Some eats of late (and not so late)

Yes, I’ve done it again. It seems my posts are running on somewhat of a bi-monthly schedule at the moment, even with the best of intentions. Shout out to those of you who are still here reading, thanks for sticking around!

Today is just a jumble of recent and not so recent eats…photos that have been sitting unlabelled (‘cos I like to test my memory) on my lappy, waiting for their time to shine.

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First up – some sweet treats from Cupcake Central. The Bear sat in on a seminar through his uni with the lady who started Cupcake Central as a guest speaker. He came home raving about what an entrepreneur she is, and so I felt particularly inclined to taste some of her goods, having been aware that they offer vegan options.

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Cupcake Central run one or two vegan flavours per day, as well as a GF option. You can check their baking schedule online and look up which flavours will feature on each day. These also change seasonally so you will never get tired of eating the cupcakes (as if you ever would, eye roll). These were chocolate peanut butter bad boys, and they were freakin’ tasty.

WARNING: The rest of the photos in this post will be from my on it’s last legs phone’s camera, as I do not frequently have my camera with me. Apologies for quality, but I want to share the eats with you anyway, ’cause that’s what it’s all about.

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This is Power Plant Cafe’s avocado on toast with lemon, coriander, chili, tomatoes and walnut and truffle spread. It is highly recommended. The presentation was on point and while at first I was worried that there wasn’t going to be enough avo to cover my two delicious pieces of toast, I needn’t have worried. I try to avoid avo on toast when I go to places where I have lots of options, but I couldn’t look past it with the twist of walnut truffle spread. Just too good. I also had a coffee, a strawberry milkshake, and a raw PB cup.  Not to mention our table got some chips to share – the chips here are on form – covered in smoked paprika and with a thick and creamy aioli, though unfortunately the milkshake was far too sweet for me.

This was my second visit to Power Plant, the first I enjoyed an equally well presented and delicious macro bowl and took some cupcakes home with me. The menu is fairly small but I’m keen to work my way through it. The cafe itself is light, spacious and calm, with two outdoor sitting areas for those sunny days.

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My housemate and I finally checked out the Glass Den after rave reviews. We were not disappointed. I got the breakfast soba noodle salad with polenta crumbed mushrooms, pine nuts, smoked coconut, kale sesame crumble and a side of almond feta. I kid you not, this was so good that a lady from another table came over and asked what I was eating. “I’ll have what she’s having”

I’m so keen to go back and try the Tiramisu Hotcakes I’ve been seeing pop up all over Instagram. I’m not usually a sweet breakfast kind of girl when I’m eating out, but I need to have them…they are a work of art.

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We were heading past the Prahran Market a while back and I was ravenous, so we stopped at Beangreen Cafe for a quick bite. I got some chickpea fritters, three salads and some hummus. Everything at Beangreen is super reasonable in price – I think I paid around $9 for this plate. Simple, wholesome and tasty.

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The Bear got this giant cookie – we can’t remember now what it was. I want to say it was ginger, the Bear thinks it may have been macadamia.

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A colleague and I recently popped up around the corner to the relatively newly opened Neko Neko near the corner of Gertrude and Smith streets. I ordered the Agedashi tofu. This delicious plate of red rice and various veggies and pickles is just what comes with most of the main dishes. AMAZING. How did they know I love lots of little individual piles of things to enjoy?!

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This is the Agedashi tofu itself. Full of little goodies like pepitas and hemp seeds (I think? I can’t remember now – am just assuming from the picture).

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My colleague and I shared the tofu as well as this raw okonomiyaki. Now this didn’t have a huge resemblance to the traditional okonomiyaki, but it was certainly delicious – dense and creamy. It came with it’s own little piles of veggies and some miso eggplant macadamia sushi. At $18, it’s more than I’d usually spend on a work day lunch, but we wanted to treat ourselves and we felt we got our money’s worth with these delightfully presented, healthy meals. They do have sushi rolls and mini bento boxes ready to go if you prefer a cheaper and faster lunch – I will be back to investigate this further.

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And last, but not least – my housemates surprised me by splitting two vegan donuts from Doughnut Time – one was chocolate with strawberries and pistachios on top, and the other was matcha. The latter was my favourite, while it didn’t taste particularly strongly of matcha, I enjoyed the tanginess of what I assume is freeze-dried raspberry on top. Delicious.

