A sisterly coffee in Hawthorn…

A catch up to discuss living arrangements now we are both back in the one city… and we own the one house together… in that one city… inneresting…

Sis is currently renting in Hawthorn, around the corner from Porgie and Mr Jones, a place I have heard a lot about, a place where a queue is standard. Today it was a case of good timing as we rocked up at noon and there were a few tables available… Not for long though, the lunch rush started about 20 mins later…

This was a coffee date but I was super hungry and couldn’t resist an order of folded “scrambles” with fresh herbs and chunks of goats cheese…

Scrambles with fresh herbs & goats cheese

It was really delicious (a nice ordering change for me) and seemed good value for around twelve bucks but I found the menu pricing super confusing with my old favourite eggs and avo on toast at approx $17 yet most of the dishes were around $12 or $13 dollar mark… The avo was costed with a few other things, as an extra at $5 which seems a little extreme for extras too… maybe I have just lost track of how much avos cost these days… It’s just I am not normally a price driven consumer and on this occasion it seemed to stand out. Overall I would definitely re-visit… at noon of course.
Porgie and Mr Jones on Urbanspoon

Brekkie in North Melbourne or was it Carlton…

… It’s tough to get brekkie in North Melbourne… without waiting in a queue… as we learnt on a recent Sunday brekkie.

Mum had requested we go to Duchess of Spotswood after reading my food story from our visit west, but I convinced her that North Melbourne was better brekkie territory so I could knock off another venue on my Northside Brunch Pledge. My intention was to visit the much-lauded Auction Rooms and that was the first address I gave to mum… The parentals were waiting out the front when we arrived… along with about 30 other people… The wait was about 30 mins according to the “brekkie door bitch”… I’m not really keen on queuing for brekkie and I would think that peeps over 50 are generally less inclined so quick-thinking Ben suggested Di Bella around the corner where he’d had a great coffee the week before (little did he know that was also on my list so there were no arguments from me). We jumped into one car and drove around the corner… We didn’t even need to slow down to see the situation was the same if not worse out the front of Di Bella… I clicked onto my Urbanspoon app to suss out the next closest venue (on my list) and we found Seven Seeds around the corner and, by now in the next suburb of Carlton. There was no obvious queue thank god, as Dad’s patience was well and truly waning… Unfortunately, once we got inside, we saw the little group of people milling at the front and were told 20 minutes… This time we did wait and were finally seated out the back on a table under a heater. I quite liked the little outside bit until a bunch of smokers also joined us dammit…

Brekkie was okay. The pics make it look fantastic (I think my best brekkie photos so far). The bacon and egg bagel was definitely the winner but mum’s rosti was a little disappointing with an overpowering oily taste. I choose my standard eggs and avo which was good (I think I am getting bored with my standard…. it might be time to mix it up a bit)

egg & bacon bagel with roasted cherry tomatoes & tomato relish

Heirloom tomatoes w yarra valley feta, avocado & sauce vierge on toasted seeded sourdough

Carrot & Potato Rosti with avo & tomato

I think Seven Seeds deserves another visit when it is our intended destination… and when I can get a little more exciting with my order!

 Seven Seeds on Urbanspoon

A Mexican Long Weekend…

A lot of delicious cooking happened this weekend… of the Mexican variety…

Slow cooked pork tacos that took eight hours… yum, the house smelt amazing… served with thinly sliced, mango & cucumber and garnished with chilli & coriander

Slow cooked pork tacos with sliced mango, cucumber, coriander & chilli

And snack-time nachos that took approximately five minutes… Double YUMMO!

Nacho snacks - salsa & mexican cheese blend

Now I need a week of lettuce and exercise dammit!

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Finally… Frank at Fonda…

What a frikkin good idea to frequent Fonda on this particular Friday…. Okay… it was a Tuesday but that ruins my alliteration attempt (haha! again)… Anyway, main point is that I had been keen to try Fonda for ages so when an ex-work colleague suggested it as a Richmond venue for a quick bite to eat I thought it was a FAB idea! I was concerned we would be waiting for a bit, maybe for a table or for food but it was super quiet at 1:30pm. Phew, because I was very hungry.

One great thing about this restaurant is that the menu is short so you could try everything in a couple of visits. Woot! To start and to share, we ordered pork scratchings with guacamole, corn chips with guacamole & salsa, and the corn… OH. MY. GOD…. The corn… It was the epiphany I expected when I ate the corn at Mamasita (that didn’t happen at Mamasita). I can’t really explain the difference except that the Fonda corn was creamier somehow…

Pork scratchings, corn chips, salsa & guacamole

The O.M.G corn with chipotle aioli, ricotta salata, lime

“Do you think the pork scratchings are healthy?”

“Uuummmm… Yep, probably as healthy as prawn crackers…”

For mains we were both super keen on the beef taco and the fish taco so we got one each.. and then we were really, really full!

Beef brisket taco with poblano peppers, breakfast radish

The fish taco with chipotle aioli, pickled carrot/onion, cabbage

Great value. The perfect lunch spot… The sun even poked her head out enough for me to strip to a singlet top and enjoy a wonderful Melbourne afternoon…

Fonda Mexican on Urbanspoon

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Restaurant quality at home (not my home)…

A really special dinner… for a couple of reasons…

Mainly because it was spent with my in-laws to be… and also because the chefs for the evening take such pleasure in entertaining and the whole meal preperation took place central to our conversation. I just love open-plan! We arrived and our menu was written on the chalkboard in the kitchen

chalkboard

We chatted as the sides were created in front of us and the fish cooked on the balcony BBQ…

sweet potato & goats cheese getting mashed

Dinner is served…

mash, fish & coriander salad

Amazing! Thanks for having us guys! We will come again please!

x

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Girl talk at Chez Dre…

Lunch at Chez Dre was a gossipy affair over some delicious light meals. I was feeling really bad about the last time my friend and I hung out because as usual, my wedding talk took over, and I didn’t manage to ask enough questions about my friend to find out she had a new boyfriend… self-centred bitch that I am! Wedding talk is super boring compared to new boyfriend talk… as we both found out!

Tomato, Basil, Mozzarella & Pancetta Bruschetta

Moroccan Baked Eggs with Sourdough

I ordered the bruschetta which comes with an egg. The combination sounded little strange but totally worked for me. The pancetta was fab. The Moroccan baked eggs looked amazing and were ordered with sourdough instead of ciabatta to avoid too much crunch. We basically both ate brekkie at lunch but nothing wrong with that and to top it all off… they had one of their incredible cakes on tasting as we paid the bill… Yyyyeeeeesssssssss!!

Chez Dré on Urbanspoon

Mother’s Day at Axil… Or should we call it Auntie’s Day..?

Stunning weather for Mother’s Day in Melbourne this year… or maybe not. I woke up to heavy rainfall on the window for about the fourth morning in a row… Bob the Dog could tell you exactly how many days it had been, as it would also be the number of days that he hadn’t been for a walk…. oops… Anyway, he definitely wasn’t getting a walk this particular morning either so I snuggled back under the covers… without turning my alarm back on…. double oops…

So we were late again… Ben and I in the car… me being a front seat driver in the rain… eeekkk. We were off to meet Auntie Chrissie (Mother of Max) for a little Mother’s Day brunch. Also in attendance, London sister and her NZ boyfriend, in Melbourne for a flying weekend visit. I warned Auntie that we were running late… She responded with:

“I have put us on the list”

List dammit?! What is with queuing for brekkie in Melbourne (special weekend I know but this is pretty standard these days)! When we arrived at Axil on Burwood Rd in Hawthorn, I had flashbacks to uni days flitting between The Glenferrie Hotel and Nevermind Bar but I have no idea what used to be in the cavernous space that is now Axil. Cool space too. With massive milk-can pendant lights and a barista training room – which on this particular day just had a family sitting in the glassed-in room enjoying brunch. We didn’t wait too long but it was pretty funny as each time “the doorbitch” (one of the owners I think) flew past he kept telling everyone quite loudly that they were all at the top of the list… We were seated at one end of the big share table watching the food come out. We ordered and were delivered our coffees really quickly which was super impressive given the busy-factor. Good coffee too but unsurprising given the coffee pedigree of the owners three-times barista of the year or the like! Our meals were also served up quite quickly.

Fran's obligatory smashed avo & goats cheese with poached egg

Haloumi corn fritters

quesadilla with eggs, avo & chilli

A really delicious meal was had by all. I was very boring ordering my standard avo and goats cheese on toast but was happy with the range around the table. I am definitely returning to try the frozen yogurt muesli brekkie when I am feeling a bit sweeter… frozen yogurt for brekkie would be a first for me and maybe needs to wait until it’s a bit warmer but I guess that will give me more time to get back to my Northside brunch quest

Axil Coffee Roasters on Urbanspoon