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Saturday, April 19, 2014

Cai Guo Qiang's Fallen Back to Earth

A few weekends ago, the other travel bunnie and I finally had the time to visit Cai Guo Qiang's Fallen Back to Earth exhibition held at the Gallery of Modern Art. The large-scale installations are simply breath-taking and our favourite was definitely the centrepiece of the exhibition: Heritage 2013 which features ninety-nine animals gathered together peacefully drinking water from a crystal blue lake, from which the reflection of the animals can easily be seen.

After the exhibition, we relaxed at the GOMA Cafe Bistro by the river in the late afternoon breeze. We sipped on a San Vittoria Peach Tea ($3.50) and an iced latte ($4.30) and shared the tea-infused desserts ($8) which are inspired by the exhibition. The trio of desserts include a peach bun, jasmine sago pudding with preserved kumquat and jade green tea and pandan mooncake. It was just the right amount of sweetness to put a perfect touch to our afternoon.

Total Bunnie Dollars Spent: $30 for tickets + $15.80 for food and drinks

GOMA Cafe Bistro on Urbanspoon

Mad Hatter's High Tea at Stamford Plaza | Cnr Margaret & Edward Streets, BRISBANE QLD 4000

Mum came to visit me last week, and with Easter just around the corner, I thought it would be a wonderful idea to take her to Stamford Plaza for their Mad Hatter's High Tea.

Inspired by Alice in Wonderland, the two-hour high tea starts at 3.30pm during the Easter holiday period and is held in the hotel's lobby, which is probably not the best location if you are after a relaxing and enchanting affair, as there is a constant flow of passersby.

I was really looking forward to the “down the rabbit hole” experience but it was unfortunately nowhere near as good as I had expected.

The extremely slow service was paired with average food, which included coloured sandwiches, cracked macarons, two easter chocolate eggs that could easily be bought in packets from your local supermarket, cold pea soup and two little bottles of pink lemonade. We waited 15 minutes to get someone's attention so that we could ask for the tea menu. Tea was poured into our cups, but we weren't allowed to keep the teapot at our table, which meant that to get the cups refilled, we had to get the wait staff's attention again and eventually, we just gave up as our waitress had a less than friendly look on her face.

So yes, at $49 per person, I was less than impressed with the high tea experience at Stamford Plaza.

Total Bunnie Dollars Spent: $98. 

Brisbane High Tea - Stamford Plaza Lobby on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Chop Chop Chang's | 185 Boundary Street, WEST END QLD 4101

Could Chop Chop Chang's be Brisbane's answer to the ever so popular Chin Chin?

I had this very question on my mind the whole time we were on our way there.

Occupying quite a large and open space on the busy Boundary Street in West End, Chop Chop Chang's serves pan Asian street food. Each table has a bottle of Sriracha sauce by Huy Fong Foods proudly placed in the middle of it so I instantly had a good feeling about the joint.

The lunch menu is simple but the options are filled with your everyday south-east flavours, like nahm jim, chilli, lime and thai basil.

We sipped on an iced Vietnamese coffee ($4.50) and a ginger beer ($4), while sharing their karaage ginger, garlic chicken w' iceberg and karashi mayo ($12) as an appetiser. The crispy chicken was well marinated and extremely juicy inside, and the fresh iceberg lettuce certainly added a nice texture to each bite.

It was a little difficult to decide on the mains as every dish on the menu had its own uniqueness. We eventually settled on the crispy roast pork, aromatic master stock, choi sum and egg noodles ($18) and twice cooked sticky beef ribs w' hot sour herb salad ($22). The crispy roast pork was tender and the skin was perfectly crispy, but I struggled to understand why the beautiful pork was placed into a bowl of broth which almost immediately soaked the crispy skin making it soggy and a little rubbery. I personally think that the dish was pretty boring for $18, but my disappointment was quickly erased by the deliciousness of the sticky beef ribs. Those melt in your mouth, fall off the bone sticky beef ribs. Words can't even begin to describe how much I liked that dish and yes, I was really close to licking the plate at the end of the meal.

Lunch at Chop Chop Chang's was definitely above my expectations and while it's hard to convince myself that I've found Brisbane's answer to Chin Chin, this pan-Asian eatery has without a doubt made it to my list of regular eating spots.

Total Bunnie Dollars Spent: $60.50

Chop Chop Chang's on Urbanspoon

Monday, April 14, 2014

Alfredo's Pizzeria | 39 Alfred Street, FORTITUDE VALLEY QLD 4006

One Saturday night, the other travel bunnie and I decided to have a date night. Both of us craved for pizza, but having tried a number of pizzerias, we wanted to go somewhere different and that's when Alfredo's Pizza popped up in our heads.

Located in the Valley and next to an old Queenslander known as Alfred & Constance, Alfredo's Pizza is definitely not your average pizza takeaway shop. 

The pizzeria was empty when we arrived, but not long after we were seated and just as the sun went down, Alfredo's Pizza suddenly turned into a crowded hotspot with old school dance music pumping loud and hard.

To start off with, we shared a garlic, parmesan & rosemary flat bread ($6.50), which was just the right portion for the two of us to nibble on before our pizza arrived, a Sweet Home Alabama ($24.90). The paper thin pizza base was topped with popcorn chicken, Alfredo's BBQ sauce, crispy pancetta and garlic mayo, while the edge was the pizza was perfectly puffed in the wood-fired brick pizza oven. Both of us thought that the combo of ingredients worked extremely well. The bite sized popcorn chicken pieces were so tasty and I just wish that they were more generous with the amount.
Our waitress had forgotten our dessert order, so our banana nutella dessert pizza with vanilla cream and caramelised hazelnuts ($14.50) took a lot longer than expected. Luckily the dessert was delicious and it just wouldn't be fair to let that one silly hiccup ruin what would otherwise be, a wonderful date night.
Total Bunnie Dollars Spent: $53

Alfredo's Pizzeria on Urbanspoon

500th Post

As I'm sitting here writing this 500th blog entry, I have officially been on maternity leave for one entire week. I have to admit that initially, I was really worried about not having anything to do at home. The thought of not being at work and not having to get up at 7am almost haunted me. But a week later, I must say that I'm getting used to this new leisurely lifestyle.
Time's ticking fast and there are only eight weeks left till we welcome mini bunnie George into this world. The other travel bunnie has been so excited that he actually set up the nursery in December. When I just moved into the the bunnie pad, it screamed very much a bachelor pad. I didn't mind and in fact, I quite liked the décor. It wasn't until last year, that the other travel bunnie and I went on a Hermès and Versace frenzy and finally put a feminine touch to the apartment. So for the 500th blog entry, I'd like to share some photos of our nursery and a few glimpses of our bunnie pad with you. Enjoy!
PS. yes, those are one hundred glow in the dark stars on the nursery room's ceiling.

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