Friday, December 18, 2015

Some of my favourite restaurants


Sokyo is one of my favourite restaurants of all time. The food is a Japanese fusion done amazingly well and there are so many varieties from sushi, sashimi, sushi rolls, robata, tempura, main dishes to great vegetarian options and the most delicious desserts. My favourites from Sokyo are their Tuna crispy rice sushi, Kingfish miso ceviche with crispy potato, Cuttlefish tempura (the texture is amazing!), Scampi sushi, Tamago, Caramelised miso cod, Tofu cheesecake and Goma street (caramelised white chocolate and sesame ice cream dessert). I live close to this place and everytime I walked past by, this place was always busy and buzzing. Sokyo, where the buzz of Tokyo meets a Sydney beat!

Wagyu 9+ short rib tataki with pickled grapes. 

Kingfish belly sashimi and Abalone sashimi. 

The best scampi sushi I've ever had and this tamago (Japanese omelette) is unlike the tamagos I've ever had before. So light and fluffy and almost tastes like cake :) Tamago is one of my favourite things to eat and I always order them whenever I'm at a sushi restaurant, especially at the end of my meal (as they're a little sweet). One of the reason why I like them so much is aside of the fact that they taste good, is that they're so hard to make. It takes so much skill and practice to master this dish so for that reason (I know I'm silly ^^), I always order them at a restaurant (as I can never be able to make one) ^^

Peanut butter fondant and vanilla ice cream. 

The fabulous dessert sampler at Sokyo. I LOVE the dessert at Sokyo as there are so many delicious options and I've had most of them and they are all amazing. It's very rare for a Japanese or Asian restaurant to have these many delicious dessert options and I think this what set Sokyo apart from the other top notch Japanese/ Asian restaurants in Sydney. 

Yuzu Soufflé with passion fruit jelly, crème fraîche ice cream and Tofu cheesecake with thyme sugar, strawberry consommé.
Both desserts are beautiful but the tofu cheesecake has to be one of the best cheesecake I've ever had! So light and no, you don't taste the tofu :)


Bentley restaurant, which now has moved to a bigger, grander space at the Radisson Blu hotel serves modern Australian food. The menu is very innovative and certainly one of the most amazing dining experience I've ever had. I love the interesting, slightly weird food and here I had things that I've never had/seen/heard before and I find that very exciting. Dining here is such an experience! 

Cured bonito, almond pil-pil, purple Brussel sprouts. I really love the texture of the fatty oily fish <3

Pork cheek, garlic and yoghurt purée, radicchio, jamon. Everything about this dish is amazing, the texture of the pork cheek, the jamon crust, the purée, the other condiments. However I tried my dining companion's entree (not in the picture) which is kingfish, celtuce, squid ink, wakame and I have to say that his dish is so good and I even like his slightly more than mine. 

Wagyu skirt steak, broad bean shoots, native plum.  I've had skirt steak before but not as good as this. The texture of this skirt steak is amazing (Yes, I often use the word 'amazing' haha). It's almost like brisket, perfectly medium rare and I love the crust. My dining companion's main (Lamb, cauliflower, caper leaves, buttermilk) is amazing too. I love both of them equally but my dining companion likes his lamb more. I think the flavour of the skirt steak is more vibrant and light while the lamb's flavour is more rich. You can't really compare these dishes actually as they are all unique in its own way. If you're dining with someone in this place, it's actually very easy to share the foods, as the steak and the lamb both come with 2 pieces (as do the kingfish and pork cheek entrées), so you both can eat one piece in each plate and swap each other plate. Yay! :D

Malt cake, Apple, Jerusalem artichoke. This is such an interesting dessert! I love the artichoke chips covered in chocolate, the malt crisp on top is crispy and delicious, the malt cake is moist and the ice cream is smooth and has interesting malty flavour. I also love the fact that this dessert is creamy and satisfying without it being too sweet and sugary. 

I love this restaurant so much. Everyone would enjoy dining here but this place is especially suited for people who's really open-minded about food and open to trying new ingredients and unusual flavour combinations. Service is very friendly and we are also given this amazing miso salted caramel chocolates to close our meal which is probably the best chocolate I've ever had. The caramel filling just burst out in your mouth when you bite into its thin chocolate shell. It's magic! 


