30 April 2011

Royal Wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton: High tea drinks, canapés and cakes (29 Apr 2011)

Time for a Royal High Tea

If you're like most of the world that watched the Royal Wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton on their TV and didn't get an official invite like Sir Elton 'Hercules' John CBE, Ian 'Thorpedo' Thorpe OAM, Victoria 'Posh' and David 'Bend It Like' Beckham then check out the up close and personal photos on The Big Picture to give you a great idea of what it would have been like — how amazing does that wedding cake look. To celebrate this auspicious occasion in style I was very privileged to be invited to a high tea of delicious homemade treats. How nice to start with a glass of Henkell Trocken which is one of my non-champagne favourites which went well with the all-time-classic of a Cucumber sandwich with crème fraiche and dill. The Egg salad sandwiches made apparently to a Women's Weekly recipe were excellent.

Homemade Scones with strawberry jam and freshly whipped cream started the sugary intake along with three types of Macarons bought from Adriano Zumbo. Delightful looking Butterfly cupcakes were homemade and decorated with fresh raspberries. The pièce de résistance of the night for me was the Homemade meringues with freshly whipped cream and Persian rose water fairy floss. Fragile to the touch and melted-in-your-mouth with sugary goodness. The rose water fairy floss worked so well on flavour making them very special and fit for royalty. I had to stop myself at two but could have easy eaten a whole platter of them. Matched with Audrey Wilkinson 2010 Moscato that also gets my tick as a favourite.


Audrey Wilkinson 2010 Moscato

Santa Margherita Prosecco

Cucumber sandwiches and Egg Salad sandwiches

Homemade scones with strawberry jam and freshly whipped cream

Adriano Zumbo macarons and homemade butterfly cupcakes

Homemade butterfly cupcakes

Adriano Zumbo macarons

Homemade meringue with whipped cream and Persian rose water fairy floss

William and Catherine tea towel

William and Catherine bell

William and Catherine saucer and cup

Forks and tea cups

Table flowers

The Royal Wedding on TV

Arriving to Westminster Abbey

Queen Elizabeth II and Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh

Charles, Prince of Wales, and Camilla Parker Bowles

Prince William and Catherine Middleton

Elton John (right)

Ian Thorpe and David & Victoria Beckham a few rows behind

En route down Constitution Hill to Buckingham Palace

Red Rooster proud sponsor of The Royal Wedding — that's a little weird

Crowds converge towards Buckingham Palace

Media and their big telephoto lens

Royal family greet the public from Buckingham Palace balcony

The Royal first kiss

Chat Thai: Closed for renovations until 1 Oct at The Galeries, Sydney (29 Apr 2011)

Shop 5, Lower Ground, Food Avenue, The Galeries
500 George Street, Sydney NSW 2000

Chat Thai heading to Westfield

If you've been a fan of the Chat Thai in The Galeries like me then you'll be sad to know they're closing for renovations until 1 October but their sign mentions they'll have a branch opening in Westfield Sydney on 17 August just down the road. Let's hope the prices remain just as reasonable but I'm suspecting like all eateries in the new Westfield Sydney they'll probably be a bit more expensive. The last time I visited I spotted someone ordering the Kana Moogrob ($8.90) so I thought I'd give it a try. It's quite a delicious sight of chinese broccoli and sliced crisp pork belly but it's the abundance of fresh chilli that has me quite scared. Thankfully it's more a sweet chilli than the heart-stopping variety. There's a decent amount of pork, with some bits more crisp than others. The Duck Noodle Soup ($9.90) has nice depth of flavour in the five-spiced smoked duck stock although being a fatty meat there's also a fair amount of skin which can't be too healthy.

