least I had to say this to explain to the person I was with why it was so bad. We could not even get someone to give us a menu or take our order. Needless to say it was so traumatic that we went somewhere else for coffee. Do you know any good coffee places? I was going to Atomic in Neutral Bay but have moved out further now. I have discovered Ciao Down in Lindfield but was wondering if there is anything else out this way.

  4. I live on the North Shore is Sydney which I consider to be a culinary wasteland. I think the Eastern Suburbs are probably the best place to be for food. There are lots of great places particularly around Surry Hills and Darlinghurst. You would also be fairly close to Waterloo etc. which is becoming a bit of a foodie haven thanks to places like Fratelli Fresh and Simon Johnson's new food emporium.

  5. Eastern Peak... where's that from? I'm too lazy to google. Seems like its time to un-plug the '96, 10 years on... prime time.

    Good weekend for wine, the one just gone:

    - more Train Trak '01

    - Charles Melton 'Laura' Shiraz 2000... not grown by Mr Melton in the Barossa, but sourced from special contract growers up in the hills somewhere. A floral style, without the turbo-push-you-back-in-your-seat punch. Great integration, smooth as silk, a winner for a quality set of barbie kebabs involving chicken or lamb. Refined is one way to put it.

    And I just received the following in my email, from Charles Melton Wines:

    Hi folks,

    'tis that time again!

    The jolly fellow is just about coming down the chimney,

    with a big thirst for sparkling red!

    Just to let you know that our 2005 disgorgement Sparkling Red

    is available for the usual limited time.

    Awesome, serious, shiraz bubbles, perfect for the holiday season!

    Let me know if you would like some sent to you, 

    delivered to your door in time for chrissy!

    oops, have you forgotten a present for your Father in Law?

    We are doing gift packs of the 2003 Father in Law Shiraz (complete with jocks and socks!)

    gift boxed for the man of the house!

    Just what every dad needs, at least there's a good bottle of red!

    Give us a buzz on 08 8563 3606 fax 08 8563 3422

    or just reply by email!



    their email address is: cmw@charlesmeltonwines.com.au

    and no, i'm not affiliated with them :raz:

    Eastern Peak is from the Ballarat region - not that Ballarat is technically a wine region as there is not enough wineries of the required size. Moving away from the Ballarat area if you are looking for a very good inexpensive Pinot I would recommend the Mount McLeod which is the second label of Caledonia Australis.

  6. I think either York St or King Street Wharf are both good locations. The restaurants you mention fit your criteria well. We had lunch at Icebergs recently and I am still thinking about the food. It was simple food where the quality of the ingredients really stood out - please try the school prawns if they have them on the menu. One other place I would recommend is Fish Face. It is owned by one of the former owners of Pier and has amazing seafood. It is very casual, somewhat uncomfortable (stools only),BYO and you can only book between 6 and 7pm. Despite all this the seafood blows my mind every time. Enjoy!

  7. I have been to both Marque and Tetsuya in the past six weeks and have been contemplating which I think is better. Personally I prefer Marque. The food at Marque was amazing and I am still dreaming about many of the dishes. The sommelier at Marque is also probably one of the best in Sydney if not Australia. Tetsuya is a wonderful experience and probably a more uniquely Australian experience, but if I could only go to one restaurant for the rest of the year and I had a choice, I would choose Marque.

  8. Anyone see last night's show?  Surely Melbourne have to be eliminated now.  It's unbelievable that they could run such a filthy restaurant,  It just defies common sense, and with the recent food poisoning incidents at Alasya and Sofia's, you would have thought they would have been perfectly aware of hygene issues.

    You are right Shinboners, it was absolutely disgraceful. I don't see how they can avoid being nominated for elimination. I am looking forward to seeing what happens on Sunday night.

  9. Gordwal, thanks for highlighting Ezard. I think it is a brilliant restaurant. The food is sensational and I am very grateful to Ezard as I actually discovered a great Pinot Noir at Ezard which is surprising produced in Ballarat.

    found out the wine Fi fi! :cool:

    that is if it is the same as the one listed on the wine list on his website

    2000 Eastern Peake pinot ballarat

    Ozmouse, I do know and have sampled the Eastern Peake but the wine I was referring to is Tomboy Hill. I also enjoy their second label which is called Rebellion. As far as I know it is only available in restaurants and direct from the winery.

  10. Gordwal, thanks for highlighting Ezard. I think it is a brilliant restaurant. The food is sensational and I am very grateful to Ezard as I actually discovered a great Pinot Noir at Ezard which is surprising produced in Ballarat.

    Tetsuya's is certainly more refined and has more of a big night out/special occasion feeling. Tetsuya's also has a more extensive wine list. As Gordwal and Ozmouse conclude, we should make room for both of these restaurants in our dining experiences.

