Dessert

Pasticceria Papa

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Vanilla and Ricotta Cannoli

★★★☆☆

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Mini Ricotta Cake

★★★☆☆

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Coconut Nutella Bigné

★★★★☆

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Iced Chocolate

Half the glass was simply cream.

★★☆☆☆

Overall:

I had really been looking forward to the cannoli and the ricotta cake after reading all the rave reviews. Although they were tasty, I didn’t find them spectacular. In fact nothing we had was spectacular which was a bit disappointing. Perhaps we just came on an off day.

Pasticceria Papa

145 Ramsay St, Haberfield, NSW

(02) 9799 9531

http://ppapa.com.au/

Pasticceria Papa Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Beatrix

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Cocoa sour cream layer cake with chocolate cheesecake buttercream and raspberries

A light and spongy cake that is perfect for that chocolate craving.

★★★★☆

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Pistachio and lemon curd layer cake

Pistachio + Lemon = Amazing. How did I not know this earlier? This deliciously moist cake was lightly tangy and had an intense nutty flavour.

★★★★☆

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Goats’ curd cheesecake tart with a toasted hazelnut crust and cherry compote

After eating this I realised that loving goats cheese and goats curd in a savoury form does not mean that I will love it in a sweet form. It just didn’t taste quite right.

★★☆☆☆

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Baked and brûléed caramel cheesecake with a cocoa cookie crust

Crunchy caramelised topping, dense sugary cheesecake, tasty cookie crust.

★★★★☆

Overall:

Beatrix is a cake lover’s dream. It’s a place where the cakes are baked with love and have a homemade quality to them. I seriously wanted to order one of everything but the slices here are decently sized and we could barely finish what we ordered. Service was cheery however seating is limited (as this place is teeny-tiny). Note that this place is closed on Mondays and Sundays.

Beatrix

688 Queensberry St, North Melbourne, VIC

0403 698 836

http://www.beatrixbakes.com/

Beatrix Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Richmond Oysters

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Seafood Platter and Garden Salad

(natural oysters, smoked trout rillettes, Morton Bay bug, prawns, mussels, baby octopus, local scallops, soft shell crab, salt and pepper calamari, grilled fish)

★★★★☆

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Golden Gaytime

(honeycomb parfait, peanuts, chocolate)

★★★☆☆

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Creme Brulee

(macaroon, salted caramel, chocolate)

★★★☆☆

Overall:

I was truly impressed with the newest branch of Richmond Oysters (which is unexpectedly located in Oakleigh). Spacious and modern, this place emanated a sophisticated yet comfortable feel, and I loved all the live seafood that was on display. Service was excellent (friendly and attentive), and the food was fresh and tasty. We came here with a $99 Cudo voucher which made this meal a bargain (a bottle of wine was also included!), and we left feeling extremely full and content.

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Richmond Oysters

66 Portman St, Oakleigh, VIC

(03) 8592 4676

http://richmondoysters.com.au/

Richmond Oysters Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

The Black Toro

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Coconut Kingfish Ceviche – young coconut, tomato, cucumber, chilli

This basically tasted like an amazing curry dish – fresh and creamy, with a bit of heat from the chilli.

★★★★☆

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Grilled Corn On The Cob – chipotle mayo, ground masa, lime

I love grilled corn and whenever I see it on a menu somewhere, I always order it and then compare it to the corn here at The Black Toro. It’s been years since I’ve had this and after my first bite I felt super ecstatic as the corn was still as incredible as I remembered it to be.

★★★★★

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Spicy Pulled Pork Tacos – soft corn tortilla, sriracha mayo, cabbage slaw

These were some tasty tacos and I really appreciated how they were served on a warm plate so that the tortillas would remain soft and warm for longer.

★★★★☆

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Salmon Tartare – avocado puree, radish, toasted black sesame, puffed rice chicharon

The salmon needed a bit more seasoning otherwise this was a light and enjoyable dish.

★★★☆☆

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Crispy Pork Hock – masterstock braised pork, guajilo chilli caramel, green apple salsa verde, butter lettuce

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 Sticky, sweet, and full of flavour. I made such a mess wrapping my pork up but it was totally worth it.

★★★★☆

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Dessert Tasting Plate

Can’t pick a dessert? Why not try everything!

★★★★☆

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Passionfruit Tart – berries, toasted meringue, mint

Beautifully presented with a lovely balance of sweetness and tartness. Meanwhile the combination of the smooth filling, the fresh fruit and the dehydrated fruit provided delightful texture variation.

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Deconstructed Peanut Butter Cheesecake – chocolate ice cream, peanut butter ice cream, honeycomb

Best eaten with a little bit of everything on your spoon, as the peanut butter was extremely rich on its own.

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Chocolate Brownie – salted caramel, popcorn, vanilla ice cream

These brownies were phenomenal – extremely smooth and highly decadent. They tasted amazing on their own, and the other additions were merely added bonuses.

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Arroz Con Leche – coconut rice pudding, saffron spiced pear, cinnamon, walnut

Creamy and satisfying.

Overall:

Always a great experience. The food, service and ambience is brilliant, and the grilled corn is still my absolute favourite in Melbourne!

