Moroccan Soup Bar


We’ve been meaning to venture out to Moroccan Soup Bar for some time now as we’ve heard nothing but great things. Davin has always been a bit hesitant given it focuses on vegetarian dishes and he sure loves his meat, however I have especially been really appreciating vegetarian dishes lately so was keen!

We ended up checking it out with our dear friends who are vegetarians for dinner one night. Nestled in Fitzroy North, they only take bookings for 6 or more people so we thought we’d just see how we’d go with lining up for a table. Surprisingly for a Saturday night we got a table fairly quickly. The only thing I didn’t like was that we were told we would have to vacate the table within an hour. Understandably it was packed and bustling and there were probably other people waiting This didn’t give us much time at all, particularly as we all recently came back from our travels and wanted to catch up on everything. The food came out super quick but it felt really rushed and we felt pressured to leave too quickly.


There is only a verbal menu or alternatively you can pick from 2 banquet menus which were $25 per head or with some additional tapas, $30 per head. We were keen on the $30 banquet given Davin and I are such big eaters however the staff convinced us to try the $25 banquet first as she told us it would be plenty of food.

Boy was she right! Unfortunately given there wasn’t a written menu, we can’t go into too much detail about the ingredients of the dishes. However we can say that every dish was packed full of wholesome flavour.  We started off with a plate of dips and vegetables which included yoghurt, hummus, carrots, eggplant, olives and potato. It was very yummy.



Then came the main dishes which came out sharing style. There were a number of dishes which had combinations of rice and vegetables, and a vegetable stew. Our favourite dish however was the chickpea yoghurt bake. The combination of the chickpea yoghurt with the crunchy textures within the bake made it one killer dish! It was delicious!


For dessert, a number of sweets were offered on a plate such as turkish delight and baklava, We were also given a lovely aromatic mint tea to have during our meal and turkish coffee to have with the desserts.


Overall it was a good experience. The food was very impressive and full of flavours. Staff were also very attentive. As mentioned above, a little more time would have been appreciated as an hour just felt way to rushed when you’re catching up with friends over dinner. The price was also very reasonable for the amount of food you get. So if you’re keen to try some great wholesome vegetarian food, it’s worth checking out.


Moroccan Soup Bar
Approx $25 AUD per person
Address: 183 St Georges Rd, Fitzroy North VIC 3068
Phone: +61 3 9482 4240

Moroccan Soup Bar Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Nepal Dining Room

I would imagine it’d be pretty rare for anyone to wake up craving Nepalese food. It’s not a cuisine which is at the back of our minds. However when either one of us suggest it, it’s always met with the feeling of shock and excitement. We are rewarded every time we eat Nepalese food, and this time at Nepal Dining Room, it was no exception. As a matter of fact, this may be the best Nepalese we’ve ever had!

Sometimes Helen and I enjoy being away from the hustle and bustle of the CBD. Situated in Malvern East, parking was always going to be plentiful outside Nepal Dining Room. Equipped with a bottle of Peter Lehman Shiraz (BYO), it was the start of a chilled and relaxing night. The decor here was clean, modern and contemporary. All the paintings and wall hangings embedded themselves beautifully on the concrete walls. The use of wooden furniture and Edison lights added a warm feel to the restaurant. The sound absorption panels on the roof stopped any echoing from entering our conversation. Overall it’s a well designed layout which would make anyone feel really comfortable.

The whole experience wouldn’t be complete without some tasty food, and they were certainly on point with all their dishes. We started with the tapas platter as we wanted to try a bit of everything. This was the perfect starter as it was appetizing but not too filling. I enjoyed everything on this platter! My favourite dish was the Pork Belly Choila. It was a grilled pork belly marinated with garlic, ginger, onion, coriander and a touch of lime. I’m quite convinced that no bad dish can be made with these lovely ingredients. I loved how the charred flavour comes through, then the marinade tones it down.


We followed this up with an eggplant and pumpkin curry, goat curry, garlic bokchoy, pulaw rice and aloo roti. Both curries tasted amazing! No matter if you’re a vegetarian or meat eater, these guys have got you covered. I’m personally the latter and am finding a new appreciation for vegetarian dishes. Considering the fact that eggplant and pumpkin were not my favourite veggies growing up, they have won me over with this curry! The flavours were bold and flavoursome, loved it. We also enjoyed the aloo roti, as it had a layer of fluffy potato inside. It also had great texture as the outside was not soggy at all. In hindsight, we probably ordered too much carbs and could have done without the rice as we were stuffed! Oh I almost forgot to mention, for you chilli lovers out there, don’t forget to get a serve of the chilli chutney. It was so good that we ordered some takeaway for our parents.



I could not fault anything about Nepal Dining Room, everything was perfect! The only regret we have was not finding it sooner. We’ve already made another booking to take Helen’s parents here to eat and I cannot wait! Check this place out guys, because we could all do with some more Nepalese food in our lives.


Nepal Dining Room
Approx $35 AUD per person
Address: 156 Waverley Road, Malvern East VIC 3145
Phone: +61 3 9569 3358

Nepal Dining Room Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato



We didn’t get a chance to visit the island of Crete during our time in Greece. However, being able to enjoy some Cretan cuisine at Elyros back in Melbourne was a pretty awesome experience! We already get excited by new flavours with dishes we’ve never had before. To be spoilt by a whole new cuisine, I felt like a kid at a candy store.

