Sunday, July 31, 2011

Regional Flavours Festival and Ginga

Another weekend, another food festival in Brisbane. I'm loving it! And so is my cousin Tehana, my favourite festival partner in crime. We've started planning our months around food, fashion and furniture festivals.

This weekend was the Regional Flavours Festival at South Bank. Clappy hands already to the organisers for spelling "Flavours" the correct AUSTRALIAN way, not the American way. (Sorry US of A, but that  "u" is very important to us spelling nuts).

So, gourmet goodies from producers in regional areas. Fabulous! This meant cheeses from the Sunshine Coast hinterland, wines from the Granite Belt and chocolate from the Lockyer Valley. Samples galore!  Heaven! I don't know how many chutneys, chocolates, crackers, breads and jams we sampled, but there were loads and it was fabulous!

After we'd sampled everything and stuff ourselves...well, it was time for lunch. We went to Ginga, a cute Japanese Restaurant in Little Stanley Street.

I had the Vegetarian Bento Box. For $19 it was awesome value and to be honest, we probably could have shared it. Tehana had an insanely huge bowl of soba noodles and neither of us finished our dishes.

It's bizarre how often the number 18 pops up in my life. I was born on the 18th. My Mum was born on the 18th. We used to live at number 18 and my room number at college was...18. Today, we sat at Table 18. Awwww.

Monday, July 25, 2011

Dandelion & Driftwood

Dandelion & Driftwood in Hendra.  This quaint little cafe popped up on Natascha Mirosch's Top Spots for coffee in The Courier Mail's Life so I met the Red Carpet girls there to check it out. (The Red Carpet girls are the PR girls I used to work with at Red Carpet Projects a few years ago. Fun times. Catch up with them when I can).

So...I got there at 9.45am. It was on the other side of town to me, in Hendra, and people were hanging out the front waiting for their coffees from the coffee cart out the front. I went in, and it was packed. The waitress said, "do you have a booking?" A booking? At 9.45am? On a Monday morning? In the suburbs?? I was astounded. It wasn't even in a shopping strip, it was just a main, but random road in the burbs.

I sat at a bar by the window and stalked the other patrons until a few left and I bagsed (is that a real word, or just one from high school?) a few chairs until the girls arrived.

This place takes their coffee seriously. I'm no aficionado, I just know when it tasted good, and while I have no idea what "blend" it was, it was really, really nice.

Lunch was given a fancy schmancy name, but was really just a toasted sandwich and was served with a few chips. Not fries...chips, like Samboy chips. It was a bit bizarre.

But we topped it off with an apple and cinnamon muffin which was divine and blended beautifully with my tea. Love this cute little tea set.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Chinese Girl Pyjamas

It's been a chilly one in Brissie lately. And by chilly I mean 5 degrees, which is cold for this neck of the woods (says Karina, channeling Al Roker). So I bought the CUTEST pair of flannelette PJs cause they kind of reminded me

They're pink, with a seemingly super happy Chinese girl running around with various stereotypical accessories including a fan and an umbrella.

I guess if I had rosy cheeks and flowers fell around me every where I went, I'd be grinning like this too.

Rug up Brissie!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Thank you cupcake!

There's nothing that says "thank you" more than a cupcake. Look how cute this one is - it's got lolly lips on it! (Cue collective "ahhhhh"). Yes, nothing beats the Oxford Stret Bakery in Bulimba for cupcakes. Moist, sweet and oh so cute.  Grabbed this for my bestie Bernice for hanging out with Josh all day while I was working.

Actually this is something that says thank you more...

Eight cupcakes!!  Yeah!

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

There's nothing like home made

This was dinner just before it went into the oven. Baby spinach, mushrooms, capsicum, kalamta olives, sun dried tomatoes, baby bocconcini and mozzarella. was delicious. There's nothing like home made.

The Valley

While we're on the subject of the was the first time in a long, long time I'd been in the Valley on a weekday and it was...horrible.

I usually go on a weekend when it's hustling and bustling with the markets, families out to yum cha, buskers in the street. It's a little grungy, but the atmosphere is fun and happy.

Today it was full of, well, not so nice people.  They were drunk and disorderly, smelly and rude and it was a completely different feel than it is on the weekend.

I think I'll stick to Saturdays and Sundays for my visits...

Pho my god!

Finally...a Vietnamese place that makes a vegetarian pho. And look how delicious it looks!!  And look how BIG is it!! Josh and I shared...I still couldn't finish it. Kudos Pho 8 in the Valley.

Visitor at my door

Look what was at our door when we got home. So perfectly still...I nearly stepped on him!

A day in the park

So glad to have my 12 year old back home after almost 2 weeks away. It's still school holidays so we wandered down to New Farm park seeing as it was such a beautiful Queensland winter day.

I love what they've done with the old Powerhouse Museum there. They've kept exposed the industiral sections that were working parts of the original power house, as well as reminders of when it was a run down and abandoned. It's a fantastic combination, and a great venue - I've been to a number of functions there.  The restarants and cafes there are awesome too, if a little overpriced for being in such a "cool" venue.

Friday, July 1, 2011


It doesn't matter what angle you take it from, curries never really photograph as well as they taste. They kinda always end up looking a bit smushy, like this one.  But I guarantee you it was D-E-L-I-C-I-O-U-S!!! It was 3 curries and rice from Vegerama in the Myer Centre.

Was pretty chuffed to find this place again. Graham and I used to go at Post Office Square when it first opened a few years ago, but they closed when the food court was renovated, and I didn't realise it has moved here until we came across it looking for somewhere for dinner on Friday night.

So, here we have a split pea curry, a potato curry and a spinach paneer with brown rice. It's hard to see the cool plates, but they're made from eco friendly bamboo. (The plastic forks and spoons though, strangely, were not.) The plate was huge and you can see they served up a decent helping. And...$9. Bargain. G and I shared and still didn't finish it. I would have loved to have had a dosa as well cause they are awesome, but we were just too full.

But, we did have a samosa with tamarind sauce and a rice ball. Soooo yummy.  Love this place. Check it out. Food court atmosphere, not so fab, but you can always get take away and go and sit in the Botanic Gardens.