Moroccan Soup Bar

Ah Moroccan Soup Bar, I’ve heard so many great things about you. I remember when I first discovered Fitzroy, Brunswick Street in particular, and promising myself that I will try out ALL the restaurants one day. So it’s been a few years, and I’ve still got a long way to go, but hey, I was finally able to hit up Moroccan Soup Bar before my friend and I went to Lion King, and tick that off the list.

Mint Tea

If you haven’t heard already – where have you been – almost everyone chooses the banquet option here at Moroccan Soup Bar. Maybe because the menu is told verbally and no one can be bothered – good marketing strategy eh. After we went ahead and ordered the $25 pp buffet, things started off with some mint tea. These were nice and minty (I wonder why), and set the theme for the night.

Dips w/ Pita Bread

The dips were so good. The tangy tzatziki danced on my pallet, and the earthy hummus provided a distint contrast. The vegetable salad on the sides all had some interesting flavours too, my favourite was the mushed up califlower one. And oh, you could always ask for extra pita bread if that whole stack isn’t enough, they’re obviously store bought but still, bread is bread.

Chickpea Bake

And here it is, the all-so-famous chickpea bake. Creamy and acidic, this was kind of like a lasagna. Layers of chickpea, tortilla chips, and a Greek yoghurt mixture meant that this was a hearty and satisfying dish. The flavours were definitely on point, my only complaint is the same as everyone else – if only the tortilla chips remained crispy.

Vegetable Stew

The vegetable stew was a lot more mellow in flavour, but it was still pleasant to eat. There was plenty of sauce for us to dip the pita bread with.

Lentil Stew w/ Two Types of Rice

The lentil stew – extremely unappetising looks wise I know – had a myriad of spice thrown in there, I could taste cinnamon distinctively. After mixing the stew with the rice, it was home cooking down to a tee.

Pancakes, Truffle, Donut

And to end it all, we were given a plate of various desserts. The truffle tasted a little strange, too much cardamon maybe? But the little pancakes were cute, and the donut was delectable.

Although the restaurant was never decked out when we visited, there was a constant stream of people picking up deliveries in their own tupperwares. Moroccan Soup Bar certainly has its charm, and I’m glad that I finally visited the place!

How to get there:
Moroccan Soup Bar is located on St Georges Road, catch tram #11 and get off at stop #21, Alfred Cre/St Georges Rd, and the restaurant is two minutes walk away.

Moroccan Soup Bar Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

The Broadsheet Restaurant

Any restaurant that gets a shout out from Broadsheet can pretty much expect a line of people outside the door on the next day. So when Broadsheet announced the two-month pop-up restaurant on their website, to say that Melbourne was excited is an understatement.

I made several attempts to visit the restaurant sooner, but all those plans fell through. But I was determine to hit up the much talked about restaurant at least once before it closes this Sunday.

With names such as Top Paddock, Coda, Grain Store, Estelle Huxtable, and the promise to deliver the best of Melbourne, great things were expected. I decided to go for brunch over dinner, since, well, it’s brunch.

Skinny Cappuccino – $4.00 

Service was a bit off when we visited, no one asked to take our drink order, and even when we ordered our food, the typical follow-up question of “what drink would you like?” was not asked. My friend did manage to get one of the waiter’s attention and put through her order, but before I could say anything, he was off again, so I never even got a chance to order my coffee.

My friend thought the coffee was average at best, and the spotty sprinkles of chocolate powder was kinda weird.

Toasted Reuben Sandwich on Dark Rye Bread with Corned Brisket, Sauerkraut, Swiss and Russian Dressing – $17.00

I ordered something from Five Points Deli, since it was one of the few restaurants I haven’t tried yet. When the Reuben was placed in front of me, I thought it wouldn’t be very substantial, but boy, was I wrong. Between the two slices of dark rye bread, there laid fatty (in a good way, at the start anyway) corned beef brisket, sauerkraut, and Swiss and Russian Dressing. Because the sandwich was toasted in a sandwich press of some sort I think, the bread itself was actually quite oily too. I really enjoyed the first half, the corned brisket was sinful but delicious, and the crunchiness of the sauerkraut counteracted some of the indulgence of the beef. However, I struggled to finish the sandwich because it became way too heavy, more sauerkraut and pickles would’ve helped.

My friend and I tried to figure out whether the chips were made in the house of store bought, and it remained a mystery.