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The Black Toro

79 Kingsway, Glen Waverley, VIC

(03) 9561 9696

http://theblacktoro.com.au/

The Black Toro Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Bibelot

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Black Forest Eclair

(chocolate choux, cherry compote, vanilla bavaroise, crumble, chocolate crème, cherry chantilly)

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Raspberry-Chocolate Tart

(chocolate sablé, raspberry compote, ‘inaya’ chocolate ganache, raspberry mousse)

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Salted Butter Caramel Eclair

(caramel crème pâtissière, roasted walnuts, caramel chantilly, salted caramel)

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Gourmandise Board

(cinnamon-sesame praline bonbon, rose-raspberry macaron, mango dome, chocolate fondant & chocolate chantilly, strawberry & vanilla & thyme, green tea sablé, green tea dome, blueberry cheesecake, hazelnut-praline crunch)

Overall:

Bibelot (pronounced bib-loh) is a glorious place that embodies a patisserie, a gelateria, a coffee bar, a chocolate shop, a high tea salon and a library of coffee table books. Expect to be spoiled for choice when it comes to the desserts but no matter what you choose, chances are it will be amazing! Everything we sampled tasted fabulous, however the black forest eclair and the green tea dome were my favourites. Service was quick and the atmosphere bright and inviting. I highly recommend Bibelot for all you dessert lovers out there!

Bibelot

Bibelot

285-287 Coventry St, South Melbourne, VIC

(03) 9690 2688

Bibelot

Bibelot Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

GJ’s Grill

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Lechon

Crispy roast pork served with delicious garlic rice, atchara (pickled papaya) and lechon sauce (a sweet and sour sauce made from liver).

★★★★☆

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Crispy Pata

This famous Filipino dish was cooked twice (simmered and then deep fried) which meant that the pork was wonderfully tender while the skin was INCREDIBLY crispy. I wasn’t a fan of the soy-vinegar sauce so I was happy eating the pork by itself.

★★★★☆

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Pork Skewer

Firm pork covered in a tasty marinade with a smoky chargrilled flavour.

★★★★☆

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Halo-Halo

This colourful dessert comprised of shaved ice, evaporated milk, jelly, corn, coconut and purple yam. Refreshing and not overly sweet.

★★★☆☆

Overall:

This was my first taste of Filipino food so I had no idea what to expect and had nothing to compare it to. What I found out about GJ’s Grill is that not only are the staff Filipino, but so were most of their customers during our visit. If that doesn’t say authentic, then I don’t what does! There isn’t a lot of seating here and when we got there at 7pm on a Monday night, we had to wait about 15 minutes for a table to become available. The staff were very warm and welcoming, and service was relatively quick. The menu is predominantly meat based so don’t expect to find any salads or vegetables here. Instead, expect to find generous servings of well cooked meat that will lead to you rolling happily out the door.

 

GJ’s Grill

Shop 2, 243 Franklin St, Melbourne, VIC

(03) 9328 8242

GJ's Grill Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Brae

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Asparagus, sea butter, olive plant

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Raw pea & lemon aspen tart, Brook trout & nut butter crisp

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Prawn, nasturtium, finger lime

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Iced Oyster, Beef tendon & mountain pepper

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Chilled broth of broad bean, green almond, strawberry, fig leaf & yoghurt whey

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Sourdough (made from hand milled wheat and baked on site) & freshly churned butter (made from locally sourced jersey cows)

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Calamari, black lip abalone, broccoli & blue mackerel

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Artichokes & salt grass lamb washed with mussel juice & citrus

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Potato & jerusalem artichoke crisps served with a single poached yolk

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Bass groper, cured back fat, walnut & butter braised turnip

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Aged Pekin duck wood roasted on the bone, quandong, dried liver

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Milk, honey & mandarin

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Parsnip & apple

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Rhubarb, pistachio, blood & preserved blackberry

Overall:

I visited Brae late last year so this post is a bit overdue.

Impressively ranked at number 87 in the world’s 100 best restaurants list of 2015, Brae is undeniably a place where you will find quality food and innovation. Located 130km southwest of Melbourne in the small town of Birregurra, our visit to Brae was indeed a fun little road trip. As soon as we arrived we noticed some construction happening right next to the parking lot. We later found out that this was to become six on-site accommodation suites which will open from February 2016.

As we stepped into the simple weatherboard farmhouse, we were warmly greeted and guided to our seats. Service throughout our meal was exceptional (as to be expected), with the staff being friendly, courteous and efficient. The origins of each dish was diligently explained and all my random questions about the food and the restaurant were happily answered. The atmosphere in the dining area was bright and comfortable, and we were also able to get a glimpse into the kitchen from our table which was nice.

A great deal of care and attention to detail was seen with the presentation of each dish, and although I throughly enjoyed sampling everything on their degustation menu, I did have my favourites and my not-so-favourites. My not-so-favourite was easily the asparagus. Sure it was fresh and crisp, but a single stalk of asparagus does not get me salivating. Luckily the asparagus was served first because it all went uphill from there. The absolute stand out dishes for me were the prawns and the iced oyster. The prawn heads and the prawn parcels bursted with amazing flavours, while the iced oyster turned out to be sweet and creamy, similar to a deliciously smooth ice cream with a gentle hint of oyster.

Our visit to Brae was a lovely experience and it is a great place to head to for memorable world class food.

Brae

Brae

4285 Cape Otway Rd, Birregurra, VIC

(03) 5236 2226

http://braerestaurant.com/

Brae Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato