Sunday, May 31, 2015

Ganges Indian by Nature, Hobart

All right, this one is about Ganges Indian by Nature Restaurant, Hobart. On the last leg of our Tasmanian journey we arrived at Hobart and were staying at Woolmer's Apartments. After an entire day of trekking at wineglass bay and driving back to Hobart, we were tired. I decided to stroll down to the nearby market to get some supplies and found an Indian restaurant called Annapurna. Initially, I decided to go for a few starters and ordered the lamb seekh kebabs and tandoori prawns. I placed the ordered and waited for some time. the restaurant was a bit empty. I decided to go and put the supplies back to the hotel. I came back to the restaurant and this time it was a bit full, with a few groups of people dining.

I collected my order and came back home, to have some snacks with the family. Unfortunately, I found the lamb seekh kebabs over spicy and very tough. When I ordered, I was under the impression that it would be just the kebabs, but to my surprise, they took the kebabs and stir fried it with onions, chillies. The kebab was not to my liking. The color was dark and didn't look appealing, the taste equally pathetic. Unfortunately, it was one of those rare times, when I actually thought about throwing away the food.

The tandoori prawns again were with a tandoori marinade and burnt out partially. The quantity was quite less and not good again. I didn't like it.

Unfortunately, my feedback for this restaurant is not positive and I didn't like it at all. Over and above it took to much time to deliver the order. So a big no from my end.

141 Sandy Bay Road, Sandy Bay, Hobart
Ph: 62232040

Ganges Indian Cuisine on Urbanspoon

Thursday, May 28, 2015

Hyams Café, Jervis Bay

All right this one is the café at Hyams beach in Jervis Bay. On our way to Narooma, we had decided to go visit the white sand beaches of Jervis Bay. Unfortunately, for the second time I came over to Jervis Bay and it was raining. Extremely gloomy, cloudy there wasn’t we could do here. After travelling the 12 kms off the Princes highway,  we took refuge at the Hyams Café. It seems to be the only café over there next to the beach. Airy and white interiors, it has a breakfast and lunch menu along with coffee. Also, seem to have basic supplies. There were options of fish and chips, burgers and all.

To keep it simple I ordered simply the lamb burger. It was a mediterranian lamb burger. It basically had the Turkish bread with a fat juicy lamb patty. Along with the patty there was egg plant, fried onions, red capsicum. A layer of harissa yogurt makes it a bit creamy. The burger comes with chips.

The burger was quite wholesome. The vegetables were chargrilled. The patty of the lamb mince was cooked, juicy on the interiors and seemed to have some herbs mixed in the mince. While the burger was descent, I just felt and wished there was a bit more salt in the patty. Somehow, while the lamb was fresh, minced and juicy, it lacked the lamb flavor for some odd reason.

So an ok burger for me. Liked the Mediterranean flavor, Turkish bread, yogurt, but just wished for amore flavorsome patty and bit of salt.

76 Cyrus St, Hyams Beach NSW 2540

(02) 4443 3874

Hyams Beach Store & Cafe on Urbanspoon

Montague Coffee, Narooma

 Just a few steps ahead of the Ice Creamery Café on Princes Highway is the Montague Coffee. Now this is a simple and specialized coffee shop and they are renowned for coffee. They are small specialized boutique coffee roasting shop. They source their coffee beans from different locations. A number of different blends sourced for different coffee beans, and roast the coffee beans.

I initially went it looking for proper hot breakfast, but unfortunately,  I was looking at the wrong place. The montague café does have some basic food on display- which consists of cakes, pastries and sandwiches. I ended up having my breakfast at the ice creamery café down the street and then returned back to have my coffee here. The decors are very comfy and cosy. One room has all the bean jute bags hanging on top and couches. The main room of the shop has basic café chairs, the coffee counters. There are a couple of seating options outside on the pavement. They also have closed cute open air garden.
I ordered for the cappuccino, and an ice cream banana chocolate milkshake. The coffee was great. I am not the greatest specialist connoisseur for coffee, but I do know coffee to extent to like the right blend. For instance, in Sydney, I would  only stick to a few places for coffee which would include campos. I would hate the coffee at most other places. The one at Narooma, at the Montague Coffee had a good flavorsome coffee and I definitely liked it. I would recommend it.
The banana chocolate ice cream shake was again good. Good, creamy with ice cream and bananas blended with chocolate syrup. Very good again.
This is a specialty joint which focuses pure and simple on coffee. If you are a coffee lover, I am sure you will love it.

