Yayoi Garden Japanese Restaurant, Sydney CBD, Sydney

  • Located in they Sydney CBD, this is a fancy-ish Japanese restaurant - somewhere you might want to eat for a nice evening out or for a date with your partner (note this one which I visited is the Bridge Street location 'Yayoi Garden')
  • Service is attentive but is does get busy so try to make a booking
  • Decor is classy and laid back, with the feeling of being in a Zen garden
  • Dishes slightly on the pricey side but worth it in terms of taste, portion sizes are average
  • A few dishes you don't see in a typical Japanese restaurant which are worth trying
Clean and relaxed table setting

Soft shell crab fritter with garden salad - $20 - I wanted more!

Prawn spring roll with sweet mayo - $12 - crispy pastry and fresh prawn flesh

Premium wagyu sukiyaki with mushrooms and udon - $33 and the recommendation of our waitress. Very nice

Unagi Hitsumabushi - $23 - a dish not normally seen in Japanese restaurants with unagi rice and a dashi broth served separately. The waitress noted to try it both without the broth first and with the broth after and see which you prefer. I much prefer the broth and it changes the whole dynamic of the dish and adds an additional element of flavour.

After adding the broth

YAYOI Garden Japanese Restaurant Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Rising sun workshop, Newtown, Sydney inner

Given the prevalence of social media and the time poor nature of almost everybody these days, I have decided to make my blog posts more 'snackable'. Essentially this means the posts going forward will be shorter - summarised with a few key dot points. Please provide feedback below if you like or dislike this approach - thanks for reading!

  • Rising sun workshop is a quirky half motorcycle workshop, half Japanese ramen house situated smack in the middle of Newtown
  • They are well known for their breakfast ramen below which is definitely a different take on your run of the mill breakfast cafes!
  • The other dish we ordered was also ramen but a lunchtime ramen.
  • Open for lunch and dinner, a worthy place to check out if you haven't been before

Breakfast ramen - $17 - buttered toast broth (yes it actually tastes like toast!), grill tomato, bacon, egg

The light ramen - $19 -  a more flavoursome ramen I thought than the breakfast ramen.

Broth: holmbrae chicken and super dashi double down.
Tarè: River salt, ocean salt, smoked salt, ginger, apple, onion
Toppings: kurobuta belly, greens, shroom, bamboo, egg, green onion, nori

Rising Sun Workshop Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Spago, Beverly Hills, Sydney South West

I love to blog about Spago because it is really one of my favourite local Italian restaurants. The prices are decent, the service is quick and the taste is exceptional.

I highly recommend if you are in the neighborhood to try this place out!

My all time favourite dish is squid ink spaghetti with blue swimmer crab meat and chili. Such a flavoursome combination of ingredients. I'm salivating as I write this. So much crab meat as well!

Second favourite is the lobster risotto - rich lobster infused risotto and a fresh lobster tail sitting on top. Oh so moreish.

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

I'm Angus, Darling Harbour, Sydney CBD

Darling harbour I think is generally a bit of a tourist trap but there are a few deals to be had if you go at the right times. On week nights there is a happy hour special between 5pm and 630pm I think where you can get 2 courses for $32 from a select choice of menu items.

We went for this on a Friday night and it wasn't too bad - felt like a holiday in your town!

Grilled Baby Octopus Shallots, bean shoots & fried onion, with chilli, soy dressing - A nice light Asian style salad to get the taste buds salivating

Soft Shell Crabs Tempura battered, nam jim dipping sauce - In the words of Manu - where is the sauce! The crab needed a bit more sauce.

Grilled Barramundi with sautéed wild mushrooms and spinach - lovely fresh barramundi, crispy skin, mushrooms and spinach were the perfect accompaniment.

Top Cut Sirloin and Prawn Served with garlic butter and creamy mash - Note that the menu explicitly says "PRAWN" so expect 1 prawn as per below. Big in size, but would have been good to have one or two more. Steak cooked to perfection with the taste of the jot grill lingering.