Bistro Moncur is one of those places that is filled with regulars. There is a sense of familiarity dining here and even though it is a fine dining restaurant but everyone dining here is such at ease and dressed in a smart casual way. Bistro Moncur is famous for its French classic dishes, such as French onion soufflé gratin, Sirloin steak cafe de Paris, (Barossa) chicken liver pate and pure pork sausages. 

Sirloin steak with cafe de Paris butter. I always order this when I came here. I can't help it. It's one of those things ^^. I always planned to order something else (to try new things!) but seeing almost everyone around me have either this or the Fillet steak with bernaise sauce and enjoying their steaks made me feel like steak and I always get this again as I LOVE the buttery sauce and there are many other places that make good bernaise sauce. 

Bombe Alaska. So pretty!


Otto is a beautiful restaurant located at the beautiful Wooloomooloo wharf. I've been here maybe only twice and seated outside overlooking the water and both times I spotted celebrities walking past. The food is of course delicious and the service is very attentive. 

Angus beef carpaccio, truffle dressing, aioli, capers, parmesan, baby rocket. And the chilli salamis at the end of the table. Delicious!

Ravioli of finely sliced pickled beetroot with goat's curd, pistachio and horseradish. What a beautiful looking dish. Tastes even better :)

Hazelnut and white chocolate mousse, gianduja ganache, white chocolate sorbet, peanut butter wafer. White chocolate sorbet sounds so sugary but it tastes really lovely. The whole dessert is rather amazing. 


This restaurant is described as a casual Italian eatery and it has a few branches across Sydney, very popular and serves really good Italian food.  Some of the dishes are quite traditional such as spaghetti alla carbonara and pappardelle with meatballs (which both I love) but their menu is constantly changing. Some of my favourite dishes from this place are the zucchini flowers with 5 Italian cheeses (I think everybody orders this as it is so yummy and you can just get one for $5!), the arancini with taleggio, the cured meat board, caprese salad (so simple but you can really taste the quality of the ingredients), the linguine with lemon, chilli and pangrattato (bread crumbs, *sigh* the simple thing in life is sometimes the best thing!) and the banoffee tart (one of my favourite dessert ever!). Most of the pasta dishes that I ordered in the past are on specials so they are not in the current menu anymore. I've had different types of pastas with ingredients such as lamb neck/duck ragu/oxtails and they are all just so amazing. Great produce, pasta cooked al dente, beautiful olive oil, seasoned well, amazing tasting cheese. 

Fusilli bucati with eggplant, cherry tomatoes and salted ricotta. Sounds and looks so simple yet so delicious. 

Crispy polenta with mushroom and Gorgonzola sauce. Another vegetarian dish. Another great dish :)

Citrus and mascarpone cheesecake with orange granita. I love cheesecake but sometimes I find them too heavy to be had after a meal so I normally only eat cheesecake in the afternoon on its own. However, this is light enough yet very creamy and delicious and the granita is super refreshing. It's not too tart, a bit bitter which I love and nice orange flavour. Overall this is such a light & refreshing yet indulgent dessert to have for a hot sunny summer afternoon. 

Until next time and happy eating! ^^

Sunday, March 15, 2015

14,000 things to be happy about by Barbara Ann Kipfer

I love this 14,000 things to be happy about, The Happy Book by Barbara Ann Kipfer. Described as a quirky, compulsive, enchanting list of all the little things that make us happy, it is such a delightful book to read and I'd highly recommend this for everyone! This also would be a perfect little gift for your friends and families as this book is about the everyday's happiness that's all around us that we sometimes don't notice enough. 

Some of my favourites 'things to be happy about' from this book:

An unexpected message from someone saying something lovely to you
The colour, scent, and deliciousness of strawberries
A successful first attempt
Things that stand the test of time
Life choices
The art of following through
Doing your job like no one else could do it
Happiness coming in three ways: anticipation, realisations, memory
Living with the knowledge that you've done your best
Being nice to someone who bugs you
Giving your least favourite food another chance
Hour-long telephone calls
'Have a nice day' from a checkout person
Ice cream cakes
That vacation feeling
Lines from favourite movies or poems
Making a life, not just a living
A sense of humour in bed
When all your senses are engaged
Pleasure being life's major concern
"All that we are is the result of what we have thought." (Buddha)