“How did you find this place?” – this is a question which we get asked a lot. Well the answer to this question for Elyros was random Google restaurant searches, along with some cross checking on Zomato. As a matter of fact, this is how we find most of the restaurants we go to, because we like to try different places out. Elyros caught our attention with their menu and reasonable prices. We rocked up and I was shocked to see how nice the place was. We don’t generally look up pictures of the inside, so I found myself severely under dressed again! I felt as though my black runners were discreet, so I puffed out my chest, and walked to the table confidently like they were leather shoes. Fake it till you make it!


The white walls, big windows and chandeliers gives the restaurant an understated yet elegant look. It has a strong Greek flair without having to resort to scattering photos of Greece all over the place. I certainly didn’t feel like I was in Melbourne during the whole time I dined at Elyros.

With the help of the friendly waiting staff, we finally agreed on the 4 course set menu for $63. Please bear it mind that this is a mid week special, and the prices may vary on the weekend. This set menu even came with alcohol too! You get either a French sparkling, Semillon from Hunter Valley, Greek red, or a beer. Something for all alcoholic preferences, it was very well thought out. The first two courses consisted of multiple dishes, which would be too much to list here. Picking our favourite dishes was a difficult task as they were all so tasty! The Fava – yellow split pea puree, capers & shallots was just to die for. Throw out everything with what you think a pea puree should taste like, this one is totally different. There was nothing artificial with the sweetness of this puree, the capers and shallots give it an interesting twist. This dish singlehandedly upped my carb intake for the night because I couldn’t stop dipping the bread in it!


Kalitsounia – traditional Cretan cheese pies was also a hit. Little fluffy pillows of cheesy goodness. The cheese was light and piping hot, burnt the roof of my mouth from eating this, but so worth it. The lamb was exceptional, slow cooked for at least 12hrs, it was soft and juicy.


The fish was cooked to perfection, and it was complimented with black garlic. The only previous interactions I’ve had with black garlic was seeing them at the supermarket and marking them as too expensive to buy. I never would have expected it to be used with fish. Did it work? You bet it did! It accentuated the sweetness of the fish and I thoroughly enjoyed it. By the time we had finished our 3rd course, we were well and truly stuffed! Dessert was overkill. I remembered it to be nice, but no more recollection after that. I was way too full and my taste buds had shut down.


Upon doing some research before writing this review, I learnt that Elyros was actually a one hatted restaurant. Without knowing this prior to visiting them, I had already thought their price to food quality ratio was tough to beat. We were also treated with the utmost respect from the waiting staff at Elyros. Being totally new to Cretan cuisine, we naturally asked a lot of questions. The waiting staff here always answered with a smile on their faces, and we were never made to feel as though we were a hassle. I found them warm and personable, total opposite of the snobby service you may find at other hatted restaurants. Do pay Elyros a visit if you haven’t been, I’m sure you’ll have a magical experience!


Approx $65 AUD per person
Address: 871 Burke Road, Camberwell VIC 3124
Phone: +61 3 9882 8877

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



Hey everyone! It feels like it’s been loooong time since we’ve published a post. We’ve been super busy travelling, working on other projects and then studying for my final exam ever! Now that’s done, we’re back into the swing of things such as our love for food.

Calia has been a place that we have wanted AND have attempted to get in to try for a while now. Located at Emporium Melbourne in the CBD, the Japanese menu has been designed by Michelin star chef Francisco Javier Araya. The reviews for this place has been high and the photos of the dishes looked amazing so we were dying to check it out. Attached to the dining area is also a retail concept space which stocks and showcases high quality, luxury food and food related products.


However they are only open until 7.30 pm from Saturday to Wednesday and 9.30 pm from Thursday to Friday, and they don’t take bookings. Therefore you really just have to show up and try your luck at putting your name on the wait list. They take your number down and text you when it’s ready. However there are no guarantees you’ll get in because like us when we first tried, if it reaches almost closing time then you’ve missed out for the night. Their dining area is not huge either so the only tip we have is to get there as early as possible.

On this joyous night we decided to get there at 5.30 pm, and lo and behold, we were seated within about 20 minutes! We were so excited! While we were waiting we just browsed around in their retail store which had items ranging from wine, cured meats and truffle slices to tea pots, whiskey glasses and honey dippers.


Once we were seated we perused the menu and realised we pretty much wanted to try almost everything because it all sounded amazing! After some time though we narrowed it down. From the grazing menu we ordered the Alaskan king crab claw baked in miso mayonnaise, Unami fries, raw scallops dressed in wasabi ponzu sauce, baked scallops (cause we just had to try both versions!), and ox tongue with yakitori sauce.



The Alaskan king crab claw was a bit disappointing as it was dry and had no crab flavour at all. I think they relied heavily on the very strong miso mayonnaise. It was probably our least favourite dish of the night. The Unami fries were absolutely amazing! They were crunchy and flavoured with seaweed and the perfect spices. We couldn’t stop eating them! The raw scallops were SO fresh and their light dressing ensured the scallops itself were the hero of the dish. This was one of my favourite dishes of the night and I took my time savouring it. The baked scallops were also delicious and the creamy mayo sauce they baked it in was perfectly balanced in flavours.