Other visits to Chat Thai:
29 April 2011 - Kana Moogrob, Duck Noodle Soup
3 June 2009 - Chicken Fried Rice
4 June 2009 - Boat Noodle Soup with Pork, Som Tum: Green Papaya Salad

PROS: Good tasting dishes at reasonable prices
CONS: The Galeries Chat Thai closing for renovations but hopefully bigger and better when reopened, Existing food court a bit run down
MUST TRY: Visiting the Westfield Sydney Chat Thai once it opens

Kana Moogrob: Stir fry of chinese broccoli, fresh chilli and sliced crisp pork belly on rice ($8.90)

Duck Noodle Soup: Rice moodle in five-spiced smoked duck stock, BBQ duck fillets, bean sprouts, dressed with coriander and shallots ($9.90)

Closing for renovations until 1 Oct 2011

Menu specials

Food court seating

The Norfolk: Pub bistro with courtyard, Redfern (18 Mar 2011)

305 Cleveland Street, Redfern NSW 2016

Popular inner city watering hole

The Norfolk seems to advertise itself as wanting to be in Surry Hills but technically I believe it’s actually in Redfern according to Google Map. After what seems to have been some cosmetic renovations it’s now attracting a huge clientele of inner city devotees making it very popular and hence loud and crowded. I’m not sure if it’s due to the young attractive service girls at the front bar or the new tempting menu that seems reasonably priced. The leafy rear garden courtyard is a very sought after location to set up camp. Wine isn’t particularly cheap starting at $30 a bottle unless you go for the 500 ml carafes of house wine for $16 but the 2009 Tylers Stream Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough NZ ($32) hits the quaffable spot. The Soft shell tacos ($20 for 4) look pretty good which I hope to try next time. For extra heat there’s Salsa Habanera sauces available for your free pouring.

The sizeable Chicken schnitzel with parmigiana ($18) comes with chips and is tasty enough to fill the stomach. The Chicken schnitzel with Napolitana ($18) is also simply presented and comes with a small side salad of lettuce that could do with some extra dressing. Spiced Norfolk fries ($7.50) are good and definitely more flavoursome than your stock standard fries. My Chicken caesar salad ($17) is fairly decent although missing some much loved anchovy for a salty hit. Lettuce is fresh and there’s plenty of dressing but possibly too much. Due to our meals taking so long to arrive because staff couldn’t find our clearly displayed order number on the table we received a complimentary bottle of Swinging Bridge Sauvignon Blanc from management to say sorry — much appreciated and something I wouldn’t have expected to find in such a pub.

Other visits to The Norfolk:
14 Apr 2012 / 1 Sept 2011 - Bar snacks, Tacos, Ribs, Jugs of cocktails, Bloody Asian
18 Mar 2011 - Tacos, Schnitzel, Fries, Chicken Caesar

PROS: Reasonably priced meals, Interesting menu and décor, Garden courtyard at rear, Upstairs seating available, Affordable What’s On specials during the week
CONS: Can get very crowded and loud, Wine isn’t particularly cheap
MUST TRY: Tacos next time and more of the bar menu like the Deep-fried pickles with ranch dipping sauce which sounds pretty wicked and the Ice Cream Sandwich for dessert which comes with toasted brioche, caramelised banana, ice cream and dulce de lece

Beef soft shell taco: Beef short rib, queso fresco, scallions & lime, salsa mojo ($20 for 4)

Chicken soft shell taco: Chargrilled chicken thigh, red onion, guacamole, lettuce, chipotle mayo, cucumber ($20 for 4)

Salsa Habanera sauces

Chicken schnitzel with Napolitana ($18)

Chicken schnitzel with parmigiana ($18)

Spiced Norfolk fries ($7.50)

Chicken caesar salad with chicken tenderloins, bacon, croutons, parmesan, egg and caesar dressing ($17)

Soft shell tacos menu

Bar snacks menu

House sparkling and schooner of beer

Gin & Tonic — pretty small glass

2009 Tylers Stream Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough NZ ($32)

Complimentary Swinging Bridge Sauvignon Blanc because meals were misplaced

Front bar

Middle bar

Upstairs seating and wall of chalk graffiti

Garden courtyard

Weekly What's On specials

Suggestive magazine cut outs as wall decor

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