Being too busy to notice trivialities 
Giving a soft answer to a not-so-soft question
A real person answering the phone 
Viewing every problem as an opportunity for learning new things
Paying attention to the sounds of each of the different instruments in a symphony 
The perfect spot
An odd couple 
Just-right-length necklaces
Orange segments 
Extra kisses
The contagious act of yawning 
When you pour soda and the fizz shoots right to the brim, you expect it to overflow, but it slowly drops down
The preposterous rituals that people resort to to get rid of hiccups 
People who just by their presence warm your heart
A 20-question marathon in the car
This thing called love
Moving from the needlings of nervous energy to a deeper level of stillness 
'Your cake will brown slowly in the oven and rise like a perfect sun.'
Honesty being so delightfully, pink-cheekedly seductive
Saying yes... yes... yes

Waking up with a really pleasant thought
The spirit of childlike eagerness
The cool underside of a pillow
Kisses: love's punctuation marks
Finding your own private pleasures
Vivaldi in the morning
The texture of cream 
Making sure the water from the shower hits the back of your neck
Learning to make the perfect cup of coffee
Mindful consuming 
Practicing 10,000 hours to learn something expertly
Doing the right thing even when no one is looking
Letting someone else shine
Not taking life that seriously because it's here to be enjoyed

Being all dressed up with somewhere to go
Being quietly sexy
Anticipation being the greater joy 
A new adventure everyday 
Wrinkle-resistant clothes
Fresh, free and sensitive people
The triple kiss, left-right-left 
Laughing till you cry
Tasting menus
Being street-smart
Best-case scenarios 
The happiness of heading home
Casablanca (movie)
Movie review that agrees with your view
Someone to kiss goodnight 
A bed that doesn't squeak 
Staying until the candle burns out
Years from now, remembering everything: the light, the words said, the magic mood

Being young at heart
An ice cold coca cola on a hot sunny day. 
The position of your head as you bite into a taco
Telling a letter, "Have a good trip" as it goes in the mailbox 
A deep, elegant, or beautiful explanation 
Watching Dead Poet's Society (movie)
Useful, preventive measures- the fruits of experience 
Revolving doors
Open minded uncertainty 
The determination of an understudy
Absence making the heart grow fonder
Conflicts with an umbrella on a windy day
The last piece of pie, saved for you
Simplicity and sophistication 
Avoiding people who make you feel quilty
The very best tea, the very richest coffee, and the very thickest cream 
The electric touching of fingertips
The power of a touch, a smile, a kind word, a listening ear, an honest compliment, or the smallest act of caring
S.W.A.K.B.A.L.W.S. : sealed with a kiss because a lick won't stick 

A cut that heals quickly 
The light inside the refrigerator 
Eating a ripe peach and letting the juice trickle down your chin 
Listening to someone excitedly tell a story  
The intimacy of humour 
The craziest person in your life 
Ungodly hours
Butter of the peanut 
Putting things back where they were found 
Doing the common things in life in an uncommon way
Connecting with someone new 
People who give more of themselves 
Anne Frank's The Diary of a Young Girl
Knowing how good you have it
The stroke of luck involved in sometimes not getting what you want
Never dramatising a difficulty 
Not worrying about what's going to happen 
Looking toward tomorrow

Three essentials for happiness: something to do, someone to love, something to hope for
Walking at the same speed as an elderly person so he or she does not feel rushed 
Questions designed to provide revealing insights into your psyches 
Socks snuggling up to each other in a drawer 
Flexible, bendy straws 
Eating ice-cream sandwiches by first licking around the sides 
The applause of an audience  
'banzai', meaning, "May you live 10,000 years!"
A minor problem 
Too busy? Delegate or organise. No money? Borrow or work an extra job. Not enough time? Get up earlier or stay up later. Don't know enough? Take classes 
A fun person with a good appetite, interesting work, good storytelling ability, slightly twisted humor, fresh insight, brave choice
The journey of a lost dollar 
"The most beautiful thing we can experience is the mystery." (Albert Einstein) 

Delectable creations made hot and fresh every morning
The unhurriedness of brunch
Chewing your food so slowly so you can savor all the flavours
Foods that no one can eat gracefully: powdered doughnuts, corn on the cob, melting ice cream, barbecue ribs, Buffalo wings, a huge slice of pizza 
Eating Oreo cookies and then looking at your teeth
A smile from a stranger
The seven holes in a Ritz cracker 
"Happiness is not having what you want, but wanting what you have." (Rabbi Hyman Schachtel)
Appreciating the effort of 12 bees making 1 teaspoon of honey
The gift of undivided attention 
Sucking in air so crisp and clean that you think you have never really had the experience of breathing before
The distance from your elbow to your wrist equaling the length of your foot
The craziest things you have done for love
Leve fit quod bene fertur onus, "That load becomes light which is cheerfully borne."