What surprised us the most however was the ox tongue. When it came out we were wondering if it was really ox tongue or whether it was actually beef as they were presented on skewers as thick square shaped pieces. I guess we were envisioning thin slices of meat being ox tongue. But oh my gosh they were ox tongue and they were so soft! The meat literally melted in our mouths. They were SO good! The best ox tongue we’ve ever had! We also enjoyed it with this special green matcha beer they recommended which went down really well.



For the mains we ordered the marbled Sukiyaki bowl which had premium Marble 9+ wagyu slices with a 63 degrees egg and rice. This dish was SO tasty! The wagyu was so soft and flavoured perfectly, a spoonful of the wagyu, the rice and the egg was heaven. We also ordered the Ochazuke Samon which had grilled sustainably caught Tasmanian salmon with a dashi tea broth. The tea broth was lovely however the salmon was a bit dry. We recently had a similar dish with the tea broth in the U.S which was better.



With dessert we ordered the chocolate lava cake which oozed of warm matcha ganache. This dessert was to die for and we loved that strong bitterness of the dark chocolate. Really yummy dessert. We were also given a complimentary dessert which was their newly created crepes filled with the loveliest yuzu flavoured cream. It was really good and I would definitely order that again.

The service was good and there were a lot of staff to attend to their diners. Food came out super quick. We did struggle a bit in communicating with one of the staff because his English wasn’t that good, but other than that they were really friendly and accommodating. The prices for high quality food such as this are also VERY reasonable.

Overall it was a great experience and we’re really glad we got the opportunity to try their food.


Approx $40 AUD per person
Address: Shop 8, Level 3/287 Lonsdale St, Melbourne VIC 3000
Phone: +61 3 9662 1688

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

Rare Hare and the Jackalope experience


A couple weekends ago we visited Rare Hare, a restaurant out in Mornington Peninsula, which is part of a fairly brand new establishment called Jackalope.

Jackalope is a unique one stop shop getaway which includes a luxury art hotel, a vineyard and wine tasting cellar, a fancy cocktail lounge called Flaggerooot, a fine dining restaurant called Doot Doot Doot and a more casual style restaurant called Rare Hare. You literally don’t need to go anywhere else and could spend the whole day here. Or even stay there the night if you want to!

Anyway on that day our focus was Rare Hare because we had heard good things about it. Now Jackalope has only been around since April this year so it is VERY new and yet the word was already out there about how amazing the place was. In fact the day after we visited, it was featured on TV on Postcards.

Rare Hare only takes bookings for groups of 8 or more so we decided to show up at 2 PM on a Saturday afternoon for a late lunch. The restaurant was still buzzing! We were told it would be about an hour wait and I provided my mobile number so they could text me once our table was ready. This gave us time to explore the grounds. First stop? Straight to the wine cellar of course for some wine tasting!


The wine cellar entrance is attached to the restaurant and so after we put our name down on the waiting list we walked straight through the door into a huge open warehouse space with an abundance of wine barrels from floor to ceiling lined up against the walls and perimeter of the warehouse. It was quite a sight! Outdoor heaters were set up in the warehouse for warmth near the wine tasting table. Staff there were very friendly and chatty. And surprisingly all the wines were quite good! We’re not Chardonnay drinkers and almost passed on tasting it but the friendly staff convinced us to give it a go, and guess what? It was so good we ended up buying a bottle! We also purchased a Shiraz and a Brut to take home and was very pleasantly surprised with the quality of the wines.

With still time on our hands we then went to check out their cocktail lounge which is located just inside the Jackalope hotel. As soon as we entered we were like wow! This is a glamorous cocktail lounge you would probably normally experience in the city but not out in Mornington Peninsula! We seated ourselves at the bar which had a lovely marble finish and ordered a couple of cocktails. Behind the bar there was an abundance of colourful bottles of liquor. They also had a bar food menu so we decided to order the truffle mac and cheese croquettes, which were AMAZING. The batter was so crispy and the filling oozed of delicious goodness.



It was not long after I got a text advising us our table was available so off we went to Rare Hare. It was still packed when we were seated and handed the menus. Everything on the menu looked great. We started off with their pacific oysters and got half a dozen with a migonette sauce. We enjoyed it with their lovely 2012 Wllow Creek Vineyard Brut which went really well with it. The oysters so fresh! In fact they were so good we ended up ordering another half a dozen! We also ordered some cured meats and the cured trout with horseradish creme which were both delicate, fresh and delicious.


For mains we ordered the kingfish, rare venison, chargrilled squid and beef cheeks to share. There isn’t even any point in describing each dish because every single dish was faultless. The presentation of the dishes were beautiful and the flavours were spot on. They really focused on highlighting their fresh produce and we were really impressed with the quality of their food. We also got the meringue which had lemon verbena, fennel seed custard and rhubarb for dessert which was also spectacular. What more can we say? We are super happy that we found this gem and we’ll definitely be back for more of their amazing food.





We ended up finishing the great day by sitting on their comfortable chairs outside with a final glass of sparkly (tea for Davin as he was driving), watching the sunset before we headed home. It was a perfect day.


