Taste Budds Cooking Classes

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Taste Budds Cooking Studio, run by Chef Sophie Budd, is found in Highgate. Sophie has previously worked for popular British Chefs Rick Stein and Jamie Oliver. Predominantly, the cooking studio offers cooking classes for adults, catering, long table dinners, and during the school holidays Sophie runs her extremely popular cooking classes for children.

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Little Chef was invited along for the “hands on” class for eight to twelve year olds. Considering he’s from a family of three Chefs, he doesn’t have many kitchen skills (whoops!). Hospitality is a hard industry to work in and we don’t want to push him into it! Saying that, being able to cook is an important life skill and it’s high time he learned how to peel a spud!

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The class is run by Sophie, with help from Chef Brendon. The main focus of these classes is food preparation skills. Sophie’s passion for cooking is infectious. She’s really great with the kids in the class (usually about 12). Everybody warmed to her instantly and she managed to keep a friendly but authoritative rein on the class. Continue reading

Our City Staycation at Holiday Inn Perth CBD

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I think the Holiday Inn has to be one of the best Perth hotels for a family stay in the city. Not only was the four and a half star hotel recently refurbished and is incredibly modern, it is also slap bang in the heart of the CBD, opposite the Central Park building on Hay Street, close to the pedestrian shopping malls, cafes and attractions.

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Chef, Little Chef and I were excited about our Holiday Inn staycation. I was there on assignment for Buggybuddys, Perth’s top kids website, who I also write for. We didn’t have time to travel anywhere for a break, so discovering our own city was a great alternative and we jumped at the opportunity to check out the Holiday Inn.

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We pulled our car up in the driveway at the side of the hotel, which is really convenient if you want to take advantage of their valet parking. We entered the lobby and were promptly checked in by the welcoming ladies at the front desk. Particular attention was paid to Little Chef, who was given an activity pack and told that there would be a special surprise if he completed the book, so he was totally on a mission to finish it!

Our Rooms

HolInnFamPic Credit: Holiday Inn Perth

We grabbed our overnight bags and electronic key and excitedly headed to our Family Room on the seventh floor. The Family Room features a massive king sized bed in the main area, which faces a large 48” flat-screen TV, perfect for lying in bed and watching a movie!

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There’s an adjoining separate bedroom (which we were stoked about!) with a further two single beds and a 32” flat-screen TV. There’s also a desk – where Little Chef quickly set to work on his activity book. It kept him entertained for ages!

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Little Creatures – Fremantle

 

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Chicken Skewers

 

Little Creatures Fremantle Brewery Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

One of our most favourite all-rounders is Little Creatures at the Fishing Boat Harbour in Freo. Chef loves the massive beer barn, as he’s partial to a pint or two of a good craft beer. I love the buzzing, but chilled atmosphere and we have to drag Little Chef out of the massive sandpit. We all LOVE the simple yet consistently tasty pub food.20131113_132006

We find the inside tables a bit noisy, so we sit out in the back beer garden by the harbour. It’s a fab spot where I happily spend a few hours, usually with our overseas guests. Occasionally it can be a bit breezy, but generally ok and we try to find a shady spot under one of the trees or umbrellas. Otherwise you’ll find plenty of bottles of sun cream hanging around. Little chef and his cousins were as happy as Larry; there’s a large partially shaded sandpit in the beer garden. As I’ve said before… Little Creatures caters very well for our own little creatures!!IMG_2596

The menu is mostly made up of share plates (big & small) and wood fired pizzas. We usually order the pizzas. The harrissa spiced lamb with melanzane and feta pizza ($23) is packed with flavour.IMG_2591

I really love the prawn, Coriander and shitake mushroom woodfired pizza ($24) This topping, it is one of my absolute favourites. The kitchen is always very generous with the juicy big prawns too! I’ve had this pizza more times than I remember.20131113_134219

 

We enjoy all the food, it’s perfect to share with friends, or in our case pommie relatives. The craft beer is brewed on site. It was a hit with all the blokes – in particular “Rogers” and the “Pilsner”. Little Creatures is a Fremantle treasure and somewhere that Chef and I will always have a big soft spot for.20131113_143010

V Burger Bar – Floreat

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V Burger Bar on Urbanspoon

Chef and I don’t always crave extravagant food – sometimes something casual appeals to us even more. After a 12 hour shift in the kitchen, plating up sous vide meats, foams, jus and this and that – Chef especially wants food that is deliciously uncomplicated.

We found ourselves at V Burger in Floreat on a night when neither of us wanted to cook at home. It’s at Floreat Forum shopping centre – opposite “The Boulevard” pub. It overlooks a leafy courtyard, you can dine alfresco or inside.IMG_7618

The service was very warm and friendly. Watching the open kitchen it looked like everything was running like clockwork. To start, we nibble on panko crumbed mushrooms ($8), which were heavenly. The crumbed button mushrooms are served with a wickedly creamy blue cheese sauce. So scrumptious!IMG_7605

I chose my burger from the newly launched brioche menu. Though the bread is far from healthy (brioche contains sugar and lots of butter) for me, it makes the perfectly flavoured burger bun. The Piggy Back ($14.50) is packed full of off the bone pork ribs, homemade bbq sauce, jalapenos, coleslaw & onion rings. It’s not as tall as Chef’s monstrous burger, but there is still plenty of burger! I’ve had may a burger in my time and I’m going to go out on a limb to say this is my favourite of all! I’m a sucker for ribs and this was spot on. The slaw wasn’t an afterthought and was really crunchy, creamy and tasty – I’d happily eat that on it’s own.IMG_7614