Cupcake Central
7/672 Glenferrie Rd, Hawthorn
Mon – Fri – 7.30am – 6.30pm
Sat – 10.30am – 5.30pm
Sun – CLOSED
(Check other locations for their hours)

Power Plant Cafe
2-6 Swilk St, Templestowe
Mon & Tues – CLOSED
Wed – Sun – 8am – 3.30pm

The Glass Den
15 Urquhart St, Coburg
Open 7 days, 8am – 4pm

Beangreen Vegetarian Cafe
Prahran Market
163 Commercial Rd, Sth Yarra
Mon & Wed – CLOSED
Tues & Thurs – 7am – 5pm
Fri – 7am – 6pm
Sat – 7am – 5pm
Sun – 10am – 3pm
CASH ONLY

Neko Neko83 Smith St, Fitzroy
Mon – Fri – 12pm – 3pm & 5.30pm – 10pm
Sat – 5.30 – 10pm
Sun – CLOSED

Doughnut Time
5 Degraves St, Melbourne
Mon – Fri – 7am – 11pm
Sat – Sun – 8am – 11pm
And various locations in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and the Gold Coast (check each for opening hours)

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Chapel Street Eats

These eats go back a while. The first was way back in April on ANZAC day – the bear and I met up with my mum and dad for lunch and a movie due to it being a public holiday. We met in between our places on Chapel St, and headed towards the Sweetwater Inn for a bite to eat. Unfortunately, they weren’t yet open when we got there, though that may be a good thing – this post may have had far too much deep-fried-ness otherwise. Yowzers!

I’ve never really spent a lot of time on the South Yarra end of Chapel st – it’s a bit more fashion-oriented than I can bear for very long. They do have a couple of cinemas though, and plenty of cafes and restaurants to drink cawfee and fill tummies.

We decided to stop at a Mexican place called Amigos, as it wasn’t too far from where we needed to be. Amigos has three location – South Yarra, St Kilda and the CBD, and according to the website they have been serving Mexican food and drink since 1981.

Upon viewing the menu, I noticed two items labelled vegan. Not a huge choice, but good to have the options labelled nevertheless.

amigosThe bear went for the Ensalada Verde – a green salad with avo, tomato, red onion, and a citrus and herb dressing, topped with tortilla strips. He enjoyed this, and even let me taste a little. Decent tasting though someone overpriced at $16.50 for some leaves and bread, in my humble opinion.

amigos2I had the Pico de Gallo – a blend of tomato, red onion, coriander, lime and chili with corn chips ($10.50). Nice and fresh tasting, and suits my love of snacking foods.

Afterwards, we went on the Jam Factory to see The Grand Budapest Hotel at the cinema. It was the first time I had been to the movies in quite some time, and I enjoyed watching a film in the dark on the big screen. Gotta love Wes Anderson, I enjoyed the unusual darkness of this film, as well as the usual quirky patterns of conversation. Since then, I’ve been to the cinemas two more times (Good Vibrations and All This Mayem) and am looking forward to more visits – hopefully I’ll catch a few films at the Melbourne International Film Festival starting tomorrow….look out!

Next up, a trip to Lord of the Fries. Why oh why do I continue to go here and not enjoy myself?

Perhaps that is a little harsh – it’s just that I have such high expectations! Vegans and omnivores alike, everybody tells me how great Lord of the Fries are..it makes me feel like I am missing something. Can somebody please explain to me why they are so good? Perhaps I make continually bad choices, I don’t know. Perhaps I need to visit at 3am after a night out – I bet I would enjoy it then.

lotf2The bear and I got a few bowls of fried stuff. Here is some chips and chili poppers with vegan cheese and hot napoli sauce. Yet another sauce that really didn’t do much for me, although it was better than the satay and the special vegan mayo that I’ve tried before. The sauce wasn’t spicy at all, and the chili poppers were pretty tasteless – just friedness, with bland cream cheese style filling.

lotf1Sorry for offending your eyes with this picture, I know it ain’t the prettiest. This is a bowl of chips and onion rings with vegan cheese and gravy. Admittedly, this was the best sauce of all the ones I’ve tried, despite its translucent gelatinous appearance. Not saying it was amazing, but definitely preferable to the others.

Maybe I need to try the sweet potato fries. Or the burgers or hot dogs. I had a burger once and it was okay, but nothing mind blowing. No doubt I will be back some time, as I feel the need to crack this mystery.

lotf3Oh my goodness – to think I almost let you get away without laying your eyes on this monstrosity! Okay, that was mean, I actually enjoyed this until I felt sick. The Chapel st store also does a few milkshakes, this one being Oreo flavoured. I know it looks a bit like sewerage, but it was not too bad – a bit sickly sweet, but hey, why else would you get a milkshake?


Amigos

7/478 Chapel St, South Yarra
Sun – Thurs – 11.30am – 12am
Fri – Sat – 11.30am – 1am

Lord of the Fries
170 Chapel St, Windsor
(see website for other locations)
Mon – Wed – 11am – 8pm
Thurs – 11am – 9pm
Fri – Sat – 11am – 5am
Sun – 11am – 9pm