California Pizza Kitchen – Hillarys

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California Pizza Kitchen Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

A taste of California has landed at Hillary’s Boat Harbour. California Pizza Kitchen (CPK) at Sorrento Quay is the very first Australian outlet of the popular American family restaurant. The atmosphere is casual and can get a little noisy – CPK is a BIG restaurant!img_3037

The menu is equally as big with loads of pizza toppings to choose from, as well as many other share plates, soups, meaty mains, a selection of pasta dishes and salads. There’s plenty of international flavours, including lots of American influences – think Jambalaya fettuccine, mac n cheese, chopped salad and roasted NY strip.img_3003

As pizza lovers we were all keen to check out this new joint, though I had heard a few mixed things about it online. I figured I’d try and ignore all the negative noise and give it a go myself. It is still a new venue after all, maybe they had had a few teething troubles?

The old Jetty’s restaurant is all shiny and new. It’s light, bright and has a modern nautical feel.  There’s tables, comfy sofas and cosy booths. We sat at a table by the open window, giving us a lovely view over the harbour and kiddies beach.img_3031

The drinks menu is also extensive, with a good range of drinks and some tempting looking cocktails. My photo turned out a bit rubbish, but here’s the “Ultimate” Bloody Mary, $18. It’s a growing trend that’s stemmed from the “Freakshake” milkshakes, that’s now spilling over to alcoholic drinks too. Tito’s Handmade Vodka, house-made Diablo horseradish sauce, tomato juice, fennel salt rim topped with spicy pepperoni, mozzarella, olive, fresh lemon and thyme. It’s a bit random to have a meat garnish on a cocktail, but I’m told it was a good version of a Bloody Mary.img_3027 Continue reading

Whisk Creamery – Northbridge

img_2377Whisk Creamery Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

One of our go-to spots for a totally over the top sugar hit is Whisk Creamery. The popular café that started out in Subiaco, has now opened another store on William Street in Northbridge. Little Chef and I had been at Nostalgia Box, a video console museum, for a morning of fun playing retro computer games. Afterwards, we popped into Whisk Creamery for a tasty treat for morning tea, no doubt it would include their speciality – fresh soft serve gelato.img_2358

Deciding what to choose is really tricky, especially with that little voice in my head telling me sternly ”think of all the calories!” . The menu also have photos of each creation and it’s very difficult not to want to try everything! There’s indulgent stuffed cronuts, deep fried gelato, banana splits and more.img_2382

Little Chef had the “Sneaky Caramel”, $12.40. The cup is brimming with salted caramel gelato, hot honey chocolate fudge sauce in a syringe, chocolate wafer shards and coffee mousse. He gave it two very enthusiastic thumbs up!img_2362

I had the “Banoffee Waffle”, $13.50. I don’t have a massive sweet tooth, so I wasn’t too sure if it would be too much, but I really enjoyed it. Super fresh double waffles are smothered in swirls of coffee mousse, a hot caramel fudge sauce in a syringe, fresh banana slices and topped with chocolate fairly floss. The mousse was absolutely scrumptious and so light, so the whole dessert didn’t feel heavy. I would definitely eat it again.img_2369

To drink, there’s some wicked milkshakes, iced drinks, tea, coffee, smoothies and complimentary water. Whisk Creamery’s gelato creations are totally naughty – but so worth it!img_2383

And here’s a little bit on The Nostalgia Box…

Back in the day, my parents had to drag me off my Commodore 64 or Sega Master System. I loved playing Frogger, Sonic and Super Mario Brothers. So Little Chef wasn’t the only one to be super excited to be visiting The Nostalgia Box, Australia’s first interactive video game console museum!img_2283

The museum is found on Aberdeen Street in Northbridge. Half of the museum is a dedicated exhibit to gaming history where around 100 gaming consoles are on display. These date back to the 1970s through to the present day. Some of these machines look like ancient relics and I didn’t actually realise that consoles had been around for that long.img_2291

After walking through the exhibit, you can experience playing the classic games in the gaming area. The inviting space is adorned with a vibrant mural of all the gaming favourites of the 1980’s and 90’s. There are twelve consoles set up with games like Duck Hunt, Space Invaders, Super Mario Bros, Street Fighter, Sonic the Hedgehog, Crash Bandicoot and many more.img_2306