Rare Hare
Approx $60 AUD per person
Address: 166 Balnarring Rd, Merricks North VIC 3926
Phone: +61 3 5931 2501

Rare Hare Wine & Food Store Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Stocked Food Store


It was one of those weekends again where we thought we would go check out a new cafe in Toorak however it happened to be closed on that day so we walked along Toorak Rd and came across the Stocked Food Store. The delicious and healthy looking salads in their window certainly got our attention and so we walked right in without hesitation!



The place was buzzing! It is not a huge space so when you walk in, it is quite narrow, particularly as there are generally lots of people coming in and getting takeaway. On one side there is the deli which serves up a variety of gourmet cheeses, meats, dips, salads, soups and other pre-made meals on display which you can take home such as fish pies, quiches, lasagnes, salmon patties, meatballs, cauliflower cheese – the variety feels endless! All their food is freshly made in their store and there is an abundance of healthy dishes. On the other side, shelving covers the whole wall and is filled with jars of other goodies, crackers and all other packaged items.


Right at the end of the narrow store is just one communal table in which you can eat in. We’ve done this twice now and have always managed to get a couple of seats as most people pop in to buy takeaway and leave. On this occasion Davin ordered the salmon with a broccoli and green bean salad and I ordered the salmon pattie with a salad to eat in. Both dishes were delicious and were quite generous portions! I’ve also had their quiche and potato salad which was good too.

Because the food was so good we then decided to get some takeaway for dinner so we got the chicken and vegetable soup, a fish pie which was made with fresh prawns, salmon and rockling, the cauliflower cheese, one of their gourmet salads, some cold meats and this beautiful hard cheese washed in a balsamic vinegar. I also got a lemon tart – yes they do dessert and have a range of options too! The food was divine! It made having dinner at home just as good (if not, even better in some cases) as dining out. In fact all we could think about after the lunch was having dinner at home! If the store was closer to home we would definitely be popping in more often to grab food on our lazy days. You could even host a dinner party easily by ordering their pre-made dishes. Prices are more on the expensive end however you are paying for quality and fresh produce.

Highly recommend if you’re in the area to check out this food store. We’ll definitely be back!


Stocked Food Store
Approx $30 AUD per person
Address: 549 Malvern Rd, Toorak, Melbourne VIC 3144
Phone: +61 3 9826 3333

Stocked Food Store Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

New Shanghai


My aunty had raved on about New Shanghai for a while, saying that they make the best dumplings in Melbourne. Huge call, and I’ve been really wanting to try them out to see what the fuss was all about. Problem is that we hardly ever go to Emporium in the CBD, so on this rare occasion we were there, we wasted no time in checking them out.

We got to New Shanghai with an hour till closing time, therefore only waited around 10 minutes for a table. I have heard from other people that it’s not uncommon to wait over 30-45 minutes for a table, so keep this in mind if you’re hungry! A person put our names on their list and allocated a number to us. I kinda feel sorry for the take away place next to New Shanghai, because everyone seemed to be using their chairs to sit down and wait without buying anything (we’re guilty also). The restaurant itself looks very Chinese, sending a strong message that they do not do fusion foods. Message received loud and clear, time to bring on the dumplings!


It’s criminal to not start off with the classic Xiao Long Bao (steamed pork dumplings). This is the signature dumpling where all the dumpling places are rated on, a make or break dish. The Xiao Long Bao here was fabulous. The skin was thin and soft, but fully capable of holding the beautiful soup inside. With the correct chopstick technique, you shouldn’t spill a drop. I would recommend grabbing the dumpling more towards the top, where there’s more rigidity as the middle part can be quite delicate. The soup had great natural sweetness and hits you with a burst of flavour! The pork mix inside was soft and bouncy, maintaining good texture. Could not fault the Xiao Long Bao, it’s as good as any I’ve had in the past!


My personal favourite was the prawn wontons with peanut-sesame sauce and chilli oil. The prawn filling was fresh, and the peanut-sesame sauce was outstanding. It was as though they mixed smooth peanut butter through the sauce, and the peanut taste hits the back of the palette after every bite! I loved it, and will certainly be getting this dish every time. We ordered some other dishes such as the drunken chicken, pan fried crab meat & pork dumplings, and the crab meat Xiao Long Bao. They were all high quality dishes and I guarantee that you won’t leave disappointed.


All the waiting staff were quick and highly alert. They were always looking around to see if any customers needed anything, it never takes long to get their attention. The service is efficient but not personable, as they will not go out of their way to ask you how your day’s been. We also experienced the vintage Asian style of stacking the chairs around us before closing time. We’re not too fussed about this, but if this is something that bothers you, then you may have to come earlier and not so close to closing time.


All in all, we enjoyed our experience at New Shanghai and would highly recommend them to anyone after some top quality dumplings! Are they the best in Melbourne? Well I’d have to say they are right up there! We’ll need to make a visit to our other dumpling favourite again in order to come to a true conclusion. It’s been a while since we’ve been to the other place, therefore we need to refresh our taste buds. We will write a review after the visit. As it stands right now, New Shanghai is certainly right up there in our top 2 in Melbourne!


New Shanghai
Approx $50 AUD per person
Address: Emporium Melbourne, Level 3, 287 Lonsdale St, Melbourne VIC 3000
Phone: +61 3 9994 9386

New Shanghai Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Paris Go


Well it’s definitely been a while, so we’re sorry it’s taken this long to write up another post. With work, study and all these other side projects, we have been busy bees! Anyway, you all should know by know how much I LOVE French cuisine. So of course I had to write up on yet another French restaurant we recently came across.

