Monday, April 21, 2014

Travel tip: Carry on essentials

On the way to the airport for another trip abroad. Inside my carry on tote:
  • Passport and flight tickets - don't lose them!
  • Wallet - ID, credit card, sim card, some cash to get me started
  • Wrap or jacket - it can get quite chilly inside those flight cabins
  • Water bottle - hydration is important
  • Lip balm, hand cream - did I tell you hydration is important?
  • Mints - toothbrush and paste are better, but more of a hassle
  • Travel wipes - for those emergency situations, if not, at least tissues
  • Cellphone and charger - my cellphone has the shortest battery life, so need to be on alert all the time
  • Blue/black ball point pen - for those arrival/departure cards
  • Reading/drawing material - entertainment inbetween in-flight movies, sleep, chats with the flight attendants near the snack bar, walks along the corridors

Friday, April 18, 2014

Brunch place: Industry Beans

It's Good Friday and everything is closed. 

Industry Beans is one of the handful of places open to brunch goers in Melbourne, and despite the suddenly sullen weather, we had to get there. Oh, boy, weren't we glad. The warehouse inspired interior was spacious, full, friendly and warm. Did you know it is shortlisted for the 2014 Australian Interior Design Awards? We were a large group of seven, so we had to wait a bit, but soon a table space was cleared up for us. 
I finished my crispy beans and quinoa salad (bottom left) so quickly, it was so good. Salmon souffle, eggs and relish, avocado smash with herb & citrus cured salmon. The salmon was lovely, full of flavours with each chew. 
Industry Beans knows their coffee. Pourover - smooth and subtle. 
Industry Beans, open all Easter weekend long. 

Unit 3 Cnr Fitzroy & Rose St
Fitzroy, VIC 3056
Industry Beans on Urbanspoon

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Brunch place: Brunswick Flour Mill

Despite it being a Sunday, Brunswick Flour Mill was packed and busy. By the time my meal order arrived, I'd pretty much ordered my latte and probably could have finished a second, too, if I hadn't been taking my time. However, the service is friendly enough, and my vegetarian order of sweet potato and lentil burger with spinach, sweet chili aioli and sliced beetroot, with a basket of polenta eggplant chips, was amazing. Amazing. I am going to get myself a mini fryer so I can make my own eggplant fries. Anything with sweet potato and aioli and beetroot reminds me of home - New Zealand - so this was perfect. Another Sydney Road pass for me.

341 Sydney Road, 
Brunswick, VIC 3056
Brunswick Flour Mill on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Five Finds: Capture the moment

Getting ready for my next overseas adventure next week! Things to do:
  • Find lock
  • Book accommodation
  • Decide on a camera and strap 
I know the quality of the photos on this blog need real improvements. The digital camera has finally arrived from NZ, so no excuses any more. My other cameras are film ones, a super-cute, super-light Lomography Action Sampler and a super heavy but cool vintage Olympus Trip 35. A little hesitant to take the Tripper with me, but it most definitely needs a strap; so that is the theme for my very first Five Finds post: 

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Brunch place: The Little Mule

Intended to get a take away, but I had to stay, and glad I did. This hidden cafe had been on my list since my first weeks in Melbourne more than half a year ago. Nice ambiance, friendly staff, smooth coffee, but most of all, the breakfast bagel was a total surprise and I fell in love. A little pricey, but there is a magic chutney on the bottom I was amazed by. By far the best breakfast I had had in a long time!
19 Somerset Place
Melbourne VIC 3000
The Little Mule Cycle Co. & Cafe on Urbanspoon

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Surfing in Sydney

Back from a three night business trip to Sydney. As a home office worker, it is always good to catch up and interact with colleagues as much as possible. To be honest, I'd been a little under the weather lately. Would have preferred to curl up in bed early at nights, despite the nightmares. Perhaps the timing could have been better, but then again, there is no better timing than the present, right?
The last day was surfing day. There is nothing like a morning surf for hangover cures and lifting up moods. It was my first time and I had a blast. Plenty of winds and waves, the board was so heavy and it was tricky to get it to the right angle of the upcoming waves, but I soon got the hang of it. Should the chance arise, I would definitely go again. 

After a few hours of surfing and a lovely barbie lunch of sausage sizzles and gourmet salad, I went straight to the airport, with sand still down my back, in between my toes, my hair, and in my ears, too. 
Bearing plenty of bruises from the trip, from the late nights out as well as the equally rough surf, I was incredibly glad to be back home. Exhausted from all the events of the week, some rest is in order for me. Hopefully some sleep will take back the dark circles starting to take place under my eyes...zzz

Jiro Dreams of Sushi (2011) David Gelb

Jiro has been making sushi since he was nine, but even after almost 75 years of sushi making, he says that he has never hated his job once. How many people could say the same for his/her own job? As a sushi chef, Jiro practises the same techniques day in, day out, but for him, they are opportunities for improvement. It is a never ending process. His sushi bar hardly has room for nine people, and lacks even a toilet, but bookings are taken in months in advance and each dish is as high in price as its quality taste.

Jiro's sushi is described as an orchestral piece, by a famous Japanese food critique. The simple classic first act is followed by a cadence of improvisations, ending with a final bang that is back to the traditions but with stronger tastes. An art. 

His philosophy may not be easy to adapt in the modern world where people look for quick results and broader interests rather than a specific expertise. Jiro's art is in using quality ingredients and patience in self improvement, as well as love for what he does. He is a true artisan.