  11. Well this topic is certainly generating some interesting discussion. Stovetop it was really interesting that you mentioned the fish marketing board in Vancouver -now I know where all the great fish went. Hopefully they will become more active in the local marketplace. My husband went on a couple of those corporate fishing trips so we got to eat some fantastic salmon. I also had some amazing seafood when staying with an Indian Band on a remote island. Although it is two years ago now some of the restaurants I really liked were - Lumiere, Ouest (as it was then named), En Japanese,Vijs and Rodney's Oyster Bar.

    I am in absolutely no position to comment on the food situation in Adelaide. Although I did visit there for a week recently and they are certainly a parochial bunch. The ironic thing about the food situation in Adelaide is that Adelaide University actually runs a Masters Program in Gastronomy. I have only lived in Melbourne and Sydney so I can really only speak from my experiences there.

    There is indeed lots and lots of crap Pizza in Australia but at least here in Sydney I know I can go to pizzeria certified by the Associanzione Vera Pizza Napoletana. I am happy to be corrected but I don't think this was an option in Vancouver. There is a real pizza revolution going on in Melbourne at places such as Ladro. I rarely eat white bread although Philip Searle (an ex-Adelaide legend) at Infinity Sourdough makes a very decent loaf of white bread.

    I loved Alberta beef but I do feel happy with the meat situation in Australia. I have three different places where I source my meat - the local growers market where I can but it directly from the farmer, my local all-organic butcher and one of the those really old fashioned butchers where they make all their own small goods, age their beef for different lengths of time and luckily have many of the cuts that I enjoyed in North America such as short ribs and brisket. I think for me North America will always be the King of the good old fashioned steakhouse. I used to pay $50 a kilo for Australian lamb at Urban Fare but at the time I thought it was worth it every cent even though everyone in Australia thought I was crazy. I bought 10 limes for a buck this morning but they do get expensive in the off season. I always try to eat according to the seasons when fruit and vegetables taste better and are priced accordingly.

    I would have to agree with Paul on the wine front for both Melbourne and Sydney. There are wine shops in both cities that sell virtually only imported wines. I personally love burgundies and Oregon pinot noir and have absolutely no trouble sourcing these wines although they are not a cheap as I would like so they are certainly not for everyday drinking. On Christmas Day we had wines from Chile,California, France, Italy and Australia so I like to believe that my appreciation of wine goes beyond the jammy oaky Australian selection.

    One thing that is a problem in Australia although only from my selfish perspective as an eater is the Customs Authorities. There are some things which we can't import in Australia such as unpastuerised cheeses and more recently Puy Lentils.

    Would love to hear more - especially from those in Melbourne which is probably Australia's food capital.

  12. Well I could not resist not commenting on this one as two years ago I lived in Vancouver for two years and have now returned to Australia. The single most depressing thing about living in Vancouver after the rain was the food and wine. This was not to say that there are not some great restaurants in Vancouver but in terms of the general quality and freshness of the food, there is really no comparison between Australia and Vancouver. As ozmouse suggests the greatest similarities are in our great restaurants. Like ozmouse I also feel the need to comment on some non restaurant matters.

    If I can start with the Granville Market. The fruit and vegetables were so lacking in freshness that I often cried in frustration. I found that I could not plan what I was going to cook in advance as it was really a matter if seeing if anything was vaguely fresh. Also the fish is terrible. One day given that the freshness of the fish was an issue I said to the fishmonger I am not fussy about what kind of fish I just want something that is fresh. As we were leaving the market my husband said to me what is that smell - it was the fish. Needless to say there were more tears and the fish went in the bin. In Sydney we are very fortunate to have to Sydney Fish Market. I recently took a friend from Vancouver there and they were totally speechless.

    In Australia I also feel we have a lot ethnic cuisines. In Vancouver I felt it was fairly difficult to find good examples of certain ethnic cuisines such as Greek and Thai. In Vancouver it was also difficult to find a decent Italian style pizza. Decent bread and coffee is also something that needs to be carefully sourced in Vancouver. I also feel that food safety are a real issue in Vancouver restaurants. One day I had a craving for Vietnamese food so we went to what I was told was one of the better restaurants in town. About a week later I was in Las Vegas and became so ill that I had to leave the room cleaners a $100 tip because I felt so guilty about the state I had left the room in (you probably get the picture). Anyway after some testing back in Vancouver they discovered that I had caught a Vietnamese parasite from the Vietnamese restaurant. They wanted to put me in a study at UBC because I was the first Caucasian to have the parasite. While that was all very nice nothing happened to the restaurant despite the fact that many people caught the parasite from the restaurant.

    I also feel the need to comment on the wine situation. I have never seen anything as depressing as those Government Liquor stores in Vancouver. They really know how to take the pleasure out of wine shopping. As for the Okanagan wines. I realise that many people in Vancouver honestly believe they are great wines but you have to assume these people have not drunk very many wines from around the world or are alternatively off with the pixies.

    Sorry I have digressed greatly from your original question but I think I have been looking for the opportunity to vent. I think our high end restaurants and very similar to those in Vancouver which is to be expected in the era of globalisation. One difference is probably that Australian high end restaurants do offer a greater variety of seafood dishes purely because we have a much wider variety of fish and shellfish available in Australia.