Montague Coffee Roasters
2/40 Princes Highway
Narooma, NSW 2546
02 4405 9523 or 0401798357

Montague Coffee on Urbanspoon

Ice Creamery Café, Narooma

All right, again, my second visit to Narooma. In both my visits, I did my breakfast for the first morning each time here. The ice creamery café is located on the main road of Narooma, on Princes Highway, right opposite to the Easts Holidays Park. 

A very happening café with loads of people early in the morning. Airy and open, the café has outdoor seating as well as indoors. The indoors, have big open windows overlooking the street. The left side has all the ice creams, milkshakes, smoothies etc. The right side of the same café has the coffee machine, the menu and the main ordering area. Coming here for the second time, I looked at the familiar menu and decided to order a vego brekkie. 

The vego brekkie had the hashbrowns, home made baked beans, mushrooms, cherry tomatoes, with a ploughourmans bread. Additionally I ordered two fried eggs with it. The standard brekkie couldn’t go wrong. The fresh produce, and bread, just love it.

The other dish I ordered was the ploughermans bread topped with  feta cheese and scrambled eggs. Served on a black tray with the bread topped with scrambled eggs, chives and some spring onions, and feta cheese. The flavors were good. Just when you thought, it was a bit bland, the feta cheese add the saltiness. 

On the first visit, I was so happy with the breakfast that I came in for the second day again to the same spot and had the quiche as well. My friends had opted for the chicken schnitzel sandwich and he had good things to say about it. The other friend had the fish and chips or the fish basket and it was delicious, with fresh fish batter fried.

All in all, it is a good spot to come over for breakfast. Good coffee, good airy café, descent food. Will I come here again. Most probably yes.

Shp1/ 46 Princes Hwy
Narooma, New South Wales
(02) 4476 1296

Ice Creamery Cafe on Urbanspoon

Sorriso Italian Restaurant, Narooma

All right, I had come to Narooma about 8 months back, and back then on our first night, we went to Sorriso for some great Italian food. Now the food was so great that I wanted to come back again and try it out. Usually, when I visit the same town or place again, I try to cover different restaurants, but its probably that good, that when I came again now with my family, I wanted to take them here again. Also the selfish motive of eating good food and taking pictures and being able to write this review because, last time I had no camera to take the clicks.

Now Narooma is a very small town which probably dies and sleps at 8 in the night. We head over to Sorriso at 7:30. A pretty restaurant with an entire wooden finish interiors, and a stone building from outside. It is usually very full. During the winters, there is a large fireplace which operates and makes the whole restaurant warm and cozy. There is also a open air seating on the rear of the restaurant. As we head in and settle down, the waitress greets us and provides the menu.

Knowing what to eat and also knowing that all the items don’t seem to be on the menu. Now this is authentic Italian restaurant and they do write on their menu that the pizza’s are not about toppings etc, but more about flavors and striking the right balance. Most of the menu items involve pork, which I cant have. And I am not too much of a fish person as well.
The waitress does inform us of the specials for the day, a local swordfish, and also of linguine pasta.
So I order for a pollo risotto or the chicken risotto with napolitana cream and mushrooms. The pizza is a chicken mushroom pizza. I also order for a a chicken main course which has chicken breasts pan fried in garlic white wine creamy sauce.
The food arrives shortly.
Let’s start with the chicken risotto. Now I have had risottos and I don’t like them too much usually. Being an Indian, mush used to rice and chicken in different forms, I am usually not too much of a fsan of the risotto. Usually I find the risotto too hick a rice and gooey for my liking. Howveer, the chicken risotto here, is something that I love. Small chicken breast chunks of cubes, mixed with rice and in napolitana sauce and cream, makes its extremely delicious. The napolitana sauce gives the risotto an orange color. The mushrooms and chicken topped with parsley. The flavors are good, and I like this dish very much. One of the very few places where I would go for a risotto. The presentation of the dish is also very good.

Next the chicken main course, has the chicken breasts pan fried, with a garlic, white wine creamy sauce. This dish is wow to look at when it is served. The chicken breasts are flattened, pan fried, stacked and then on top there is a very creamy white glazed sauce. The sauce  also has butter fried mushroom slices. The sauce oozes and falls over all of it, and topped with some spring onions or shallots.  On the side there is a small portion of red cabbage and a small bowl with boiled and roasted potatoes cucmber, beans and carrot. Now the dish has very good flavor. Its balanced., the sauce is extremely creamy and yummy. The chicken is soft and matches very well with the sauce and the mushrooms. I loved this dish. Presentation, flavour’s, taste all full marks from me. All I would add to this dish is a little bit more salt and pepper.

