Wayside Inn – Did you say Steak?

I love steak and who doesn’t, well… I guess vegetarians don’t. Anyways, I’m always looking for a good place to have some steak but not just any steak, some good steak!

Jenny’s work mates sent myself and Jenny to Wayside Inn for Jenny’s birthday treat. So sweet of them!!! Thank you so much guys!! We loved it and the food was great.

I was so excited to use my new Canon 7D to take photos and I pull out the camera to take a picture of the front before it got dark and I thought to myself it’s a bit lighter than usual. Silly me I forgot to put the battery in. Doh! But didn’t panic because the trusty iPhone4 is always near. And you guessed it, these photos are from the iPhone4 and some of them have been filtered through Instagram (if you guys are an iPhone owner and haven’t joined instagram yet, jump on board coz its awesome! well i think so. While you’re at it checkout my instagram posts)

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We thought the water jugs were great. They came in blue and green and made a gurgling sound when completing the pour. Made me laugh each time.

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For entree we had the Plateau De La Mer which had scallops, oysters, mussels, bugs, clams, prawns, smoked salmon, crab and calamari. Alot ey? Most of the seafood came in threes so it was more of a sharing plate for 3 but that meant more for me and Jen. The oysters were a bit small. The sauces complimented the seafood well, overall it was good but probably not needed as I struggled to finish my steak.

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I love it when restaurants serve bread but the bread needs to be fresh and soft but with a crunchy/soft crust and have good butter to work with it. I found the bread a bit hard and could of done with some time in the oven before they serve it. Sorry that’s how I like my bread.

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Now for the steaks! I got greedy and picked the 500g Rib Eye. All the BBQ steaks are served with a garnish of salad and beranaise sauce. I got mine done medium rare but it came out more medium but I still like it that way. I found the bearnaise sauce too much but then its up to you how much you want with each bite. The steak was cooked well and I enjoyed it but 500g was a bit much after the seafood sharing plate and we also got a side of crispy twice cooked chips. There was quite a bit of fat in the rib-eye so if you don’t like fat, probably stay away from that.

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Jenny ordered the 300g Scotch Fillet which was probably a more sensible size to get with all the extra food we ordered. Because it’s served the same for all the steaks, it’s all up to your preference on cuts. The steaks are good but I found Station Hotel steak in Footscray a little better.

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It’s not cheap to eat at Wayside Inn but the food is not too bad. I can compare this place to Station Hotel in Footscray as the setup, food offerings and setup is quite similar. Being the new kid on the block, they’ve done quite well to establish themselves. The service is great as our waitress knew the menu quite well and they filled our water when running low.

Jenny and I enjoyed ourselves, service was great and the steaks were good so I’m giving Wayside Inn a thumbs up for steak lovers plus its new so it’s good to change the scene.

Location: 446 City Road, South Melbourne VIC 3205
(03) 9682 9119
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Opening Hours:
7 Days a week, 11am til late.

Universal Italian Restaurant – Great Food, Great Value


Chicken Avocado
“Tomato, cheese, mushroom, grilled chicken tenders & fresh avocado” 15.9

My good friends at FOOD-Pampering-Yourself gave me and several other bloggers an opportunity to be apart of their very first food trail which landed us a special feast at Universal Italian Restaurant. I was also delighted to meet Alfie the proud owner of Universal Italian Restaurant, given a tour of the upstairs function area, was able to meet several other awesome food bloggers and to top it off had a full and very satisfied stomach.

Right in the heart of Lygon St, Universal Italian Restaurant is a personal favourite on mine and the good news is, they’re expanding. They’ve acquired the space next door and will be opening up the place to integrate as one. They’ve also converted upstairs to a very nice function & bar area, including an open balcony for some fresh air and drinks.

We were presented with a massive line-up of food, from the starters, entrée, main, pizza, pasta and home made dessert menu. I felt spoilt and was absolutely content. The food looked amazing and now looking back at the menu and prices, they were all under $20 so I have to say that’s good value for some great food. But let the photos do the talking.

