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fergal76's Profile

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Tokyo & Kyoto lunch deals

Hi,

I'm going to be on holiday in Japan in February, with flexibility when to eat. I was wondering whether there are good lunch deals to be had in well regarded restaurants, similar to what is common in the UK & France?

I know Narisawa serves the dinner menu at a greatly reduced rate at lunch, but can't find anymore mention of places on chowhound & google.

Any other suggestions? Thank you

Sep 22, 2013
fergal76 in Japan

Brisbane - Sunday Lunch

thank you. German Club looks ace.

Crosstown Eating House is closed on Sundays. Any other gems you know about for a good sunday roast?

thanks

Jun 06, 2013
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

Brisbane - Sunday Lunch

Hi, I'm going to be in Brisbane for the Lions test and having trouble finding anywhere open for lunch that will be decent.

I'm not after fine dining or expensive, since we may be a little hungover, but any locals have any recommendations for a good sunday lunch?

thank you

fergal

Jun 05, 2013
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

Miu Knives in Sydney

Just tried to Google it to no avail. Anyone know where I can find Miu knives in Sydney?

Thanks

Fergal

Oct 30, 2012
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

Pizza dough in Sydney

Hi, I've never heard of a pizza restaurant that sells pizza dough.

At the risk of being annoying have you tried making your own? I've come across several excellent recipes that work with no kneading required. It would be a case of spending 5mins to mix the ingredients together and leaving the dough for a minimum of 12 hours to proof. So make it thursday night (doesn't matter if you've had a drink or two) or first thing Friday and you're good to go.

I've had good success with recipes from Food Wishes blog. There is even a 30min Wolfgang Puck recipe

http://foodwishes.blogspot.com/2010/0...

Good luck

Jan 13, 2012
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

Become another foodie on TV....

Hi all,

I came across this link on a website - production company looking for an Australian male foodie aged 45 - 58 to take on a gastro tour and film them. Thought it might appeal to someone on this site:

http://www.campaignbrief.com/2011/12/...

Not sure why they're being so discriminatory (presumably they've already found the younger demographics).

PS. I'm in no way affiliated to this venture, just thought I'd share.

Dec 08, 2011
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

Visiting Sydney from New York City

Hi there, I think you will find lots of answers to these sort of queries on other threads - be it Thai, Vietnamese, Chinese etc.

In addition if you have a mobile you can download one month subscription to the SMH Good Food Guide 2012, just published. It will point in the right direction for the best dining at all levels.

Oct 10, 2011
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

Sushi grade fish in Manly area

Oh and while I'm thinking about fish, I have another option to get sushi grade fish if you don't want to travel to the city. In Neutral Bay there's a place called Fine Fish. You won't find better quality fish, but you will pay for it. They sell fish specifically for sashimi.

It is a 25min bus journey from Manly, bus no.144 etc. there's a bus every 15mins or so. So that's your guaranteed option if you don't want to go the city

Oct 10, 2011
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

Sushi grade fish in Manly area

Hi there, Manly Fish Market & cafe is pretty decent and would give them a go before I venture to the city. It's a fishmongers and a cafe. It has a good selection of fish and with all places it would be worth calling them prior to place an order. I've bought from there several times and have never been disappointed by the quality.

In addition, you have a small fish chop called Mongers just round the corner from the above place. They generally do fish & chips to go, but the quality is excellent. Again worth giving them a call..

So in short, while the Fish Market in Pyrmont is reliable and excellent, you've got some potentially decent options nearby.

Good luck

Oct 10, 2011
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

Royal Mail Hotel, Dunkeld

Hi,

I had a dinner at this much talked about place at the end of November. I must say it was worth the effort, bringing my dad along for the journey.

Only about 45mins from delightful walks in the Grampians it's worth making the trek from Melbourne. The town itself is tiny and unpretentious. So it does focus your mind around walking and eating. Not a bad combination.

The restaurant itself is airy and relaxed without the pretence often found in fine dining. It's a good place to while away a few hours. Although I went expecting culinary fireworks, the meal itself was very restrained, focusing on wringing out the maximum flavour from seasonal and the freshest of ingredients, grown in the gardens on the grounds.

There are pictures and commentary on my blog, but the standout dishes were:

- egg yolk, toasted rye, legumes and yeast
- asparagus, duck ham, spring blossoms and duck consomme
- pistachio cake, hazelnuts, honeycomb and chocolate

I could see while some people would question this sort of dining experience. What you're paying for is not readily evident on the plate - an absence of luxury ingredients and showy technical skill. However there is a much admired restraint and focus on great and involving tastes. It made for one of the more interesting meals of the year and I would look forward to return.

