Wednesday, September 28, 2005

Good Morning Eric

Rumour has it you've been to The Spice in Sandy Bay. Care to report?
Have a gorgeous fun-filled day, Eric.
GW ;-)

Monday, September 26, 2005

Maldini

A rare Sunday night out. Went to Maldini cos Marque IV wasn't open.

The thing about Maldini is that at first glance it is a classy old building with funky big colours on the wall. The second thing about Maldini is that it doesn't pay to look too closely. An overdose of men's bodies with red shirts flapping from their heads adorned the walls, along with a very ugly Venetian festival image and an even uglier red Venetian mask. Sometimes I think plain sandstone has a lot going for it.

The menu was fairly standard, although a couple of interesting options stood out. Couldn't resist the chargrilled sardines on a caremelised onion tart. Really tasty. Actually, really big flavours. It was classed as an entree (although you can order it as a main size). I can't imagine that anyone could face a second course after the robustness of this dish. I liked it, but glad I wasn't staring down the barrel of pork chops or an eye fillet to follow.

I knew I was ordering a tastebud-busting dish, so ordered a garden salad to break it up a bit. Unfortunately, the salad seemed to be last night's antipasto left-overs tossed through some salad mix. It was tart and sweet and completely wrong. As there was no alternative to provide a bit of flavour freshness, this was flavour over-kill and very disappointing.

On a positive note, my eyes greedily followed plates of seafood pasta around the room all night. I spied big mussels, clams, prawns, and so on jutting perkily from bowls of herb-tossed pasta. Defintely worth going back to try these dishes on for size.

Verdict: Maldini passes muster foodwise (except for that stupid salad), but food service was very slow (the very professional and friendly waitstaff looked as frustrated as I was), and interior decor could do with an overhaul. Coffee was better than I remember. I'll go back to try the seafood pasta.

GW.

Thursday, September 22, 2005

Kawasemi Moonah

Realising I would starve if I waited for you guys to give me the low down on the new Japanese tea house in Moonah (yes, Zelda, I know you tried to find it), thought I’d drop in today to suss it out. Fearing the worst I was excited to find not a single pre-prepared sushi pack.

The d├ęcor is tastefully Japanese, as is the sushi chef! He handed me a menu and I found a range of sushi was available. I ordered the mixed maki (nori rolls). It was made fresh while I waited. Mr Kawasemi (not his real name, I’m sure) handed me my 14 pieces and asked for $10 in return. Fair exchange I thought. And being a Japanese Tea House, sushi is not the sole focus at Kawasemi. There are Japanese curries and all sorts of stuff. And let’s face it, any Japanese menu that has a whole page devoted to Japanese desserts has to be interesting (coffee jelly for example!).

Now, here are my instructions:

Go to Kawasemi immediately. Have a look at the menu, order something that takes your fancy. Then book your staff Christmas function, your bah mitzvah, or your wake. Tell your friends, tell your enemies. I think it’s awesome that something as authentic as this is available in Moonah.

Well done Kawasemi-san!

(Actually Kawasemi is Japanese for Kingfisher)

Kawasemi Japanese Tea House
Dickenson’s Arcade
109 Main Rd Moonah
6278 1322

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

Rumours

1. Dukkah is moving (actually not a rumour; fact)
2. Atrium behind Rockerfeller's to become Bar & Cafe (hmmm, this too is fact)
3. Rockerfeller's new management giving serious consideration to a wine bar in the Rocker's cellar (please, oh please, oh please)
4. Japanese tea house coming to Elizabeth St city (anyone tried the one in Moonah yet, you're all very slow!)
5. Hill St Grocer mob have purchased the Dodges Ferry grocer
6. Georgie Weston is a big fat blabbermouth (definitely fact)

Thursday, September 15, 2005

An Honest Critique

I was chatting with a world-weary busker in town yesterday. He told me it was his birthday. He said he was looking forward to a special seafood meal. He didn't have much money, but fancied a bit of a nosh-up. I asked him where he might go and he said he thought he'd go to the Globe Hotel.

"Do they do good seafood there?" I asked, never having had the pleasure.
"Oh yeah, it's alright," he said.

He then went on to talk about "that place down by the water, what's it called, you know the one ..."
"Mure's?" I ventured.
"Yeah, that one." He said he took a lady there some time ago for a treat.
"That's pretty special," I said, "what did you think?"
"I reckon it's not all it's cracked up to be."

Couldn't help but laugh. Happy birthday mate.

Sunday, September 11, 2005

Retrofadism

Vegies bought, the persistent rain prompted a coffee craving. Trudged off to Retro cos it was close and it was open. Hennaed heads, blunt fringes, and the miserable looks on staff faces sent me back to St Kilda in the early 90s and The Galleon cafe.

Coffee duly arrived and I sipped away. It was inoffensive and warm. Not very hot, not very great. But I smiled as I sipped, recalling the recent accusation of my 'McDonald's taste in coffee'.

Today's coffee at Retro: Better than McDonald's, but barely indistinguishable from Hudson's. Oh alright, that's harsh. The milk wasn't frothed to within an inch of its life.

GW ;-)

p.s. I think my taste may have matured a wee frad ... I no longer heart Hudson's, although I remain a coffee guts ... in case you were wondering.

Saturday, September 10, 2005

Red Back

I’m a bit of a sook when it comes to driving long distances. I need to stop at least once between Hobart and Launceston. Historically the only reasonable coffee to be found on the midlands was at Zep’s in Campbelltown; a little too close to Launceston to be much use one way or t’other.

Notnymore!

Across the road from the cop shop in Oatlands is the Redback Gallery and Espresso. Noice knitted scarves, interesting glassware, a bit of jewellery, etc, etc. The chick behind the counter is very friendly (and a bit of a radio personality on Midlands FM I hear). She makes good coffee and serves it with little yummies (most recently amaretto macaroons). As a bonus, local characters lounge about the place making for entertaining eaves-dropping.

All in all, well worth the stop.

Thursday, September 01, 2005

North Hobart

Thanks to Zelda for dishing the dirt on Sunday night take away in North Hobart (a sad affair it seems) and for letting me know that Conchettas is to become "Taj Palace" or somesuch. Brave choice of locale, given proximity to Annapurna and Taste of Asia. We'll see how that pans out.

And I spy with my little eye a sushi bar about to open next to the BP. Hurrah!

Happy first of spring, as the weather improves so does my appetite. And you know what that means!