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Showing posts from November, 2015

10 reasons not to cook Christmas lunch in Brisbane

On the hunt for a fabulous feed in New York's Central Park

People will tell you that the only place to eat in New York is The Loeb Boathouse Restaurant which is beautifully located on a lake where you can rent row boats.

It's certainly been popular for more than 80 years, though the boathouse you see today was rebuilt in 1950.  What you won't find out until you try to book is that the boathouse is very popular and you'll be lucky to get a spot unless you book well ahead.

On holidays I prefer to float free and I'm a commando dinner - roaming and sightseeing until the need for food demands my attention and then I find the best available.  It might be a seat at the bar of a great restaurant or a dumplings in a side alley, but it's usually a dining experience to remember.

So when we discovered Loeb Boathouse only does breakfast on weekends we floated around Central Park in search of other food venues and stumbled across the totally delightful Le Pain Quotidien.  Find it in the concession building north of Sheep Meadow at Mine…

I've got a hunch that you'll like The Hutch

Ask a local about Hutch Bistro and they will tell you this is a restaurant that rarely disappoints and they are a pretty clued up food lot around here.

Located on the top terrace of a shopping centre on the corner of Days Road and  Kedron Brook Road,
there's plenty of action going on in the large carpark, however the restaurant dining area is well insulated from the hustle.

The restaurant has some indoor seating and also occupies an outdoor terrace so there is plenty of room to move and you don't have to listen to the next table's conversation.

Chef John was having fun in the kitchen on the night we visited and sent out a few tempting starters to get our evening off in style.  It's hard to go past a tender scallop and crisp pork belly combination but the foie gras tastes were the top favourite for the night.

There were many choices that tempted on the menu but the potato gnocchi which came with a fricasse of wild mushrooms and green beans was selected by two of my gr…

Push a button for Real Food

It's time for a mind reset when it comes to food vending machines.

They are no longer only the bad guys dispensing sugary drinks, candy bars and packets of chips.

Vending machines have been given a makeover by All Real Food to re-emerge as a self service cafe putting healthy food at the finger tips of commuters.  Now it's all about jars carefully stacked with salads made from what the makers say is holistic, healthy food that nourishes the body.

What's really surprising is that even though it comes out of a machine, it tastes good too.  Salads that are full of colour and crunch, that taste  like they are freshly made and with a full ingredients list that's made most intriguing by what's not on the list - additives, preservatives, colours and refined sugar.

How does it work?  They put the wettest ingredients, like olives and feta, in the base and dry ingredients are at the top.  You can eat it straight from the jar or turn it out onto a plate to mix up the ingredie…

How to fly to Tokyo the easy way

Flying with a national carrier makes sense when you've got their home base on your travel list, plus it starts your destination experience right from departure.
Japan Airlines (JAL) Sydney to Tokyo flight is an easy introduction into the Japanese way of doing things with charming precision and efficiency.  
I travelled economy from Sydney to Tokyo (Narita) on a day flight and had an enjoyable nine hour economy flight.  The food was reasonable with a choice of meals and plentiful with both lunch and dinner served.   There were a couple of movies to watch and it wasn't hard to nap.  Space between the seats was limited and when the seat in front of me was reclined I did feel cramped, however an aisle seat meant I could move around.  JAL's economy seats were named the best in the world Skytrax 2015 Awards.
On the night flight on the way home, enticed by photos of more seat room and a bigger pitch, I took an optional upgrade at the airport to premium economy which cost me around…

How to be a barbecue champion!

There’s a sizzle as a drop of molten fat hits the burner, the seductive aroma of sausages and onions, and the distinctive clank as the empties hit the wheelie bin.

Warm nights, plenty of lingering light and it’s deck time again at my house. Time to fluff up the cushions on the outdoor lounge, set up the mozzie candles and put the barbie in prime position.

Aussies are barbecue champions but there’s one country where grilling skills are taken equally seriously and that’s the good old USA.

My friends at Trafalgar have partnered with Weber, the guys who make those great barbies (there’s been different versions of a Weber barbie on my deck for about 20 years) to find Australia’s best BBQ duo. They will win the ultimate BBQ lover’s holiday in the USA, with masterclasses at Weber’s headquarters in Chicago before they take on their BBQ champions in St. Louis. Jealous much?  I am!

Trafalgar want Australians to host their own Be My Guest BBQ experiences and submit either three images or a …