One of Little Chef’s favourites was the shooting game “Duck Hunt”. Little Chef and I had a good time trying to beat each other on the two player games like Mario Kart too! My favourite was Sonic The Hedgehog, though I couldn’t get passed the first boss level, so I am a bit out of practice. It has been about 20 years between games to be fair! Little Chef and I also enjoyed Super Mario Brothers, which I revelled in beating him at.img_2329

I was surprised to learn that the museum is very popular with adults in their 20s and 30s, but afterwards after re-living my youth via Sonic The Hedgehog, I’m not that surprised. You’re sure to discover some random old games, as well as have many blasts from the past. Nostalgia Box takes you back to your childhood, as well as giving your children a chance to experience gaming the “old school” way.img_2341

Our Last Day in Denmark (Part 5)

img_1405Our trip to the Great Southern region of Western Australia was wonderful, but not nearly long enough, there’s so much to do in delicious Denmark! If it wasn’t for Chef’s busy work roster, we would have stayed on a few more days at charming Misty Valley Country Cottages. We all felt so relaxed, even after a few days of getting away from the daily grind! img_2008

On our final morning at Misty Valley, farmer Warren showed Little Chef how to milk his cow, Holly. It was really interesting and he loved the experience. Chef even had a go! We fed the chooks, ponies and those cheeky goats too. Before we said our goodbyes, Warren handed us a big bottle of the fresh milk as well as more freshly laid eggs to take home.img_1836

Mrs Jones Cafe Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

img_2051Mrs Jones is a wonderful café in the centre of town and we stopped there for brunch on our last morning in Denmark. The popular café has great menus for breakfast, lunch and dinner and good coffee too.img_2077

Chef devoured the tasty eggs benedict, $18. Bacon and perfectly poached eggs are smothered in hollandaise and sit upon two door-stepper slices of freshly baked bread.img_2067

I was really impressed with the Shakshuka, $17. Baked tomato, capsicum, fetta and spices were served in a bowl. Hiding underneath this rich and sweet Moroccan style tomato sauce were baked eggs. I used the thickly sliced fresh bread to mop up every last drop of the sauce – delicious!img_2076

Before we left town I needed to stop at a winery. Denmark has so many highly regarded wineries, it would be rude not to go to at least one of them. We popped to Mad Fish Wines and Howard Park, so I could squeeze in a quick tasting and obligatory wine purchase before we headed home. I found a nice drop of pinot noir there to take home.img_2041

We decided to drive back to Perth via a different route. Though it was longer, there was more to look at along South Western Highway. We stopped a few times to break up the five hour drive with stops at:

The Diamond Treeimg_2085

Little Chef loved stretching his legs at the fantastic Manjimup Timber Park. It has loads of fun play equipment…img_2093

gorgeous animal carvings…img_2107

and one MASSIVE slide. It took poor Little Chef 5 minutes to be coaxed down, but he enjoyed it in the end. He’s braver than I am!img_2094

Another hour further up the road is the Donnybrook Apple Playground, another brilliant park, said to be one of the biggest free playgrounds in the southern hemisphere.img_2132

Bridgetown looked lovely, but we’ll save that to stop at on another trip. Our trip to Denmark was so enjoyable, but far to short to fit everything in. There are many wonderful wineries and restaurants that we didn’t explore, like The Lake House and Estate 807. We also didn’t make it to the Denmark Chocolate Company and we would have loved to hire a canoe on the Denmark River. There’s plenty more to experience on our next trip to Denmark and the Great Southern.

If you haven’t discovered Denmark yet- we really recommend that you do!img_1401

Our thanks again to Warren and Leonie at Misty Valley Country Cottages for inviting us!