Paris Go is located amongst other great restaurants on Rathdowne Street, Carlton. However the high ratings and reviews on Zomato did make this restaurant stand out just a tad so we had to check it out.


Upon entering, you see white tablecloths, white wooden banisters and white walls. The walls however are complemented with artfully, colourful framed French posters, paintings and mirrors which I kind of wanted for our house. A mixture of wooden chairs and French velvet button chairs are scattered throughout the restaurant.

Now right here, I have to say how super friendly and fantastic the staff were. From the moment we arrived until we left, they were nothing but attentive, switched on, accommodating and friendly. Kudos to them for providing such awesome customer service throughout our experience.



But of course onto the important part: the food. We started off with my favourite, oysters! They were served three ways: natural, baked in cheese, and natural with a yummy green, possibly garlic type sauce. They were fresh and delicious! We then ordered the King George whiting dumpling in a prawn sauce which was something we’ve never had before and was very interesting! They were fluffy and the sauce was full of prawn flavour. We also couldn’t say no to the steak tartare which had a special dash of cognac. The flavours of this steak tartare was perfect. Sometimes you come across steak tartare which are more on the plain side. However this one was packed with flavours without it being too flavoured, if that makes sense! Our final entree was the fresh steamed southern Tasmanian mussels in a champagne sauce and oh my gosh, these were also super fresh and flavoured really well too. We were impressed. So far so good!



Ok so you’re probably wondering, how can we possibly fit in mains after ordering FOUR entrees? Because we decided to share everything we decided to only order one main in addition to the four entrees. This ended up being the 250g eye fillet with bearnaise sauce and the staff were very lovely to split the steak in half and serve it on two individual plates so that we got our own steak and sauce. It also came with french fries which we shared. The steak was cooked rare, just how we liked it and the bearnaise sauce was really nice. Oh and we also ordered a lovely bottle of French red to go with the food: Cotes Du Rhone, 2012.


Although we were pretty full, we couldn’t help but have a peek at the dessert menu. Being a total sucker for lemon type desserts, I quickly zeroed in on the caramelised lemon tart so it was settled pretty quickly. The tart had just the right amount of tang with dollop of cream. We gobbled that up quite efficiently too.

Overall it was a fantastic experience and I would definitely recommend if you’re looking for some traditional French food. Lots of ticks to great food and fantastic service!


Paris Go
Approx $70 AUD per person
Address: 116 Rathdowne St, Carlton, VIC 3053
Phone: +61 3 9347 7507

Paris Go Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Arbory Bar & Eatery

Arbory Bar & Eatery is a fantastic place to hang out for some drinks and quality food. It’s located right next to Flinders Street Station – they literally share a fence! Huge savings can be made by not having to take an Uber or taxi home.


Having grown up in Melbourne my whole life, sometimes I forget how lovely our city looks. On the other side is the Yarra River, and the light reflections on the water creates a stunning view. There’s plenty of cover available at Arbory for the constant rain in Melbourne as of late. The bar is fully sheltered with gas heaters scattered around the whole place. In between the gas heaters, are metal barrels with fire breathing out of them, a very cool sight indeed! Another thing that’s striking is just how long this place is, it feels as though you could walk forever till you get to the other end.

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The food at Arbory is not what you expect bar food to be. The addition of the word ‘eatery’ in their name should give you an indication that these guys are serious about food! Even though the atmosphere feels casual, the food is restaurant quality. There are smaller items to go with beer and wine, however Helen and I went for the full food experience! We got the New England lobster roll, mushroom & truffle Arancini, white fish ceviche, sirloin steak and a side of chilled green beans. We were off to a flyer with the lobster roll! The lobster was fresh and succulent, mayonnaise was light and delicate, and who can resist a sprinkle of fresh chives. The roll wasn’t overly sweet which was a huge bonus in my books. The sirloin came with a silverbeet tart which was interesting, the horseradish sauce complimented the meat perfectly. It was cooked rare, exactly how we like it. Funny enough, my favourite dish of the night was actually the chilled green beans! These were possibly the best beans I’ve ever had. Perfect crunch, and the Merlot vinegar dressing was just to die for. Along with the feta, mint and almonds, it was a tasty textual delight!



The only little negative thing about Arbory is that it’s so packed! Seems like the whole of Melbourne knows how great they are, and they really swarm here. Fridays  after work can be chaotic and finding a table to enjoy dinner could prove difficult. If you’re someone who’s bothered by large crowds, then you may want to avoid coming on Friday and Saturdays. Personally, I will eat standing up if I have to, cause the food is delish!


Arbory Bar & Eatery
Approx $35 AUD per person
Address: Flinders Walk, Melbourne VIC 3000
Phone: +61 3 8648 7644

Arbory Bar and Eatery Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Caffe E Cucina

A nice Italian restaurant is always the perfect entree to a movie! When all we could find was a 9:40PM movie session at Jam Factory, we just knew that the stars were aligned for an Italian meal. Caffe E Cucina is one of the top rated Italian restaurants in the area, so the decision was an easy one.

