Thursday, 20 December 2012

The Jacaranda Tree Cafe

I used to come to the Jacaranda Tree Cafe quite often when I lived nearby. I haven’t been for quite some time so decided to see what the cafe was like now. I looked up the website before I went to see whether the menu had changed. It looked pretty much the same but when I actually received my menu in the cafe, some of the prices had gone up. Time to update the website guys. The chairs had all been replaced with fold-up chairs which were comfortable but unattractive. Most people were choosing to sit outside today though. We were not greeted at the door as we used to be and glancing around showed that the usual friendly waitresses were not working here today (or perhaps not anymore). Today, I chose the Egg, lettuce, chopped bacon, and mayonnaise on a focaccia ($9.00). There are lots of other fillings to choose from too. Mine had burnt edges but otherwise tasted okay. My friend chose the Shepherd’s Pie ($13.90). This beef pie came in a bowl and was quite good. But the accompanying salad needed a dressing of some kind. It took a long time for our food to arrive. The cakes are made at the cafe ($7.50) with my favourite being the Lumberjack cake. The combination of apple, date, and coconut warmed up with a side of cream is very decadent. The coffee ($3.60) had a burnt taste but surprisingly improved as you went along. A pot of tea is $4.00 and is just a teabag! If you are going to charge high prices for tea you should at least use loose leaf tea. We used to love coming here because the staff were very friendly but when it was time to pay, we could barely get a smile out of the waitress. Next time I am in Blackburn, I think I will try the cafe round the corner...

Address: 2/28 Blackburn Road, Blackburn, VIC.  

Phone: 03 9894 7652

Website

The Jacaranda Tree Cafe on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, 11 December 2012

Cook's Corner Cafe

If you keep going though the Kallista round-about and head towards the Patch, you will come across Cook’s Corner. Situated in a house in what seems the middle of the forest is a tranquil refuge in the hills. I have been here a number of times before but unfortunately the coffee went from being excellent to barely drinkable. This was a shame because I always loved the food. There is seating inside with a cosy heater or if it is a nice sunny day you can sit outside. A Mexican menu is now on offer which looked interesting, as well as the corresponding cocktails. The service here is usually good but on this instance the waiter was very keen on up-selling which was very unpleasant. If I wanted to order these items, I would have done so! Instead, numerous ‘no thanks’ were needed. I ordered the Smoked Salmon Sandwich ($10.95). Smoked salmon, cream cheese, rocket, avocado, red onion, and crispy capers served on ciabatta sourdough. The crispy capers made a novel addition to the sandwich which was very big and tasty. The bread was easy to eat unlike some places where you need razor sharp teeth to bite into it. My friend ordered the Chicken Sandwich ($10.95). Roast chicken, avocado, bacon, cheese, rocket, and a garlic aioli. She could barely eat it all as it was so filling but delicious. Our coffees arrived and thankfully, the coffee ($3.50) today was back to being great! A complementary chocolate freckle also sits proudly on the teaspoon accompanying the coffee. Now for sweets...The scones here are huge and at $3.80, they must be one of the best value Devonshire teas in the hills. One scone is a meal in its self. The essential jam and cream are also excellent. Yummy food here as always!


Address: 2 Kallista-Emerald Road, Kallista, VIC. 

Phone: 03 9752 1380  

Website

Facebook

Cook's Corner Cafe on Urbanspoon

Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Watts Cooking

Nestled in the Union Road shopping strip in Surrey Hills is Watt’s Cooking. I’ve always wanted to try Watt’s Cooking and on Saturday I happened to be in the area and thus seized the opportunity. We were greeted by a waitress when we entered which always makes you feel like a valued customer. We chose a table in the window and were quickly offered a menu. One side of the menu showed more substantial meals (around $20). I was tempted to order the risotto as it did sound delicious with cauliflower puree, asparagus, mushrooms, and truffle oil but I didn’t feel like a big meal today. I flipped the menu over and found some lighter options and decided on the Vegetarian lasagne ($15.00) of pumpkin, spinach, and ricotta. This was the best tasting vegetarian lasagne I have ever had! I would love to know this recipe... A wonderful salad of greens, zucchini ribbons, and tomato with a luscious, creamy dressing came with the lasagne. My friend ordered the Corn fritter with chicken, crème fraiche, avocado, and tomato and Spanish onion salsa ($15.00). Again accompanying the dish was that yummy salad. The chicken was so tender and coated in spices. Very tasty. The chef here is clearly very good at their job. We then ordered a coffee ($3.00) which was nice and hot. The service here was very attentive and efficient, and table service was also provided. Overall, a very pleasant experience and can’t wait to come back and try some more dishes off the menu.





Address: 147 Union Rd, Surrey Hills, VIC

Phone: 03 9890 6268

Watts Cooking on Urbanspoon
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