Natural Wonders of the Great Southern (Part 4)

img_1860Denmark is a great spot to base yourself if the Great Southern. It’s slap bang in between Albany, Mount Barker and Walpole. On the third day of our trip we took the opportunity to spend a morning in Albany, though to really do it justice, we could have done with a couple of days there.img_1863

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A trip to Albany isn’t complete without visiting the spectacular natural tourist attractions at Torndirrup National Park where you’ll find The Gap, The Natural Bridge and The Blowholes. It’s a short stroll to both The Gap and Natural Bridge through the exposed granite boulders. It almost looks like we’re on the moon, the landscape is so barren.img_1870

At The Gap, the lookout goes out over the rock edge. The grated floor gives glimpses to the sea crashing 40 meters below, though I think if it had a glass floor, it would make the attraction even more impressive. The massive waves crash against the cliff wall as the surging tide of the Southern Ocean shows all of its fury. It’s a stunning view over the coast from Bald Head to West Cape Howe.img_1852

img_1857If you walk for two minutes in the other direction you’ll come to the lookout point for the equally stunning Natural Bridge rock formation. These rocks were formed many millions of years ago when Australia and Antarctica collided.img_1867

Another spot to check out are the Blow Holes, a short drive up the road. These are quite impressive, though I’d not recommend it for young kids, as there are lots of steep steps and there is no safety fencing at the blow holes either. On the day that we visited the sea was a little rough, so every few seconds there was a rush of water into the rock cavern below us and we heard an eerie hissing sound and a rush of wind through the holes that would knock your hat off!blowholes

Vancouver Cafè & Store Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato
For lunch we stopped at a cute cottage café on the edge of town, Vancouver Street Café, which sits high on a hill overlooking King George Sound. They make a good cuppa, using Naked Beans, a local Albany coffee roast. On the lunch menu you’ll find fresh salads, wraps, toasted Turkish sandwiches, frittatas and savoury tarts as well as sweet treats.img_1894

Knowing we were heading to the brilliant Boston Brewery (again) for dinner, we oped for something light and toasties fitted the bill. I really enjoyed mine, which was a tasty combo of eggplant, sweet potato, pumpkin, fetta roasted capsicum and a house made tomato relish. img_1901

Afterwards, we headed west, back towards Denmark for an afternoon discovering the beaches at William Bay. One of the most popular spots is the beautiful Greens Pool which is just about as picture perfect as any beach could be. This beach is very popular with the families of small children as it’s sheltered from the waves of the Great Southern Ocean by huge granite boulders. The

calm turquoise waters make a stunning natural swimming pool and it’s a great spot for a snorkel too.img_1700

Elephant Rocks is another stunning spot, named after the massive granite rocks that look just like a herd of elephants. Further down the gravel path is a steep staircase to Elephant Cove, walk between two giant rocks and you’ll come out at another beach.img_1714

At Mad Fish Bay, where the waves lap the sand from two different directions, we stayed a little longer and enjoyed a bit of fishing off the rocks.img_1933

Our host Warren, at Misty Valley Country Cottages, recommended this bay to us as it’s a popular fishing spot. You’ll find schools of whiting, bream and salmon. Little Chef was really excited to catch a flathead, though he was a bit too small and got thrown back.img_1950

I left the boys to it and went exploring around the rocky bay. It was an absolutely perfect afternoon for beach hopping!img_1954 

Discovering Delicious Denmark (Part 3)

img_1500On our first morning at Misty Valley, after a good night’s sleep, we enjoyed a fry up cooked by Chef. We were in for a BIG day of sightseeing, I had a lot on my itinerary! We were set up for the morning with Chef’s tasty sausage sandwiches. He used tasty free range eggs from the Misty Valley hens and the yolks were oozing out everywhere – delicious!img_1804

After, we had a quick stroll through the bush in the fresh country air, over to the farm. We were greeted by farmer Warren and Lucy the dog.  Little Chef had lots of fun feeding the chooks and collecting their freshly laid eggs. Warren showed LC how to feed the horses and ponies with the hay bales and groom them too. LC was also very excited to have his very first pony ride on Zantiki.img_1431

Before we set off for the day, we grabbed a couple of flat whites (and a hot chocolate for LC) from Warren, who makes a brilliant coffee. We enjoyed these on our cottage’s balcony. Denmark is a great spot to base yourself in the Great Southern. It’s slap bang in between Albany, Mount Barker and Walpole. On our first full day, we decided to head west, towards Walpole and the region’s main attraction  – the Valley of the Giants Treetop Walk.img_2028

