A work function
brought me to Soda Sun Lounge in North Beach for shared Tapas and lunch.
Situated on the
beachfront, I felt as if we were floating on a cruise ship as the glistening
blue ocean stretched out from the window overlooking the beach.
For entrée we shared:
salt & pepper calamari, chilli,
green onion $16
was fried nicely so the white meat had a nice springy texture to the bite yet
was not rubbery. A mild spice accompanied the calamari, yet a slight oil
residual was left on my palate… I like it when fried food does not leave that
overly oily taste on your tongue.
caramelized duck tacos, sichuan pepper $16
duck in this taco dish was cooked to perfection. Soft flakes of dark, red meat
fell apart at the touch of the fork and the sweet, sticky caramalised sauce
accompanying the duck was ever-so-morish! Fresh bean shoots and spring onion
added a nice crunch-element to the dish along with the crispy hard taco shells.
ganoush, olives, red pepper & crostini $12
baba ganoush dish was slightly underwhelming as the unseasoned and mild-tasting
baba ganoush to crostini ratio was heavily unbalanced. The large scoop of baba
ganoush overtook the flavour of the dish and the crostini was left drowned...I
felt disappointed that we were given what felt like a crostini from a Coles
packet with a big scoop of flavourless dip.
real chips, aioli $9
accompany my mains I had crispy chips, rusticly cut and served with a creamy
aioli. No complaints here, this dish was lovely as the chips were well seasoned
and I enjoyed the skins being left on the potatoes.
also had an ‘asparagus, pear, onion, cos
& roquefort salad’ ($16) with my main.
Unfortunately I devoured the
lightly crunchy asparagus on this salad before remembering to take a photo. I
omitted the blue cheese from this dish due to my lactose intolerance but do
admit this was ameture of me as the strong blue cheese flavour was the hero of
this dish. Without it, I was left with a lot of lettuce and no strong flavour.
For mains I had the ‘chermoula
barramundi, peas, parsnip, tomato’ ($34).
dish was exquisite. Presented wonderfully on the plate, the large barramundi
fillet sat on top of roasted parsnips that were rustic and spiced. The skin of
the barramundi was not crispy but salty none-the-less and upon first touch of
my knife, the white flesh fell apart on my plate. The barramundi was cooked to
perfection and the sweet white meat complimented the sweet cherry tomatoes that
popped in my mouth. The chermoula spice could have been more prominent if I was
to be overly picky, but I thoroughly enjoyed this main. The wilted spinach
leaves and peas added a bright colour contrast that certainly made the dish
more appealing to the eye.
Overall my experience at Soda Sun Lounge
was a very enjoyable experience. The ambiance of the restaurant is lovely and
the food was very impressive.
I would definitely return in the future
(maybe next time with a fuller wallet!).
There’s something about relaxing in the country and enjoying the simplicities of life.
I love the fresh produce and using it in everything I cook. Fruit and veggies just get taken to a whole new level when they are home-grown.
Upon my recent trip to Harvey, I made a five course Tapas meal inspired by all the fresh produce we had!
Course one: fried chilli chorizo with fresh lemon
Course two: aioli potatoes with fresh lemon
Course three and four: chilli garlic mushrooms and Moroccan chicken skewers with Greek yogurt.
Course four: Baha fish taco’s with coriander and chilli
Course five: home-made Thai sticky rice with coconut custard
Thai sticky rice with coconut custard is my ultimate favourite dessert! I am lucky enough to know a Thai lady who makes this for me upon request. No matter how many attempts I make at this Thai dessert, I cannot get it right or anywhere near as delicious as she makes it!
So I have given up and instead put my order in for two large bowls of sticky rice and custard every time I visit Harvey.
Tapas, sitting outside while the sun sets, sipping on a cold cider with my loved ones.
Nobu restaurant at the Burswood Entertainment Complex (Now Crown Perth)is a world-famous modern Japanese fusion restaurant with 27 restaurants throughout the world. I have been dying to dine at Nobu Perth since it was newly opened at the Crown Perth in September 2012. Spoilt to the max, I was surprised with a dinner here just recently. Our dinner reservation was at 6.00pm but as we arrived early, we were seated in the bar to wait until the restaurant opened. The bar is styled similarly to Nobu restaurant in tones of gold, olive and brown, where bright gold globes of light circle the centre of the room making an architecturally divine lantern chandelier. This chandelier is also featured as a centrepiece in the main dining room. Promptly seated after 6.00pm, we take our seats and are pleasantly offered drinks to start. We are asked if we have been to Nobu before, and upon our reply, “no,” we are told the menu is designed for sharing. I glance down at the pages of the menu and my eyes excitedly dash from page to page, buzzing with anticipation of the food to come. Our waiter suggested we choose two to three cold dishes, followed by two to three hot dishes. The extensive menu has the usual Japanese suspects – Sashimi, sushi, tempura, teppanyaki and teriyaki – but each with a touch of elegance and a unique Nobu twist. We decide on:
·Nobu Style Ceviche: - Mix Seafood $22
·Scallop Tiradito $20
Signature hot dishes
·Nasu Miso $9 (eggplant)
·Scallops with Wasabi Pepper or Spicy Garlic Sauce $24
·Chicken Yakimono with Balsamic Teriyaki $32
(Choice of Sauces: Wasabi Pepper, Anticucho, Teriyaki, or Balsamic Teriyaki)
·Octopus and mushroom with garlic butter yuzu
Much to our dismay, but to the delight of our bank account, we restrained from ordering the Black Cod Miso (AU$46), which is Nobu’s much talked about signature dish. I just couldn’t possibly justify $46 on a piece of fish when there were so many other delicious sounding dishes to try! Slightly regret not splurging on this masterpiece but it just means I now have a reason to come back!
