Thursday, May 22, 2014

Good Food & Wine Show Giveaway

Thanks to the lovely people over at Spark Communications, I have a wonderful giveaway for all of my wonderful readers! As a fellow food lover, I'm always happy to attend all these food festivals to see what's new and devour all the delicious things on offer. And being an annual food festival, it's that time of year again where the Good Food & Wine show is upon us.

The wait is over as Sydney is set to become the centre of the food & wine universe over a dynamic three day weekend from 27 – 29 June at the Sydney Showground, Sydney Olympic Park.

Celebrate wines from around Australia at the Riedel A+ Australian Wine Bar, rub shoulders with famed sommeliers and vintners at the Riedel Wine Theatre or relax with a cold one in the Grazing Garden with famed food trucks.

Get up-close and personal with your favourite iconic chefs at LifeStyle FOOD Chef's Table; and impress your friends with your newly found culinary skills after taking part in Zumbarons Masterclass with Adriano Zumbo.

I have 3 x double passes worth over $60 each to give away (sponsored by Spark Communications) to 3 of my lucky readers to enjoy everything food related along with me over at Sydney Olympic Showground. There are tonnes of samples, freebies, live demonstrations and cooking classes all for your enjoyment over the course of a three day weekend from the 27th - 29th June.

Simply follow my blog and/or my Instagram @shezhuang, like the photo and leave a comment about what you are looking forward to most if you win the double pass to the Good Food & Wine Show at the end of this post! The most creative answers will find themselves the owner of a double pass to the 2014 Good Food & Wine Show :D Don't forget to leave your email at the end or I won't be able to contact you!

Please enter by Saturday 14th June at 9pm and I will require you to send my your details within 24 hours to claim your winning prize.

You must satisfy the conditions of how to enter.
Winners will have to make their own way to and from the show.

Congratulations Annie, Christina and Amy - you've won yourselves a free double pass to the Good Food & Wine Show for 2014!

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Papparich, Ultimo

With over 70 restaurants open across Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia and China, PappaRich first graced its presence with a restaurant in Chatswood. However, the north shore is quite a trek for me so I was happy to see the opening of a restaurant right next to my university campus. Malaysian food is probably one of the Asian cuisines that I am less familiar with but a flaky, crispy roti is something that is always welcome.

There is quite a line happening outside the restaurant upon arrival at 6:30 but the rate at which it moves is very fast. Signs that service inside is efficient. Gingerbreadmanne and I were seated quickly and menus were produced. Ordering here is different from what you would receive at normal restaurants. Provided on the table are pencils and a pad with you fill in the dishes that you want. The dishes are numbered on the menu so you simply just jot it down and the waitress takes it away to process it once all is decided. It took a while to pick and choose though - the menu is very extensive.

Coconut delight
Gingerbreadmanne and I couldn't resist ordering the coconut delight to share despite the cold weather outside. What's not to love about this concoction of ice blended young coconut juice, a dash of coconut milk and a sprinkle of coconut flesh on top? Refreshingly sweet.

Biryani rice (2 dishes) with beef rendang & sambal prawns
This was the first dish to arrive and was quite a spectacle with the circular papadum on top and it's large serving. The bright yellow colour that is a signature of the tumeric rice would have benefited from soaking up the sauce of the beef rendang and sambal prawns as it was quite dry by itself. But there was much too large a portion and much too little sauce from the small size of side dishes and end up leaving majority of the rice untouched. I can imagine how the cucumber would have provided a nice cooling effect if the prawns and beef had been spicy enough.

Curry laksa (chicken)
I'm not sure how this would fare compared to a good laksa as it was my first time having laksa. There was a beautiful rich coconut fragrance to the broth which I would normally equate to desserts such as coconut sago. It came with a generous amount of toppings - chicken, bean sprouts, tofu puffs, bean curd skin, eggplant pieces and sliced fish cakes.

The roti was a saviour though. We were expecting to be able to mop up the sauces with a extra side of roti however there wasn't much for us to do so. No matter - even eaten by itself, the roti was very moreish. Buttery and flaky with a crispy outer, there was a slight sweetness that would've easily tipped it over to becoming a dessert with just a slight sprinkle of sugar more.