I'm Angus Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Golden Sands Yum Cha, Hurstville, Sydney South

A new Yum Cha restaurant in Hurstville to rival the well-established Sunny Harbour Seafood restaurant. Located right on the main road of Forest Road, Golden Sands sits on the first floor of a newly built set of apartment blocks. 

The decor is nice and well laid out although there is a bit of a feel of claustraphobia as one side of the windows face an apartment wall. The queues are long with any Chinese Yum Cha restauratn on the weekends, but we went early and so managed to get a seat stragith away.

The service was good, and the dishes tasty. Not much more you can ask for a decent Yum Cha feast. 

Fried Chinese donut (Yau tao) with Cheung Fun outside - lovely and crispy in the inside.

Chicken and vegetables in bean curd

Bean curd wrapped sticky rice

Custard bun with flowing egg custard inside - not many restaurants offer these so these are a must order whenever you see it. The filling is so rich with egg yolk it is literally intoxicating.

Check out the gooey goodness!

Golden Sands Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Hogs breath cafe, Brighton Le Sands, Sydney south

Bright sunny day at Brighton Le Sands beach down towards the South of Sydney. Sure the area probably isn't as nice as the Northern beaches or the Eastern suburbs, but it is a nice beach nonetheless, and an area where some restaurants are popping up on the strip by the sand.

Joining Hurricanes ribs (see prior post here) is Hogs Breath cafe which just opened a few months ago. Situated right next to Hurricanes, it has 2 floors, one on the beach front and one above which a pretty decent view. 

The top level of Hogs is more of a bar area but still has tables and seating.

Crumbed mushrooms with aioli - lightly crumbed button mushrooms with a nice crisp finish

150gm steak with curly fries, corn and vegies - a somewhat healthy option. The steak was well -done and so a bit dry, but tasted pretty good with the spice rub.

Steak sandwich with curly fries - steak was tender with a combo of the usual toppings of lettuce, onion, tomato and beetroot.

Caramel sundae - old school dessert favourite

All washed down with a Fat Yak

Hog's Australia's Steakhouse Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Pho PHD, Marrickville, Sydney Inner West

Another trip to Marrickville means another obligatory post about pho! In addition to my many visits to the Vietnamese eateries in Marrickville (see previous posts via the search function above) here is one about one of the stalwarts of the pho scene.

PHD is one of the eateries that have been around for quite a while. They were super popular and now have 2 branches both in Marrickville - one on Marrickville road and the other on Illawarra road. The menus are the same but if one is full you can try your luck at the other.

This time we went to the Marrickville road branch for an early lunch. Not too many people here so we could choose where we sat. Unfortunately no complimentary tea here but there is table water.

Pork spring rolls - $11 - for starters we got the classic spring roll. Pork mince and vegies wrapped in crisp pastry deep fried to perfection. Crunchy and piping hot when brought to the table the tangy sauce went very well as an accompaniment.

Pho Tai - Beef pho -$12 - the pho here comes in 3 sizes - regular, medium and large. With prices ranging from $12 to a whopping $19. We got the regulars which actually wasn't too small in size. Plenty of beef slices but just a bit lacking in the noodle department. The soup was bit on the sweeter side but packed with real beef flavour. As you can see from the photo, the soup is a bit oily. 

Complimentary beansprouts, basil and lime.

Pho Phd Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Penang Hawker, Campsie, Sydney Inner West

There's a few Malaysian restaurants in Campsie these days. Our usual go - to is Ablees kitchen, but more recently we have ventured out to try a few others. Located a few doors down from Ablees, the newest one is Penang Hawker, which specialises in Penang cuisine with the decor to match.

It was busy but we were happy to share a table and so get a seat relatively quickly. Service is quick and attentive.

Lam Yu Pai Guat -$18.80 - a deep fried pork rib dish. Had some nice aroma to it but the meat I found a bit tough.