The Great Southern region of WA is renowned for their excellent wineries, though on our first boozy stop we visited somewhere a little different, Bartholomew’s Meadery. The family run meadery specialises in the ancient craft of making mead (or honey wine) which is made from their locally sourced natural honey.img_1461

Their pure honey is not processed, it comes straight from the hive. There are also many bee and honey products available to purchase, including bee pollen, beeswax and royal jelly products. At the cellar door you can see the bees at work in a glass bee hive, as well as taste the various types of meads on offer, including their spiced hot toddy.img_1462

Sweet tooths can enjoy some of the house made honey ice creams. There are lots of delicious flavour combinations, all including honey – of course! There’s honey and vanilla, honey and passionfruit, honey and ginger, honey and banana and many more. The Meadery is well worth a visit.img_1477

After a 30 minute drive west through the country side, we came to the awe inspiring Valley Of The Giants, a unique area of ancient trees. Since I was a kid (back when Elle McPherson famously visited!) I’d wanted to visit this special part of WA. It took a little longer than I’d hoped, but finally we got there, some 20 years later.img_1510

The Tree Top Walk is found in the heart of the Valley of the Giants. Here you can experience walking through the canopy of the rare tingle forest and enjoy the majestic views from a very different perspective – 40 meters in the air! There are no steps on the tree top walk, just a gentle, sloping climb up a lightweight, architecturally-designed bridge. The walkways do move a little, I felt a bit like I was on a boat, softly bobbing on the ocean. We all enjoyed the tranquil walk amongst the branches and birds.img_1546

As well as the Tree Top Walk there is another walk trail – the Ancient Empire boardwalk. While walking this path you can get up close and personal to the beautiful old giants of the forest, as well as the lush growth of the forest floor. The walk winds in and out of the tingle forest and you can even walk through the hollow trunks of some giant trees, which make a brilliant photo opportunity.img_1527

An entrance fee is payable for the tree top walk, but it is free to visit the Ancient Empire Walk, Discovery Centre and gift shop. I was surprised such a major tourist attraction didn’t have many food and drink options, but we found a fantastic little bakery just down the road. We suggest you check out Tingles Bakehouse!img_1585

All the food at Tingles Bakehouse is made from scratch. There’s lots of choice, which changes seasonally, depending on what produce is available locally. I was fascinated by their huge greenhouse which looks like a giant igloo. In here they grow a lot of their produce, including random things like pineapples! For lunch, Chef picked a tender ox tail and thyme pie with carrots, celery and onion. Little Chef scoffed his massive sausage roll. I loved the beef, mushroom and bacon pie, which was brining with chunky pieces of meat. The pastry was flaky and light.img_1589

Tingles Bakehouse also offers good coffee and many freshly made sweet treats – cakes, slices, tarts, biscuits and raw wholefoods too. There’s lots of seating on the shady veranda and in the lush gardens. It is a very pretty spot! Also on site is a bead gallery, selling some exquisite handmade jewellery.img_1594

Our next stop, Dino World, is worth checking out for those who are into lizards, dinosaurs, snakes and birds. It is a small attraction and won’t take long to look around. You’ll be greeted by the very funny Sid, a cockatoo, saying “Hello Darling”.img_1615

Inside there’s exhibits of snakes, lizards and replica dinosaur skeletons. Outside there’s aviaries full of many species of native birds and some kangaroos too.img_1607

Little Chef was lucky to hold a lizard as we visited during a quiet time. The great photos I got of the lizard on his head were worth the admission fee alone!img_1643

We had a “ball” playing Denmark Soccer Golf, which is found at the Denmark Toffee Company. It’s also home to the Elephant Rocks Cider Co and A Bit On The Side Sauces, so there are lots of yummy tastings available. There’s also a small playground and a few farm animals too.img_1690

The unique game of Soccer Golf is lots of fun. It’s basically the same premise as golf, each kick is equivalent to one stroke, there’s no dribbling – though the boys had to be reminded of that!img_1657

