Gazi, Melbourne

I have to admit that I haven’t really eaten much Greek food in my life. The odd souvlaki or the occasional haloumi salad (although I really do love haloumi!), but I can’t remember the last time I went to a Greek restaurant. Gazi in the Melbourne CBD was suggested by an old school friend for our very long overdue catch-up, and when she gave me the address, I was surprised to find that it was ridiculously close to where I work, yet I had never noticed it. As I always do before going to a new restaurant, I checked out the menu and I was immediately drawn to the soft shell crab souvlakakia.

Soft shell crab souvlaki - wanderluxelife

Crab Souvlakakia – soft shell crab, mint, coriander, honey, mayo

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Recipe Roadtest: Chorizo and Spinach Muffins

Finding healthy savoury snacks has been something of a holy grail for me. My snack of choice: a pack of Kettle’s chilli chips (or really just about any chips!) is probably not something to be included in your daily intake, and with my wedding coming up, I’ve really been trying to clean up my diet. I stumbled upon David Lebovitz’s recipe for pistachio and chorizo cake which looked amazing, but as I was without a loaf tin, I decided to tweak the recipe and re-create it in muffin form.

Chorizo and spinach muffins - wanderluxelife

Chorizo and spinach muffins

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The Wild Collective

Anyone who knows me will tell you that I love to shop. I can happily browse for hours in shopping malls, scroll through online storefronts till the early hours of the morning and – to my fiancé’s frustration – spend days touring the high streets and outlets while on holidays. But one shopping experience I absolutely love is roaming around markets, be they farmers, arts and crafts or food and wine. So when I heard about The Wild Collective’s fabulous new market event featuring some incredible foodies/designers/producers, I was more than excited to join the tribe!

The Wild Collective - wanderluxelife

The Wild Collective

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National Institute of Circus Arts

Ever dreamed of running away and joining the circus? If you want a taste of circus life before packing your bags, then the National Institute of Circus Arts (NICA) is the place to start. A training institute that is part of Swinburne University, it offers a bachelor degree in circus arts for those who want to make their career in the industry, but for those of us who just want to escape our desk jobs for a while, there are any number of short courses to choose from! Tumbling, hula hooping, trapeze, aerial silks – basically anything you’d expect to see in a circus!

Aerial hoop - NICA - wanderluxelife

Aerial hoop

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CNF Cafe, South Yarra

Brunch is probably my favourite meal of the day, mainly because you can order anything you want – sweet, savoury or anything in between! One of the first places we actually tried in South Yarra was CNF Café and we’ve been back a couple of times since. I’ve ordered the same thing every time, despite the variety in the menu, but it has basically everything I want in a brunch dish!

Gluten Free Stack - wanderluxelife

Gluten Free Stack

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Recipe Roadtest: Spicy One-Pot Quinoa and Chorizo

We usually go out for dinner on the weekend, so I tend not to do much cooking on Saturday or Sunday. However, this particular Saturday night, my fiancé was invited to a corporate event at the footy, which meant that I had a rare night at home. I decided to use this chance to cook up something new; and flicking through the pages of a Christmas present – Donna Hay’s Simple Dinners – I found a recipe for one-pot chorizo and cous cous. Continuing my healthy eating attempts, I substituted quinoa for cous cous and added in mushrooms for extra nutrients – but don’t worry, it still tastes delicious!

Spicy One-Pot Quinoa and Chorizo

Spicy One-Pot Quinoa and Chorizo

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The Canvas Factory

One of the fun parts of moving into a new apartment is having the freedom to decorate it and turn it into a home. Since moving to Melbourne, I haven’t yet done much interior styling besides matching the sofa to the carpet; and the sofa conveniently came with accent cushions, which makes the living room a lot more pulled together than I had planned! However, our white walls are still starkly bare – I had bought my fiancé a few pieces of AFL memorabilia but they’re still languishing at his mum’s place. So when The Canvas Factory offered me the opportunity to create my own piece of wall art, I couldn’t wait to give it a go!

The Canvas Factory

The Canvas Factory

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Pastuso, Melbourne

Walking down Flinders Lane, I’ve often passed ACDC Lane and noticed a restaurant at the very end – Pastuso, a “modern Peruvian grill, cevicheria and pisco bar”. My only previous experience with Peruvian cuisine has been the Japanese-Peruvian fusion of Nobu, which I loved, so I did have quite high expectations of Pastuso.

Ceviche Nikei de Camarones — Crystal Bay prawns, radish, ginger, turnip puree, ponzu & white miso

Ceviche Nikei de Camarones — Crystal Bay prawns, radish, ginger, turnip puree, ponzu & white miso

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