Sambal Lala (pipies) -$15.80 - Apologies for the shocking photo but this dish was pretty good. Only downside was that the pipies weren't live and were a bit small. But can't complain at this price.

Lor Mee - $11.80 - a classic malaysian dish of thick noodles in an even thicker broth. Pork mince and chinese vegies are underneath as well as egg. Add a bit of vinegar to add some bite to the dish.

Not a bad restaurant but I think I still prefer Albees.

  Penang Hawker Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Irvins salted egg potato chips, Singapore

A family friend recently came to visit us from Singapore and brought over some souvenirs. Now normally I'm not a big fan of souvenirs but in this case it was food related and I was intrigued!

She had brought over the latest food fad in Singapore which was salted duck egg potato chips! Omggggg..... I cannot believe someone actually made this! For those who haven't heard of this flavour, it's basically a type of flavouring which is used in Singaporean and Malaysian cooking - primarily in cooking seafood such as crab and prawns.

The flavours are super addictive and is like a salty eggy taste which is hard to explain. It is definitely an acquired taste though as not everyone that tried them liked them. But in Singapore at the moment they are a huge hit with this company basically specializing in just this product and people lining up en masse to buy them - in some places it is literally sold out. Retailing at around $8 AUD it is not an easy feat to gain such a strong following.

The packet below - you can see the warning label - "Dangerously addictive" - it should probably also read "Dangerously bad for people with cholesterol problems" lol

Other information at the back - interestingly no nutritional information.

Now I failed to take a photo whilst I was eating them so I had to resort to a stock photo below. The chips int he packet basically look like this. The chips are thinly sliced and include some of the deep fried curry leaves that you get in the usual salted egg dishes. The flavour is very rich and salty but with also a creaminess to it. It is very hard to explain. The are very flavoursome and some find the taste to be overpowering. You probably couldn't eat a whole pack in one seating without something to cut through that oiliness.

But overall an amazing chip flavour - if you're coming back from Singapore - feel free to send a pack my way!

Anatolia, Sydney Inner West, Clemton Park

Clemton Park has undergone a bit of gentrification in recent years with a huge residential complex having popped up complete with its own Coles and shopping and restaurant precinct. One of these restaurants - Anatolia - is where we decided to grab a bite to eat for lunch.

Plenty of seating inside the restaurant and you can dine in or takeaway. Order at the counter and away you go. We decided to eat in which I think has the same menu as takeaway but is a bit more expensive probably due to the service.

Beef and Spinach gozleme - ~$15 - served on a wooden chopping board this large sized gozleme was freshly made to order. The dough light and flufy and the ingredients flavoursome and fresh. Much better than those you get at the local market stalls.

Mixed doner plate with chicken and beef - $22 - I love how with middle eastern food there is such a vibrancy of colours on the plate. Here the meat from the kebab is well marinated and served on a bed of steamed rice. There is also a side of homemade flatbread which you can use to make your own little kebab wraps.

The salads provided include: shredded carrot, pickled cabbage, tabouli, tomato salsa, a green chili and a grilled tomato.

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

Captain's Grill, St George Motor Boat Club, San Souci

On the waters of San Souci lies the St George Motor Boat Club. Very popular with the locals and a pretty cool place to hang by the water and enjoy a feed with family and friends. Just be sure to get in early or you'll have to park a few streets away and walk down.

Prawn spaghetti with chili, zuchini and shallots - ~$20- prawns were fresh but could have been more of (think there were only 6), though were of decent size. Plenty of pasta so would fill you up. Taste is nice with a real kick of chili coming through.

Chicken parmy - ~$19 - a classic winter warmer here. Bolgonese sauce, cheesy top, crispy chicken schnitzel on a bed of hot chips. Garden salad on the side. Chips were amazingly crispy on the outside but fluffy on the inside and just a dusting of salt to season.

The Captain's Grill Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


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