I have just discovered a local Yum Cha that is comparable to those in the City. Rhodes Phoenix is neatly tucked away from the hustle and bustle of Rhodes Shopping Centre (also home to giant outlet Ikea). It is the 4th child of the Phoenix Restaurants family, the other siblings being Sky Phoenix, Hilltop Phoenix and Manly Phoenix; so I suppose it's success isn't really that surprising.
One of the perks of being a food blogger is the exposure to hidden treasures. Thanks to the openness of some who are just as passionate about good food, I have recently discovered a fabulous Greek restaurant. The ironic thing is, it's not so much hidden... as there's a huge neon sign... and I do only just work next door!
I've been working across the street from Mother Chu's Vegetarian Kitchen the last 9 months. So I jumped at the opportunity of finally lunching there when 2 workmates mentioned that they were planning on trying something new. The elderly Chinese have a respect for this place, and I can totally understand why. They serve delicious vegetarian alternatives and the Buddhist culture is truley brought out in the casual decor, genuine service and hearty menu. Catering for strict Buddhists means that there's no alcohol consumption on the premises. Sparkling juices are prepared in replacement of wine and beer. And tofu or soybean of all shapes and textures are served looking and sometimes even tasting like the meaty variation.
I feel like I'm right at the heart of Seoul. There's a lot of clatter as staff follow the ringing of table bells. It's such a lively room. Hungry people join the queue every couple of minutes. I scan the room, and large majorities of the crowd appear to be Korean. Ah, perfect... an authentic Korean restaurant. Families, students, large groups and working couples all look content with their meals. Food really does soothe the soul.
On Friday night, Dianne, Florence and I celebrated an early Christmas at the Corn Exchange Restaurant for a $70 seafood and dessert extravaganza. As you can see, the variety was endless! *drools*
Port Orient Restaurant transforms into a karaoke bar after 9pm. So while we were really here to embarrass ourselves, the food was surprisingly impressive. For $59.90 per person, we had the 'Special Christmas Banquet' with two entrees (four pieces for $10). And what a great night it was -there was plenty of laughter, great entertainment and fablulous views which overlooked the harbour.
I had the duck as my main dish. The duck was coated with a coarse mixture of pistatios, coriander seeds, cumin seeds, macadamia nuts and sesame seeds, then panfried to a perfect pink, and the falafel cake was rich and crunchy. This was topped up with a sweet pilaf which was a heavenly marriage of figs and caramelised onion.
Iron Chef Chinese Seafood Restaurant is meant to be a part of the new breed. Along side it's sister restaurant, Zilver, they clearly stand out from the traditional Chinese restaurants, in terms of menu range, ambience and furnishing. The restaurant is classically decorated in royal red hues, live bamboo shoots and fancy spotlights. It is probably one of the best looking Chinese restaurants I've ever been to.
I've always been a regular at Dooleys Bistro. And since they've introduced the $8 rump steak on Monday and Tuesday nights, I can now enjoy a quick bistro dinner at a great price. The kids meals are awesome too... at $8, you can choose from the fish and chips, nuggets and chips, spaghetti bolognaise, or the roast with vegies, and also get a free soft drink or juice, and ice-cream!