Nobu Style Ceviche: - Mix Seafood $22
The Mix Seafood Nobu Style Ceviche was beautifully plated with a clam topping the mountain of seafood packed on top of a golden lemon garlic broth. Bright red and yellow cherry tomatoes popped against the golden sauce and seafood which created a pleasantly colourful dish. The raw salmon and white fish were silky smooth, slipperly on the palate and the poached prawn pieces added a slightly chewing-element to the dish. The strong lemon garlic sauce dominated the tastebuds but the strong flavour complimented the subtle taste of the fresh seafood. I found this dish an absolute delight to eat.
The Scallop Tiradito came plated as a circle of cucumber and pearl white raw scallops, each decorated with a touch of chilli sauce. Dusted with a Japanese chilli pepper and garnished with coriander, this was another winner. I fondled with my chopsticks trying to combine all the ingredients into one mouthful so that I could crunch lightly into the crisp cucumber as the scallops melted in my mouth delicately. The chilli heat was subtle but plenty to not overpower the dish. There is something magical about the sweetness of a raw scallop as it slips down your throat with a faint chilli kick.
The Nasu (eggplant) miso was one of my favourite dishes of the night! Coming in at the cheapest and being a huge eggplant fanatic, I was ever-so eager to try this eggplant dish.
The baby eggplants came plated with a caramel soy dressing and crisp lemon wedge. The crisp, hard skins of the eggplant provided a rough surface for the molten eggplant flesh inside. The miso dressing was salty and with the addition of the lemon and caramel soy, a delightful sour and sweet element was added. The caramel soy was a sticky sweet caramelised indulgence in which I did not hesitate in scraping my plate squeaky clean. I found it a difficult dish to manoeuvre elegantly, as the eggplant was a size that needed halving upon one mouthful but with only chopsticks and a hard skin, this was impossible! All-in was the result! Upon breaking through the rough, sturdy skin, the eggplant flesh melted on my palate and I tasted the sweet and salty miso, combined with the sour lemon – a gastronomic delight!
I could have eaten eight more of these plates, but I am very bias with my love for eggplant!
The balsamic teriyaki sauce intrigued me and so the Chicken Balsamic Teriyaki Yakimono was next! This dish was larger in size than expected, but in a good way! Glistening balsamic teriyaki sauce was drizzled over the chicken, providing a sweet element of moisture to the meat which lay in its sticky goodness. The chicken was garnished with a few al dente sprigs of asparagus, steamed carrots and mushrooms. The chicken skin was barbequed to the point where large crispy scales topped the breast of the chicken and provided a distinct char-grilled flavour. The chicken itself was cooked well, however if I were to be fussy, it definitely needed the juice of the balsamic teriyaki sauce to moisten the meat as without the sauce I could almost deem the chicken to be on the dry-side (eekk – dare I say it!).
The sweet, yet tart sharpness of the teriyaki sauce was deliciously addictive and I was scraping the plate clean to get as much of this on the chicken as possible!
With a generous serve of the chicken, Jack nearly subbed out of dinner as he announced he was very full at this point of the meal. I was only getting started and my excitement grew for our last two dishes!
The Scallops with Spicy Garlic Sauce came out unexpectedly resembling a simple vegetable stir fry. The bright, crunchy asparagus, capsicums and beautifully spongy mushrooms were plentiful and nutritious. The scallops were tender, plump and cooked wonderfully. The distinct sweetness of the scallops were celebrated with the tasty garlic sauce. I enjoyed this dish thoroughly but felt a little underwhelmed as I expected a little more from the dish. The sauce was not particularly spicy and the dish as a whole was similar to many of the stir fries I have sampled in…dare I say it… the average Asian restaurants in Perth. I guess the difference here was the perfect crunch from the vegetables – not overcooked or soggy and the wonderfully fresh and juicy scallops which singed sweetness.
Our last dish of the night was the Octopus and mushroom with garlic butter yuzu. Served in a clay pot, the tentacles of the octopus popped from the rich buttery sauce, beneath the abundance of various plump, juicy mushrooms. Swiss brown, button and enoki mushrooms dominated this dish as the octopus was cooked to a lovely springy texture. The garlic butter yuzu was a very strong, distinct flavour in the dish. The powerful taste of preserved lemons (the yuzu I presume) overtook much of any other flavour in the sauce and although I quite enjoyed the buttery sensation on my palate with the sour tang from the preserved lemons, this dish became quite sickly sweet after the first few mouthfuls and even more so when I accidentally took a bite of the preserved lemons in the sauce. I found myself dodging the slices of preserved lemons in the sauce and picking out the deliciously juicy assortment of mushrooms and tentacles of octopus.