Anybody else been of late? thoughts?

Fergal
www.foodmiles.wordpress.com

Jan 11, 2011
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

Where can I buy specialty cooking supplies (molecular)?

The wonders of Google!

461 Liverpool Road, Strathfield - (02) 9758 7459

Jan 10, 2011
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

Tasmania

I went a few months ago. Lovely area.

A few things:
- Fish Frenzy was OK, but Mures is even better. The ground floor has the look of canteeen, but the oysters are cheap and great and with a reasonable bottle of Muscadet sat on the pier, It's hard to beat.
- We tried Marque IV and it was pretty disappointing experience. The place was not very buzzy with the food being too fussy and lacking gravitas.
- We liked Bruny Island, but the cheese shop is an anti-climax. Sure the cheese is good, but the destination itself is nothing special. If you are heading there I can though thoroughly recommend Bruny Island Smokehouse (2mins from Ferry) for the best hot smoked salmon I've tasted.

enjoy

Nov 21, 2010
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

Melbourne, Adelaide Trip Planning

I called up a few days ago and the bistro was fully booked, but there was still place in the main restaurant. I would guess the restaurant is mainly booked for special occasions and tourists, while the bistro is a locals place. Always good to have the option if you book ahead

Nov 14, 2010
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

Melbourne, Adelaide Trip Planning

I've decided to treat my dad and go ahead and book Royal Mail anyway. Not sure when I'm going to be in that neck of the woods again, so might as well make the most of it.

Will also report back

Nov 14, 2010
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

Notes on a few places in Sydney

Hi Phil,

I've eaten at Cafe Spora in Walsh Bay a few times. Really enjoy it. Not sure about the stars, but it's well cooked good value Italian. I'd love one in my neighbourhood, but clearly the service needs a bit of work.

I'm also a little mystified by Bentleys. It comes across as clever cooking for the sake of it. I've most recently had the tapas menu and a couple of dishes were just wrong. Parmesan custard was texturally weird and plasticky. Fried chicken was all batter with the mere hint of meat. Nothing I'd rush back for.

Nov 13, 2010
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

Melbourne, Adelaide Trip Planning

I'm driving from Melbourne to Adelaide in a few weeks time. My Dad's coming over and we're doing the Ashes in Adelaide. We've got 4 days to do the drive.

He loves his food, but not a fan of 'fussy dining' as he calls it, so unfortunately Royal Mail is probably out of the question.

With that in mind where you recommend we head to on the way?

Nov 11, 2010
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

Sydney - What is the best Asian food the city has to offer?

I was out in Cabramatta a few weeks ago and had a great vietnamese meal with make-your-own fresh rolls & crispy pancake.

It's a bit of a trek to get there, so I was wondering if there are any decent places closer to CBD or Lower North Shore.

thanks

Oct 10, 2010
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

OZ - Cairns, Sydney and NZ - Queenstown, Rotorua, Auckland - Suggestions?

Hi,

we've just come back from a brief stop in New Zealand. Loved it.

We stayed a bit in Queenstown and did our research beforehand.

In terms of simple food we'd recommend Fergburger - a good & very popular burger bar. My wife thought it the best burger she'd ever had, but we're not American... It was good. I can also recommend Aggys fish & chips on marine parade. Try the scallops!

In terms of good dining - the best in town seems to be Botswana Butchery. But it is a steak restaurant of sorts.

We'd recommend heading out of town to Saffron in Arrowtown - a good french style restaurant. Also only about 10 mins outside of Queenstown is Amisfield WInery. Which has a renowned bistro. We didn't try, but have heard good things.

Enjoy!

Oct 08, 2010
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

What to eat during three days in Sydney?

The Rocks is the oldest part of Sydney and a great tourist spot to look around. There are some good places to have a drink and get a fantastic view of Sydney, but in terms of eating it's not a place for locals unless you count Sailors Thai (another great Thai restaurant) & Cafe Sopra (an authentic chain of Italian eateries).

Sep 14, 2010
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

What to eat during three days in Sydney?

Hi,

I have to second Lord Nelson. It's not really worth the trek. The food is fine, but nothing special, especially if you've only got 3 days, though it's a fine drinking establishment.

As you will have seen from other posts, definitely check out Thai food - something like Spice I Am on Wentworth Avenue.

Sep 14, 2010
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

Arras [Sydney]

Interesting review. This place has been on my radar for a while, but never quite a priority. I've walked past a few times, but it's always looked a little quiet.

The menu looks really interesting, but pricing wise it demands a proper evening out.

Glad the food was up to scratch if not the service

Sep 13, 2010
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

Sydney Good Food Guide winners and losers

I'm in two minds about the results. I agree with the demotion of Tetsuya since it lacks the excitement I think necessary for a 3 hat, but does est really represent exciting food?

Yet what's more apparent is that GFG want to make a point about be a bastion of good taste. So it's relishing its demotion of certain restaurants. I'm not surprised there are many angry restauranteurs.

Pier is a good example. I very recently ate there (pictures on my blog) and thought the food & experience excellent. It's certainly a two hat establishment. Demoting it to 1 hat just smacks of sour grapes.

additional thoughts?

Fergal
www.foodmiles.wordpress.com

Sep 06, 2010
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

Rockpool Bar & Grill [Sydney]

I go to the bar fairly often and have yet to get beyond the great burgers. The empanadas are a great pointer.

It ain't cheap, but it is worth it. I can particularly recommend the manhattan cocktail, which is brilliant

Aug 23, 2010
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

Xmas in Japan

thanks. any more views on availability of good produce in December, would be great

Jul 22, 2010
fergal76 in Japan

Xmas in Japan

Hi,

fellow chowhounders.

I'm thinking of heading to Japan (Kyoto & Tokyo) at the end of December for a couple of weeks. I have a couple of questions.

1) Is this a good time to visit Japan food-wise? Or in terms of fish, is it good all year round?

2) Are any of the top restaurants going to be open (28th Dec to 3rd Jan) or do they close for holidays?

thanks

fergal

Jul 21, 2010
fergal76 in Japan

Mudgee, NSW

Hi,
Mudgee is not the most happening place on a Sunday night. I think Cobb & Co is your best option. Elton's is also open as well as an Indian called Rajarani (where we ate). It was OK. So if you want a 'proper meal' then Cobb & Co is the place to go.

If you can make it there's a really good wine/tapas bar called Roth, which is not open on Sunday. Might be worth a pre-dinner drink prior to Deeb.

We didn't get the chance to eat there for Breakfast, but The Butcher Cafe on Market Street looked good and has plenty of recommendations.

In terms of vineyards we liked Robert Stein, Huntingdon Estate, Farmer's Daughter, Varafina (good Reisling). We didn't make it to Oatleys or Logan which was recommended. We visited a lot of these places on Sunday afternoon and they were pleasingly not busy at all.

There appears to be a glut of wine in Mudgee so good case deals can be found. We bought a case of Prince Hill Shiraz for $39!

Happy Hunting

Jul 20, 2010
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

Mudgee, NSW

Hi all,

had a lovely weekend in Mudgee. good vineyards and lovely people.

On the way we stopped at Vulcans for Friday evening. A quirky place, but not a great meal. Service was a little stand-off-ish, but the dinner started off well with a great crab and artichoke soup. Pleasingly devoid of cream it was sweet and satisfying with nice chunks of crab. However our main courses was both unbalanced dishes. I had blade of beef with kaffir lime and lemongrass, but it lacked something to make the dish smoother . My wife had pork with papaya salad. it again had good spice, but lacked sweetness. We expected a little better.

We did however have a great meal at Deeb's Kitchen. Just like eating at someone's home it was charming, cute and good cutsy food. I'll write it up on my blog at some point, but will be back. So if anybody is on their way to Mudgee, I would urge a booking.

fergal
www.foodmiles.wordpress.com

Jul 19, 2010
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

Mudgee, NSW

Deebs is booked and got a table at Vulcans in Blackheath on the way. sorted

Jul 14, 2010
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

Mudgee, NSW

Interesting. Deebs looks really intriguing. I'll definitely try and bag a table.

thank you

Jul 13, 2010
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand

Mudgee, NSW

Hi,

Inspired by PhilD's adventures we're also heading out of Sydney this weekend. We're off to Mudgee with the farmers market and farming festival. Sounds like fun.

We've had a look at the Sydney Good Food Guide, but nothing inspiring jumps out in terms of eating. So can any fellow food enthusiasts provide some good suggestions for dining, especially on Sunday (inc. evening).

Also any vineyards not to be missed, let me know.

many thanks

Fergal

Jul 13, 2010
fergal76 in Australia/New Zealand