#48. Caffe Moravia

662 Burke Road,

Camberwell VIC 3124

(03) 9882 0008 ‎

I know I’ve left out #47, but I’ve been keen to post up this one for a while :D.  And I guess these food blog posts will also be peppered with a bit of my own personal life through it…hope no one minds ^^’.

Date visited: 8th January 2011

My long overdue breakfast date with a blog buddy unfortunately turned into something more like a lunch, since my family had some home issues with the hot water that morning and I mistakenly counted street numbers on the other side of the road, only to realise (too late) that they didn’t coincide with the side where this little cafe was located on.  After U-turning, parking (thank God there weren’t that many cars that Saturday!) and apologising profusely to Ms. MoreBlindDates, we went in!

Still new at this taking-photos-for-food-blogging-purposes thing (and probably still a bit snap-shy in shops) so only one photos of the inside of the cafe.

I was looking for a place somewhere halfway between our own homes for easy commuting and Caffe Moravia popped up on GoogleMaps with a few good reviews, so I thought we’d give it a try.  They served breakfast until 2pm (?) so we were good to go :).  After some intense deliberating, we called over a waiter, only to be told we had to get up and place our orders… meh.  It soon became evident that I’m very new to the whole dining out for breakfast thing, as when asked how I wanted my eggs, I confusingly replied, ‘Ummm… sunny side up?’  Thankfully, the guy at the counter was nice enough to give me the options of poached, fried or scrambled and in my flustered state, I said fried (and mentally kicked myself for not going poached when Ms. MoreBlindDates’ dish came).

Caffe Moravia boasts excellent coffee so of course, as a (newbie) food blogger, I had to try one :).

Ms. MoreBlindDates had a skinny latte (?) and I had a cappuccino (aren’t you proud, Ange?).  Loved the coffee art and despite my cautious attitude towards coffee, I have to say I did enjoy mine :).  It was nice and creamy with just enough froth.  A jug of water and plenty of glasses are free to be taken and used by patrons near the ice-cream cabinet.

Food wise, we both had been eyeing the Egg Benedict ($11.50 on their website, but it hasn’t been updated since 2004 and I’m pretty sure it was about $13.50…?) but since I hadn’t eaten at all yet, I decided to leave that for my guest and have the Moravia Special Big Breakfast (~$19.50?).

Egg Benedict

Before I go on, I should just say that this was my first face-to-face meeting with Ms. MoreBlindDates (and one of the most natural first meetings ever I should say!) and when she heard I was giving food blogging a try, she graciously excused herself to use the bathroom when the food came so that I would feel less self-conscious about snapping photos ^^’.  Hence, she told me to make the point that if you do want to use the bathroom, ask the staff for the electronic password needed for entry at the back of the building.

Ms. MoreBlindDates let me try a bit of her Egg Benedict and I thought it was pretty good…? Definitely a fan of Hollandaise sauce :). I’m not sure what else I can say about this…

 

Moravia Special Big Breakfast

 

My choice really was a ‘big breakfast’.  I guess it was the standard kind of breakfast you would expect, with a corn and cheese fritter thrown in the mix.  The bacon was a bit too crispy for my liking but the lightly toasted sourdough bread made up for it.  Mushroom, tomato and spinach all cooked well and juicy :).

Service was quite quick and the staff left us in peace to leisurely chat for over 1 1/2 hours :).  I’d be happy to come back and try other things on the breakfast menu, especially their pancake stake or french toast, pictured on their website, which both looks enticing.  They have a wide variety of cakes and 20 different flavours of gelato made on premise, along with some interesting-sounding mains (e.g. Scallopine Pizzaiola) that I’d be keen to sample at another time, perhaps for dinner?  Maybe with Ms. MoreBlindDates ;).  ‘Twas a lovely brunch, thank you m’dear :).

*Disclaimer: All food ratings are purely based on my own experiences and how I feel about the quality, food and service.

Overall Food Rating (Dining experience): 8/10

Restaurant Ambiance: 8/10

Service: 8/10

Value for money: 7/10

Caffe Moravia

Open 7 Days From 7:00AM to 11:00PM (BYO)

♥ April

Review: Your Thai + Bonus

255 Swanston Street,

Melbourne VIC 3000

(03) 9663 8010 ‎

Date visited: 3rd January 2011

In the company of equally indecisive people, we eventually concluded that Thai food was usually a safe option so we headed into the crowded Your Thai Rice and Noodle Bar during their busy lunch hour.  I’ve come here a few times so their menu wasn’t a surprise to me but as mentioned earlier, making a food choice at these lunch places isn’t my forte (especially since they had photos of all the dishes in the menu as well!).  Anyway, we finally were able to make some decisions.  The friend sitting next door to me ordered Five Spices Chicken Ribs with Rice:

