Saturday, November 10, 2018

Dark Horse on the Brit, Mitcham by Bureaucrat

About a year ago, we started venturing into cafe life with Boy Chick in tow.  Back then, he was little enough to force put him in a high chair.  Nowadays, as a boisterous toddler, outdoor seating is a must for us if we want to have any chance of eating out.  I remembered that the Dark Horse on the Brit having a spacious al fresco area that is located in the middle of a not-too-busy pedestrian thoroughfare in the Mitcham shops.  And it seems that we're not the only parents that have cottoned on to this fact - there were plenty of other young families doing the same thing!

Dark Horse on the Brit, Mitcham, paella
As with risotto, paella is a dish that often isn't as good as you'd hope it to be.  The Lawyer is rather a fan of paella (we can still remember the magnificent squid ink paella that we had in Barcelona all those years ago), so when he saw it on the specials menu, he figured he'd give it a shot.  Happily, this was a pretty good version of it.  There was a good amount of chorizo and chicken and it was well seasoned.  The rice was nicely done - not too mushy and not overly al dente.

Wednesday, November 7, 2018

The Sown—debut novel by AC Bux

Here at Eat and Be Merry, our writers write to justify their gluttony.  We write to eat.  On some occasions, we live to write, even when there is no motivational carrot, metaphoric or otherwise, dangling in front of our noses. 

We are excited that one of our contributors, Obelix, otherwise known as AC Bux, has published her debut novel, The Sown.  If you enjoyed Obelix's posts and want to check out her writing chops delving in the genre of historical fiction exploring dark themes of betrayal, shame and addiction, please head over her website ( for more details.

Monday, November 5, 2018

Now And Not Yet, Warrandyte by Bureaucrat

Now And Not Yet is a rather special cafe.  Ensconced in the main shopping strip in leafy Warrandyte, Now And Not Yet is a social enterprise that puts its profits towards local community causes and helping asylum seekers by providing employment opportunities for them.  During a weekend of self improvement, Now and Not Yet seemed to be a rather fitting choice for lunch.

Now And Not Yet, Warrandyte, super salad
Similar to the Rumour Mill in Croydon, the menu here accommodates many dietary needs (vegetarian, vegan, gluten and dairy free).  There were nine of us for lunch and we made sure to have a booking.  Some of the dishes that we ordered included the Super Salad.  A colourful and hearty salad comprised of kale, chickpeas, beetroot, tomatoes, sweet potato, quinoa and topped with maple roasted walnuts and mustard apple cider vinegar.  

Friday, November 2, 2018

The Coventry, South Melbourne by Bureaucrat

Just over a month old, The Coventry is the newest cafe in South Melbourne.  Owned by the same family who run Piatella and Meat In The Middle, The Coventry is a breezy and relaxed spot that's located opposite the South Melbourne market.  The menu here draws upon a number of cuisines.  Owner, Nick Bourgazas, explained that they wanted to offer something a bit different to the typical cafe fare to differentiate themselves from the glut of neighbouring cafes.

The Coventry, South Melbourne, tuna tartare
Case in point, is the tuna tartare.  A delightfully modern take on the greasy and stodgy battered fish and chips, The Coventry's version is much healthier and surprisingly moreish.  While I'm usually not a fan of rare/raw seafood, I couldn't help stealing forkfuls of the delicious tuna from the Lawyer's plate. The tuna is finely diced so that even if you're squeamish about eating raw fish, you cannot feel the chewiness of the uncooked fish.  The tuna is tender and melts in your mouth.  It's beautifully seasoned with cornichons, capers and shallots and the aioli gives it a lovely creaminess - it's utterly yummy and there's not a hint of fishiness at all.  The tuna is served with these gorgeously golden and geometric fluffy polenta chips and lotus root chips.

Friday, October 26, 2018

OMI, Doncaster by Obelix

I have fallen in love with the concept of an Onsen egg.  A singular egg poached to perfection at 65 degrees Celsius.  Tenderly wibbly-wobbly.  A yolk-like custard. It was the sole reason why I decided to try OMI - for the Onsen egg.  

OMI, Doncaster
Wibbly wobblies on a plate

But then, I was introduced to Mentaiko (fermented fish roe marinated in sake, konbu and yuzu) and I found myself obsessing over OMI since.

Monday, October 22, 2018

Rumour Mill, Croydon by Bureaucrat

Having been smitten with the quaint McAdam Square shopping village in Croydon, we decided to go back there to check out another cafe.  Earlier this year, we brunched at the beautifully verdant Scented Garden Cafe.  This time around, we decided to try the Rumour Mill, whose menu is geared towards those with dietary requirements (e.g., raw, organic, vegetarian, gluten, dairy, vegan needs).

This is quite a big cafe, with seats outside the pavement and lots of room to push a pram through on the inside.  I really liked the range of dishes on the menu, which included breakfast Bento boxes, Mexican inspired salads, to middle Eastern green shashuka eggs. 

Rumour Mill, Croydon, mushroom ragu and polenta
Mixing things up a bit, the Lawyer and I decided to pick dishes that we normally wouldn't choose.  Uncharacteristically, the Lawyer went for the lovely mushroom ragu with soft polenta.  This was served with puffed amaranth, pine nuts, poached egg and parmesan crisp.  This plate of gorgeously golden polenta with the deep flavoured mushrooms impressed him.  Warm and nourishing.