Category Archives: Reviews

Coast, Darling Harbour

Sir D never likes to visit the same restaurant twice. Every time I ask him after a meal if he would return, he says, “I’d rather go someplace new” (unless it’s somewhere really amazing like Quay). So in the spirit of trying someplace new, we wander around Darling Harbour looking for a place to have a nice dinner before catching a movie at the IMAX and we stumble across Coast on the top level of Cockle Bay Wharf.

It’s still early on a Friday night so the restaurant is quite empty. It’s nice and spacious with views of Darling Harbour and the Harbouside Shopping centre on the other side. We’re seated at a table with a good view of the open kitchen and above us is a big light fixture which reminds me of ocean waves.

We order two mains and a side and while we wait we’re given some complimentary bread and olive oil to munch on. The bread is actually really good, so when the waiter asks if we would like some more bread, we happily say yes.

Bultarra Saltbush Lamb rump, kipfler potatoes, capers and dill – $37

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ATFT Photography Workshop @ MUMU Grill, Crows Nest

It’s been almost a year now since I’ve started using a DSLR for my photography and although it’s been a steep learning curve, I still have a long long way to go to get my photos looking as good as I’d like. I can only dream that one day my photography will be as awesome as Billy’s from A Table for Two but in the mean time there is much to learn. And who better to learn from than Billy himself at his ATFT food photography workshops held at MUMU Grill.

Olive selection and Cherry tomato and feta salad

18 month Jamon Serrano and Catalan bread

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Red Spoon Thai Restaurant, Castle Hill

You may have noticed that given the large number of Thai restaurants in Sydney, I have yet to review any of them on my blog. This is because I don’t really like Thai food – granted, I’m not all that familiar with Thai food and my knowledge about it is very limited, but I do know that there are certain flavours used in Thai cooking which don’t appeal to me. Namely coriander and kaffir lime. Bleh! (It also doesn’t help that I can’t take a lot of chilli)

As a result I don’t really choose to go to Thai restaurants, but on this night we were dining with family friends and the parentals had chosen to go to Red Spoon in Castle Hill. I always think that if I keep trying foods then maybe one day I will grow to like them, so I went along with this attitude hoping that my tastebuds will have magically grown to like these Thai flavours.

Well, I can’t confirm that this happened, but I was pleasantly surprised to find that I enjoyed most of the food that we ordered. Maybe because I tried to steer away from the dishes that I knew would be very strong on the coriander or kaffir lime leaf taste, but nevertheless it made me think that I should go out and try more Thai food before being so quick to strike off a cuisine completely.

Curry puff (4 pcs) – $6.90

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Miso, Sydney

If could only eat one type of meat for the rest of my life, it would be meat from the humble pig. There are so many ways to enjoy it – pork, ham, prosciutto, pancetta and of course bacon. But everything tastes better when deep fried, so when I had a hankering for some porky goodness one night, where better to head to than Miso, a Japanese restaurant which specialises in tonkatsu.

Katsu-tama Set – $16.80

Miso is part of the Masuya group which also has Japanese restaurants Masuya, Musashi and Makoto sushi bars. It serves meals teishoku style, which includes a main dish, miso soup, rice and a few smaller individual accompaniments alongside it (kobachi). For the non-pork eaters, they also have chicken katsu, as well as a range of udon noodle, curry and chirashi sushi dishes. But we were here for the tonkatsu, a pork cutlet which has been covered in panko crumbs and deep fried until golden and crunchy.

Katsu-tama Set – $16.80

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Ichi-ban Boshi, The Galeries Victoria

Judging from the queues I see everytime I walk past, I think it’s safe to assume that Ichi-ban Boshi is one of the most popular ramen joints in Sydney. Due to it’s obvious popularity, I had pretty high expectations on my first visit here and sadly I don’t think the food lived up to the standards I’d set and since then I have been reluctant to return. However, on Fi’s request I’m back again tonight for dinner before watching Avenue Q at the Theatre Royal.

Having an early dinner at 5.30pm means that we a) get a table easily for 6 of us and b) avoid the horrendous queues that have built up by the time we leave. Fi and I have still yet to try the tonkotsu ramen and we ask the waitress whether they have any left. Sadly they have run out so I go to my plan B and order the karaage ramen. Everytime I order this I have the intention of asking for the karaage chicken on the side but as usual I forget and it arrives with the batter semi-soaked in broth. Fail.

Karaage Ramen – $10.90

The chicken is still good though and the noodles have a nice chewy texture, and along with the not-too-salty soy broth I am pleasantly surprised to find that I’m thoroughly enjoying my meal.

Katsu Curry – $11.50

Sir D the non-ramen-eater orders the katsu curry which comes with miso soup and a side salad. He accompanied me on my first visit and was also not too impressed with the food but this time he is very happy with his curry and eats it up quickly.

Tsukemen (cold noodles with dipping sauce) – $12.00

Captain Awesome is undecided whether she wants the Geki-kara ramen (super hot ramen) or the Tsukemen, and asks the waitress who says that the Tsukemen is very popular. “Ok I’ll get that!” says Captain Awesome and a big plate of cold noodles arrives with a bowl of spicy tantanmen soup that is packed full of mince. We all try a bit and it’s very nice but the only thing I find strange is eating cold noodles with hot soup, which together becomes sort of lukewarm in the mouth. I think I prefer eating hot or cold noodles, not somewhere in between. Interesting experience though!

All finished!

Since the queues outside are building up we decide to leave for Avenue Q a bit early (go and watch it if you haven’t seen it already… it’s fantastic!). Everyone has enjoyed their dinner and now that I have restored faith in the food at Ichi-ban Boshi I think I’ll have to go back and grab myself a bowl of their elusive tonkotsu ramen!

Ichi-ban Boshi
Level 2, The Galeries Victoria
500 George Street, Sydney
Ph: +61 (02) 92627677
Open 7 days, 11am – 9pm

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