Overall the service at Nobu was outstanding. To a level I have not experienced before. Upon placing my chopsticks down on my plate, like a magpie, the waiter swooped in to steal my plate. As this attentiveness was at first impressive, I found myself trying to defend my plate at a couple of occasions when I was still cleaning up the last of the deliciously addictive caramel soy or scraping up that balsamic teriyaki with the last of the chicken left on the plate. As pleasant and friendly as the staff were, this overly keen attention to clear our plates became a little off-putting. Especially because I was making clear visual cues that I was still finishing my meal at many occasions - note - chopsticks in hand!
However I must note that our overall experience at Nobu was wonderful, the food was very impressive.
I love the shout of “welcome” in Japanese the staff sing each time new guests enter the restaurant.
I love the décor, golden globes and elegantly decorated tables.
I will be back to try the Black Miso Cod specialty!
2012 has been the year that led me to my love for Japanese cuisine and my exploration through the country of Vietnam, giving me the opportunity to taste the Vietnamese flavours you just can’t experience here in Perth!
There have been many ‘firsts’ in 2012, but my biggest was the first time I started to eat meat other than seafood!
Chicken started the craze and soon to follow was duck, pork, pate, turkey, beef (including raw beef), crocodile and even FROG! (but that’s another story)
This is not to say I eat red meat regularly, but chicken is on the menu at least 6 days a week and I’m open to trying new meats when I can!
Lettuce Muncher has evolved into a Chicken Chomper!
I have listed my ‘Top Eats for 2012’ as the places in Perth I have had great food experiences at and generally can rely on for a great feed!
I can always rely on Chapels for great bottom-less tea and my usual big breakfast with poached eggs, smoked salmon, spinach, tomatoes and mushrooms! This was the place that got me hooked on New Norcia Bakery’s Fig and Fennel sourdough! You can’t deny the restaurant has a great atmosphere where you can sit inside and surround yourself in Japanese tea ornaments and china tea sets, or outside in the courtyard under big red umbrella’s.
I can always rely on fresh seafood, meat cooked to perfection where the chicken falls from your fork and value for money at Is Donburi.
I absolutely love their Seafood Salad where I can guarantee a generous amount of fresh seafood including salmon, kingfish, tuna, prawn, squid and seaweedwith a sweet punch of chilli-apple dressing for only $11.50!
I have been here numerous times and tried nearly every item on their menu! The only hesitation I have is with their sushi – nothing too special or exciting, and in my opinion lacks general flavour or spark. However, their Bento Box meal deals are unbelievably good value!
Prompt and attentive service, gorgeous romantic atmosphere with dim lighting and food to bring your taste-buds alive!
Terms such as “caramel soy,” “cajun,” “miso broth” and “butter soy” made me so excited to order I couldn’t simply decide!
Sashimi so fresh you could feel the kick of the fish tail as it was plucked from the ocean, teriyaki chicken meat so tender it fell apart at the touch of your fork and intoxicating sophisticated Japanese flavours that opens your mind on Japanese cuisine.
Although Bonsai has a nice little “Perth” price tag attached, I constantly battle the craving of the “caramel soy” dishes!
I have to make a special mention to Jessie's Curry Kitchen in Inglewood. Discovered upon my recent move to Maylands, Jessie’s has provided us with endless last minute takeaway orders for Indian curries that make your taste buds dance Bollywood style!
Run by a gorgeous couple and their family, Jessie’s will, without-fail, have a spice-intoxicating, creamy butter chicken on request! Hugely generous in servings and meat always cooked to maintain moisture, Jessie’s is a Maylands local secret and undeniably our go-to take-away when we can’t be bothered cooking and need a big hug from India in our bellies!
And that brings 2012 to a delicious close!
May 2013 for Lettuce Muncher bring undiscovered taste sensations, many meat trials and of course, good company to share the wow-moments that food gives!
I have recently acquired a juicer and have become quite the experimenter in the kitchen!
You learn quite quickly (and with a lot of mess) what fruits and veggies are juiced well and what flavor combinations go together.
I have discovered the wonderfully spicy, earthy addition of ginger really gives my metabolism a kick start in the morning and the fresh, sharp punch from fresh mint leaves add liveliness and zing to any juice I am making!
My favourite juice concoction of late is carrot, apple, ginger and orange juice:
I have also experimented with beetroot which has a really earthy, root flavour and unusual texture which reminds me of any root vegetable. Not one for the faint hearted, you must be able to swallow that distinct raw root vegetable taste and handle the ultra deep pink colour your juice will turn!
This juice below is beetroot, orange, apple and ginger:
I love the fact that you can pretty much put anything into that blender (not your finger) and create a fresh and healthy mix of fruits and vegetables.