And many many more <3. Buy the book!!!!! X

Monday, March 9, 2015

'Emma' by Jane Austen

One of my favourite classic novel is Emma by Jane Austen. 

Emma Woodhouse, the main character is introduced as handsome, clever, and rich. Emma, however, is also rather spoiled and headstrong and imagine herself to be very good at matchmaking. 

One of the reason why I like this novel is because I fell in love with Mr George Knightley, whom Emma has known all her life. In his late 30s, he is noble, mature and wise which are qualities that I always like in a man. I loved him when he scolded Emma for her behaviour towards Miss Bates. Emma who is 21 years old can be spoilt and a snob sometimes, but she listens to Mr Knightley. 
I find this novel to be very charming and at parts, funny. I love Emma's father who is always worried about everyone and I find Miss Bates to be very entertaining. I love how English this novel is, the landscape, the characters, the manners, the language. It's all quite fascinating. 

These are some of my favourite quotes from the book:

“There was no occasion to press the matter farther. The conviction seemed real; he looked as if he felt it. She said no more, other subjects took their turn; and the rest of the dinner passed away; the dessert succeeded, the children came in, and were talked to and admired amid the usual rate of conversation; a few clever things said, a few downright silly, but by much the larger proportion neither the one nor the other—nothing worse than everyday remarks, dull repetitions, old news, and heavy jokes.”

“But they would have done better had they given her notice of it. Surprizes are foolish things. The pleasure is not enhanced, and the inconvenience is often considerable”

“I am glad I have done being in love with him. I should not like a man who is so soon discomposed by a hot morning. Harriet's sweet easy temper will not mind it.”

“At first it was downright dulness to Emma. She had never seen Frank Churchill so silent and stupid. He said nothing worth hearing—looked without seeing—admired without intelligence—listened without knowing what she said.”

“Very lucky—marrying as they did, upon an acquaintance formed only in a public place!—They only knew each other, I think, a few weeks in Bath! Peculiarly lucky!—for as to any real knowledge of a person's disposition that Bath, or any public place, can give—it is all nothing; there can be no knowledge. It is only by seeing women in their own homes, among their own set, just as they always are, that you can form any just judgment”.

“Oh!" cried Emma, "I know there is not a better creature in the world: but you must allow, that what is good and what is ridiculous are most unfortunately blended in her."
"They are blended," said he, "I acknowledge; and, were she prosperous, I could allow much for the occasional prevalence of the ridiculous over the good. Were she a woman of fortune, I would leave every harmless absurdity to take its chance, I would not quarrel with you for any liberties of manner. Were she your equal in situation—but, Emma, consider how far this is from being the case. She is poor; she has sunk from the comforts she was born to; and, if she live to old age, must probably sink more. Her situation should secure your compassion. It was badly done, indeed! You, whom she had known from an infant, whom she had seen grow up from a period when her notice was an honour, to have you now, in thoughtless spirits, and the pride of the moment, laugh at her, humble her—and before her niece, too—and before others, many of whom (certainly some,) would be entirely guided by your treatment of her—This is not pleasant to you, Emma—and it is very far from pleasant to me; but I must, I will,—I will tell you truths while I can; satisfied with proving myself your friend by very faithful counsel, and trusting that you will some time or other do me greater justice than you can do now.”

“Do not imagine, madam,' she continued, 'that I was taught wrong. Do not let any reflection fall on the principles or the care of the friends who brought me up. The error has been all my own;”

“She had no doubt of Harriet's happiness with any good-tempered man; but with him, and in the home he offered, there would be the hope of more, of security, stability, and improvement. She would be placed in the midst of those who loved her, and who had better sense than herself; retired enough for safety, and occupied enough for cheerfulness. She would be never led into temptation, nor left for it to find her out. She would be respectable and happy; and Emma admitted her to be the luckiest creature in the world, to have created so steady and persevering an affection in such a man;”

Excerpt From: Austen, Jane. “Emma.” iBooks. 

Monday, March 2, 2015

Weekly Diary: bathtubs, books and more...