Bruschetta Roma
“Homemade pesto, fresh tomatoes & feta cooked on a pizza base” 8.5

Garlic Pizza
“Cheese & garlic pizza” 7.5

Oysters Naturale
“Fresh oysters”

Oysters Kilpatrick
“Baked oysters with bacon & Worcestershire sauce”

Buffalo Wings
“Marinated & grilled BBQ chicken wings” 8.5

I Am Angus
Tomato, cheese, Grilled beef strips, roasted red capsicum,onion, jalapeños & a drizzle of garlic mayo” 14.9

Porter-House
Certified Australian Angus, 150 day grain fed – 270g” 18.9

Slow Roasted Pork Ribs
“Slow roasted tender marinated pork ribsserved with roasted butternut pumpkin & corn on the cob” 19.9

Tuscan Chicken
“Tuscan marinated chicken breast fillet grilled &served with wild mushroom risotto” 15.5

Risotto Poseidon
Creamy risotto with pan seared tiger prawns, mussels, spinach & roasted capsicum, with a touch of spicy olio & napolitana sauce”  18.5

Salmon Fillet
Grilled fresh Atlantic salmon filletserved with vegetable ratatouille & roasted garlic aoli” 19.9

Gelato Tasting Plate for Two
“A variety of Italian gelato & premium ice cream” 7.5

Tiramisu
“Coffee & liqueur soaked savoiardi biscuits, smothered inmascarpone cream & chocolate shavings” 8.5

Panna Cotta
Vanilla bean & honey flavored panna cotta,with wild berry soup, caramel toffee shard & Persian fairy floss” 8.5

Blueberry Cheesecake
“New York cheesecake mixed with fresh blueberries on a biscuit crust” 8.5

Chocolate Mud Pudding
“A dense & moist mud pudding served with chocolate fudge,corinthian wafer & macadamia nut ice cream” 8.5

What a satisfying array of food from the Universal menu. I can’t wait to go back when they’ve fully renovated the restaurant and possibly put a few new items on the menu.

Checkout their website http://www.universalrestaurant.com.au for more information on their function facilities and options and also checkout their online menu which makes my life easier 🙂

Contemplating a visit to Lygon St or just happen to drop by? Why not give Universal Italian Restaurant a go. I recommend trying the Buffalo Wings, Porter House Steak, I am Angus pizza, the Tuscan Chicken with Mushroom Risotto and my favourite dessert was the Chocolate Mud Pudding…drooool!!!

Location: 139-141 Lygon St, Carlton VIC 3053, (03) 9347-4393
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China Bar Signature – All You Can Eat


Love asian food? Wish you could eat all the oysters and peking duck you can eat? Then you have to try China Bar Signature Buffet in Burwood!!! It was like a dream come true walking into that place.

The tables are prepared nicely, there’s plenty of space and the place is nice and clean.


Their dinner sessions are from 5:45pm-7:45pm & 8pm-10pm. 2hrs you say? Trust me it’s plenty of time and I advise you to take your time because it’s easy to get full at this place.

Want some raw fish? Ask the sushi chef and he’d slice you some raw salmon, yellowtail & raw tuna. I couldn’t stop myself from having too much sushi & sashimi but thought to myself I can get sushi anytime, so I diverted my tactics to seafood!!!

I probably had 2 dozens oysters, a dozen prawns and a whole lot of scallops.

Peking duck is my favourite and there was an unlimited supply of it. There were two chefs stationed at the peking duck and duck soup section making sure there was enough duck to go around. At one point they were struggling to keep up but managed to keep up with my demands.

They even had a section for noodle lovers, where you could tell the chef to put together the ingredients and then he’d cook the noodle dish for you.

You can’t call it an asian buffet without the dim sim section.

I didn’t manage my time well and got full with 45mins. I had another 1hr 15mins to go but couldn’t help myself to the beautiful wall of desserts!!!

And if you’re a fan of those $1 asian flavoured ice-creams at your local asian grocery store then stuff your face with all these (I know I did)

I would have to make this place one of my top 10 restaurants to try and I’m going to make any excuse to go here at least once a year from now on.
There’s plenty more food there but I can’t cover it all, so only my favourites this time around.

