On recommendation from my sister, we decided to grab a burger from Huxtaburger to start off our Hamburger Quest. When you click the burgers on their website menu, the image of the burger splits open to show the ingredients which I thought was quite cute.
The restaurant was quite busy and stylish but I am not a big fan of sharing large tables with other customers, especially when I am struggling with a messy meal…
DarkAngel had the bigger Bills burger with bacon, egg, pineapple and beetroot. I had the Denis burger or as known as the hot one with jalapenos and sriracha mayo. The sriracha mayo was quite nice, however the burger was prone to falling apart and was quite soggy.
We ordered Chipotle chips, which according to Wiki is smoked chilly or smoked dried jalapeno. I wasn’t particularly a fan of the seasoning and would much rather chicken salt, but was worth a try. At least the soft drinks were bottomless.
I am not quite sure what the fuss was about. Although price was average, we weren’t particularly impressed of the burger size so we had to head back out for second dinners…
After a long shopping trip, we ducked into Switch for dinner. The Switch franchise is always busy and loud, probably not my everyday choice but there was a couple of interesting items on the menu that we tried…
This is a volcano pizza. Somehow it reminds me of a calzone full of salami, jalapenos and cheese. Quite nice but I couldn’t each much of it as the amount of dough quickly fills you up.
DarkAngel has been talking about wanting to get me to try Squid ink pasta, so he ordered it straight away when he saw it on the menu. The colour is rather unusual but I couldn’t really taste the ink, just that it went all over our mouths. Maybe not the dish for those who are really self conscious about food stains.
DarkAngel spontaneously wanted to watch the sunset with me so we made our way up Mount Dandenong again (*chuckles* someone was trying to be romantic*). Dates up there feels like time is spent most in the car; the long drive and arriving to find out that it is windy so we take cover from the weather. After standing around in the freezing wind, among other hugging couples and shrugging tourist families, we went on a mission to fill out bellies on the way down the mountain.
After a small walk around and viewing several menus, we decided on The Ivy, most likely entranced by the lighting and the warm fireplace inside.
Always the one for trying something new, we ordered a Insalata di Spiniel. Described on the menu as Baby Spinach, Buffalo Mozzarella Cheese, Wood Fire Roasted Capsicum, Basil and Vincotta. Turns out the dish was a salad. I think Buffalo cheese has to be one of my favorite type of cheese. It has a mild taste so you can eat quite a bit without finding it overwhelming and it has a rather interesting texture.
After Storm in a Teacup, we became somewhat in love with the idea of Wood-Fire Terracotta Pot dishes so we ordered the Slow Roasted Lamb. This dish did not disappoint. It consisted of tasty slow roasted garlic and rosemary lamb with vegetable and fetta cheese. We made a mental note to buy one of these Terracotta pots for when we decide to move in together to try our own combinations (^_^#) ~ ~~
The strange thing about this restaurant is that although when we went while it was rather empty, the staff there are bent on putting people at the back of the restaurant rather then up the front where it seemed more comfy. The Ivy has to be one of those restaurant that I would only try once because of something different on the menu, I get this feeling that perhaps I am a little too young to appreciate the atmosphere XP.
Nothing is more welcoming during the Winter Blues then a comfy restaurant. Cafe Carpenter has to be one of the most relaxing restaurant I have ever been to.
The first thing we noticed as we step in was the brightly lit wooden interior and the open kitchen with seats around the bar if you wanted to chat to or watch the owner at work.
We started off with some green tea as we got comfortable on the cushion covered seats. Interestingly, the menu lists a mix of Korean and Japanese dishes.
Our first dish was Sweet Potato Noodle with Beef and Veg, more famously known as Japchae. There is something about this dish that I cannot have enough of but it always tastes slightly different from restaurant to restaurant.
DarkAngel always stresses over whether to order the Takoyaki Balls. He loves them but can’t stand the fact that I can only have one or two before I get sick of them. Crispy exterior with hot gooey center, the Takoyaki Balls here were fresh and tasty!
And finally we finished off with DarkAngel’s favourite Okonomi Yaki Japanese Pancake covered in Bonito Flakes. We always get amused by how it moves like it is alive from the heat of the pancake.
Cafe Carpenter is not the restaurant to visit if you are in a rush, but somewhere to go if you want to unwind and enjoy some lovingly cooked Japanese or Korean dishes. Each dish is well presented and you can tell how much care the owner / chef places into them. Although the service was a bit on the slow side, it matches the calm homey atmosphere of the restaurant; the perfect place for a slow lazy Sunday date
Thinking back to the first time I ever had Max Brenner, I was single and thought I would definitely be back with my someone special. Although a few years late, we did finally circle back here and the date still was as sweet as I thought it would be.
To share, we ordered a Chocolate Pizza with a Crunch…
and of course an English Breakfast Tea :)
Luckily I felt like chocolate so coupled with the tea, I didn’t feel it was as sweet as we feared it to be. The little marshmellows were melted in the middle so that was a pleasant surprise. Also the contrast of the soft base and crispy cornflakes gave a pleasing texture to each bite.
Dessert dates are always so warm and sweet, too bad I rarely feel like sweets. Hopefully there will be plenty more sweetly warm dates in the future (^^ )v ~~