Cape Grim Beef Burger with House-Made Mustard, Seasonal Fruit Relish and Leaves on the Kettle Black Bun – $21.00

My friend went for something that’s similar to what she’s tried before at the Kettle Black. Instead of wagyu steak, Cape Grim beef was used. The beef was cooked to perfection, and there was plenty of it! Being a Kettle Black dish, of course edible flowers were a must, and although they did nothing to elevate the flavours of the dish, they were pretty, and that’s all they were there for I guess haha.

Besides the lukewarm service and the coffee, there were things that I liked about Broadsheet Restaurant. The space definitely screamed Melbourne, with the large use of wood and metal, branches hanging off the roof, and plenty of pot plants around the restaurant.

If it was a permanent fixture with a rotating menu, maybe it would’ve had more time to tweak the restaurant into perfection. However, given the current state of the restaurant, I don’t think you would’ve missed on all that much if you don’t manage to squeeze in a visit.

If you are keen to head down to Fitzroy just to experience the restaurant for yourself though, be quick! You only have until Sunday until it’s all over.

How to get there:
The Broadsheet Restaurant is located on Gertrude Street, catch tram #86 and get off at stop #14, Napier Street/Gertrude Street, the restaurant is 70 metres away.

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Trippy Taco

I used to always get Smith Street and Brunswick Street confused, the thing is, they just both have a bajillion restaurant on them and it’s hard to remember what’s where! One time, my friends and I were on Brunswick Street, and we literally walked for half an hour trying to find Trippy Taco, because we kept on thinking it was on the next corner, super sad story I know 😦 A year later, I finally got over that traumatising experience and found it with the help of good ol’ Google Map!
Mixed Taco Meal (1 Beans and 1 Tofu) – $13.50

Excuse the crappy quality of these photos, it’s hard to take good photos with the florescent orange lighting 😦 Anyway, back to what’s important, the food! My friend went for the taco meal, and she loved it! It was sooooo messy to eat though, literally the second she picked the taco up, everything just fell out haha. But the filling was delicious, and the salad was amped up with the ample amount of avocado and a squeeze of lime juice, everything was just really light and fresh!

Tofu Asada Burrito – $12.00

Omg I can’t even look at this photo, it’s just so ugly… But the char-grilled tofu was the bomb dot com! Is that not cool to say anymore? Back in 2010? Oh well. The filling was pretty much the same as the tofu taco, but because it was all wrapped up in a soft flour tortilla, it was a lot easier to eat! The smokiness of the tofu really came through, and definitely paired well with the fresh salad.

Trippy Fries – $6.50

Apparently you can’t visit Trippy Taco without ordering a basket of their fries, and who am I to say no to that? The thin French fries was really crispy, and the seasoning on top kind of reminded me of the seasoning they use for the Mexicrinkles at Salsa’s, but a more subdued version.

Service is pretty minimal here, you have to find your own table, and order at the counter. Trippy Taco is popular amongst a variety of people, which is always nice to see. If you’re craving a Mexican meal, but is watching out for your calories, then Trippy Taco’s lighter take on some of the Mexican classics is right up your alley!

How to get here:
Trippy Taco is located on Gertrude Street, catch tram 86 and get off at stop #15, Smith St/Gertrude St, and it’s one minute walk away from the tram stop.

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Gelato Messina

Back when Messina first opened in Melbourne a little over a year ago, I was as obsessed with it as the rest of Melbourne. Pretty sure I went there 3 times one week, ’cause you know, gotta try out all dem flavours – a mission which I’m still yet to complete.

what dreams are made of ❤

Messina has a huge selection of flavours, from your average pistachio, vanilla, chocolate, to the more adventurous apple pie, banana split, panna cotta with fig jam and amaretti biscuits. On top of all these, there’s the weekly specials – possibly some of the best flavours ever, they never fail to impress me!

Chocolate Fondant and So Wrong It’s Right – $6.00

The chocolate fondant was rather rich, it left a slightly bitter dark chocolate aftertaste. The texture was creamy and delectable, definitely several levels better than your average chocolate ice cream.
My favourite on the day though, was so wrong it’s right, and dayum, it’s right alright. Cream cheese and caramel gelato, the perfect base with some smashed white chocolate chips chucked in, and smothered in duck fat caramel, um, how is the first time I’ve had duck fat caramel????? Nts: make at home ASAP. It was pure bliss as I devoured the ice cream, the chips, the caramel, so wrong but so right indeed.

