Tag Archives: Sydney

A food lover’s guide to Sydney

3 Jun

The block I live on in downtown Sydney, Australia is close to a grocery store; Woolloomooloo Woolworth’s — it’s oooooooo so good — and even closer to a slice of Sydney’s infamous Restaurant scene. This [combined with my stove-less, cutting-board-less, view-less (but cheap-and-in-a-great-location) dorm room] gives me every reason to put down the can-opener and head out my front door.

They call food Tucker in Australian.

They call food “tucker” in Australian.

Hartsyard — Tucker so good it wants to eat itself. Smoked lambs ribs or whipped cheese with stuffed peppers. I saw a dish with popcorn involved; definitely going back.
Korean BBQ — Plate full of raw meat. I loved it.
Cheeky Czech — Aren’t they hungry for vegetables in that country? I was lacking nutrients and on a sodium overload.

A list of puns:
SauteThai Restaurant, ChatThai, ThaiRiffic, Thainatown, ThaiOne, Thaitanium.

Garfish or, The Manly Tumble
Good view. Average menu but a bruise on my ego forces me to remember that there’s a slippery floor.

Sushi is Sydney’s fast food; good, cheap, healthy, and located on every corner.
Sushi Train– Sushi, but slightly more expensive. It rotates. On a conveyor belt. Mechanical delivery comes at a cost.
Gelatissimo — Ice Cream Store and dinner for grown ups.
Meat & Wine Co. — This is the only country that I know of where you can (legally) eat their national emblem. ‘roo is delicious when it’s sizzling, ta.
Bodhi — Vegan yum cha, fake meat still doesn’t taste like real meat but their dumplings have brought me back.

*******A nod of deep respect to The Irish in my life*******
Curry cheese chips.

42 — Homemade lamb roast, bag lunch the next day; hospitality at its finest.


The dust is clearly marked, vintage 2005.

The dust is clearly marked, vintage 2005.

That’s Bippi in the background. And that’s my best Australian mate, Rusty, in the foreground. He says a clichéd “G’day”. You can also see Franco the “Koala Bear” who is attached to my keys; we go everywhere together except that Franco doesn’t know that I ate his girlfriend’s rump during a dining experience mentioned earlier in this post.
Stanley Street Merchants
When ordering scallops seared is an operative word; raw scallops are less good than raw oysters. (The first time I’ve seen finger limes, Nancy!)
British Indian Tapas
Continentally confused. Where is this restaurant from? Where is this waitress from? Do the Vietnamese eat chickpeas? And, sorry, can we have a doggy bag??
The Twin Italians Two completely unrelated restaurants from the same motherland. The best bit? The awkwardness as you sit on the veranda discussing which one is better.

The Twin Italians
Two completely unrelated restaurants from the same motherland. The best bit? The awkwardness as you sit on the veranda discussing which one is better.

An interesting sidebar: Australian customer service is generally poor because the country (mostly) doesn’t tip (due high wages). And so, for those of you who’ve eaten with me in this country, I sincerely thank you for your water glass.

You can all see where this post has taken me, predictably… towards dinner time. And yes, to answer your no doubt lingering question, I’m off to read something intellectually demanding like a menu.
Bon Appetit,

The Great and Powerful Oz

20 May

After 2 months I can see the benefit of living in Australia: They love my accent.
Plus, I purchased new sneakers online (you’re welcome future travel mates), had them sent to my address down under, and didn’t have to scroll all the way to “U”. #timesaver

are these hot dogs or legs?

Me on my couch that is actually my bed.
Don’t worry, my ankles are still attached.

I’ve been nesting here for the past several weeks; setting up a bank account, getting a job, and renting an old studio apartment which harbours odours from generations of geriatric residents all of whom I’m certain are still living/dying/for-sure-coughing in this building :/ When I walk through the stairwell a smell leaps up, greeting me like a pooch who’s been alone all day. It’s not terrible as I have my own room with a window (although as you can see, the skylight is obstructed by a brick wall translating to minimal actual sunlight and my plants dying every other week). On the ‘bright’ side I enjoy purchasing new shrubbery and am only moderately worried about being reported for herbuse.