Caffe E Cucina was opened in 1988 with a vision to introduce Italian hospitality to Melbourne. For a restaurant to be open for 30 years is a feat rarely achieved. Helen and I have witnessed numerous restaurants close down throughout the years, many which we considered of high quality. The restaurant business is truly cut throat, with everything having to work in harmony to have any chance of survival.


After visiting Caffe E Cucina I can understand how they stood the test of time. The service first and foremost was simply impeccable. Our dedicated waiter was quite a charmer, and had a constant smile that threatens to take your woman away. We experienced this service in Italy as well, the charm, the wittiness, and the smoothness. They make you look foolish for not tipping. Our waiter also remembered our whole order without writing anything down, and did not get one thing wrong. He was always on the ball to the point where our wine glasses were never dry, but we didn’t even notice him pour the wine!


Helen and I don’t place a huge emphasis on food authenticity, but if you’re someone who prefers authentic Italian food then Caffe E Cucina certainly delivers. The produce from the cured meats to the seafood was fresh. I couldn’t fault any of the dishes, there was nothing that steered me the other way. Picking any favourites here would come down to personal preference. I particularly enjoyed the swordfish carpaccio and linguine with seafood! The swordfish with the acidity from the grapefruit, pomegranate and tomatoes was fine tuned to perfection. An appetising entree that leaves you craving for more. The linguine with seafood was probably one of the best pastas I’ve had. Seafood already has so much natural flavour, so it’s always best to let it shine. That’s exactly what Caffe E Cucina has done. They haven’t overcomplicated this pasta and I was rewarded with fresh clean flavours. The linguine was cooked just right resulting in great texture. The respect paid to the ingredients was evident in all their dishes.




Now I did notice a little outdoor balcony outside where I was seated. This was apparently the ‘Rolls-Royce’ spot of the restaurant! It’s so special that it only fits two people. Helen and I would love to give this balcony experience a go in the future, but it does lead me to my one and only minor criticism: $230 minimum spend! I understand that they may not want two people out there sipping on water for 3 hours, but $230 sounds a bit steep indeed…

Apart from this minor criticism which technically hasn’t even affected me yet, Caffe E Cucina really is the place to be for Italian cuisine in South Yarra. These guys are without a doubt the real deal, and we cannot wait to head back!.


Caffe E Cucina
Approx $65 AUD per person
Address: 581 Chapel St, South Yarra VIC 3141
Phone: +61 3 9827 4139

Caffé e Cucina Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


Saint.Urban are brought to us by the same team as Punch Lane. To say that we had high expectations of Saint.Urban is an understatement, because Punch Lane ha​s​ served us high quality food consistently for years. Sometimes we forget what a difficult task it is for a restaurant to maintain food standards of high quality, yet able to constantly change their menu. Punch Lane is a restaurant who has achieved this, and we can honestly say that we’ve never had a bad dish there. As we have found out, Saint.Urban has kept with this trend.

Located on bustling Swan Street in Richmond, Saint.Urban ​is​ on the quieter end. However this did not help us much on a Saturday night, as we couldn’t find any parking and found ourselves parked 600 metres away from the restaurant. Not a big deal for us as a bit of cardio couldn’t hurt, but you should be mindful if you’re someone who leaves the house at the last minute.


As soon as I walked in, I instantly fell in love with the decor of the restaurant. The use of arches were prominent throughout the restaurant. It was used from their ​menu ​specials board to their windows. Speaking of which, I sat in awe as I watched how the windows opened up! Each arch has the ability to open up to let air in, I have never seen this design before, it was beautiful. Raw exposed concrete walls provide the perfect backdrop.

Well as for the food, it was exceptional! I’d say it more than exceeded our expectations. The Wagyu bresaola had some of the most intense beef flavours I’ve ever experienced from Wagyu beef. It was also a generous serving for the price. The sheep haloumi with peppered beetroot compote was a brave dish, but boy did they pull it off! Who knew beetroot and cheese could taste so good, the texture and sweetness of the beetroot blended seamlessly with the haloumi. The beetroot also served it’s purpose of taking away the gamey edge of the sheep haloumi. The mains dishes, confit duck and snapper were equally satisfying. Neither were overcooked, and the honeyed pear looked stunning on the plate, well played Saint.Urban!




Saint.Urban has firmly planted themselves as one of the best culinary eateries in Richmond. Over 20​ ​yrs of experience at Punch Lane has been carried over to Saint.Urban, and the results speak for themselves. Two thumbs up from me, and I can’t wait to go back!


Approx $45 AUD per person
Address: 213 Swan St, Richmond VIC 3121
Phone: +61 3 8456 0933

Saint.Urban Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Heartattack and Vine


I’d like to share with you guys today a refreshing Italian restaurant located on Lygon Street. Now I know what you guys are probably thinking. Italian men standing at the front of their restaurant with menus, herding people in like sheeps! This is actually one of my pet hates, and I would never recommend a restaurant that does this. Heartattack and Vine is the total opposite of this unwelcoming stigma. They let their showcase of food, and the faces of happy diners do the marketing. We’ve walked past Heartattack and Vine many times after dinner. Everyone always looks happy and relaxed dining here. Having missed out on trying their food so many times, food frustration kicked in, and we made an exclusive trip to Carlton to try them out.