Messina never fails to disappoint, with their innovative flavours and friendly service. I remember back in the summertime, the line would be soooooo long it would go outside of the store, but the staff was still patient enough to allow you plenty of time to decide what to get, and are always happy to offer some tasters! Messina is hands down, best gelato ever. Can’t wait for the weather to get warmer so I can visit more often, LOL who am I kidding, rain or snow, nothing can stop me! ^______^

How to get there:
Messina is located on Smith Street, catch tram 86 and get off at stop 18, Hodgson Street/Smith Street.

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Hinoki Japanese Pantry

My friend mentioned Hinoki Japanese Pantry to me once, but we didn’t end up going. So when another friend suggested it again after her graduation, I happily obliged.

After visiting, man, I’VE BEEN MISSING OUT ALL MY LIFE, FOR REALZ. Sushi bar at the front, Japanese grocery in the back, it’s like, literally, all I need.

Nose Make Mix – $13.50

Because it was my first time visiting, I decided to order the maki mix, which allowed me to try 5 types of maki Hinoki had to offer. From top to bottom, they were – seared salmon, eggplant, kingfish, tuna and salmon. It was hard to pick a favourite, because they were all so unique! But the most unique one out of the bunch would be the eggplant I guess. The eggplant was silky and sweet, and was a delight to eat. The seared salmon was also really nice, it was caramelised nicely with a blowtorch. The kingfish one had a kick to it from the jalapeño hiding beneath the little cubes of kingfish. The salmon on the end there was also really yummy, with just the right amount of kewpie on top. The tuna was probably the most unremarkable, that being said though, it was still really nice. The freshness of the fish was what I really enjoyed, and of course, the presentation was so on point.

The grocery store at the back has some Japanese specialty snacks, sauces, and just everyday needs. I got some caramel popcorns which were delish!

Hinoki is certainly pricier than your average sushi chain, but for the quality, it’s worth every penny. There is just something so nice about see the sushis made right in front of you by the sushi chef. Hinoki has a very extensive menu, and also has platters that can be ordered beforehand – which I may or may not have went back for a week later. Hinoki Japanese Pantry has definitely made it to my list of favourite sushi restaurants in Melbourne.

How to get there:
Hinoki Japanese Pantry is located on Smith Street in Fitzroy, 5 minutes walk from stop Smith Street and Johnson Street on the 200 and 207 bus line, alternatively, take tram 86, and get off at stop #18 Hodgson Street and Smith Street.

Hinoki Japanese Pantry Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Etsy Night Out

Ah Fitzroy

A little over a week ago, Etsy Australia hosted their first Christmas pop up market. For those of you who don’t know, Etsy is like eBay, but for mostly handmade or vintage and unique things. I personally have only bought frankens (home-made nail polish) and a Harry Potter sticker thing for my laptop (which I lost T_T) there, but I decided to go there and see some of the stores in person, since you know, it’s different when you can actually have a closer look at things before you buy them.

Urban Cartel

How freaking adorable is this little cloud trinket dish?! I definitely would want things like once I get my own place (which is never ’cause I suck at saving), but for now, if I get cute things like this, I know I’ll just end up stacking them in the corner of my room and they will never see the light of day.

Surfing Sloth

These were some wacky cards, they were $5 each I think, I wanted to buy some but there were too many to choose from LOL #firstworldproblems

Shabana Jacobson

This looks super cool right?! But $180 is a bit out of my budget at the moment.

OTAA – I can’t even omg.
OTAA – Harvey’s ties

 

OTAA – Mike’s ties

Seriously, after looking at these, how can any guy just buy ties from a store?! There were literally hundreds of choices, next time I need a present idea, I’ll definitely have a look at OTAA!

Photobooth fun

There was also a photo booth there, with some fun Christmas props for you to play around with, the photo was emailed directly, yay for saving paper! 😀

Rose Street Artist’s Market

This was a fun market, but a lot of things was out of my price range unfortunately. I didn’t end up purchasing anything, but I still had a good time browsing around. Etsy has definitely grown rapidly over the last couple of years, I will try to venture out and buy something exciting next time, possibly from one of the 35 stalls that attended the first ever Etsy Night Out.

Details: Etsy Night Out