Here’s a few tips for you:
-No need to arrive early (just make sure you book – plenty of tables)
-Take your time (eat slowly)
-Don’t have too much sushi (filled with rice = get full quickly)
-Don’t waste food, I think they have a disclaimer that they’ll charge you if you waste food
AND
-Make sure you leave room for dessert!!!!

Checkout their website for prices, times and reservation details

http://www.chinabarsignature.com/

Location:380 Burwood Highway, Burwood East, VIC 3151
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Next Door to Movida is Movida Next Door

Obviously Next Door to Movida (The Original). A small bar serving an awesome lineup of tappas and located on the corner of Flinders St and a funky laneway called Hosier Ln where graffiti, camera enthusiasts and wedding shoots are a regular occurrence.

We went on a Saturday afternoon for a late lunch so it wasn’t too busy, as we entered we were quickly greeted by one of the waiters and escorted to a seat on the bar. Probably the best place to sit so you can easily order and speak to the waiter while you eat and drink, that’s if you’re not there to stare into each others eyes while you hold hands.

Nothing fancy about the look of the menu but the lineup of tappas on order looked tantalising and looking at a few other dishes of people around us, made our mouths water. Plus as it was 2pm, our stomachs were growling, loudly.

To help cool us down from the 36C heat we quickly ordered some sparkling mineral water and allowed our eyes to wander around its decor.

Complimentary bread rolls! My philosophy is if a restaurant serves you complimentary bread rolls and they taste good, then their food must be good! haha. Movida’s bread rolls were fried and crunchy but soft to eat and seasoned nicely. I was hooked on them and would of been satisfied eating them all day long.

I don’t know why, but I seem to always want to order oysters just like when I go to a Japanese restaurant I almost always order sashimi or raw beef tataki. It’s either habit or just a personal favourite to start off a lovely meal.
Oysters weren’t anything special although they were shucked on the spot and were presented nicely.

Next we had some Fried Croquettes with Wild Mushrooms. They were tiny little things but what waited inside was something special. The creamy light mushroom filling and thin layer of bread crumb batter was two contrasting textures that had great flavour.

I wasn’t convinced with the next tappas dish so we only ordered one. But boy was I wrong on this hot day. We ordered a serving of the Ajo Blanco Chilled Almond soup with Grape Granita. It was refreshingly delicious. You could really taste the almond flavour from the cold soup and the grape granita was soft but had a little crunch to it. If you mixed it up a bit and let it sit, the two flavours combined nicely. I loved it so much, I ordered another one.

The last dish we tried which was the highlight. Knowing how fresh the seafood was gave us more reason to try it. Yabbies were live and crawling freely in the window with the other seafood items.

Now that they’ve been ordered, that’s right yabbies, you’re our lunch!!! We saw the chef prepare the yabbies and we were excited. One minute they’re happily crawling around then the next minute they’ve been ordered and ready to be chopped in half and served for lunch or dinner.

The Yabbies were served in the pan they were cooked in, probably around 4 yabbies split in half and cooked in a good mixture of garlic, butter, parsley (I think), a few other ingredients and the juices from the yabbies itself. Scrumptous things they were!

The waiter told us a funny comment a customer made earlier where they wanted to have the yabbie dish but not the live ones in the window. LOL…what yabbies did they want? The live ones in the back?

Anyway what I loved most was the bread rolls that came with them so we could dip them into the yabbie sauce. Like I said before, the bread rolls were awesome, so we asked for more as we quickly gobbled the first batch down.

Overall I had a very pleasant experience at Movida Next Door where the service was great, the food was more than great and the bread rolls were awesome! LOL!

I believe the dishes were fairly priced for the great selection of tappas. I haven’t tried the Original Movida but I’m pretty sure Movida Next Door does it proud. Location is great and when it’s not busy you have time to speak with the waiters and enjoy the food without having people bump into you or shout to have a conversation.

Location: 1 Hosier Ln, Melbourne, 3000
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