Wednesday, 30 September 2015

Thip Samai, Bangkok, Thailand (Alissa and Don Eat Asia)

After a wonderful five week honeymoon eating our way through Asia in 2013, Alissa and I were excited to head off for the continuing adventures of Alissa and Don Eat Asia in 2015. What started as a Japan trip with stopovers in Bangkok and Hong Kong ended up focusing on our stopovers to the point that we decided to drop Japan altogether - especially with the considerable rise of Bangkok restaurants like Nahm and Gaggan making a convincing case for Thailand as a truly great candidate for destination dining. With the risk of flight delays and missing our reservations meaning Gaggan and Nahm would have to wait until later in the week, Alissa and I headed out for our first meal in Bangkok at Thip Samai - a restaurant said by many to serve the best Pad Thai in Bangkok.

Saturday, 19 September 2015

Sarawak Hawker Cuisine, Willetton, Western Australia (Alissa and Don Eat Australia)

As much as we love trying new restaurants and visiting unexplored areas in unassuming suburbs, Alissa and I also keep a selection of local restaurants on rotation as regulars for the nights we can't be bothered to cook or drive any great distance away from home. Kai has always been our most visited go-to, however our restaurant of choice for the Singapore/Malaysian Hawker niche has been in a state of flux over the two years. Initially, we used to go to Bull Creek Hawker until we discovered Kitchen Inn, however we felt that the standard of food and service dropped significantly after Kitchen Inn moved to a bigger premises. Thankfully, a tip off lead us to Ah Mei Cafe, which became a fortnightly favourite for their handmade Bakmie Special noodles. Unfortunately, we found that Ah Mei was recently sold and the new owners no longer offer the handmade noodles we used to know and love. Having recently picked up the Gourmet Traveller Restaurant Guide, I read about a recently opened Hawker restaurant in Willetton that specialised in Kolo Mee and Chicken Rice. Both amongst our personal favourite dishes, Alissa and I decided we had to given this new restaurant a try. What started as a single visit has ended up being more than a few occasions, even bringing my parents along to get their opinion last weekend.

Tuesday, 15 September 2015

Chimek, Fremantle, Western Australia (Alissa and Don Eat Australia)

Some dishes seemed destined to be stars of Instragram Food Pornography. From strikingly beautiful desserts like Sepia's Chocolate Forest or something idiosycratic like a Cronut or Tim Ho Wan's crispy take on the Char Siu Bao, these dishes can be found at restaurants at every level from street food to fine dining, but all share one common characteristic - they can be eaten with your eyes. As the prevalence of Food Porn has increased, restaurants seem increasingly driven to make their food interesting looking. The benefit of this is that presentation is given a lot more attention than it used to be, however the down side is that sometimes the visuals are more impressive than the actual taste of the dish itself - and at worst are really just an exercise in viral marketing.

A restaurant that has recently been featured on many a Perth foodie's Instagram feed is Chimek, a stall located in the Fremantle Markets known for their 'famous' black coloured burger buns and Matcha Cheesecake. The Food Porn move definitely worked; Alissa and I were definitely intrigued, and had to find out for ourselves whether Chimek's food was as good as the visuals suggested.

Tuesday, 8 September 2015

Short Order Burger Co, Fremantle, Western Australia (Alissa and Don Eat Australia

Friends who know my deep love and almost religious fervour for Ramen Noodles are often surprised by my lack of regard for the western fast food equivalent - the Burger. It's not that I don't like Burgers of course, its just that I'm so often let down by how ordinary even supposedly gourmet burgers are; the amount of times I've asked myself 'is this that much better than McDonald's?' and answered in the negative vastly outweighs the times I've said 'yes'. My image of the Platonic Form of a Perfect Burger is not particularly unreasonable or unusual either - soft brioche style bun, a flavoursome and tender patty cooked rare to medium rare, cheese and pickles, not overly sauced or sloppy and not so big that its hard to take a bite of. And yet, that perfect combo is a real rarity, with the Merrywell Burger the only burger I've written about on the blog that fits the bill. That is, until now.