Cookbookmaniac
  • Wagaya – Modern Japanese Izakaya
    Asian Restaurant Reviews
    Wagaya – Modern Japanese Izakaya
    I am part of a food-obsessed family. My father is a former Yum Cha Chef. My mother is an amazing home cook. All my sisters and I think nothing of opening the fridge at midnight to fry up a meal from scratch. We do not hesitate spending an entire day making dumplings in the kitchen. When I decided to start a food blog, it seemed like I had just announced I was slicing an apple. Gastronmic connoisseurs? Nope, we are foodlovers. We travel far and wide looking for a great bowl of noodles, we pay no attention to the time of day when we are hungry, we bicker about who-ate-what and didn't share it, we gossip about who-went-where and didn't get to go, we fly across the world just to eat and shop, we each have a friend that thinks we are crazy food geeks. Its Chinese New Year and we decide to have lunch at a restaurant my father once worked at. They must've had an off-day, because the food was bland, ordinary or overcooked. We were all seriously disappointed and it was the least that we had spent at Yum Cha. "Dad, is it the Head Chef's day off?" "He would rather be dead than not be in the kitchen. This is terrible." I am not satisfied. There is nothing like a disappointing meal to increase my appetite for the next one. "Hey, let's go out for dinner tonight to make up for this crap." "Where you wanna…
  • Restaurant Reviews
    Lunar New Year – Tet Vietnamese Festival
    Vietnamese Lunar New Year falls on the same day as Chinese New Year. It was (and still is) my favourite time of the year as a young child. My sisters and I would eagerly wait for the auspicious red packets to be handed to us from our parents and our older relatives. They were considered lucky money and were given to young children and the elderly. We would always compete with each other on who got the most money and red envelopes by the end of the day. It was a lot of fun teasing the least successful recipient. What were we to do with all this money? Personally, I couldn't wait to spend it all on food, rides and games at the Tet Festival! The carnival was once held at a park in Cabramatta, during the suburbs troubled times. It was occasionally overrun by gangsters and I recall on one visit all the rides were shut off because the troublesome teens were dangerously interfering with the rides and swinging off the rafters. The festival eventually outgrew the park and moved to larger grounds at Warwick Farm. Cabramatta has since been ridden of these dirty scoundrels and is now a thriving, family-oriented, Vietnamese metropolis in Australia. Thus, the festival has seen fewer dramatic incidents ever since. Its been 9 years since my last visit. I have been begging Pizzaboy to come along with me in the last few years, so that I could show him my favourite past time. However,…
  • Asian Restaurant Reviews
    Gumshara – This broth is so hearty, it is going to give me a heart attack!
    "Hey Pizzaboy, I'm thinking I might do a theme". "Uh oh... like what?" "My search for the best ramen in Sydney" "Ok! I'm in. Where are we going!" You may have read about how Pizzaboy and I discovered and fell in love with Tonkotsu Ramen in Japan. Ever since our return we have realised that there are many ramen restaurants throughout Sydney. It was just a matter of getting out there and finding the one that calls out my name and says to me "I am the one". According to Time Out Sydney, Gumshara is one of the top 5 noodle places in Sydney. That is a very bold statement. Sydney is a city that has seen waves of immigration and now has so many authentic places to dine at, whittling the list to just five seems impossible and unfathomable. "We're going to Gumshara". "Whatshara? Gaa Gaa?" "They boil down 120kg of pork marrow bones and tendons with just water for an entire day and it becomes this thick soup of collagen rich tonkotsu." "Oooh! Is it nice?" "Must be. Sydney Morning Herald dedicated an entire page to its review of this place." "Nah, we're not going." "Why?" "All those authentic places are damned when they get popular." "Well, if it weren't for its popularity we wouldn't know about it. Let's just go and see what its like." I haven't been to Eating World since high school, over ten years ago. It looks the same, except... more sterile. The moment…