Heartattack and Vine is an Italian tapas style restaurant. They have an outdoor seating area outside, but since it was a warm day when we went, we opted for some indoor air con goodness. Dimly lit lighting sets a romantic and intimate scene. They showcased all their beautiful cichetti (tapas) at the front behind some thick glass. Staff were welcoming with big smiles on their faces, and we were seated straight away on the communal curbside bench. The dining area was small and cosy, and they soon realised how big our appetites were! We ended up taking up the space of 4 people with our food. The concept was simple, you walk up and pick what cichetti you want and either pay on the spot or start a tab. Cichetti were $3.50 each or 3 for $10. More substantial items such as oysters or house salads, had their own prices.



After ordering 2 Italian reds, we were on a mission. The cichetti were great value and we pretty much tried them all. I was asking what everything was just to satisfy my curiosity, but I knew I was going try all of them! We were truly impressed by the variety offered, and it wasn’t too carb heavy, which was a bonus. The dishes were simple yet with all the ingredients combined they worked effortlessly. The produce was extremely fresh, proof is with the seafood. It’s hard to disguise freshness with seafood, the mussels and oysters here were spot on! Figs, quail eggs, mascarpone cheese are some of the other delicious delights you may find on the day. I say ‘may’ because they are constantly changing their dishes to the seasonal produce. I’m not expecting to eat the same things next time I come to here, and that’s an exciting thought!



Heartattack and Vine offers an abundance of food to cater for any picky or adventurous eater. I don’t expect any two persons to eat as much as we did, but if you do decide to go a bit crazy, it certainly won’t send you broke. You’d be hard to find value like this, with quality to match. I have a feeling this will be one our regular go to places, and I hope it will be yours too!


Heartattack and Vine
Approx $30 AUD per person
Address: 329 Lygon St, Carlton VIC 3053
Phone: +61 3 9005 8624

Heartattack and Vine Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Crux and Co.


South Melbourne seems to be one of our favourite places lately, as yet again we came across another lovely eatery there! As soon as I walked into The Crux and Co. I instantly loved the place. It has a nice modern, and clean feel to it with the light woods and white decor, making it feel really spacious inside. Staff were very friendly and let us choose where we wanted to be seated so we sat down at a table that had comfy cushions for our backs.




I started off with a latte which was pretty nice, it had the perfect level of bitterness and didn’t come out scorching hot, so I could drink it straight away. Davin got an iced coffee after seeing quite a few of them come out and that was really good too. It was not sweet at all and had a good balance of coffee and milk. I also ended up getting a fresh orange juice with my meal. We loved the glasses the drinks came out in.



Now onto the food. It was pretty amazing. Davin ordered the smoked salmon and ricotta on house-made croissant with fennel salad and balsamic reduction, which was delicious. The croissant was fresh and had a lovely crunch to it. Add the combination of the salmon and the ricotta cheese, it made it a really enjoyable dish. I ordered the scrambled eggs with smoked salmon, broad beans, bonito, with a tobiko and siracha mayonaise on squid ink toast. This was also a really yummy dish and I easily gobbled this up fairly quickly. The presentation of the dishes was also pretty without being pretentious and trying too hard, something we’ve seen at quite a few other cafes lately.


Finally we couldn’t pass on dessert because they had so many lovely desserts displayed in their glass cabinet. I settled on a lemon eclair which was so good and hit the sweet spot for me. Service was also outstanding and the staff were very friendly. We will definitely be back!


Crux and Co.
Approx $30 AUD per person
Address: 35 Albert Rd, Melbourne VIC 3004
Phone: +61 3 9820 1081

The Crux & Co Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Sakura Kaiten Sushi


So a friend of mine is currently over in Japan having the time of her life skiing and eating, sending me pics of her eating adventures (at my request), which of course made me really miss all the amazing food over there.  I thought that it was timely then that our next blog post was on a Japanese dining experience in Melbourne!

If you’re looking for a good sushi train restaurant with top quality produce in Melbourne, then Sakura Kaiten Sushi is one to check out. It’s been on our very long ‘to try’ list for quite some time and finally we did it. The outcome? Why didn’t we try this place earlier?!


Not to be confused with their sister restaurant Sakura Kaiten II which is located on Lonsdale St, the Sakura Kaiten Sushi we visited is located on Little Collins St, CBD and is the higher rated out of the two. It is a fairly small and intimate place so if you’re like us and don’t want to spend too much time waiting in the queue outside, call up and make a booking. We didn’t think that they took bookings but were pleasantly surprised when we called and they allowed us to reserve two seats.


Now let’s get straight into the food. Just like most other sushi train restaurants, there are different coloured plates of glorious food that slowly travel by you for your choosing. Each colour represents a price (i.e. orange plates are $2.80, pink plates are $3.80 etc.). But of course being the piglets that we are, Davin and I never take notice of that and more look out for what looks good, generally taking plates off the conveyer belt as fast as they are topping it up. Okay maybe that’s an exaggeration but you know what I mean!

The quality of the produce was the closest reminder of Japan for us. The seafood was definitely fresh and we gobbled up more sashimi and nigiri than we probably should have. It would be too much to list every plate we tried but one of the highlights included the super tuna belly nigiri. Oh my gosh the tuna belly literally brought us back to Tokyo when we were just ordering plates and plates of the nice pink super fatty tuna nigiri over there because it was so good. Well this tuna belly nigiri for Melbourne standards was pretty damn good and pretty close to Japan! The tuna literally melted in our mouths and we could taste the fattiness of it on our lips. Of course we couldn’t stick to just one plate and took a few more plates for our feasting.




