It Just Has To Be Delicious

In Campoamor, just down from the Hotel Montepiedra is a restaurant with a sea view called Fish Bowl. It’s a favourite with VBW attendees and we visited twice during our stay. It’s pretty essential to book, but on our first visit the staff accommodated us at a table by the bar for tapas.

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We chose the duck and truffle croquettes to start, a sublime combination of shredded duck, fried in breadcrumbs, with a creamy foie gras dip.

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Next came the tuna tartare with wasabi ice cream and a Vietnamese dressing. This was really tasty and great quality.

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Our third dish was a beef salad with chilli, cashew nuts, sesame and red pepper – a half serve was plenty for us, and again this was a really tasty dish – we were already talking about a return visit.

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The next dish to arrive was scallops with a seasonal garnish of mango and chilli. I didn’t expect the scallop meat to be chopped, but it was fresh and delicious and served with a cleansing citrus sorbet.

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Our last dish was slow cooked beef cheek with truffle potatoes and Guinness jus – yet again a delicious dish prepared with care.

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When we came back a few days later, I chose from the fixed price menu and my partner chose a la carte.

I had pulled pork tacos to start, which were tasty, but I would have liked some salad in them.

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My partner chose the half serve of duck salad. Like the beef salad we had on the previous occasion, this was nicely prepared and very tasty.

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For my main I chose the beef fillet with dauphinoise potato and pumpkin mash. This was beautifully cooked, and I really enjoyed the meal.

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My partner chose the crab and prawn risotto, which had a nice amount of crab and prawn but could have been a little softer. It was all nicely seasoned.

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For dessert we chose the Bakewell tart with rhubarb ice cream – another great dish.

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Fish Bowl is definitely one of the finer restaurants in Campoamor and well worth a visit.

Click here to discover more

 

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VBW Pasta

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We recently stayed in a holiday apartment in Spain, and it can be quite a mission to make tasty home cooked food without buying hundreds of condiments from the local supermarket.

This is a simple pasta that we made without cooking oil, and it was enough to serve four people. It also took just 4 ingredients from the local supermarket: a jar of mixed antipasti (eggplant, capsicum and onion), a jar of napoletana sauce, some sliced hot chorizo, and some pasta.

First we started to cook the pasta in boiling salted water. Then we cooked the chorizo on a low heat to render some of the fat. We chopped the antipasti and added it, then poured in the napoletana sauce. Once the pasta was cooked, we drained it and added it to our hotchpotch of sauce and mixed well. It was really tasty and didn’t cost the earth.

Old Faithful Bar & BBQ Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Old Faithful is a pub and BBQ restaurant at the Wellington Street end of King Street. Walking in, it looks like a typical bar with wooden tables and chairs, and we received a friendly greeting as we were allocated a table.

The menu is full of grill bar favourites, ribs, burgers, sandwiches etc. and there are beer specials on the chalkboard.

We chose to share a rack of pork ribs, 100g of brisket, fries, coleslaw and pickles. The food arrived on a platter to share, and everything was full of flavour.

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The brisket was the star with a lovely smoky flavour, and the smoked and char grilled ribs were really good, although just a little longer would have seen the meat falling off the bone. They were the kind of ribs that you have to chew off the bone. Nonetheless, the ribs were full of flavour, very slightly dry, but I think that was due to the cooking method.

Fries were spicy and tasty, coleslaw was good quality and the pickles all disappeared very quickly thanks to my pickle-addict companion.

I really enjoyed Old Faithful and will definitely return for more barbecue creations.

Click here to find out more.

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Tsunami Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

We visited Tsunami on Saturday night – it’s one of a few restaurants on Glyde Street in Mosman Park. It’s quite large inside with seating at the front and back and some outdoor seating too with pretty fairy lights. We were seated in the back section which was quite dimly lit.

The menu is interesting – a selection of sharing dishes, hot and cold, sushi, sashimi, hot stone dishes and hotpots. The menu also indicates that some dishes are ‘not recommended’ and just on the menu because people ask for them, which is a bit of an unusual approach. Click here for the menu link

We ordered a low alcohol yuzu highball to start – a lovely citrus drink with a hint of alcohol.

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We ordered five dishes from the menu – first to arrive was the mixed tempura. This was really delicious – prawns, mushroom, sweet potato and seaweed, beautifully fried with the lightest batter and a great ponzu dip.

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Next came the spicy tuna roll, probably the best spicy tuna roll I have tasted with quality minced tuna inside, aburi tuna on top and nice ginger, scallion, and avocado flavours.

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Next came the marinated black cod – a very yummy dish, but not easy to share, and not a lot of food for $22.

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We also had miso soup, which I did not photograph – it had a nice depth to it and lots of seaweed and tofu to enjoy.

Then came the lamb ribs, one of the highly recommended dishes. It was okay, but nothing really special. The ribs had a membrane on them which was not pleasant to eat, but the meat was nice and tender and the capsicum puree tasted good.

