It’s my last day in Australia and I have nommed and munched my way from here to Melbourne and back again. Sorry for the total lack of blog posts since I arrived, I’ve been enjoying the sunshine far too much! Tomorrow morning I’m heading to Vancouver for a week (joy: 16 hour flight!), then into Amurika, from the West to East Coasts and seeing many of you very soon! Exciting, eh?
So, enough natter, here’s what’s been going on in my fave format: photos! And a video! That’s down at the bottom. I’ve also got a few new articles coming soon for The Arbuturian (as soon as I finish writing them, that is!). In case you missed my last one on Snake Soup in Hong Kong, you can read it here.
Sydney Fish Market
Dining With My Aunt
Have I mentioned that my aunt is the ultimate foodie? She’s not only a fabulous cook, but also travels all over the world, dines at some of the best restaurants, and knows amazing food. She has sampled more than one ‘food of the gods’ as she calls it, at the hands of more than one world-renowned chef. Her next adventure will be through Scandinavia, dining at Noma and chasing the Northern Lights. Envious much?
Hiramasa sashimi with yuzu kosho from Japan, soy sauce and soy sauce with wasabi oil; multicultural chopstick rest; sashimi salad box; lightly seared and thinly-sliced scallop with ponzu sauce, and wasabi and garlic sesame seeds; thinly-sliced wagyu beef with sesame sauce; bouillabaisse.
Little Vietnam! So much food everywhere…
Welcome to Asian Town…
Awesome Malaysian restaurant – super authentic!
Their roti were so delicious – roti canai & roti planta. The planta was so buttery, melted in my mouth and then clogged up my arteries. Beautiful.
Just look at that crispy chicken!!!
And, my favourite, roti tisu, was done the right way. The inside is a buttery, sugary mass of deliciousness. Honestly, if you’re ever in Malaysia or in Sydney and come across a Mamak, just order this. It’s heaven on a plate.
Shop P9, 1-5 Railway Street
And now… Melbourne! Three days of whirlwind eating and touring. Actually, Melbourne’s pretty small, three days was almost too much! I recommend the ACMI, Melbourne Aquarium and the National Gallery of Victoria for sightseeing, and for food? Josie Bones on Smith Street. Keep an eye out for an article on that experience soon.
Bar et Bistro Vue
Decent, if slightly overpriced, French food. Sister joint to the famous Vue de Monde in Melbourne.
Canard confit & mixed grill.
Bar et Bistro Vue
430 Little Collins Street
I stumbled across this place on Smith Street when I was waiting to go to Josie Bones and searching for a coffee. They weren’t technically open but the beautiful French owner let me come in, sit and have a coffee regardless. It turns out that not very much in Australia is open between the hours of 4-6pm. If I ever go back to Melbourne I’m definitely going to have to pop in here for a meal, because the menu (chalked up over the walls) looked fantastic. Great coffee, too.
92 Smith Street
I am obsessed with pho. Obsessed. This place has been frequented by a lot of big names (including Jackie Chan and a famous Hong Kong food critic) and their noodles were pretty good. I had the beef brisket and bone marrow pho, because I am weird. It was yum.
241 Swanston Street
“Abysmal” doesn’t really cover it. Lygon Street in Melbourne is the Italian district, but it’s basically just a street full of crappy, cheap, student-y Italian joints. My eye was drawn to this one because of their duck risotto with white truffle oil special, but after I’d ordered and started sipping on my white wine they returned to tell me they’d already sold out! Rubbish. I instead had the spaghetti al cortuccio – pasta cooked in a paper bag – and whilst the pasta was a horrible soggy, overcooked mess, the seafood and marinara sauce salvaged it somewhat. Still, if you’re looking for a good Italian meal maybe don’t try Lygon Street, and certainly don’t go here.
222 Lygon Street
Victoria Market is a wonderful assault on all the senses, smells, sights, sounds – go for a wander, pick out some of your favourite goodies, pack it up in a bag, wander back to the river and have yourself a picnic, yo. A fabulous way to spend an afternoon.
155 Victoria Street
Out & About
Melbourne is famous for its Lanes. This was just a little one I wanted to snap because of the starkness of it. The others are teeming with people, government-endorsed graffiti, eateries and hot spots.
If you can, try to get into MoVida or MoVida Next Door, the sister-joint to the famous tapas restaurant. We couldn’t get in, but then neither could these guys.
1 Hosier Lane
St. Kilda is a beautiful little town, about half an hour by tram from the centre of Melbourne. I have a real thing for water, apparently. It was a beautiful bright day when we went, if a little on the windy side.
A Birrov Culture
The National Gallery of Victoria, just next to the Melbourne Arts Centre (identifiable by its gigantic Eiffel Tower-esque spire) has some amazing free exhibits on, including a current wonderful one on New Zealand art called ‘Unnerved’. Definitely worth a visit. Their permanent collection is also wonderful – highly recommended.
Part of ‘Unnerved’.
Gormley’s sculptures in the entrance to the gallery.
National Gallery of Victoria
180 St Kilda Road
The ACMI has some brilliant free exhibits on, as well, and a fab one on the Art of Disney’s Fairytales at the moment, ranging from early ‘Silly Symphonies’ and ‘Snow White & The Seven Dwarfs’ to the recent ‘Tangled’. Great for a Disney head like me! Did I mention that I wrote my final year dissertation on Disney’s adaptation from literature to film? I am that cool.
Australian Centre for the Moving Image
I love aquariums. I love penguins. I do not love the fact that Melbourne Aquarium has a tiny enclosure for their penguins, with a 180 degree view for visitors. It made me really sad to see them, to be honest, as they were these beautiful Emperor & Gentoo penguins in a weeny space. They kept coming up to the glass and staring out at the throngs of people, and one at the back just stared at the changing lights the entire time. I can’t imagine how distressing it is for them, particularly the babies who were in a tiny four-by-four enclosure at the back, called the ‘Nursery’. But then here is the problem of putting animals in aquariums or zoos. Cage habits are a horrible thing.
And so there we have it! Australia in a nutshell! At least my bit of it. So now the video – enjoy!
See you all in Vancouver – peace and love.