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Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Melbourne :: Pacific Seafood BBQ House‎

D had been talking about this clay-pot for awhile. Bored with Toronto's Vietnamese offerings, I hopped onto the chance to try something in Richmond, Melbourne's Vietnamese neighbourhood!
Backpack strapped, I trundled my way with D to Pacific Seafood BBQ House. It was quite busy, but they were happy to accommodate a table for 3: Me, D, and my backpack.
I was tempted to order the crocodile - but for $18/plate it didn't seem like a wise decision. I decided to hold off and we ended up ordering the duck.

Yum! Crispy skin, not too fatty, yet very moist and flavourful. The noodles were standard, nothing to get too excited about, but always a good buffer. We also ordered a clay-pot of mushrooms and sea cucumber. The sweet sauce was good - we probably should have ordered some rice to savour it a bit more, but we were bustin' by the end. 

Oh Melbourne, I'll miss your wonderful culture and people dearly. As I rode to the airport, I took in as much of the city that I could, wishing that I had just one more day to roam the alleyways and staring at the wonderful graffiti. Off to the Great Barrier Reef!


Sunday, May 29, 2011

Melbourne :: Charcoal Lane

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Staying with D &C was an absolute pleasure. They are an amazing couple – truly unique, absolutely generous, and wonderfully adventurous, they travel the globe like no others that I’ve encountered. They easily pick up and move around the globe and eat their way around the city. Fantastic! After F and I finished our Great Ocean Road Adventure, he kindly dropped me off at Charcoal Lane. What better way to end an epic journey spotting Australian’s wildlife than to…eat it?
MMM…cute animals!

Charcoal Lane-23Charcoal Lane
Verdict: Great Native Australian experience!
Meal: Dinner
Location: 136 Gertrude St Fitzroy, Melbourne, Australia

Friday, May 27, 2011

Guacamole :: The Perfect Condiment

What's fresher than lime and avocado? I don't buy avocados too often, but when I do, I often buy a sackful since it's much better deal. However, I usually only need 1 or 2 for a recipe (i.e. Avocado cupcakes!) so I'm left with a few that become very ripe at the same time. I could put them in the fridge, but they would eventually go bad. So I've started to just use the rest to make guacamole, and it serves me very well for so many things!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Great Ocean Road :: Nico’s Pizza

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We wrapped up the trip with a stop at Anglesea to see kangaroos! Not captive, not really wild…but possibly the most interesting caddies in the world:
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We had a quick bite in Port Campbell – not terribly exciting, but just a simple pizza each. I wouldn’t go out of your way to try Nico’s pizza, but I wouldn't say that it was terrible at all. Pricey, but that's expected for the area.

Nicos Nicos (2)
They are open late, however, which is quite useful for a post sunset meal.

Overall, the Great Ocean Road is a fantastic road trip that I would do again in a heartbeat. Where else can you drive along a beautiful coast, stop to smell eucalyptus, see prehistoric tree species, spot (and hear!) koalas from the tree tops, watch kangaroos hop around golf courses, and…well I could keep going!
We returned to Melbourne to continue our Australian journeys – separately. While he finished his time in Melbourne with plans to head to New Zealand, I decided to start thinking of my next steps. The dilemma? Where to go next!

I was stuck deciding between flying up north to the Great Barrier Reef or making my way up to Uluru & Alice Springs. Time did not allow for either – so it was coral vs. the outback.

The pleasures of difficult decisions :-) Nico's Pizza & Pasta on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Cantanhede O Bairradino :: Portuguese Chicken

Massive Portuguese Portions

It's really a shame that Cantanhede is so far away from the university campus - with the massive portions, it would cater quite well to hungry students. Like me! Cantanhede offers more than egg tarts - you can feast on massive portions of chicken, potatoes, and rice. Can't get much more basic than that!

Cantanhede O Bairradino
Verdict: Go for an inexpensive and massive dinner
Meal: Dinner
Price: $10-ish
Location: 662 Lansdowne Ave

Monday, May 23, 2011

Great Ocean Road :: Louttit Bakery

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As you may have seen from my last post, the storm clouds were rolling in. While worrisome at first, this ended up working in our favour as the clouds created a beautiful sunset and led to waterfalls that were gone by morning! While waiting for the sun to set, we roamed around the surrounding area, aiming to return to the Twelve Apostles by sunset. If I may say so myself, the wait was well worth it!

Louttit Bakery Louttit Bakery
Verdict: Quick, tasty sandwich
Meal: Great Ocean Road Pre-Sunset Sammy
Location: 46B Mountjoy Pde, Lorne

Friday, May 20, 2011

Great Ocean Road :: La Bimba

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Animal Sign Addiction
Oh how I loved this part of my trip. The animals, the breathtaking views, the smells. The simple pleasure of stepping out of the car to just breathe in the eucalyptus trees was amazing. Just. Amazing.
How did I plan this trip? Well. After a kayak trip in Sydney, I sat across a guy from the Netherlands. The conversation went something like this:
“I want to see koalas”
“Me too! I heard that you can see them along the Great Ocean Rd. in Melbourne”
“Let’s do it!!”
LaBimba-2 La Bimba
Verdict: Trumpeter yes, Kangaroo burger no
Meal: Road Trippin’
03/125 Great Ocean Rd Apollo Bay VIC 3233, Australia
We high-fived and weeks later, we were reunited in Melbourne and embarked on an adventure!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

HodoKwaja :: Brown Sugar, Walnuts, & Red Bean Desserts!

Korean Snack Time!

I can't express how much I love these walnut cakes. When I grab a bag of these hot little treats hot out of the press, nothing gives me more pleasure than popping them in my mouth and enjoying the mashed potato filling. I have distant memories when my mother used to drag me to the hairdresser but soothing the situation with these cakes (she was absolutely obsessed with perming my hair - and I still think that I was right to protest). More than a decade later, this little shop still exists and I have run many times to get my fill of Hodo Kwaja!!

Verdict: Go
Meal: Korean Snack Time
Location: 656 Bloor Street West

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Melbourne :: Longrain

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When I landed in Melbourne, I was so excited to see a familiar face. I met G in Toronto awhile back, before she moved to Australia, and once I was heading over I shot her a message. Like most people that I visit while travelling, she decided to plan a fantastic dinner!

Longrain-18 Longrain Melbourne
Verdict: Go! Thai win!
Meal: Dinner
Location: 44 Little Bourke St Melbourne, Australia