The Duchess & The Smith

I had a fab eating day last Sunday. It started with a brunch in the west. I don’t often cross the Westgate to eat but we wanted a change from the norm and with a little man in tow, a trip to Williamstown beach was on the cards. I put a post out onto facey for some west recommendations and only got two which suggests some unchartered waters perhaps?

We decided on The Duchess of Spotswood based on the quote “it’s really good…. even for the west”. I had the prettiest brekkie ever called Simple Pleasures, and it really was a bunch of delicious, simple, pretty ingredients! The rest of the menu looked amazing too. I think we will be making the trip back.

Poached eggs with marinated avo, heirloom tomatoes, goats curd, radish, peas, herbs

The foreshore stroll was highly enjoyable, especially for the little man Gus, and his running buddy Ben, dodging bikes as they raced each other along the waterfront.

For dinner Ben and I accompanied Ben’s dad and another couple (family friends from France) to The Smith in Prahran. I was really excited to try it as I had heard great things and it’s super local for me. We decided on the $65/head 5 courses menu. This always makes me happy because I get to try more things! Woot! To start we ordered some bubbles, once again celebrating getting engaged (you can never drink too much bubbles). Sidenote: It was at this stage my intention to drive home. It became clear quite quickly however, that the entire dinner was going to proceed in French… hhmmmm… I understand of course, that when I get married in December I will become half french and I am really excited about it… It’s just that my second language skills suck! So, at this stage the decision was made to leave the car and really enjoy the fine food and wine as I couldn’t understand anything else that was going on at my table. The waiter certainly found my situation amusing and was really helpful in filling my glass regularly with the fab Crawford River Riesling

unfortunately... I can't remember which fish this was... prob due to the wine consumption

lamb cooked two ways, with peas and jus.... by the looks of things

So I really enjoyed the entire evening… including the conversation by the end when I’d had enough wine to join in… even if by joining in I just mean yelling out the words that I knew… oops

Duchess of Spotswood on Urbanspoon

2011 part 2 – The fine food of Bali…

Okay another flashback but not too far this time…

Six months ago, on an amazing girls trip to Bali, I got my eat on in a serious way! It was such an amazing trip that we have booked in again for 2012 so you can expect another posting like this later in the year. We visited a few old favourites and some newbies…

KU DE TA is still my favourite place for daytime nibbles by the beach, 10 years after the first time I visited. This time around, we stayed in Uluwatu, far from the hustle and bustle which was wonderful but it made our trips in to Seminyak less frequent and therefore much busier. On this occasion we had spent the morning at Bodyworks for pampering sessions and were re-fuelling before an afternoon of shopping. See what I mean about busy? Perfect day really!

tomato gazpacho with shredded prawns, cucumber, peppers & sourdough croutons

soft shell crab salad with green beans, cherry tomatoes, chilli, lime leaf, mint, coriander, peanuts, & nham jim

tuna carpaccio with preserved lemon, fried capers, chilli and salmoriglio dressing

lobster & pork gyoza with spring onion & black pepper vinegar

The view from KU DE TA at our lunch..

Next up is Sarong which was my favourite dinner spot for the last trip. We had to book for this one. Frikkin awesome asian food served up in a heavily decorative room… Think red velvet drapes, gold brocade and heaps of chandeliers. Amazing ambience. I can’t remember the exact dishes but I can tell you it was the best pork belly I have ever had… and believe me, I have had a lot!

incredible pork belly - crap pic unfortunately

... can't remember what this was... very green though!

pretty lights

lightly cooked fish from the coconut grill with chilli vinegarette

chilli prawns with pink grapefruit and mint. This was SERIOUSLY HOT in the chilli way! YUM

empty plates

Finally, two pictures from our favourite place in Bali… Nammos Beach Club at Karma Kandara Resort. We spent way too many days lazing on this beach, munching on the incredible parmesan truffle fries and delicious pizzas and drinking Coronas or Bintang…. Can’t wait to be back here…

the beach club

my fav nammos pizza - fig, gorgonzola & prosciutto

And that it all on Bali… for now…