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Decided that, as I had enforced leave between Xmas and NYE anyway, I might as well head down to Canberra, a place I had never been during that period of time when I HAD lived there. Always part of the exodus.

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Booked myself a lovely room at the Mantra on Northbourne. Top floor, nice view. King bed. HOT shower :)

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And walking distance from Civic. Which meant I could easily catch up with friends for dinner or drinks :)

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First stop was coffee with the darling Hannah to catch up on life.

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Dinner one night I caught up with Mike at Wagamama. Noodles! Sake!

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Even went and watched a movie. Must have been on holidays!

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Spent my middle day sitting in Glebe Park. Breathing. Relaxing. Chilling. Napping ;)

(I got sunburnt. In the shade! Bloody hell!)

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Stalked down Pia (ooh Wikipedia page) for a quick catch up at Gus’s.

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Of course, a few glasses of Canberra region wine were consumed ;)

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Don’t do it! Pinot noir should be from NZ, or Canberra. Or the Victorian highlands. Oh or Tassie.


Not Cessnock. Seriously.

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Moo Gourmet Burgers, Manly
Bubbly on arrival? I’m your girl!

Twas a miserable Sydney evening. Rain, scary on the roads, rocky on the Ferry, but somehow the five of us made it to Moo at Manly to try some of their awesome burgers.

Moo Gourmet Burgers, Manly

Somehow I made it there about 6:45pm, for a 6pm start! I JUST missed the ferry that would have gotten me to Manly at six. It wasn’t to be.

Moo Gourmet Burgers, Manly

To start was chips, and the Wagyu burger. Mine on the gluten free bun. (17 of their 20 burgers can be done gluten free!!) Us girls trying to figure out how much to eat to have room for the rest! The onions were sweet, the patties devine!!!!

Moo Gourmet Burgers, Manly

The others had some Moo Pale Ales ($8.50) with their burgers. I stuck with the bubbles ;)

Moo Gourmet Burgers, Manly

Then arrived a selection of milkshake samples. I drank this one, the Cow in Mud – because it was Baylies and Frangelico and other awesome cocktail ingredients ;) Yes, I paid for it later!!!

Moo Gourmet Burgers, Manly

Then came the roo burger, which an American friend had tried and recommended the other weekend. It was nice, but I concentrated on the yummy beetroot relish and the pattie as I was sooooo full at this point!

Moo Gourmet Burgers, Manly

Moo Gourmet Burgers, Manly

A dessert of ‘Mookies’ was brought out… with gooey dark and white chocolate, baked on the day. The other girls shared one and we all took some home. I met a friend for drinks on the way home and he was happy with my cookie offerings!

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Ginger beer for wary stomachs on the road! (or ferry!)

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Shame they’re not out here…

What’s your ‘Friday drinks’ drink of choice? Mine’s usually a calm glass of wine…

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Tim Adams 2003 Cabernet
‘scuse the light, it was a dinner for two moment.

There have been two bottle of the Tim Adams 2003 Cabernet following us around Canberra since Rish began his PhD in 2006. Waiting, “cellaring” in the linen closet, waiting for a celebration.

On Sunday night we went to one of out favourite places in Canberra, La Scala in Garema Place, for a bit of a celebratory dinner. Rish is finished and looking forward to the future, and I’m finished for the semester and looking for breathe for a little bit before the next challenge.

Tim Adams 2003 Cabernet

We took along one of the bottles of Cabernet. The cold cold bottle out of the linen closet. Opened it with a sense of adventure. It could be great, it could be off! Who knows!

Ahh, the beauty of screw caps! We were pleasantly surprised at how well it aged, how well it drank given the conditions it’s been under. We wondered, would we be able to tell had it been a cheaper bottle aged less, or the same bottle and not left for years? Who knows. There’s one more left.

La Scala, Canberra

Our meals were delicious as always. Mine was the Cod special, with mushroom, spinach, baby tomatoes and a pepper and saffron sauce.

La Scala, Canberra

For Rish, the very CHILI veal scallopini. Spicy, as expected.

La Scala, Canberra

Dessert for Rish while I finished the wine, a white chocolate and coffee pana cotta. Delish.

La Scala, Canberra

Then for a coffee and a brainstorm at Babar, as everywhere else was either closed or only had outside tables (on the -6 degree night, no less). Got to people-watch, and do a virtual butchers paper effort. Ahh, ramblings. xx

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March 31, 2011 · 8 comments

Yeah! Baby Octopus FTW nomnomnom

Had some friends over the other week for a Steamboat. And a few bottle of wine. And plenty of chatter. Always good fun :)

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Prawn Crackers to nibble on to start while we got the coals heating

Burn, baby, burn

Array of seafood, meat, noodles, veges and tofu

Going fishing!

And the wines:

Side gate riesling
2008 Side Gate Riesling

Clonakilla 2009 Hilltops Shiraz

Rose Hill Durif
The Rose Hill Durif we picked up in Victoria.

Such a social way to have a meal!

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I could write about…

January 30, 2011 · 6 comments

The gluten free meal I had on the plane home from Melbourne last night:

Gluten free plane food

Or the complimentary wine:

free wine

Dinner at The Deanery Friday night:

The Deanery, Melbourne

The Deanery, Melbourne

The 5:15am WAKE UP CALL we all got Saturday morning at The Oaks on Market. All 4 rooms of our group. Something wrong there.

Oaks on Market, Room 1605

Or I could just write a few sentences and post some photos. You all cool with that?

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Red curry

Red curry

Red curry based on the Gwinganna Cookbook Green Curry recipe.


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Decided, as nothing else was planned, we’d get all grown up and actually go to dinner for New Year’s Eve. We HAVE been out of school for 10 years you know ;) So, to Customs House it was, for 4 courses, a view out the window of the fireworks, and awesome company. Oh and more cheap wine :p

New Years Eve - Customs House Newcastle
With my Bellini on arrival.

New Years Eve - Customs House Newcastle
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Our little getaway before Xmas, 3 days in the Beechworth area. Wine tasting, vanilla slices and enjoying the countryside was to be had :)

Beechworth Bakery
Vanilla Slice from the Beechworth Bakery

I’d bought Rish a gift voucher for two nights at Barnsley House in a package that included:

  • 2 night’s weekend accommodation (Fri/Sat or Sat/Sun) in romantic Elizabeth Retreat, with King size spa, open fire, LCD TV
  • Bottle of local wine on arrival
  • Full breakfasts each morning
  • A two course dinner plus glass of wine each at Gigi’s restaurant one evening
  • Antipasto platter from Beechworth Pantry one evening to enjoy in the comfort of Barnsley House
  • 2 x 45 minute relaxation massages at nearby ‘Reflective Soles’

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