The whole object of travel is not to set foot on foreign land; it is at last to set foot on one’s own country as a foreign land.” – G.K. Chesterton

Thursday, 19 January 2017

Delicious French @ Scarlett Café & Wine Bar, Hong Kong

We've recently had to say goodbyes to a few families as they moved away from Hong Kong, and we were particularly sad to see good friends of ours go to Japan. We'd only met them a year ago through our kids who went to the same playgroup, and we hit it off instantly. We managed to have a second and final double date at Scarlett Café & Wine Bar on a Friday night, and I was reluctantly pulled away only a couple of hours later by a crying baby at home who refused to settle back to sleep. Y suggested this place, and she's got good taste in food! The good: food was absolutely fantastic and delicious. The bad: service was a bit slow, but it was a busy Friday night, so I'm willing to overlook that. I'd come back again just for the food.

Oysters were the special of the month, and Y and I could not resist indulging in a few (the boys didn't care for them much, which meant more for us!):

The cheese platter was great for sharing between the four of us:

Y ordered the Beef Tartare, and the french fries was yum:

Hubby got the Duck Confit, which was just delectable:

The Apple Tarte Fine was the perfect dessert to round off a meal - just sweet enough but not heavy on the tum:

The Warm Molten Chocolate Cake was to die for, and a must for chocolate lovers:

Scarlett Café & Wine Bar
2 Austin Avenue
Tsim Sha Tsui, Kowloon
Hong Kong
Tel. +85 2 3565 6513

Saturday, 14 January 2017

Tasty Malaysian @ Tasty Dining, Oakleigh (Melbourne, Australia)

This was our first meal in Melbourne when we flew there last month. We arrived in the wee hours of the morning after a long overnight flight from Hong Kong (with three kids!) - and we just wanted an early dinner and crash early for the night. My younger sister, with whom we were staying in Melbourne, suggested Tasty Dining (though she referred to it by its former name, Kotaraya), as it was open for dinner at 5:30pm, and it was conveniently located nearby. One of the advantages of arriving so early for dinner at a restaurant is that it is still empty so that the kids can be rowdy without causing too much parental embarrassment. Service was average, with some room for improvement. One of the waitstaff got one of our dishes wrong, but there was no fuss made when we pointed it out, and the correct one was replaced in good time. The food was delicious and reasonably priced. Tasty Dining is a good option if you're in the area.

At the start of dinner service at 5:30 on a weekday - had almost the whole restaurant to ourselves:

Nasi Goreng - fried rice with spices, egg, chicken and prawns:

Chow Ho Fun - flat rice noodles with chicken, roast pork, shrimp and fish cake in egg sauce:

Coconut Butter Prawns, one of my sis' favourite dishes:

Sambal Kang Kong (water spinach) - one of my fave leafy greens dish:

Roti with Curry Chicken - the only thing the 8-year-old wanted from the menu. He didn't want rice or noodles, and this was the only bread dish I could see. And it was a mighty fine choice. :

Tasty Dining (Kotaraya)
960-962 Centre Rd
Oakleigh South, VIC 3167

Tasty Dining Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Friday, 6 January 2017

Baikingu Brunch @ Zuma, Hong Kong

Zuma is one of our favourite Japanese restaurants in Hong Kong, and we enjoyed a family-friendly weekend brunch there for my birthday which fell on a Sunday. The Baikingu Brunch (HK$490 per adult) is named after the Japanese term for all-you-can-eat-buffets ("baikingu" is a loan word for Viking, I guess because the Japanese think the Vikings had big appetites?), and there were indeed a nice variety of all-you-can-eat Japanese food on offer at the brunch - fresh sushi and sashimi, delicious food off the robata grill, slippery udon and onsen tamago (hot spring eggs). I like that most items were made as soon as they ran out, as this ensures freshness and also minimises wastage that often comes from buffet affairs. I love the open kitchen concept because I could watch the cooking in action! The Baikingu Brunch also included a choice of main course from a list, and a dessert platter. Kids under 3 eats free, and it's only HK$200 for kids aged 4-12 which includes a Bento Box of selected Japanese food and juice! And this juice is freshly pressed! There is also a small room set up with toys for kids and parents who want a break between plates. The Zuma Baikingu Brunch gets thumbs up from this family of three kids!

Sushi chefs hard at work:

Sashimi, oysters au naturel and sushi:

The robatayaki workspace:

Various tsukemono and kinpira to accompany your food:

The Kids Bento Box (which the 3-year-old ate and the 8-year-old barely touched):

Hubby's first (of a few) round:

We both ordered the Gindara Saikyoyaki (miso cod), because it's that good:

The Dessert Platter which was actually quite healthy:

Zuma's Baikingu Brunch is popular, and it's often fully booked a few weeks ahead.

[The prices quoted above do not include the 10% service charge.]

Level 5
The Landmark
15 Queen's Road
Central, Hong Kong
Tel. +852 3657 6388

Monday, 2 January 2017

Happy 2017!

Wishing you all good health and a successful new year! May 2017 be better than 2016.

The view from our balcony just past midnight on 1st January 2017: