Cookbookmaniac
  • American Restaurant Reviews
    Mars Hill Cafe – Music, Poetry, Photography
    On the ever so popular Church Street in Parramatta, there are many places that can tickle ones fancy. There are big loud pubs and clubs, wine and dine restaurants, swish sport bars, hip cafes. Mars Hill Cafe sits quietly amongst them without much ado, it is the hidden gem amongst all the eateries. It describes itself as "a local music and art venue as well as a cool place to hang out. The cafe provides ethical coffee, affordable food, outdoor dining and performance spaces." This isn't far from the truth. Mars Hill Cafe would not be dissimiliar to any other cafe you would find on King St, Newtown. Its bohemian atmosphere and friendly staff makes it the most approachable eatery on Church st. It is host to many events such as: * Art Exhibitions * Music Acts * Poetry readings * Writer groups * and other social events Pizzaboy and I decide to head to Mars Hill after a visit to the cinemas. The coffee is always dependably great and this would be the first time we order food. With much elation, the food is just as great as their coffee. Light, clean, smooth, but with a punch of flavour. Mars Hill Cafe 331 Church Street Parramatta (02) 9893 9888 http://marshillcafe.com.au Monday CLOSED Tuesday 5pm to late Wednesday 5pm to late Thursday 5pm to late Friday 5pm to late Saturday 12pm to late Sunday 1pm to late
  • Asian Restaurant Reviews
    Chef’s Armoury – Japanese groceries and knives
    Driving along Botany Rd the Chef’s Armoury caught my eye. The sign outside said so many things that I had been looking for: - Japanese Knives - Quality Wagyu Beef - Cooking classes and events - Japanese groceries I punch the air and say, “Yes!” Entering the premises it's designed like all those modern ramen bars that seem to be popping up everywhere. It is sleek black with specks of red, well lit and minimalist. The store has been open for only 4 months and is in the midst of growth. Their business had started as just selling imported Japanese knives and has expanded into Japanese groceries, grilling accessories, teapots and tea tools. They also offer classes for knife sharpening, knife skills, sashimi and sushi making. Every month they have special all day taste testing events that help demystify the Japanese cuisine. Their passion is clearly evident the minute that I walk in the door. I became particularly excited when I spotted a bottle of yuzu juice. I have many Japanese cookbooks that use this ingredient either for its zest or juice. I have never come across the fruit, let alone the fruit juice until now. I can now make my favourite ponzu dressing without having to substitute with other ingredients. I also spot wasabi powder and grab it off the shelf and put it in my basket. I am told that they have sold out of the 100% strength, however the 50% strength version is acceptable but doesn’t pack…
  • Cheap Eats Restaurant Reviews
    The Dutch Shop & Cafe
    When i heard that there was a quaint Dutch Cafe in the middle of nowhere in Smithfield I told pizzaboy we had to go for a visit. We happen to have gone on the hottest day of the year so far. Its 40+ degrees outside and we drive over to Smithfield in a car with no-aircon. Without even thinking i say, "there had better be air-con at this place". The entire car goes quiet. None of us have ever been to the Dutch Cafe and do not know what to expect. We are following the GPS and tomatogal asks me, "Where the hell is this place? We've reached the end of the road". I look ahead and we are in the middle of nowhere. There are residential houses to our left and closed industrial warehouses on our right. I see a green warehouse ahead and i say "that must be it". And it was. It is not obvious from the outside that there is anything inside. In fact, the whole place looked closed. My nephew is first to get out of the car and zooms over a door that someone had just walked out of. He opens it, then shuts it straight away. "This is not the place, its a grocery store". I say, "What?!" I quickly walk over and open the door and a gush of cool air rushes pass me. "Yes, this is the right place, its a grocery store at the front and the cafe is further…