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Then we waited, and waited and waited… The wait staff seemed to ignore us for a very long time and after a few attempts to attract their attention we eventually managed to get a waiter to replace our water bottle. It was more than 30 minutes before our last dish arrived, which was strange considering that the meal had been nicely paced up to this point.

We waited patiently for our Ishiyaki volcanic rocks stone grill, and when it finally arrived we asked the waiter to replace our plates which were dirty with the previous dishes. He took them away and never came back ! The meat on the stone grill was scallops and wagyu but it had been put on the rock in the kitchen, so by the time it got to our table the scallops were hard and rubbery and the meat had stuck to the stone. There was no oil or anything to lubricate the meat. The wagyu wasn’t very tasty and the whole thing was a disappointment. Trying to share rice and potato salad with no share plates was difficult.

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We didn’t hang around for dessert. Nobody asked us if we enjoyed our meal. It was a real shame – it started off with so much promise, but ended up not being worth our 45 minute car journey to get there.

 

Le Rebelle Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
Le Rebelle, on Beaufort Street near the Astor Theatre, is the new French kid in town amongst the hustle and bustle of the Mount Lawley strip.

It looks a bit like a a converted pub and is on two levels. As we walked in, we were seated on the lower level. My first observation was that the seating is not very comfortable, in fact it is really uncomfortable. A mixture of booths where the seat is too deep to lean back comfortably and stools with no back. Upstairs there are tall tables with tall stools, so not much better up there.

My second observation was that we had to shout to have a conversation. The music was quite loud and other diners were shouting to be heard above the music, which made the noise levels even worse. Even the waitresses had to shout.

My third observation was the darkness of the venue – it was impossible to read the menu without using my phone light, and I understand that the lighting is important for ambience, but I also like to see what I am eating, and I didn’t find the dimness appealing.

The waitresses were lovely, and the menu full of tempting options.

We started with blue manna crab on toast, with lemon mayo and pickle. This was really good and probably my favourite dish of the meal. The toast was fresh and buttery, and the crab also fresh and good quality.

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This was accompanied by double spiced crispy shrimp with slaw and cocktail sauce. Nice big shrimp, cooked well and great crispy slaw to go with it and a hint of wasabi throughout.

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Kingfish crudo with apple, kohlrabi and poppyseed continued the deliciousness. Again fresh, quality ingredients, well constructed and thoughtfully executed.

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We had a bit of a wait for our last two dishes, and while we sat and shouted conversation to each other, some guys a few tables away (who had been swearing very loudly) got up to greet some friends right behind us, and were continually bumping our table and my companion, and it was quite an uncomfortable situation. I understand that the owners of the venue put the tables close to create a fun intimate atmosphere – that works great when everybody is friends – not so great when your neighbours are drunk, loud and clumsy. It was all a bit awkward.

When we eventually received the aged beef fillet with sauteed mushrooms and peppercorn sauce, it was a delight. A great variety of mushrooms, and perfect melting steak.

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We chose the salad to go with it – endive with pumpkin and a citrus dressing – absolutely yummy.

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So in summary – the food was great, really good, and it’s clear that the ingredients are quality and the dishes well thought out. My personal experience of the rest of the meal was uncomfortable. It’s no good serving top class food if your guests aren’t comfortable in their seats, and I am sure I can’t be the only one who left with an aching back and sore throat.

A few simple changes would make this an amazing venue.

We popped into Mullaloo for breakfast at the weekend. We hadn’t been to Mullaloo Beach Hotel for some years, and the last breakfast experience was not a good one, but we decided to give it another try.

As we arrived we were informed that breakfast was finishing in 20 minutes, so with some urgency we took our seats by the window and chose from the menu. The menu is great for diners with food allergies. There are lots of options as well as a whole separate vegan menu.

There was a bit of a muddle with our coffee order, but when we eventually received the correct drinks, they were quite good.

We chose the dairy free vegan pancakes from the vegan menu with caramelised banana. The pancakes were really good for vegan pancakes – light and fluffy, the coconut ice cream was delicious, and the caramelised banana gooey and sweet. I would have liked some more nut and coconut sprinkles, but on the whole it was a really good brunch.

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Mullaloo Beach Hotel has great views and not a massive amount of competition locally, but it is looking old and tired and in need of refurbishment. The toilets were a bit grim, which is never a good sign, but the food did taste nice and I was happy with the options. The staff were lovely – it’s a nice place, but has the potential to be so much more than this.

Gipsy Boy Boutique Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Gipsy Boy is a boutique and cafe situated on Regents Park Road in Joondalup. The staff are friendly, and the cabinet of cakes and savouries always looks appealing here.

I popped in one morning for a coffee and some fruit toast. Unfortunately they didn’t have any non-dairy spread, but they offered some jam, and I sat there quite happy with my big mug of cappuccino and my toasty treat.

The fruit toast was delightful – more fruit than bread and nicely spiced.
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The coffee was delicious, a good blend and well made.

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Gipsy Boy is well worth a visit – a nice little neighbourhood gem.

Coode St Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

It’s been a while since I visited Coode Street Cafe and we decided to give it another try based on their yummy looking Facebook pictures. As we walked in, it wasn’t very busy, but there was an array of lovely baked goods on the counter.

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We ordered coffee while we perused the menu – the coffee was nice but not outstanding.

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Looking at the menu, it didn’t really inspire me. I like a menu where I have to agonise over several choices, but the basic options plus a croque madame and a croque monsieur were not particularly to my taste. I discounted the croques due to my dairy intolerance, and arrived at the conclusion that it had to be the fruit on toast or the mushrooms on toast.

I went for the rhubarb and strawberries on fruit toast with ricotta (I am okay with ricotta – because it is casein-free). This was really nice, I loved the fruity flavours and serving it on fruit toast was a nice twist.

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My partner chose the mushrooms on toast (without the feta), which again was a nice dish and tasty through to the last mouthful, but he commented that $20+ for mushrooms on toast was a little steep.

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I think that with a few tweaks the menu could be amazing. Offer dairy free or vegan options would be great – no need to invent new dishes, but just variations to the existing dishes. Nuttelex instead of butter, coconut yoghurt instead of cream, non-dairy milks… it doesn’t take a lot. The menu could also do with a nice brisket and potatoes or savoury mince and egg dish – something hearty and tempting.

Maybe it’s just me and my dairy intolerance that have skewed my view of this cafe, I think they have a lot to offer, just a bit more thought over the menu would make it amazing. There’s no doubt that the cabinet goods looked great though – I just couldn’t try them due to the overwhelming butter/cheese/cream content.

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Blacksmith Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Blacksmith, on Beaufort Street is deceptively large. It looks like a single shop front but spreads back quite a way and is family friendly with a children’s play area out back.

We stopped by for Sunday brunch and were impressed by the menu options. Coffee is supplied by Locale, and the blend was quite good but not as smooth as other beans I have tried.

Menu offerings include a breakfast board, smashed avo, brioche hotdog, lamb benny and eggs on fire.

My partner chose the tuscan beans – beans, Italian sausage, basil, poached eggs and sourdough. He really enjoyed it – a large portion of food with good rich flavours and nice bread.

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I chose the brisket benedict – beef brisket hash, poached eggs, sourdough and tarragon hollandaise. This was problematic. If the hollandaise had been served on the side, I wouldn’t have had it – it was sour, overly vinegary, and really not very nice, but unfortunately the whole dish was covered in it. The brisket hash patties were crumbed and deep fried but unfortunately they had taken on the flavour of whatever was last cooked in the oil, and they had an odd taint to them as well as being underseasoned. The bread was very nice, but I really didn’t eat much of the eggs because of the all-pervasive hollandaise. It was a shame because this could have been an excellent dish.

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On the whole, two very different plates, and we probably won’t go back – there are better brunch venues nearby.

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Bar Uma Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

At the Lobby Level of Perth’s Pan Pacific Hotel sits Uma, a Peruvian restaurant and bar, and we chose to dine in the restaurant – it was somewhere that we had wanted to try for some time.

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We were met by Eric, a charismatic sommelier who we know from Co-Op Dining, and he recognised us which was nice. Charming as ever, he seated us, chatted for a while and suggested a Pisco Sour to start which was absolutely cracking. The citrus burst and the hint of warming brandy-style backdrop was a mouthful of pleasure, complete with three drops of bitters on top.

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Next, a Peruvian waitress explained the dishes to us and suggested, two small plates, a larger plate and some vegetables. We already knew that we wanted to try the ceviche, so we chose the ceviche Peruano, which was kingfish with leche de tigre (the citrus marinade), charred sweetcorn and caramelised sweet potato. This was delightfully good, and the star of the menu.

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We also chose alpaca croquettes with a fermented chilli sauce. Alpaca is a bit like beef cheek – a rich meat, and the chilli sauce was a great accompaniment.

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We also chose some Yuquitas – cassava potato chips with shaved parmesan and huancaina (queso fresco and chilli) sauce – lovely crispy and addictive.

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For the main dish we chose slow braised lamb shoulder with adobo sauce, heirloom carrots and shallots. We also chose Salpicon de vegetales to go with it, a medley of vegetables on pureed quinoa. Together they made a hearty main with plenty of lamb meat to share, and lots of nice textures and flavours.

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We finished with picarones – sweet potato and pumpkin doughnuts with roasted quinoa ice cream and fruit molasses. A case of vegetable meets dessert, not overly sweet, but with some good unusual flavours.20190727_203320

We also chose some Alfajor Peruano, corn shortbread with Peruvain caramel. They were like the lightest and shortest melting moments you have ever tasted with sublime gooey caramel –  a really good dessert.

We left the restaurant with happy tummies and good memories – it’s a great place to try something different. Elegant and friendly, Uma is a star in the CBD.

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