Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Tetsuya's Dinner

My friend LL came to Sydney for 2 weeks, and when a pair of gluttons meet up, our outing exercise revolves around dining out here and there. We rang Tetsuya's to book a table and we were lucky to get the last table for the following week (weekday dinner). They have 2 slots for the degustation dinner, 6pm or 8pm. We took the 6pm & we finished around 10pm. The gluttons had 4 hr dinner date.

Staff lead us to 2nd floor, showed us our table - facing the tranquil garden. The room is filled with paintings, sculptures and other artworks. Errr...even the toilet has a few beautiful paintings.

Ladies with mega bucks designer handbag will be relieved as the restaurant provides wooden stool for your handbag. Very thoughtful indeed. For my case, I am happy to slot my laptop bag on the floor hehehe.

Staffs were well trained & really friendly, asked us 'Any special occasion to celebrate today' ? 'Nahhh ... catching up with old friend day today'. We really have nothing extraordinary to celebrate except for catching up after we haven't seen each other for about 1.5 yr. I knew LL about 9 years ago & we always keep in touch regardless where we are. Great to have my eating buddy back for 2 weeks.

Warm breads arrived, served with truffle butter ... yummmm !!

Staff explains each food that is served without a fail ... I mean you can tell that they explained the description of the food wholeheartedly not by memorising the whole blurb about the dish. Plus when you ask them more infos about the food, they are more than happy to share the extra infos.

Photos are not that great as the room is kinda dim & dark...nevertheless enjoy my photos !!

Cucumber soup - light & refreshing
Tasmanian Fresh Oyster with mirin dressing - fresh, creamy oyster & light
King Fish sashimi with dressings

Scampi with avocado puree 

Tetsuya's Signature Smoked Ocean Trout covered in seaweed (I think) & green apple - texture is really smooth, close to salmon's texture
Muli fish (I think) with 3 color onion pickles (red, pink, white)
Braised Ox tail - omgggg it just melts in your mouth
Quail with wild rice salad - very unique salad, crunchy burnt rice
Beef with mustard and wasabi stalks - love the beef !! Really tender & juicy ...
Granita & pudding - we were told by the staff that the duo will clean our palate ...
Sorbet ... ooppss I can't remember the type of sorbet they served LOL, was way too many food ... I only remember I finish the whole stuff which means they were good !!
Chocolate mousse, chocolate stick, chocolate rice pieces & home made ice cream

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Cheeky Monkey Cake Decorating Class

12/03/2011 Saturday

To keep myself occupied on a Saturday, I decided to do Cheeky Monkey Decorating Class @ my dearest friend's cake decorating school, Handi's Cakes by Handi Mulyana.

The course ran from 10am till 4pm, and you will be surprised on how much has to be done to decorate a 1 tier cake with 1 figurine made from scratch. At the end of the course I was quite exhausted, it is surprisingly mega labourous.

The class is informal, relaxed & tons of great fun, very different from my day to day corporate environment, it's like a short break by itself - which is what I desperately need & deserve at the moment. I am really proud of my 1st masterpiece .... I still cant believe myself that my cake decorating skills had a sudden hike.The cake was too cute to be cut, I didn't cut the cake for 1 day ... I was admiring the cake for a day LOL, I did bring it to work on Monday for my collegues. The cake was goneski in 15 mins.

Slicing the cake into 3 equal parts ... a little messy =)
Ganaching with milk chocolate (covering the whole cake in chocolate), I need to improve my techniques to smoothen my ganaching
Smoothing my cake
Palm leaves in the making
My Cheeky Monkey cake is ready .... super cute, banana on his hand, palm trees around the cake and funky hairstyle !!
Too cute to be cut ...

Saturday, March 26, 2011

New Zealand (South Island) trip - Part 2

Known as the Jade Town, we didn't have much luck with Hokitika on that day as we reached the town around 5pm and almost every shops were shut. The only photo that we took was the public library. The library has greyish Gotham city look. Jade shop is everywhere, some shop offers customized jade design.

Hokitika Public Library


We were looking for a dinner place around Franz Josef but we were a little early to have dinner in Franz Josef. We then decided to drive to Lake Matheson, around 20 mins from Franz Josef to visit the famous cafe.
  • Matheson Cafe - fantastic food & view from the cafe is absolutely stunning. Definitely worth the drive.
  • Matheson Souvenir shop - across the cafe, sells variety of NZ made products & artworks
Matheson Cafe - a must go cafe !
Chorizo pizza with corn, spanish onion and home made chilli jam
Chicken risotto with green beans and cherry tomatoes
Berry crumble with to die for home made ice cream
Healthy cows, they drink glacier water, roam around the roomy greens near the cafe, stress free & happy cows
Lake Matheson Walk
We bumped into this lost cow on the way to Lake Matheson, it was pretty ginormous I swear

If you love adventurous exercise, Franz Josef is your playground, plenty of outdoor activities are available from glacier walk, cycling, bush walk, etc.
  • 58 on Cron Motel - We are very happy with the accommodation, although it is a 'motel', the room is equivalent to a 4 stars service apartment. It is owner operated motel, they are really friendly & helpful, the motel is nestled in a quiet spot & spacious room with basic kitchen facility.
  • Franz Josef Glacier Heli Hike - I was a little worry at the start ... me...couch potato doing glacier hike ?? It must be a joke. We flew by helicopter to access the top of the glacier, and start the hike. The first 1/2 hour was a nightmare to try to walk/ hike in the snows with the heavy snow boots. Oh well, there's always a first time for everything. The view from the top of the glacier is breathtaking, similar to what you watch in National Geographic. The tour was about 3.5-4 hours in total...and I did enjoy every minute of the tour. It was the best adventurous experience ever.
Peter's Pool - mirror reflections
We are going to the top of the mountain soon ..... glacier walk
Heli Hike Tour - getting ready to fly to the top of the mountain & start our glacier walk/ hike
The Hike - about 2 hours & it suits every fitness level (if I passed this hike, anyone can seriously pass with flying colours)
Waiting for the heli to pick us up...starting to get foggy & windy in the afternoon