We all had a different coloured football to identify our own ball and we’d start each hole off with a massive kick down the fairway. It got very competitive. Chef thought he was rather good and took the opportunity to remind us that if he hadn’t broken his leg when he was a kid, he could have been playing in the EPL…img_1659

There’s lots of obstacles – tunnels, water hazards, sand bunkers and more. Most of the holes are massive, to fit the oversized balls.img_1677

On a few of the holes, you need to do something different to finish, like kick the ball into a net – that was hard! It’s more active than mini golf and we all loved it – even if I lost!img_1671

By the time we’d finished it was late afternoon. We grabbed some fish n chips from town and took them down to the riverside park in Denmark. After, we retired back to our Misty Valley cottage for the evening. I hoped I could win back a bit of pride with a game of Monopoly around the kitchen table! It was a fun and busy day, but we barely scratched the surface of what Denmark has to offer. IMG_1761.JPG

More on our Great Southern adventures soon!

 

 

 

 

 

Boston Brewery, Denmark (Part 2)

 

img_1981Boston Brewery @ Willoughby Park Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

One of the things I love about the south west is it’s abundance of great family friendly dining options. So when we were discovering Denmark for the first time, I had my fingers crossed that we’d find a few gems that everyone in our family could enjoy. Warren, our host at Misty Valley Country Cottages, suggested that we tried Boston Brewery. It’s a place he enjoys and he recommends it to all the families staying at his farm too.img_1987

Boston Brewery is part of the Willoughby Park Winery. I didn’t have a chance to check out their wines at the cellar door, but it’s on my to do list for next time. The award winning Willoughby Park wines have received a five star rating from James Halliday and a whopping 91 points for it’s popular Chardonnay.img_1371

As soon as we arrived, Chef made a bee-line for the bar. Boston brewery’s range of beers are brewed on site. There’s a larger, German style wheat beer, English style IPA, rye pale ale, brown ale and stout. They make an alcoholic ginger beer too. Another one I need to try next time!img_1395

Inside, there’s a huge dining hall with a kiddie corner and open fire, for those chilly Denmark nights.img_1397

The spring weather was glorious when we visited, so we headed outside to the huge lawned beer garden, dotted with picnic tables. There’s often live music playing on the outdoor stage too. The playground, set in a large sandpit, is large enough to keep the kids entertained while you have a cheeky late afternoon drink and some food.img_1390

The first time we went along for dinner I was feeling like something light, so I enjoyed a couple of share plates. The lemon myrtle salt and pepper squid ($15) were crisp and tender. The nicely seasoned morsels were delicious dipped in the lemon aioli.img_1386

I would make the 450 km drive to Denmark again JUST for these local chestnut fed pork and blue swimmer crab spring rolls ($14). I can’t tell you how delicious these massive spring rolls are, brimming with a generous amount of moist pork meat, crab and dipped in a spicy namh jim dressing. A must try!img_1380

Chef enjoyed his wood fired pizza ($22). It’s perfect pub grub to accompany a cold beer. The tomato base is topped with Italian sausage, mozzarella, Kalamata olives and fresh chilli.img_1378

The lure of the playground, coupled with a tasty dinner of burger, chunky chips and a good side salad meant that Little Chef wolfed down his cheese burger ($12).img_1976

Since we were so impressed by the family friendly atmosphere and good food at the microbrewery, we returned more than once. On the second time we dined at Boston Brewery, the stand out dish was my twice cooked Linley valley pork belly ($32). The pork belly, cooked in master stock, had a wonderful depth of flavour. The accompanying veg was really tasty – roasted kifler potatoes, Dutch carrots, plump snowpeas, cauliflower puree and a Willoughby Park Red Wine jus.img_1979

Boston Brewery is definitely somewhere we’d return – not just to top up Chef’s growler with their excellent craft beer! The food has more finesse than your typical pub grub. You can really tell they use quality, local ingredients too. It’s very easy to loose a few hours relaxing in the beer garden, overlooking the vines.img_1985

Read Part 3 of our trip to Denmark here… Discovering Delicious Denmark All about the attractions we visited in the Denmark area.

Year in Review – My Best Perth Dining Spots of 2016

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Hamptons

2016 has been another crazy and fun year for the Chef’s Wife! It’s been 12 months packed full of many highlights and lots of change! Like last year, I feel like I didn’t blog as much as I wanted, but life just gets in the way. I posted 75 new blogs in 2016 so that wasn’t a bad effort!

 

My blog highlights of 2016

Gosh, looking back it really was a busy old year!

I was proud as punch to be ranked in the top 5 in Perth’s Hottest 100 Food Blogs 2016. Fellow Perth Blogger Martine, from Chomp Chomp compiles this list every year. The list is a fabulous way to discover new Perth food bloggers – you should check it out!

This year I have continued my monthly restaurant review for the Post (the Western Suburbs local newspaper). I’m heading into my fourth year of reviews for the Post and very proud to be a part of such a well written local newspaper.thumbnail_screenshot_2016-02-19-22-00-02-1-1

I’ve also been freelancing and had a listicle published on So Perth, for the City of Perth’s Eat Drink Perth food festival. I listed my top spots to dine in Perth city for a date night and it featured a few of my favourite food pics! I’ve also been working with some of my friends, the lovely ladies behind family website Buggybuddys too – writing lots of posts on kid friendly places to visit in Perth.

Our beautiful city played host to some fantastic events this year. The Night Noodle Markets were excellent. I loved Hoy Panoy’s satays, though this year it was all about the pretty as a picture watermelon cake! I also enjoyed the Beauvine festival and “no cook Mondays” at the Inglewood on Beaufort Night Markets are always a favourite with us.IMG_2766

It was sad to see a few restaurant close their doors, including Chophouse. Chophouse was one of our favourite openings of 2015. It’s such a shame that it got caught up in the demise of the Keystone Group.

 

Our favourite dining experience of 2016.

Hands down goes to Wildflower! This exquisite restaurant in the stunning COMO Treasury Building is without question the best restaurant in Perth. The locally focused fine diner has set a new benchmark. We were both very impressed with its innovative menu, cooking techniques and beautiful plating. Not cheap, but worth every cent. It was a wonderful way to celebrate our 10th wedding anniversary! img_0599

 

My 5 Favourite Newbies in 2016

The new openings just keep on coming! When will it slow down?! In 2016 we have eaten at many diverse cafes, bars, restaurants and even food trucks. Here’s my top 5 favourite new Perth dining spots for this year…

o   Hand made pasta at LuLu La Delizia – Subiacoimg_1324

o   Bellinis and brunch by the beach at Odyssea – City Beachimg_0982

o   One of our very best brunches ever at Mason and Bird – KalamundaIMG_3820

o   Huuuge pizzas at Mack Daddys New York Slice – Highgate (not blogged about yet!)pizza

o   Top notch dining at Post – Perth CBDcremeux

Honourable mentions go to the Henley Brook, Chatford and Co and Hamptons.

There were so many new spots to try, I didn’t quite make it everywhere. Other newbies and soon to open spots on my hit list for 2017 are…

o   Epicurean – Crown Towers

o   KuDeTa – Perth CBD

o   The Hummus Club – Northbridge

o   Young Love Mess Hall – Northbridge

o   Tiisch – Perth CBD

o   The Chippery & Co – Northbridge

o   Frisch & Barc – Como

o   Billie H – Claremont

o   Meat Candy – North Perthimg_3158

 

My 10 Favourite “oldies” of 2016

To be fair, some of these venues aren’t that old. With all the hype of new venues, it’s important to support existing restaurants that are doing a fantastic job too! Here are my favourite Perth dining spots I visited in 2016:

o             Barque – East Freo

o             Chu Bakery – North Perth

o             Lot 20 – Northbridge

o             D’s Authentic Japanese – Joondalup

o             Lay Up – Northbridge

o             Marumo – Nedlands

o             Petition Kitchen – Perth CBD

o             Oakover Grounds – Swan Valley

o             Timber Café – Harrisdale

o             Sauma – Northbridge

 

 

Vital Statistics

My background is in accounts, so I’m a bit of a number nerd. I thought it was pretty nifty to see how my lil blog has grown from year to year. Here’s my 2016 stats…

o             75 new blog posts

o             Over 55,000 views of my blog posts this year

o             Over 12000 social media followers, growing by the day.

o             Most popular post – Suburban Table’s excellent frozen meals got over 7,300 views!