Oh my goodness, I love this gold vessel hammock bath tub! 
This hammock style bathtub is suspended from the wall and doesn't touch the floor. It is beyond luxurious to soak yourself in this gold-coated bath tub and it is also high in comfort as it spreads out longer than a regular bathtub. Wow, how unreal!

And this is another bathtub that I LOVE! This one is cut out of a large single piece of Quartz Crystal. So fancy! ^^

I love this beautiful vase!

I love this pretty colour...

I love these illustrations about the truth of having long hair. So funny and accurate :))

 I love reading and these comparison between books and relationships are adorable and so true <3

Here are some creative ideas for your next bookmarks ;)

I love this quote about reading:
"Reading is everything. Reading makes me feel like I've accomplished something, learned something, become a better person. Reading makes me smarter. Reading gives me something to talk about later on. Reading is the unbelievably healthy way my attention deficit disorder medicates itself. Reading is an escape, and the opposite of escape; it's a way to make contact with reality after a day of making things up, and it's a way of making contact with someone else's imagination after a day that's all too real. Reading is grist. Reading is bliss."
- Nora Ephron

I love these advices:
"The best advice I've ever received is, 'No one else knows what they're doing either.'"
- Ricky Gervais

"Self-love is a good thing but self-awareness is more important. You need to once in a while go 'Uh, I'm kind of an asshole.'"

Some more quotes that I love:

"Best not to mix the past with the present. The present paints the past with gold. The past paints the present with lead."
- Henry Rollins

"There is no favor better than one you never had to ask for; and no gift better than one you didn't expect."
- William Chapman

"Get excited about the little things. About wearing a new outfit for the first time. About Sunday brunches with your best friends. About the new cute guy in your class. About finding an extra dollar in your pocket. About anything that even remotely makes you happy because as you grow up, passions fade and enthusiasm gets mistaken for foolishness. So don't let the grey world stop you from shining."

Well, that's it for today. Until next time! :D


Sunday, February 22, 2015

First weekly diary of 2015

This is my first weekly diary post of 2015 (Hooray!). My weekly diary posts consist of things that I like each week (pictures, quotes, something artistic, something funny, other amazing stuffs that I like) , although I don't really update them every week #guilty. Hehe. So here it goes:

I love this journal/diary. Love the words at the front :)

I love this mother (Angie) and daughter (Mayhem) who often re-create award show dresses or character costumes out of items like construction paper, feathers, aluminium foil, tissue paper, gift wrap and plenty of glue and tape. Angie, who is a professional photographer said that Mayhem is very creative and they split the work 50-50. How adorable is Mayhem and the little dresses and all these photos? Mayhem definitely has a better wardrobe than me! #sojealous

I love these brilliant packaging designs!!

I love this diagram to help understand neurotransmitters and their functions in our bodies.

Sources from:

I read this description of introvert from which totally describe my personality. 
Introvert is someone who gets their energy from being alone and can get exhausted from being around people for extended periods of time. What an introvert isn't: low self esteem, hatred of people, and social awkwardness. This is so me
On the other hand, extrovert is someone who gets their energy from being around others and can get drained from being alone for extended periods of time. What an extrovert isn't: obnoxious party animal, social butterfly and easily makes friends/not shy. So which one of the two are you?

I love this 'Historically Accurate Disney Princesses' video. 
This video shows what Snow White, Belle, Jasmine, Pocahontas, Aurora, and Tiana would have actually looked like if they were historically accurate. This is such a well-thought, well-researched and well-made video. As a big fan of Disney movies and its princesses, I am so amazed <3

These are some quotes that I love this week: 

"It's messing people up, this social pressure to 'find your passion' and 'know what it is you want to do'. It's perfectly fine to just live your moments fully, and marvel as many small and large passions, many small and large purposes enter and leave your life. For many people there is no realisation, no bliss to follow, no discovery of your life's purposes. This isn't sad, it's just the way things are. Stop trying to find the forest and just enjoy the trees."
- Sally Coulter

When someone does something wrong, don't forget all the things they did right.

"If you want to go fast, go alone.
If you want to go far, go together."
- African proverb

"When thinking about life, remember this: no amount of guilt can change the past, and no amount of anxiety can change the future."

Until next week x

Open a book this minute and start reading. Don’t move until you’ve reached page fifty. Until you’ve buried your thoughts in print. Cover yourself with words. Wash yourself away. Dissolve.
—  Carol Shields, The Republic of Love