100 meters from my flower-killing-quarters

100 meters from my flower-killing-quarters

The apartment itself is in a premier location: I can walk to the park, walk to work, walk to the Royal Botanical Gardens, walk to The Opera House, walk to the Harbour, walk to yoga, and walk to bargain sushi (low standards). My rent is Sydney cheap ($210 each week) and I share 4 bathrooms with 21 other people and only 7 times as many cockroaches. Our chateau has no wifi which does’t affect me because I don’t have a computer: The Hilton is my local Internet cafe, they provide free computer usage to people who look like they can afford to stay (t)here.

Trying to fit in

This is me looking like I can afford to stay at The Hilton

I met these babes (above) at the Byron Bay International Blues Music Festival where I re-learned that I’m (still) not one of the cool kids, bought a feather clip to rectify the situation (it helped), saw Dave Matthews Band, John Butlers Trio (which means nothing to my friends abroad), Morcheeba, and some black guys who were very, very good at strumming the saxophone. Jack Johnson was also there, Devandra Burnhart, India.Arie, John Mayer, Joss Stone, and wayy too many beatniks. The excitement was standing up and so was I; too many people. I won’t be going back next year and not just because I’m a decibel imbecile.

even a magiciaian

This is me looking like I cannot afford to stay at The Hilton

Alternatively, I attended a wayy less popular and wayy funnier gala last week:
The Sydney Comedy Festival! I was more excited that it was in town than a raw foody who’s just discovered dates. It was all very More-ish. I saw a dozen shows and, I’m happy to report, was surrounded by grownups the entire time (a cleverly named improv show, Bard to the Bone, withstanding). In fairness, I’ll name drop: Jeff Dunham, Kevin Bridges, Jim Jefferies, Dave Hughes, A Retarded Spectacle (that might be its actual name, Cousin Richard, hosted by a guy with Down syndrome and attended by special needs guffaws. I loved it.), 1 woman, 1 magician, 1 American, and 3 people who are not worth mentioning.

The best act was the American Jew, Mike Goldstein, which is a weird segue into my next section: The Sydney Jewish Museum. Since the days of Sweden museum hopping I dontstopwontstop. People in Sydney (Jewish population, 0.2%) are shocked when they find out I went there “What do you mean we have a Jewish Museum?? Where is it?!” I haven’t run into a single person (outside of the actual museum, derp) who knows that this place exists. And I learned some things,
1. At least one Holocaust survivor lives in Sydney. I met her and she has a f*cked up story that’s the opposite of funny. I was sobbing on the baristas shoulder.
2. During WWII Australia accepted the second largest number of Jewish refugees per capita than another country in the world! Yes, the per capita disclaimer means that the actual number they accepted is suss (as in suspect) but still, impressive.

I’ve then gone on to handfuls of other museums, operas (okay one, Madama Butterfly. That’s Madama not Madame.), movies (Noah. The Christians are upset about the rock people which the producers made up but you know what else is made up….?), markets (local oysters), beaches (Bondi, Coogee, Manly), shows (Showbag, inexplicable paraphernalia evoking childlike behaviour from Aussies.), zoos (giraffes, pelicans, and sweet popcorn), plus a few World Heritage Sights. Not to mention I’ve ridden the ferry as a form of public transportation making sure to take in as much of this stunning Citdney as I can.

It's impossible to live here without mentioning the weather:  20 degrees, sunny and cloudless…again.

It’s impossible to live here without mentioning the weather;
20 degrees, sunny, and cloudless. Again.

In my-life-isn’t-perfect news, I’ve enrolled in French class which I hate because I.can’t.speak.French. ¡Ay, caramba!

In my-life-is-perfect news, it’s a wonderful year to be a Brewers fan! Aawww yea.

Australia’s better than I thought it would be, there’s hardly any albinos.
‘mi 🙂