    No doubt I will now cop lots of abuse from the Vancouverites. I have always been too scared to say anything on the Vancouver board as everyone is so parochial.

  13. I visited XO last week. I don't think the interior is quite a sleek as before as they are trying to achieve that 'modern asian' look which can be a difficult balancing act. I am also not really sure that the white table cloths sit well with the modern asian look.

    I really enjoyed the food. Most of the dishes contain quite a few flavours but they have been artfully blended so that the dishes actually work. I think it is a good place to go with a group of people so that you can sample as many dishes as possible. One dish I particularly enjoyed was the Crispy Fried Ocean Perch with Chilli Paste.

  14. Thanks FiFi... you in melbourne?? can you send a copy to me by overnight post??? only 1/2 hour till mail time, LOL...

    thanks, i'll try to find a copy of it before i leave friday morning!

    Sorry PCL I didn't read you post until now so here is a quick run down with their comments in case you didn't get a copy:

    The Grange: Grand experience/ if serious about food you should eat once

    Urban Bistro: Less formal/chef used to work for Cheong Liew

    The Botanic Cafe: Mediterranean food/always busy

    To Relish: Fun on Fridays, outstanding starter - poached oyster with a parsley puree in tiny choux pastries

    Wine Underground Restaurant: wines by the glass, tapas

    Depot one7nine: Breakfast

    Cibo: coffee, gelati and pannini

    Lucia's: institution at Central market - Breakfast/basic Italian

    Let us know what you discover - I am off to Adelaide myself in two weeks.

    Good Luck!

  15. I have only been there for lunch but I really enjoyed the food. Shannon Bennett from Vue du Monde was also having lunch there on the same day. Some friends of mine went there recently for dinner and were concerned that it wouldn't live up to the hype but they were very pleasantly surprised. I wish we had a few little places like Mrs Jones in Sydney.

  16. Hi Kangarool

    I just wanted to give you some support on your beef brisket idea. I am an Aussie who lived in North America for a couple of years and one of the things I miss more than anything else and still fantasise about is brisket in any of its glorious forms. I have now started to notice brisket appearing on a number of restaurant menus in Sydney. In fact on the weekends I like to travel to a beachside suburb called Avalon where one of the cafes does a wagyu beef brisket which has been slow cooked for ten hours with loads of herbs and spices. It is one of the best things I have eaten in years.

  17. In Sydney I would recommend Pier over Wildfire. Pier has amazing local seafood. Wildfire is more a place for a party night as opposed to being somewhere you go especially for the food. Claude's is wonderful as is Tetsuya's. Another restaurant that I haven't been to but I have heard very good things about is Est. If you enjoy real Thai food you should definitely try Sailors Thai.

    In Adelaide you should definitely try The Grange - Saturday would be best for the degustation menu.

  18. I can report that the queues are definitely getting smaller. The other afternoon I went past and there was only about twenty people in the queue. I have had the Krispy Kreme donuts before in the States and from the store in outer Sydney. They are pretty good as far as donuts go but there are lots of other things I would prefer to be eating. I think a lot their appeal comes from the fact that they are nearly always hot and fresh due to the turnover.

  19. The Vita Wheat idea is great and the 'worms' certainly add a certain novelty value. Apart from that buttered toast with a thin spread of vegemite is the way to go. Kids do take sandwiches for school lunches - perhaps you could try a vegemite and cheese sandwich on soft white bread - very yummy.

    Definitely go with the sponge cake for the lamingtons. If you really want to get advanced you can spread jam between layers of sponge.

    Good Luck!

  20. Hi ECR

    Here is my input:

    1. Sushi. Wasavie in Paddington has fantastic sushi and also some other great dishes (eg amazing braised pork belly). The drawbacks are that it is super popular (I had to book a few weeks a head to go on a Friday night) and there is only a communal table. If you want something more high end and innovative I believe Yoshii in the Rocks (Best Japanese in the Good Food Guide) is the way to go.

    2. I haven't discovered any amazing Italian yet.

    3. Mediterranean - maybe you could kill two birds with one stone and go Moorish on Bondi Beach (It was the other place Maliaty was trying to think of at the other end of Bondi Beach).

    4. As Maliaty suggests there is Watermark and Bathers Pavilion at Balmoral. I also like The Wharf Restaurant at Walsh Bay. It is set at the end of an old Wharf and is a great place for a long relaxing lunch.

    5. Pier at Rose Bay is the place for fish (Best Seafood in the Good Food Guide). It is really pricey but I can remember every mouthful of my meal there. I have not eaten better seafood anyway. It also has a lovely setting over the water.

    6. Lunch with Aussie Friend - What does she like?

    7. Cheese Plate. I haven't anything that blows me away (maybe that is because of my recent trip to France). However as Maliaty suggests Simon Johnson is the place to go. I buy all my cheeses here. The one in Pyrmont is really close to the Sydney Fish Market so you could go there when you go to get your Oysters.

    8. Oysters - Definitely the Sydney Fish Market.

    I hope you and your husband have a wonderful trip.

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