Egg sago pudding
And you all know me with my weakness for everything coconut. I know coconut sago is easy enough to make at home, but how could I not order it? This one had a cute egg pudding snuggled in the centre of the tapioca pearls and coconut milk mix which had a texture very reminiscent of the firm, jelly-like ones you can buy in plastic tubs at your local Asian supermarket.

Overall, we left PappaRich a bit underwhelmed with the whole experience. Half our order had been cancelled without any mention of it to us by the waitstaff and it was only when we asked that we were informed they didn't have any of the ingredients left in the kitchen to make it. A shame because I was very looking forward to the deep fried chicken skin. However, everything else is what you would expect from a chain restaurant - service is efficient, food is served one dish after the other at a quick succession and is of decent standard. Good for a quick bite to eat during uni classes throughout the day.

Shop 5 / 185-211 Broadway  
Ultimo, NSW, 2000

Opening Hours
Sunday - Wednesday: 11:00am - 9:00pm
Thursday - Saturday: 11:00am - 10:00pm

PappaRich Broadway on Urbanspoon

Saturday, May 10, 2014

Swine & Co, Wynyard

I have a question for you, my dear readers. What is your favourite type of meat? I, myself, am such a huge fan of pork. There are not only so many different cuts of meat you can get from the pig, but also so many different ways to cook it. And it is with this promise of lots of pork that we end up at Swine & Co after Chef Meathead's graduation (congratulations!).

Specials cocktail / Charlie Chaplin, $18.00 each
Who doesn't like starting the meal with a girly cocktail? I got lured in by the specials cocktail which  tasted like whizz fizz that I had as a child! I can't remember the exact mix but there was brandy and cherry liquer in it. McMini ordered the Charlie Chaplin which was equally as drinkable with gin, apricot brandy, lime juice and rhubarb bitters.

Complimentary bread
 Those sticks were very addictive because of how airy, crunchy and light they were.

Charcuterie, $30.00
I think we all have a slight obsession with cured meats but Chef Meathead wins on how much he loves his cured meats. I tried some of the chicken liver pate which was very rich and creamy and was coated with a thin layer of fruity jelly to add an undertone of sweetness to the salty pate.

King salmon, $30.00
Look at how perfectly the salmon is cooked! Who knew that salmon would be great with fennel? The olive soil scattered was a very clever way to add seasoning to the dish by allowing us to choose how much we wanted to eat with our salmon. But what I found super addictive were those seaweed pieces and am curious how they managed to get that crispiness to them.

Pork belly, $34.00
You really can't go wrong with pork belly if you have tender soft meat topped with a wonderful slab of crunchy crackling. And with a little croquette on the side? I'm won over! I'm used to eating pork with apple, so the introduction of a super smooth pumpkin puree and peppercorn jus was something new to which I'm glad to say I tried and liked.

Suckling pig, $40.00
Now this was a large chunk of meat I'm telling you. I was expecting something smaller, more delicate and have to say, the meat wasn't as tender as the pork belly when I had been expecting the suckling pig to be more so. I think we were all starting to get the meat sweats at this stage... There was a lot of pork happening. But no matter, we had veggie side dishes!

Brussel sprouts, $12.00
Not everyone is a fan of brussel sprouts but surprisingly, I actually like them (does that make me strange?). This version has been cooked with lentils, fermented chilli and speck. I do find that brussel sprouts needs to be cooked with a meat to soak in flavour so I was happy to see the addition of speck.

Dutch heirloom carrots, $12.00
Sweet roasted carrots with caraway butter! The addition of the crumbs on top made me feel like I was eating a dessert as they were quite sweet and reminiscent of cookie crumble.

Hand cut chips, $12.00
Aioli makes everything alright when eaten with all kinds of chips. I guess this doesn't really count as healthy veggies to help break down all the meat we were consuming :P

Located in the heart of Wynyard, the bar upstairs was very busy and packed out with business men and women when we entered on a Friday night so I have to say that booking is a must if you want to try out all the swine available for consumption here!

Swine & Co.
16 O'Connell St  
Sydney, NSW, 2000

Opening Hours
Monday - Friday: 9:00am - late

Swine & Co. on Urbanspoon