We also really liked the salmon cream cheese roll, the octopus salad, salmon with lobster salad sakura flower, scallop nigiri, grilled salmon nigiri, grilled yellow tail nigiri, calamari nigiri, tsubugai nigiri, salmon belly sashimi, only to name a few! Even their deep fried oysters and chill prawn dumplings were top notch. We were so full by the time we walked out but was very satisfied with the food. Highly recommend if you are craving a taste of Japanese!


Sakura Kaiten Sushi
Approx $40 AUD per person
Address: 61 Little Collins St, Melbourne CBD, VIC 3000
Phone: +61 3 9663 0898

Sakura Kaiten Sushi Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Pelikan Société

Pelikan Société is an awesome cafe located at Hastings, Mornington Peninsula. We initially set out to visit a winery in the Mornington Peninsula, but a quick Google search and we were drawn to Pelikan Société instead. I initially had two concerns about this place, the spelling of the name and the fact I had no idea where Hastings was! After visiting twice, I still can’t figure out these two things. We were drawn to the menu, and the pictures of this cafe looked great online. We punched the address into Google maps and off we went.

We parked in the car park and the scenery was pretty amazing. Clear blue water with small boats parked along the pier. There were people fishing along on the bridge also, with decent success. I don’t consider myself an outdoorsy person, but there was something very calming about this place.


Pelikan Société had massive windows from top to bottom which allowed us to enjoy this view whilst inside. The cafe was filled with natural light and as a result, the wooden furniture was glowing! It had a really comfortable and relaxing colour theme inside, I particularly liked the contrast with the different coloured chairs. The acoustic panels which they have installed on their ceiling, helped immensely with preventing echoing. We’ve been to a lot of places without the acoustic panels, and it can be really hard to talk without having to yell over one another.


I’ve always had a keen interest with the specials menu of any eatery. The specials allow the chefs to experiment with new dishes and to use great seasonal produce, which I wholeheartedly support. We were rewarded with an exceptional mussels dish from Pelikan Société! A true highlight for any seafood lover, and one of the best I’ve had. The use of royal gala apples with a cider reduction accentuated the natural sweetness of the mussels. The fresh herbs also balanced out the creaminess of the sauce. This sauce would go well with any seafood dish. The mussels itself were not only fresh, but was also cooked perfectly, still plump and juicy. It’s a shame that we won’t get to eat this dish next time.


“The Cuban” sandwich came out in a Cuban cigar box, very shnazzy! Certainly gets everyone looking and excited as it’s coming out – mobile marketing. Tastes as good as it looks, the pork belly melts in the mouth, with the dijon sauce and sweet pickles making it a very appetising sandwich indeed! Really can’t fault any of the food here, they’ve got the flavours down pat, and they should be very proud of themselves.


I highly recommend Pelikan Société for any food lover who enjoys a little day trip. You can also visit some nice wineries in the Mornington Peninsula afterwards as they are not too far away from the cafe. Water views plus vineyards all in one day? Sounds like a pretty sweet deal to me!


Pelikan Société
Approx $35 AUD per person
Address: 2 Marine Parade, Hastings, VIC 3915
Phone: +61 3 5909 8132

Pelikan Societe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

The Little French Deli


Continuing on with my love for French food, we recently visited The Little French Deli, a place I had bookmarked for quite some time and have been wanting to check out. We decided to head there one sunny day for lunch and they certainly did not disappoint!


Located along Nepean Hwy, two minutes from Bonbeach, my eyes lit up when we entered the deli area where they had delicious cheeses, cured meats, sausages and lovely dips behind the glass window to take away. We made a mental note to come back after our meal to purchase some goodies for home. The lovely staff directed us next door to the restaurant where we were seated. I loved the decor immediately. It had a really cute and cosy French charm to it.



We decided to order a sea platter which had beetroot and vodka cured salmon, salmon rillettes, devilled egg and dill crème fraîche. The rillettes, which is similar to a salmon pȃté was exceptional! We also got the charcuterie platter which had duck rillettes, serrano ham, saucisson, pate and baguette bread. This was also really yummy. We also ordered a refreshingly tasty lobster salad with watermelon, cucumber, broad beans and pea tendrils and some rosé wine to boot.


For dessert there were quite a few options to choose from but we settled on a lemon tart and a coffee eclair to share. Although the lemon tart was delicious, I have to say that the coffee eclair was the highlight. It was not too sweet at all and nothing like the normal eclairs you would get at any bakery. We were lucky to secure the last one as they were selling like hot cakes! They had other eclair flavours too such as chocolate and raspberry which had already sold out.


Overall the food was exceptional, however the only thing to mention is that the waitress who was serving us on that day was new, in fact it was her first day and so she was a little lost and we had to follow up on a few things. The other staff however were very friendly and accommodating when we followed up with them. Definitely recommend if you’re in the mood for some French!


The Little French Deli
Approx $40 AUD per person
Address: 524 Nepean Hwy, Bonbeach VIC 3196
Phone: +61 3 9776 0855

The Little French Deli Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato