Zomato Meet Up @ Vivace


Last week we were invited by Zomato and Vivace Restaurant for an exclusive Zomato foodie meet up and Winter warming Italian Feast! It was an intimate four course dinner by Head Chef Davide Ferraro and was set up in a lovely private dining room near the back of the restaurant. In addition, there were matching wines from Hancock & Hancock, Barone Ricasoli, Italy’s oldest winery, to compliment each dish. We were fortunate to have the Head Chef talk us through each dish, and a representative to also talk us through each wine. We were super excited about trying out the food and wine but more importantly, to meet other food bloggers!

Upon arrival, we were greeted with a glass of Prosecco, Italian sparkling wine which was very nice and crisp. We introduced each other to the other foodies and then of course like the others started snapping some photos. The beauty of this night was that there was no shame in taking as many photos as we wanted because everyone including the Zomato staff were snapping away with their cameras! It was the best!


After all the introductions and photos we sat down and was served with an Antiplasti platter which included natural oysters, prosciutto and arancini. I love oysters and these were super fresh so I gobbled a couple of them up fairly quickly! The prosciutto was lovely, soft and wasn’t too salty and the arancini balls were full of flavour.

With the entree, main and dessert we were given a few options to pick from so Davin and I made sure we ordered different dishes so we could try more. For entree I ordered the pumpkin, goat’s cheese and potato croquettes with crushed amaretti, beetroot, capers and raisin. The sweetness of the fresh beetroot and raisin balanced out the croquettes beautifully. Davin ordered the caramelised scallops with cauliflower, chorizo, shallots, fennel and coriander. The scallops were cooked to perfection! The matching wine with the entrees was a 2016 Hancock & Hancock Fiano McLaren Vale, SA.


We all got a pasta dish as part of the set menu which were pasta parcels filled with potato and leek, truffle and blue cheese sauce – all the things I love! Unlucky for those that may not like blue cheese but it was heaven for me. The portion was also very generous. The matching wine with this was the 2016 Hancock & Hancock Grenache Rose McLaren, SA. By the way, the staff were incredible and they were SO generous with the wine. They just kept pouring and pouring. I had to ask them to ease up at this point as I knew there were still a couple of more wines to try!


For mains I got the Murray Valley 12 hour slow cooked, crisp pork belly. This was accompanied with rhubarb, apple, onion and ginger relish, thyme roasted squash and white balsamic sauce. The pork had the nice crispy skin that you would look out for and the sweetness of the rhubarb and onion and ginger relish balanced it out really well. I also liked the touch of the roasted squash. My matching wine was the 2014 Hancock & Hancock Shiraz Grenache McLaren Vale, SA.

Davin ordered the roast lamb loin with pistachio brioche crust, smoked eggplant, asparagus and sweet bread. He also really enjoyed his dish and his matching wine was the 2014 Hancock & Hancock Cabernet Touriga McLaren Vale, SA. Both of the red wines were nice but I have to say the Shiraz was the winner out of the two.

I have to say that by the time mains reached us I was already kind of full because of the generous portions (and pouring!) so I was definitely over capacity when it reached dessert, but who can say no to dessert?



I ordered the dark Belgian chocolate fondant with fig, mascapone and honey gelato. The chocolate fondant was sooo good and oozed with warm, sticky chocolate lava when you broke into it with your spoon. Combined with the honey gelato it was delicious! Davin got the Panna cotta which came with white chocolate and vanilla, fresh strawberries, balsamic and pistachio praline. I could only manage a spoonful to try this but it was also yummy and the panna cotta had a nice wobble to it. The matching wine that came with our dessert was the 2009 Craigmore Botrytis Mudgee, NSW. Because I was so full and sweetened out I could only manage a sip!

Overall the food and wine was great, the service was outstanding and staff were so accommodating and friendly! We also loved being able to chat and socialise with other food bloggers and foodies and just openly take photos and talk about what we love – FOOD! So thank you Zomato and Vivace for having us, it was a great experience and we loved it. Until next time!


Approx $70 AUD per person
Website: www.vivace.com.au/
Address: 317 Bay St, Brighton VIC 3186
Phone: +61 3 9596 9511

Vivace Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato



Polish cuisine is something we have never had the privilege to try. However as Kluska has constantly been popping up as a restaurant serving home made, authentic Polish food and people have been raving on about how great it is, and the food being a true taste of Poland, it was time to check it out!



Kluska is located in the south eastern suburbs of Dandenong and is actually a house which they’ve turned into a restaurant, therefore you get the very cool experience of dining in one of the rooms throughout the house. It’s a very quaint and cosy little restaurant with the floral table cloths, wooden chairs and vintage crockery. 90s music such as M2M and La Bouche was also playing in the background transporting you into another time!


We started off with ordering some soups. I got the Barszcz Czysty, a cup of clear red borscht soup. It was packed with flavour, I could taste that it had some herbs in it and I loved that it had a spicy kick to it that warmed me up, being a chilly night. At my recommendation because so many people had raved on about it, Davin got the Flaki, their traditional hearty beef tripe soup and he absolutely loved it. It really did taste hearty and homey, again it was full of flavour and the tripe was yum! He didn’t share too much of it with me because he pretty much lapped it all up!


We then got some Pierogis, which are traditional dough dumplings with different fillings. Davin got the ones with chicken filling and I chose the ones with spinach, ricotta cheese and roasted pine nuts which were amazing! Each bite just melted in my mouth.


For mains, I ordered the Kaczka, roast duck leg baked in apple sauce balanced with a carrot stew and red cabbage salad. I loved this dish! The duck was cooked nicely and the sweetness of the apple sauce was perfect. I would definitely order this again. Davin got the Bigos which was traditional Hunter’s sauerkraut stew with finely diced beef, pork sausage and flavoured with dry prunes and red wine sauce. This dish was so flavoured and one of those perfect dishes for winter where you can just keep scooping away large hearty spoonfuls. It also came with bread if you’re into dipping it into the stew.


We also shared the Knedle for dessert which was special dumplings filled with strawberry and a hint of cinnamon, sprinkled with vanilla sugar and served with strawberry syrup and a side of cream. This was also really nice but I was so stuffed from the other dishes I couldn’t eat much of it. I probably had about two of the dumplings and Davin had the rest.

Because of their extensive list of Polish vodkas we of course had to give them a go too! Sipping away on the vodkas and eating such hearty food throughout the night, we were truly toasty warm when we left! We thoroughly enjoyed the food and the whole experience so I highly recommend checking it out!


Approx $40 AUD per person
Website: kluskarestaurant.com.au
Address: 161 Foster St, Dandenong VIC 3175
Phone: +61 3 9793 2154

Kluska Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Mr Hendricks Cafe


It’s not often that we find a good brunch place in the burbs but I do get excited when we do! I could probably eat brunch food everyday if Davin would let me. So on one weekend, a quick search on trusty Zomato brought up Mr Hendricks Cafe in Balwyn, and off we went!

The place was bustling on arrival so we were placed on a waiting list. It probably only took about 10 minutes before we were called in so they were on the ball. The interior had the wooden, rustic feel that a lot of cafes are now going for. The space inside was cosy and I understand there is also a courtyard at the back. On this occasion we were seated on the wooden bench right up against the window.


I ordered my usual latte to start off with which was really good! It had the perfect temperature and bitterness to it. We then ordered the New England lobster roll to share which had butter lettuce, celery, apple, pickled shallots and kewpie mayo which was quite nice, there were good chunky bits of lobster which we loved.

For the main, Davin ordered the fried chicken burger which came with creamed corn, cabbage and corn salad, pickled green tomato and chimichurri dressing. The burger was really good! The fried chicken was nice and crispy on the outside and tender on the inside. The chimichurri sauce went really well with it too.


The highlight dish though was the one I ordered, the salmon breakfast, which came with heirloom beetroot, burnt butter hollandaise and poached eggs on dark rye bread. Oh my gosh this dish was amazing! The salmon was cooked well, the eggs were poached to perfection and I loved how the beetroot was presented in different ways such as fresh and in purée form. But it was the burnt butter hollandaise that I absolutely loved. At first when I saw it on the plate, I thought the quantity of the sauce was overkill as there was a lot of it on the plate. But because it was soo good I literally dipped everything in that sauce. It was delicious!

Overall, I would definitely come back. The quality of both the food and the coffee was exceptional and I would definitely order that salmon breakfast again. Thinking about it makes my mouth water!


Mr Hendricks Cafe
Approx $30 AUD per person
Address: 469 Whitehorse Rd, Balwyn VIC 3103
Phone: +61 3 9830 7579

Mr Hendricks Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato