Sunday, April 25, 2010

Yarra Glen Farmer's Market @ Yering Station

Well, I've been really getting into farmer's markets of late. I suppose the charm of the farmer's market is the sense of "slowness". Sometimes in between everything, taking a few hours to just stroll the stores, find some produce and get excited about things such as lemon myrtle shortbread just makes for great stress relief.

After attending a few of these markets, I would have to say the Yarra Glen market at Yering station is one of the more 'sophisticated' ones, but sophistication is not always what you're after at farmer's markets. 'Grass root' type stores excites me more.. Set on the grounds of a vineyard, it is a brilliant backdrop for the stands and producers.. I'm not sure if they have entertainment every month, or whether it was because it was the "autumn harvest" market, but it nevertheless made it a good morning to just take some time to wander the through the barn and grounds. I don't know if it was local, but sometimes, it doesn't really matter.

Ps. I am so freaken addicted to lemon myrtle shortbread from these goddamn markets. There is a store that sells these shortbread made in the Yarra Valley and they are FREAKEN amazing because of the lemon myrtle in them.

Yarra Glen, Yering Station

3rd Sunday of each month

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Other Stuff

In other news, this week my order for Moritz and Birra Moretti finally arrived. It has taken some time to find a supplier in Melbourne that actually stocks Moritz that to my surprise also had Moretti. Now, they're both lagers, so you beer freaks out there are probably laughing, but whatever.

I suppose my first exposure of Moritz, was funnily in Melbourne not Barcelona where it is actually brewed. Places like MoVida, Anada etc have it. It to me, epitomises a summer beer. Even though, the weather is getting colder, I am trying to convince myself it would be suitable for all seasons.

In my search for both, it seemed that Moretti isn't as well rated as I expected. But it just goes down so so easily. Anyway, now that i've discovered a successful way of getting Moritz delivered to my door without having to drive around for it, I am a full of excitement!!

I will let you know about my trip to the Yarra Valley Farmer's market tomorrow. I hope to buy some more of the lemon myrtle short bread biscuits. I swear, they must have some sort of stimulant to get me so addicted to them. Maybe I just like eating stuff like lemon myrtle.


I can't believe how long it has been since I've publicly ranted!. Luckily, I feel a little rested today after some grocery shopping and just buying some roast duck from Canton Lake. I know I've spoken about this place before and whinged about how dodgy it actually looks. But make no mistake, I personally believe that this is a suburban gem.

ANYWAY, I'm digressing. I want to talk about dinner at Verge, a two hat restaurant on Flinders Lane facing Spring street. To cut the long story short, it was ok. I wasn't blown away, it didn't deliver a phenomenal experience.

To be fair however, the food was not bad, but different. The attention to detail on the plate was amazing, intricate plating and textures and techniques not generally seen elsewhere. Perhaps where it fell down for me was the flavour combination of some elements which seemed to overpower the dish.

I started with a tuna "ravioli", which was essnetially sashimi tuna, made to look like ravioli. Tapioca beads surrounded the 3 pieces of ravioli which I felt were slightly odd. Perhaps I grew up with tapioca, so I had preconceptions as to where it should be used...My friend's sashimi style kingfish with eel and watermelon was far more successful.

For mains,  I had the hapuka special. I can't remember what the composition of the dish was, but I do remember the hapuka being cooked through as it should. No revelations here. Overall, I wasn't blown away. Again, visually each dish was immaculately plated, but I don't believe it was successfully executed right through.

For deserts, we had rice pudding to share, which they quite surprisingly plated on two plates. Points for that. It was most definitely an interesting dish, as I expected ...rice pudding not logs of moist dense coconut rice. To accompany, there was a single egg yolk covered with a solid sugar shell, which I suspect was low-temperature cooked. If you cook an egg between 60-67 degrees (I don't know exact temperature here), the yolk actually solidifies before the white and the texture is very different. That's what I thought it was. I could be wrong. We also ordered petit fours, nothing to write home about.

Overall, it was an OK dinner, I think I need just a solid piece of steak, make it wagyu, just to calm my nerves. Or maybe a chicken, a WHOLE chicken, rather than this deconstructed stuff.

Verge Restaurant, 1 Flinders Lane, Melbourne

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