2012: The year in review

                                And so another year has come and almost gone! The older I get, I find the faster time slips away so I’m learning to make the most of the present. Highs and lows that happen in our life, I am a huge believer in ‘everything happens for a reason’ so people, try not to sweat the small stuff!

I hope you all enjoyed tagging along on my eating adventures this year and endeavoured some of your own. I decided to reminisce on the highlights of my 2012.

In January, I was eating my way through America and one of my gastronomy highlights was dining at é by José Andrés in Las Vegas. The most memorable dish, and one that I still rave on and on about, was the white lobe of foie gras baked in salt with chocolate & kumquat.

é by José Andrés: White lobe of foie gras baked in salt with chocolate & kumquat

For Mr A’s birthday in February, he chose Grossi Florentino for his birthday dinner and I had my doubts, especially seeing as he is a ‘celebrity chef’. The food and service blew us away and made it into one our favourite meals in Melbourne.

Grossi Florentino: Valrhona Chocolate Souffle

In March, after a beautiful night’s stay at The Olsen hotel, we went to Golden Fields for a fabulous lunch. Andrew McConnell changed my views on Asian fusion cuisine and I loved the twice-cooked duck buns and lobster rolls.

Golden Fields: Twice-cooked duck

After rave reviews from my sister, I found myself at Estelle Bar & Kitchen in April experiencing an amazing meal finished by a refreshingly simple dessert of strawberries and cream with a basil granita. Another highlight was newcomer, Hell of the North, who in their first week of trading served incredible food in a fantastic bar setting.

Estella Bar & Kitchen: Strawberries and cream with basil granita
Hell of the North: Gorgonzola pannacotta

In May, we discovered a suburbian gem in Shyun which served simple and great value Japanese fare and have revisited numerous times since. I also tried out the tacos at Touché Hombre after an hour on the waiting list and they were pretty darn good!

 Shyun: Beef tataki
Touché Hombre: Margaritaaaaas

June brought us Winter and Mr A declared that Donwoori was his favourite Korean BBQ joint in Melbourne for the set menu which included the usual banchan, plates of meat, a warming stew and rice for both of us at under $40.

Donwoori: Set Menus

In July, I was lucky enough to be spoilt silly by Mr A when he whisked me away to the Grampians for a mind-blowing degustation at Royal Mail Hotel. It easily made the top 3 meals in my life and submitted me into a food coma. Waking up to a continental breakfast in the same dining area made me reminiscence on each dish ahhhh!

Royal Mail Hotel: Pigeon, Salsify and Medlar, Cabbage Braised in Pecorino

After months of avoiding the froyo dispensers in Melbourne, I finally gave Tutti Fruitti Frozen Yoghurt in QV a go in August. An instant hit and I loved the flavours. We also had a nice ‘so romance’ night out at Merricote in Northcote which provided elegant dishes from wife and hubby duo, Rob and Bronwyn Kabboord. I was too full to sample any of the cheese off the tempting cheese trolley (!!!) but next time, I won’t be making the same mistake.

Tutti Fruitti Frozen Yoghurt: Green tea froyo, hold the toppings
Merricote: Smoked Egg Yolk with puffed rice, asparagus, peas

The start of September where we saw sparadic glimpses of Spring was when we discovered a hip new brunching spot in Prahran called Oscar Cooper which made you want to waste the day away there sipping their breakfast cocktails.

Oscar Cooper: Corn fritters for the win

In October, we discovered the ‘Double Patty Smash’ burgers at Rockwell and Sons in Collingwood which proved to be a winner. I even brought my friends there before a night out on the town and found my sister and her friend sitting at the front. The whole family loves it! Meanwhile the meal we had at Brooks, a collaboration between Nic Poelaert, Gerald Diffey and Mario Di Lenno, was fancy-smanchy and had some brilliant dishes.

 Rockwell and Sons: Double Patty Smash burger
Brooks: Meli of vegetables with sprouts, flowers and emulsions

After attending the Taste of Melbourne 2012 festival held in Albert Park in November, we discovered Matt Wilkinson’s culinary delights in Bishop of Ostia. The spicy and tangy salmon wings and crisp pig’s ear sandwich were truly delicious and we made a pitstop before a wedding to relive our experience.

Bishop of Ostia: The “Tom Allen” Pig’s ear, chilli sauce, rocket & gribiche sandwich

And for the last month of 2012, December – I never saw you coming. I had some brunch highlights at Seven Seeds and St ALi North which both turned out robust coffee and wonderful food.

Seven Seeds: Heirloom tomatoes salad with sourdough
St ALi North: Peach & Macadamia Tart with Baked cream
So there you have it, some of my favourite dishes of the year.
How was your 2012 and what were your favourite dishes?
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One thought on “2012: The year in review

  1. this was really a nice year , i have the next will be also good. Will buy a lot gifts for my friends and make then hopefully happy.

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