It is actually a Chinese dish (they had a number of Chinese and Vietnamese dishes on the menu) which she said tasted quite authentic, similar to the kind she has had at home before.  I went for the Thai Prawn Salad:

I found it quite refreshing after coming in from Melbourne’s summer heat, thought it was a tad too sweet for my liking.  The other two lunch buddies had standard Chinese dishes which I got a bit snap-shy to take photos of, but I did take a photo of this:

Satay Chicken.  Do. Not. Eat. This.  Incredibly dry and hence difficult to swallow… though, since I hate wasting food, I struggled through three of the four skewers… after drenching them in the satay sauce (which wasn’t bad I guess). Half way through my salad, I got a tad envious of the smoothies others had bought, so I ordered a Jackfruit Smoothie!

‘Twas nice but again, a bit too sweet and others felt the same about their drinks too.  Overall, if I’m ever in a jam with no place in mind to eat at, Your Thai isn’t a bad option.  Prices are reasonable but a hit and miss because of that satay chicken… never again!

*Disclaimer: All food ratings are purely based on my own experiences and how I feel about the quality, food and service.

Overall Food Rating (Dining experience): 6/10

Restaurant Ambiance: 8/10

Service: 7/10

Value for money: 8/10

**BONUS**

Not really that exciting, but when I came home that day, my relos had come to visit and one of my aunties brought us some snack foods she’d recently been introduced to:

Brie Cheese, Fig and Walnut Paste on CrackerThins = divine :).  I’ve always been a fan of cheese and crackers for afternoon tea (and by ‘always’ I mean, probably for the last couple of years, give or take a few) but I haven’t had this combo before and fell in love at first bite :).  Fig and Fennel Paste is equally as good too :).  Enjoy!

♥ April

#46. Dao Vien

22 Buckingham Avenue,

Springvale VIC 3171

(03) 9546 6564 ‎

Being an avid lover and follower of food blogs, I’ve decided to dabble a bit here as part of the move over to this new home :).  I’ve done mini reviews in the past as part of goal #21 of the 101 in 1001 project, but I thought I’d try my hand at it and see what happens…. so here it goes!

Date visited: 5th January 2011

We were killing time while waiting for my Auntie to finish her ‘beautification’ process at a family friend’s house and as we were in the area (and hungry!), Dad suggested to have ‘Banh Canh Cua’ which is a Vietnamese-tomato-based-crab-noodle-soup-kinda-thing and if you are ever in Springvale, Dao Vien is the restaurant famous for this dish in Asian circles.

It’s a bit dodgy looking on the outside, with lace curtains hiding the busy atmosphere of the shop from passerbys and once you go in, you are left standing to find your own table and if you don’t signal to the staff, you’ll be left waiting around (service is not an ingredient of most Vietnamese restaurants in Springvale… well, in most of Melbourne).  We actually saw one couple get up and leave in exasperation because no one came to serve them.  Being in the company of  seasoned Vietnamese restaurant patrons, we called over a member of staff (I have a feeling he was the owner of the shop) and placed our orders.  Here’s the thing with some of these Vietnamese restaurants.  Some only make a certain number of each kind of dish per day and when they are done, they won’t make anymore.  So sadly, we were advised that they had run out of ‘Banh Canh Cua’.   I quickly scanned the menu and picked out ‘Hu Tieu Tom Thit’ instead (I’m putting things in inverted commas since I’m not sure how to do the accents):

So as you can see, ‘Hu Tieu Tom Thit’ is a beef, prawn rice noodle soup dish which was quite good indeed.  Unfortunately, I didn’t take photos of the dishes my parents had (I felt a bit awkward sitting cramped up at the corner table getting odd looks from other patrons) but my Dad had the dry noodle version of this dish and my mum had some spicy noodle soup that she couldn’t finish because of the spicy-ness.  She ate a bit of my dish and declared that they did the soup very well and authentically…and she ordered one herself :).  The soup was rich in flavour but not too salty which is can be the downfall in any Vietnamese soup dish.  Sadly, there was only one prawn in my bowl :(.  I’ll have to go back and try the ‘Banh Canh Cua’ one day… probably best to call in first to check if they still have any orders left because this is one place that is constantly overturning customers, especially during lunch hour.  Other than that, there’s are a lot of other Vietnamese restaurants to try around Springvale so I wouldn’t exactly make this a favourite, but if you are in the area, unsure where to go, it’s a reasonably priced place to have a quick bite to eat. 

*Disclaimer: All food ratings are purely based on my own experiences and how I feel about the quality, food and service.

Overall Food Rating (Dining experience): 6/10

Restaurant Ambiance: 5/10

Service: 3/10

Value for money: 7/10

So how did I go?

♥ April