Cookbookmaniac
  • Dae Jang Kum – Korean BBQ without the smokey bits
    Asian Restaurant Reviews
    Dae Jang Kum – Korean BBQ without the smokey bits
    I always know what I want. Ask me what I like and you will more often than not get a quick straight answer. However, give me a menu with more than 150 items and watch me crumble with indecision. Throw in colourful photos for each item and a hungry partner... I could be buried in the menu for hours. Dae Jang Kum is not the kind of place to take your time ordering your food. They have a high turnover of customers and there is a constant flow of people - from all walks of life - walking in and out. Their menu includes countless items of sashimi, rice, noodle and soup dishes. There are interesting combinations of hot pots and a selection of An-Ju meals (recommended dishes to go with alcohol). However, the barbecue is the reason why we pay a visit. When Pizzaboy and I arrive at the restaurant we notice that there are no mean-looking overhead exhausts hovering over the tables and the restaurant is happily smoke-free. We come to learn that the grill plate is fitted with a self-exhausting system that sucks in the smoke leaving the restaurant free from smoke. I am tickled pink when I learn this. I love Korean BBQ, but I really dislike the cloud of smoke that I inevitably end up dining in and the stench it imbeds in my clothes. We order oysters for our entree and a combination of meats for the barbecue. Banchan - small dishes of food…
  • Ju Ju at Kings Cross – Best Value Wagyu Steak
    Asian Restaurant Reviews
    Ju Ju at Kings Cross – Best Value Wagyu Steak
    It's Pizzaboy's birthday and I surprise him with a visit to one of his favourite restaurants, Ju Ju. Ever since I've started blogging its been rare that we visit a place twice and even rarer for us to visit our old favourites. Descending the stairs you are forgiven in thinking that you have been teleported to a japanese izakaya in Osaka, Japan. Ju Ju is very charming with its wooden layout and sunken tables. Its huge menu ranges from sushi, sashimi, sukiyaki, grilled dishes, a vast array of japanese beer and a dizzying amount of small plates. Be warned - you must remove your shoes before entering the premises, so wear your nicest socks and if need be, bring along some foot deodorant. Bubble Butt and Miss South Africa (a married couple who keeps us laughing until our tummies hurt) join us to wish Pizzaboy a Happy Birthday. Pizzaboy takes reign of the menu and orders all his favourites. He prefers ordering many of the small plates (tapas-style), trying to maximise the opportunity to taste as many dishes as possible. Bubble Butt and Miss South Africa are overwhelmed and leave the ordering up to us. One of the things that he really loves is Yukke. This japanese version of steak tartare is a curious mix of raw beef, soy sauce, sesame oil, sesame seeds, seaweed, spring onions and egg yolk. Pizzaboy breaks the egg yolk with his chopstick and swirls it around the beef and seaweed strips. Pizzaboy and I…
  • European Restaurant Reviews
    The Mediterranean Kitchen – That ain’t paella!
    First thing Friday morning I am happy. I am happy to go to work because I know that the weekend is just peaking around the corner and Pizzaboy and I are going out for our ritual Friday night dinner... or as one of my workmates likes to call it: Friday Night, Date Night. Nothing makes me happier than to leave work right on the dot and head to wherever Pizzaboy and I have planned to dine at... with perhaps a little bit of comic book and cookbook shopping in between. Pizzaboy and I find ourselves on Church St in Parramatta. There is endless variety of restaurants packed between Phillip St and the river. We are undecided as to where we would like to dine at and we walk up and down that part of the street numerous times. We decide that we must visit a place that is a little busy, but without the loud music playing, and a long wait for a table - City Extra is out of the question. The Mediterranean Kitchen fitted our fussy list perfectly. We were quickly seated and the menu handed to us. All the items are listed along with the flag of its place of origin. We are such geeks that we go through each flag and try to guess what country its from. Pizzaboy wins hands down. After possibly 15 minutes reading the menu over and over, scouring every detail and discussing whether we should order our typical choices or go…