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.
Latin American restaurants seem to be popping up all over the place lately, and after checking out the menu at Argentine-born chef Oscar Gorosito’s Bridge St Garage, I was keen to visit. As I only managed to get there during a workday lunch, I wasn’t able to sample as much of the menu as I would like, but the food I tried was impressive enough for me to plan another visit. After much deliberation, I eventually went for the soft shell crab salad which is probably one of the most appealing salads I’ve ever seen.
I was rather surprised when I read all the negative reviews of C1 Cafe, which is located in prime position on the ground floor of the Chatswood Chase shopping centre. We may have just been lucky, visiting late on a Monday morning for an early lunch when the cafe was quite empty. I wouldn’t say the service was outstanding, as we did have to regularly request more drinking water but the waitstaff were friendly enough and our food came out quite quickly. As I have frequently mentioned, I love anything garlic prawns, so I was immediately drawn to the prawn linguine with garlic and chilli.
Nobu Matsuhisa’s first restaurant in the USA was located in Alaska and went up in flames after just weeks of trading. It’s fair to say that things have only improved since then. Nine years after his ‘Bombe Alaska’ (yep, I went there!), Nobu opened a Japanese-Peruvian fusion restaurant in Beverly Hills and soon became one of the world’s first celebrity chefs. There are now 22 Nobu restaurants around the world, including one in Melbourne which opened in 2007 at Crown Casino.
Group buying vouchers are a hit and miss affair. I’ve gone to restaurants where they’re offering these deals as a last ditch effort to generate some income before shutting down and conversely, I’ve been pleasantly surprised with the quality of food at other establishments. Barramundi Bar & Grill was one of the good ones. On a number of occasions in the past, my boyfriend and I had taken advantage of several deals from Barramundi, which provided you with an excellent tower of seafood and a bottle of wine for the surprisingly low price $49. We had always felt slightly bad that we had never actually returned to Barramundi without a voucher, so last week, we finally decided to try out their ‘regular’ menu.
Located in the Sydney CBD, the restaurant was less than half full with business types mainly seated in the outdoor terrace area when we arrived for lunch on this unusually fine, almost-winter day.