Thursday, April 24, 2008

Da Gianni Trattoria

Kicking myself because I never visited Three Clicks West when it was going, a proposed family gathering gave the opportunity to try the new place in its shoes 'Da Gianni Trattoria'. It got a recent rating of 14/20 in the smh's good living.

Walking in, it reminded me a lot of the good times and great food that I had enjoyed at Billingsgate in Randwick. It had a great buzzy atmosphere which in the end turned out to be a bit too loud for this old bat.

Service was a bit variable. The people closest to the serving corridor got their water glasses refilled, but I felt quite neglected up back near the wall. My water glass got filled up once, just before dessert.

Main dishes sampled: roast quail stuffed with fennel sausage with marsala and grapes; duck pappardelle with chestnuts and unfindable funghi, and roman-style slow cooked roast lamb.

The lamb had had the following comment in the review: " Roman-style roast suckling lamb is an early leader for favourite dish of 2008. On-the-bone chunks of baby lamb, initially marinated and cooked in a white wine, tomato and herb braise, are re-roasted then coated in a rosemary-pungent reduction of the cooking juices. Thus the angelically tender lamb is wetter than Romans would expect, but no less for it."

The waiter had recommended the lamb as well, saying that it was dish of the month. My lamb was tender, but over the top too salty. The sampled duck pappardelle tasted sweet and mild in comparison. I needed to intersperse the bites with the sharp vinegarette of the rocket, radicchio and parmesan salad. The rosemary had been deepfried or roasted, and was providing crunchy bits of rosemary flavoured entertaintment. But really? It was almost a relief to finish it.

I seemed intent on filling my stomach with rich-flavoured food. I dithered between the chocolate, hazelnut and frangelico semifreddo; and the vanilla panacotta. I went the semifreddo - great dish to share, almost impossible to finish on ones own! It again was very rich and intense. I thought that it would be a layered type of dessert, but it was a mix, with some intensely spiced cherries as an aside.

I also had the chance to sample the olive oil and rosemary cake with marscapone gelato and stewed figs. That was interesting: the cake was dry yet moist at the same time, and had a faint rosemary herb taste. The figs were tasty: and reminded me of the fig glut I had had whilst in Croatia. The gelato was also an interesting taste: it made the whole dessert more of a savoury affair.

I'm glad I had walked up to the restaurant, because I definitely waddled on home afterwards.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Upcoming eating outs

Next week looks to be quite busy in terms of eating outs (and going-outs). Monday will be sushi and sake from Kai on King. I'm still adoring Umi Kaiten Zushi near central station, so I'll see how this compares. This'll be followed by Ross Noble at the enmore theatre. I don't know how I'll cope with his accent, but I'll try.

Then Tuesday is next next installment in my stc theatre subscription - rock-n-roll is the play. L wasn't impressed with the Indian production of Midsummer Nights' Dream. I have to admit it took me a while to get into the play (once I worked out which particular storyline it was). Anyway, preceeding the play will be gourmet pizza & a beer at the Australian Hotel, in the Rocks.
Wednesday - normally a humpish day, but since this week ends on the Thursday, it really is the downhill end of the week. Anyway - debating whether to head to Restaurant Sojourn in Balmain (run bay another ex-banc chef! I must go!), or the three weeds pub restaurant, or the ex-three clicks west Da Gianni Trattatoria.

Having moved out west (but *not a westie, I'm not, I'm not!!) I somehow manage to pack in my social life into lots-of-stuff in one week, and then nothing for months, don't I?

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Geocaching addict

I'm getting such a buzz from finding the little treasures associated with geocaching. It's like: "!yes! score!". It's also providing me with an opportunity to get ride off all the trinkets and toys (remember pogs, anyone?) that I've accumulated over the years, but haven't wanted to give to the Salvos, for fear they would throw them out.

I went hunting today, after my facial. I went hunting on Monday, partway between one training course and another. No luck then - it was quite frustrating having to turn back without the little 'found' treasure chest on my GPS. What am I going to do, when all my local ones have been found?

Monday, April 07, 2008

Rediscovering Thainatown

Thainatown, on Goulbourn Street near the Masonic Centre has a lunchtime loyalty card!

I went there a twice last week because it was close to where I was. Good food, and not too pricey. always a table or a spot free for a loner. Loved their Duck noodle soup with blood jelly (mmm, offal), and their iced red tea with milk always seems to hit the spot.

Speaking of offal, Suan-i-san, around the corner, sells bbq-style roast liver on a stick. Yummo, iron hit.!