Chef chose the Crispy Crisp burger ($12.50) In between the Turkish buns was a prime beef patty, a tower of crispy battered onion rings, mixed gourmet lettuce, tomato, aioli & relish. Chef also chose to add bacon, cheese and chorizo for an extra charge. It went down a treat and Chef was very impressed. He reckoned it was up there with the best burgers he’d eaten.IMG_7611

Little Chef wolfed down a Mini Fish & Chips ($9.50) A perfect kids sized portion of crumbed fish fillets, served with chips & tartare sauce. Outside V Burger there is a small playground, which would suit kids that are of a toddler age.IMG_7602

Salads are also available, for those people who are a bit more health conscious. There’s also Ben and Jerry’s ice cream for those who aren’t! We just couldn’t say no to some freshly baked chocolate brownies to finish off our dinner. Yummo!IMG_7616

Chef and I have long been big fans of Grilld burgers, we also like Jus and Missy Moos. This was our first trip to V Burger and we did agree that V Burger has raised the bar very high for us – I think we’ve found a new favourite!! Check it out – you’ll thank us for it. V Burger certainly puts the “EAT” into Floreat! It is also found in East Vic Park.

V Burger Bar on Urbanspoon

Feast Café – Wembley

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Feast Cafe Wembley on Urbanspoon

I popped into Feast café for a spot of lunch on a workday. I’d heard many great things, so I was keen to check it out. There are two Feast cafes – the other being in Nedlands. I was at Feast Wembley, which is on Cambridge Street, almost opposite the Wembley Hotel.IMG_7134

The food at Feast is super fresh – with lots of seasonal produce used. The new summer menu has just been launched which is full of vibrant salads, tasty burgers and other treats from the kitchen – I didn’t quite get that far though. As soon as I walked through the door I was enticed to the chiller cabinet by all the fresh and colourful looking food in there. Everything looked so tempting, I got a terrible case of indecisiveness, but the friendly staff were happy to make a suggestion.IMG_7103

IMG_7107I chose a slice of the Mushroom Tart ($10) and added a side of Vietnamese Chicken Salad ($7.50). I also picked a “Yellow juice” ($7) which was a healthy concoction of carrot, orange and ginger – in a tall glass. It made me feel much better after being stuck in an office full of people with the flu all morning!

IMG_7112The food was plated up in a jiffy and I dove in. The tart was absolutely divine, full of massive morsels of mushroom and the pastry was spot on. The salad was excellent too, packed full of chicken, sesame, fresh mint and crisp bean sprouts, carrot and capsicum, with a Vietnamese dressing on the side. It is also gluten free.

At Feast they use Five Senses coffee, which has to be my favourite. 80% of the time when I have a great cuppa I find out it’s a Five Senses roast.

IMG_7102Little Chef would just love the clean and bright play area – its great for kids. There’s some play equipment for toddlers and a ball pit too. The large glass window means that mums and dads can keep an eye on their little ones, but also be able to have a conversation in peace! Wonderful!

The kids menu is also pretty substantial and includes thing like dino shaped French bread and egg, pancake stacks and gorgeous looking cupcakes. Feast café certainly caters well for families.IMG_7104

The brunch menu looked great too, so I’ve made a mental note to return to try that soon.

 

COMPETITION… WIN one of four $50 VOUCHERS FOR FEAST CAFE !!

I’ve teamed up with the “go-to website” for families in Perth – Buggybuddys for a giveaway. Buddybuddys has the most comprehensive local listings of things to do, events, attractions and holiday activity ideas for children. You can win one of four $50 vouchers to check out Feast Wembley or Feast Nedlands for yourselves by following the link

Win a $50 Voucher for Feast Cafe, Wembley

Good luck and happy feasting!IMG_7127

 

 

The Coffee Club – Joondalup Sqaure

New Image1Admittedly, I don’t usually visit chain coffee shops. Though thinking about it, places like Dome and Miss Maud’s are WA businesses, which we should all support. Similarly, The Coffee Club is an Australian company and it recently opened its doors at the very new “Joondalup Gate”. It has a funky fit out, with a large communal table – great for spreading out with the morning newspaper. This particular Coffee Club is owned by local couple Neil and Andrea Platts.

New Image6It’s in an excellent spot – right opposite the humungous new Bunnings on Joondalup Drive. It has a take away window – perfect for the tradies to grab a coffee on the run. The Coffee Club is also opposite a soft-floored, shaded playground, so also great for a catch up for the mum’s n bubs. There are lots of child friendly choices on the menu, as well as a dedicated kids menu too.

New Image2Chef and I stopped there for a spot of lunch. They’d only been open a day, so we didn’t know what to expect. The service was great and the food very good too. There was a lot of choice for breakfast and lunch, and lots of hand made goodies at the counter too. I loved that each item on the menu had the kilojoules listed. Handy if you’re watching what you eat. We had;

New Image3Chef really enjoyed the Philly cheese steak sandwich ($16.90). It’s sliced steak, along with caramelised onion, roasted red capsicum and melted cheese on toasted ciabatta was very tasty. I’s served with seasoned chips and a garnish salad.

New Image4I had the roasted beetroot, feta & candied walnut salad ($16.90) This was tossed in fresh baby spinach, along with snow peas and  tossed in a zesty fat-free lemon and oregano dressing. I also added squid to this salad, which was some of the softest squid I’ve ever had. I really enjoyed this salad – beetroot, feta and walnut is a favourite combo of mine.

We’ll be back for sure. Chef is a bit partial to a Bunnings sausage sizzle, I think we’ll be headed to Coffee Club instead, next time we’re there for some hardware supplies!!New Image7

 

2014 /15 ENTERTAINMENT BOOK DISCOUNTS

* 2 vouchers –  2 for 1 Hot Beverage