Hello my lovelies! :)
It’s been a while since I last wrote in here. I’m trying to keep up and make entries to this so please be patient >.< Remember I said my blog would be quite random? Well today will be a good example. People assume that I’m skinny and therefore must not eat. Well for those people who think that you are wrong :P I may look skinny but I have a gut like a pot bellied demon. I could show you photos but honestly who wants to see that and that could be an awkward sight when my hubby walks into the bathroom. No erotic photos here but pictures of my belly… yep… Different strokes for different folks right?
Let’s get on with this food topic shall we? So with the weekend that passed I seized the opportunity to try something new and grab some grub with good company and to give my SLR a whirl! ;)
Afghan Pamir Restaurant
First up, is Afghan Pamir located at 195 Londsdale Street in Dandenong which I went on Friday night with my hubby and his boys. I have never heard of this place but I am always game to try something new. Dandenong isn’t known for its food but it’s… rather pleasant residents (that’s sarcasm in case you can’t tell :P) so I didn’t know what to expect. To get to the restaurant you have to walk up a stair case and once you get in it’s not so bad. The decor is not exactly 5 star but it has its charm :) The tables and chairs were made out of carved wood and (what I think is) Marble. If you look a bit closer it has a plastic covering over the top of the table like contact that peels off. I don’t find it particularly off putting but I’m just trying to be descriptive here :) We ended going with Banquet number 1 for $35 which had 4-5 courses. Now for anyone planning to go here, the way it works is whatever banquet you order the whole table must get the same. Not to say you can’t order extras but each person on your table must have ordered the same banquet. Reason according to a note on the menu is due to the large quantity they would have to make for the banquet.
First course is salad, which consists of cucumber, tomato and red onion. There was no dressing but I guess that’s what the lemon was for. We were also given three dips: chilli, yoghurt and mint and the last… I think may have been yoghurt with carrot. Originally, I thought the dips were to go with the salad but then the naan bread came out. Salad was cripsy and fresh and the bread was quite good too and nicely heated up too!
Next up was Mantu. It’s essentially 1 serving per person. Mantu is a type of steamed dumpling with onion and ground beef topped with tomato sauce with a bit of yoghurt drizzled on top. I quite liked this dish and as you know I just love dumplings so this wasn’t an exception either. However, this dish reminds me of tortellini especially with the tomato sauce topping.
We then moved onto Meatball Kofta. This is another tomato based dish. It also had peas in the sauce. The meatball was quite flavorsome and jam packed with exotic spices. This was accompanied with beautiful looking rice which was moist and not dry or soggy like the rice you get in a lot of restaurants these days.
Last but not least was the chicken and lamb skewers. It was one of each but they kind of dumped it all on one platter. Meat was juicy and tender. It also had a kick of flavor to it too. The skewer itself is big and at the end of the meal I was quite stuffed! The banquet unfortunately does not come with dessert and tea/coffee but I don’t think I could have fit it in at the end :P
All in all, it was a pleasant and fun experience. Staff was friendly and made sure we enjoyed our meal. Food was good and filling and for $35 you would hope so! It might seem like tight portions at first but you realize halfway that there is actually alot of food. It was worth the price overall but I wouldn’t come back any time soon since it’s not located in the best place. I would definitely come back sometime in the future with some of my buddies :) This restaurant is friendly for big groups.
Saturday night was a random night to catch up with my friends at karaoke. As always, for partying we needed to find food… something that wasn’t going to upset your tummies so I jumped on Urbanspoon to find the best burger joint! Ok, so finding the best burger joint was proving to be difficult… especially since the “best” ones happen to only be open for lunch. I went with second best and this was the best I could find. Stange Wolf is on Strachan Lane and is actually a bar. Another staircase adventure downstairs and you are in the basement :) Unfortunately, for my friends and I we ended up with the stools and low wooden tables for a group of 8. If you book for this place you might want to book ahead and try to reserve the tables at the end of the bar. Otherwise there is another table area but it’s reserved for larger groups. I wasn’t too impressed with the seating arrangement. We could definitely not fit 8 people on the table they provided us. Luckily 2 friends bailed last minute and we only end up with 6. 4 people could only fit on the table provided. One of my girlfriends and I ended up sitting in an unreserved area with seats way too high for the table.
Onto the food, you are expected to order at the bar and they give you a number once you order. I ordered the mongrel burger which had Lettuce, Wagyu Beef, Truffle Mayo, Pickles and Jalapeños. As you can see the burger comes with rosemary chips and this cost $18 all together. I could hardly taste the rosemary and the chips were barely warm… The burger was almost toppled over as the waitress plated it onto the low table. So let me remind you that I was on high seats so I spent my time eating my meal huddling over a low table. The burger itself was okay. Nothing to write home about here. The most important piece to the burger is the beef patty and mine was dry. To me it tasted like someone had pressed the burger on the grill one too many times and squeezed all the juice out to make it cook faster. The patty was dry and the only thing that could make up for it was the truffle mayo which seemed be lacking in my particular burger. Service was okay as well. It’s a bar so I don’t expect them to attentive. Overall, I wasn’t too impressed with everything here. To me seating arrangement is quite important and whilst it is a bar I expect levelled seating at the very least. Good to try once but I would probably not come back to Strange Wolf. To be honest, I have actually had better burgers at Grill’d.
Sunday is usually a day of sleeping in for me, especially after an awesome karaoke session but I had the munchies and the best hang over food for me is Vietnamese food. I had a craving all week for Bun Bo Hue so I called up my bestie to join me for lunch. Bun Bo Hue is a beef and lemongrass stock soup with fresh slices of beef, beef balls and pigs knuckles if you’re wondering what I am going on about. Nam Giao is known to be the best for it’s soup noodle in the Eastern Suburbs and I have tried other restaurants but it just didn’t have good broth or some of the ingredients let the dish down. You have a choice between the Bun Bo Hue and Bun Bo Hue Dac Biet. Dac Biet means “special” and I was curious to know what the difference was and why there is a $1 difference in particular. The waiter explained to me the only difference is more beef balls and beef slices but a friend also mention to me the Dac Biet version also has pigs blood. I went for the Dac Biet version for $9 (which I normally do) and I can tell you I have never been let down. The service isn’t the best but it’s decent. The interior is a little weathered and it’s a small shop on the corner of Lightwood Road and Warwick Avenue.
Just check that picture out! The ingredients are fresh and the bowl of noodles comes with shredded lettuce, bean shoot and Vietnamese mint leaves. I like to squeeze some lemon juice and add a few fresh red chillies in for a bit of bite! I love the Bun Bo Hue here and I am a repeat customer. I highly recommend this to people wanting to try something different. If you really want to play it safe here, the combination crispy fried noodle is also good but why not eat their specialty ;)
Well that’s enough food rantings for one day. Hopefully one day you will get to try out these places and let me know what you think about these places. Until then prepare for another random post by moi!