Next we came the Pizza. We had ordered for a chicken pizza with mushrooms and olives. The pizza served on a wooden tray, looked gorgeous. Thin crusted, and well baked, all I can say is that this is one of the good pizza’s I have had. I mean, the balance of the flavors, the freshness of the ingredients, all call out. The pizza, with the pizza sauce base, the great flavorsome cheese, the mushrooms, and chicken. Its wow. I wouldn’t harp on and on, but I would highly recommend the pizza here. You can get a pizza everywhere, but to have a pizza so well cooked to perfection, and with such a great blend. It seems it is very meticulously cooked to perfection. Its immaculate and scientific. The cheese is so flavorsome. The thin crust, delicious pizza base and the toppings, all in harmony.

All in all a great dinner. Let me tell you, I am usually not a too much of a person for Italian food, but I love this joint in Narooma and I would surely visit here again. Highly recommended from my end.
Sorisso Italian
2546, 107 Campbell Street, Narooma NSW 2546

Quarter Deck Café, Narooma

All right, this one is about Quarter Deck café, which is again in Narooma and based out on the  street overlooking the Wagonga Bay. The waters are calm and quiet. Very colorful shack kind of a building. As we head in for breakfast, there is a passage with lot of fishing rods on the ceiling above decorated, whereas on the left and right walls, a number of face masks kind of artifacts decorated.
As we head in, there is tall well-built gentleman, presumably the owner, who greets us and take then directs one of the waitress to seat us at the best possible seats by the window. Dressed in a  casual Hawaiian shirt, the owner, quite  jovial, friendly and makes you feel comfortable. The interiors of the cafe is that of a fishing cafe, with anchors, nets, and other artifacts making it look wonderful, cozy and like a fishing shack. As we settled in, and looked at the menu, we wondered what to do for breakfast. In some ways, all my craving something new in breakfast is now dying out, as invariably we get the mushrooms, hash brown, fried eggs and bread with spinach and grilled tomatoes. So this has now become the most basic vego brekkie which I get.Luckily, in he mood to try something new, I ordered the Mexican Corn Fritters. The other dish we order for breakfast is the eggs Florentine. Order a cappuccino and wet chai latte. Wait for a little while and the dishes get served.
The eggs Florentine is good. Two poached eggs on local spelt toast with spinach and topped with hollandaise sauce. This is a classic and the dish was well done. I liked it.  I did require a little salt and pepper to my taste, but fantastic. I liked it.

The Mexican corn fritters were very yum. Served with sour cream and avocado, rocket leaves and tomato salsa. This was again, very delicious. It reminded me of the Indian pakoda’s. corn fritters, well fried, crunchy on the top and with corn inside, went well with the avocado and sour cream. I loved this dish and highly recommended.
The coffee was great as well. Liked it.

Once we finished our breakfast, I went to settle the bill. The lady at the reception gave us two small portions of fish feed and mentioned that we can go down the small little aisle over the water into the deep end and feed the fish there. The aisle or the small jetty, which runs down from outside the restaurant into the deep water, and where seaplanes and boats dock, we went there. Feeding the fish was fun. As such, the water was clear with just some plants inside the water, and fishes were no where to be seen, but as soon as we dropped the feed into the water, a swarm of fishes appeared from nowhere briefly and then disappeared.

As we were leaving, the owner came up, chatted, thanked us and in a caring way patted on the back and asked us to come back again. I liked this caring nature and hospitality and would surely be back here if I come to Narooma again.

Quarter Deck is famous for its views, the breakfast, lunch and tapas. They do great fish and chips, local fishes etc. they are not open for dinner usually, except for a few exceptions.

Quarter Deck Narooma
Riverside Drive
Narooma, New South Wales
(02) 4476 2723

Narooma Quarterdeck Marina on Urbanspoon

Monday, May 18, 2015

Lynch's Hotel, Narooma

All right. My second visit to Narooma and I was hoping not to jinx it. The first time when I visited Narooma, the second night was memorable for the wrong reasons. Dead tired, we dozed off and woke up and ventured into the city at 8.30 P.M., only to find out that most of the eating out options had closed. We frantically ventured from food joint to another and alas, we found none. Eventually we had to sleep hungry.
Second visit, second day and similar situation, we wake up and head out at 8 on a Sunday evening. I had the choice of going either to Mosaic restaurant in the Whale Motor Inn or the Inlet restaurant. Now Mosaic, event though highly praised fine dining, didn't make sense to me as I couldn't eat beef and pork, which ruled out most options. Besides, it was probably too high end fine dining that I could understand much by reading the menu. We drove down to the Inlet Restaurant, which was famous for seafood. Narooma being a small fishing town and famous for the fresh produce, we thought lets go to the Inlet, overlooking the calm waters of the Waroonga Inlet. Unfortunately, at 8:10 we were sent away saying the kitchen is closed. While out of experience I didn't bother trying to use reasoning or common sense to say What da !! , why is the kitchen closed at 8 P.M.

So I raced my car back to the main Princes Highway and went to the Aussie Pub, Lynch’s. Now I hoped desperately that I get some food, even a Pizza. As I spoke at the pub and requested, I was lucky. Kitchen closes at 8.30 and it was 8.30. They were kind enough to do one last order.

The decor was of a typical Aussie pub. Wooden interiors, games and matches, and betting and the booze. I wasn't sure if I would get my mom and brother here, but surprise, they lead me into the restaurant, which was totally for family seating. Looking at the menu, I was getting a bit stunned. I expected pub food like pizzas, schnitzel,garlic bread and may be some pasta’s. but boy, the menu was unbelievably exotic. It had  Moroccan chicken, Balinese curry. And wait for it, Indian curries. Well I thought the max I can get, it a tandoori chicken pizza or and anglicized version of the butter chicken. On the contrary, the menu had a tandoori sampler on a sizzler plate, Nepalese chicken momos and chilli chicken. There was korma with chicken, Nepalese chicken curry and lamb saagwala. I was getting a bit high, seeing so many options in an Aussie pub. But then being the cynic, I knew this is probably one of those creamy curries, sweet and much to please the palates of the Aussies and locals.

So without too much expectation and happy to have found food in the first place, I ordered for a tandoori sampler and a Nepalese chicken curry. The Nepalese curry was on the recommendation of the lady taking the order.

The interiors of the restaurant, again, wooden finish and very cozy. A few big families enjoying their meals. It took a bit of time, but eventually the food arrived. The tandoori platter came on a sizzling plate. It had chicken tenderloins, lamb, and prawns, all with tandoori flavors. Loaded with strips of onions, capsicum. The prawns were good, the chicken was very well marinated and tasty. The lamb was the big chunk. I used to avoid lamb initially, because of the smell and chewiness, but off late, I do go for lamb, specially the tandoori ones. The lamb here was a big portion of meat. It was juicy for starters. A few areas were a bit chewy, but not too bad. The marination could have been a bit stronger for my liking, but then this was a good one, which had the lamb soft and juicy, not too excessively cooked, and not too over spiced. If I had it my way, I would have gone for just a little bit more cooked, and a bit more flavor.  The prawns were descent as well. So all in all a good platter and I loved it.

Next came the Nepalese chicken curry. Well the plating was wow. An inverted bowl of rice, some salad and yummy looking gregariously orange-ish red chicken curry, separated by a vertical papad. Wow. Full marks to make it look great. The rocket and the papad, all ok. The rice was jasmine. The curry,well let me tell you- it was heavenly. It was exactly the kind of curry you don’t expect to get at restaurants. I mean, you go to a restaurant, you expect thick creamy curries or over spiced curies. You don’t expect a simple gravy like the one you get at home. The simple gravy made out of only onion and tomatoes, with salt, turmeric and chilly powder, and the chicken all well fried and then with coriander. It was like the homely chicken curry which I have at home, in fact even better. One spoon and I was like stunned. Man, this cant be true. I went to Melbourne, after a 9 day fast and when I was craving for curries, I got crappy curries, in a city famous for food and so many Indians. And you come to a small town called Narooma, with not even Indians visible or Indian food, and there you end up with the most awesome chicken curry. Its unbelievable and ironic.

A travel note needs to be issued. If you are travelling to Narooma or on the way from Sydney to Melbourne or from Melbourne to Sydney, must have food at Lynch’s pub at Narooma for the most awesome curry. The curry menu is available at nights only.

I was very satisfied with the food and it hit the spot. The bill was about $45, which was not too bad at all.

135 Wagonga Street, Narooma
phone2: 02 44763 022, (02) 4476 2001
Fax: 02 4476 2247