You can follow me on social media at…

@Thechefswifeperth on Instagram

@perthchefswife on Twitter

On Facebook https://www.facebook.com/TheChefHisWifeTheirPerthFectLife

 

Sponsored Posts

To all the restaurants, artisans and companies that have contacted me in 2016 – thank you for taking the time to discover my blog. I get an incredible amount of emails and invites on a daily basis. I only go to about 25% of events I’m invited to. There’s a few reasons for that. One being time, another being not being able to get a babysitter! Another reason I limit my invited/sponsored posts is that I want to keep my blog as interesting as possible and I do think that an authentic meal at a restaurant where the wait staff have no idea that I am a blogger makes for the most interesting and “real” blogging experience. Saying that, an invite to a restaurant that I’ve not had chance to discover or would not have thought to go to otherwise always mixes it up a bit and offers some unique experiences… like hanging on stage at the Regal Theatre or cooking in the C Restaurant Kitchen! img_0673

Sure, it’s great getting a freebie, but as the saying goes ‘nothing really comes for free”. With each kind gift and invite, a lot of my time and effort goes into creating a post to promote it. And in 2016 I haven’t had much spare time! When I do collaborate with a brand, I do like to keep it local and you know I’m bringing you something I’m really excited about. So thank you to these people that have taken the time to contact me and had to bear with my sometimes slow replies.img_0880

A blogger dinner is a great opportunity not only to check out a new venue, but to meet the many lovely Perth bloggers – some have become great friends. We have a lovely food blogging community in WA and I love to put faces to names of the blogs I follow.

Our 2016

Last year much of my spare time was taken up by moving house. This year, we’re all settled in at our new home and my free time has been taken up by a career change. This year my little business – The Chef’s Wife Social Media Management grew and grew. Specialising in the hospitality, family and lifestyle industries. I work with cafes, restaurants, takeaways, lifestyle products, family brands and more to boost and establish their Facebook and Instagram accounts. Feel free to get in touch with any Social Media questions for your business 🙂 The Chefs Wife SMM_banner_blue

Chef deciding to leave his Head Chef restaurant role last year for a “lifestyle change” was the best thing he has ever done. He is happier making great food for the corporate functions at Domain Stadium and the WACA, as now working nights is very rare and he often gets weekends off too – almost unheard of for a Chef. My sports-mad Chef is seeing lots of sport now, as part of his job and a couple of concerts too!

Thank YOU!!

Lastly and most importantly – to all my followers, thank you very very much for all your support! Every Facebook like, Instagram love and blog comment is really appreciated. It makes blogging so rewarding for me.

My blog started off as a secret project that I thought up in 2012. I say secret, as I thought no one would like it! Never in my craziest dreams did I think that I’d create such a little monster. I love every second and every door that it has opened. I took a chance, put myself out there and it has far exceeded my expectations in every way. It just goes to show that if you have an idea – you should totally go for it!

What’s happening in 2017… MORE FOOD! They’ll be more reviews with the Post newspaper (once I recover from the festive season). First up, I’ll be continuing to share with you our fantastic trip to Denmark last month, a fantastic Great Southern town that all West Aussies should visit. Check out the first part here.

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Delicious Denmark – the stunning Green’s Pool.

 

I’m also hoping to catch up on my backlog of TWENTY EIGHT unwritten posts! That overwhelms me a bit when I think about it. Phew! In the last few months I’ve eaten a Californian Pizza Kitchen, Cup and Co, Sayers Sister, Mayfair Lane, Brewhouse Margaret River and many more. But hey, life happens. I’m hoping that I’ll have a few days of blogging and get up to date before I embark on more foodie adventures for the new year.

I’m hoping 2017 is the best yet for us all! Wishing you health and happiness for 2017.

Happy New Year!!

Cheers 🙂

Amanda xxthumbnail_screenshot_20161231-153158