Cookbookmaniac
  • Chat Thai – Street Food in a Little Shop
    Asian Restaurant Reviews
    Chat Thai – Street Food in a Little Shop
    "Amy, where are you going to eat this Friday?" "Dunno... you wanna come?" "Yeah. Do I have to pay?" "Errr. I have a bottomless stomach. Not a bottomless wallet!" Bunnifar is my younger sister, by nine years. I hate to admit that she has me wrapped around her little finger. I cannot bear to see her sad, and will do anything to see her happy. Spoilt, she is not. Well looked after by 5 big sisters, yes she is. When she doesn't get what she wants from one sister, she moves on to the next. Sometimes she'll get what she wants, five times over! All of this done with the innocence of a youngest sister, despite being 21 years of age. We both decide to visit Chat Thai. It resembles a well-dressed hole-in-the-wall. Like many super busy asian eateries, they do not take reservations. You simply turn up, write your name, take a number and wait. Bunnifar is running late, so I write down my name and hope that she arrives before our number is called. I guesstimate that there are 20 names before mine... *curse*! The wait is made a lot easier with an open front kitchen. It looks like this is where most of the grilling and desserts are made. I start snapping away at the chef turning the grilled sticks, he smiles at me - amused. There are heaps of people waiting just outside the doorway and along the walkway to the main dining area. I walk…
  • CBD & Inner City
    Bodega Tapas Restaurant & Bar; Rockabilly + Pin Up Girls + Tapas = Modern dining at its best!
    tapas - (esp. in Spain) a snack or appetizer, typically served with wine or beer. There is much ado about Bodega, its been listed as the best tapas restaurant in Sydney by almost every food writer, food critic and food blogger. I had to go taste for myself what all the noise was about. It had been a hard week at the office, I was adamant that Pizzaboy and I go out for dinner that Friday night. There is nothing better than a good meal to cleanse the soul. We arrived at the premises 10 minutes before opening. We were second in line and the summer heat had cooled off, mercifully. Once 6pm came around we were promptly shown our seats and offered drinks. Pizzaboy and I don't usually drink alcohol with our meals, so we politely decline and are given the food menu. A quick look around I instantly fall in love with the place. The walls are adorned with a tripped out graffiti-come-pop art mural of the sexiest bullfighter you'll ever see. And then there are the staff! The boys in the kitchen are channeling modern rockabilly and the girls on the floor are all red lips and pin-up girl hair. There is an incredible range on the menu. There are some things I do not recognise. The lovely waitress more than politely explains the items in question. Pizzaboy is stunned and leaves the ordering up to me. I choose 2 must-have dishes (according to many food critics)…
  • Asian Restaurant Reviews
    Monte Carlo Reception – Celebrating 30 Years in Australia
    I was only 10 days old when my parents escaped war-torn Vietnam in 1979. They, along with half of our hometown, Camau (located on the southern tip of South Vietnam), jumped on boats and made the brave and dangerous journey towards freedom. After Ho Chi Minh took power and the threat of communism was fast becoming a way of life, my parents (and many others) were sent to re-education camps because they were of Chinese-descent. Almost everything that was worth building a future with was taken away from them, for fear of a revolt. My parents had to sell their precious belongings to a black market to feed their 5 daughters. Brave, but full of fear, they boarded strung-together boats to look for safer shores, leaving behind memories of atrocities that were never spoken of ever again. I am not quite sure how long the journey took, but we made it the border of Australia, only to be turned away and sent to a refugee camp in Indonesia. We were there for nine months. The moment we received our rushed visa to Australia we were on a plane to beautiful Sydney. One year later, we became proud citizens of Australia. My father is quite a jovial, social man. He is opposite to my quiet and shy mother. He and his friends had been organising a fund-raising function to celebrate the 30 Years in Australia. They invited their former neighbours (from Camau, Vietnam) within Sydney and from all around the world.…