Sunday, April 21, 2013

Olympus Cafe & Bakery!

Sophia says:  Hi Readers! Tonight for an early dinner we went to Olympus Cafe & Bakery. Before that it was Neto Cafe & Bakery. When it opened it was a soft opening. (soft opening: a restaurant that's open but hasn't worked out all the "kinks" yet) When we got there, we ordered at the counter. I ordered penne pasta off the kids menu. After we ordered, the waiter gave us a number for us to put on our table so they would know where to find us. It was a nice day so we sat outside. The food took awhile to come but when it came it was good! I liked the way they made my pasta, very plain and with no sauce. We also ordered the Turkish delight dessert which was good.  I would love to come back!

                     135 Castro Street, Mountain View 650-336-7613

Josh says: Hi Readers! Tonight we had dinner at the Olympus Cafe. We walked to the Cafe and ordered at the counter. I ordered chicken nuggets. They were good but they were so tiny and I was still hungry when I finished them.  I had a good time tonight with my family and I would come back.

Something happened after we left. We saw millions of ants all in a pile on the sidewalk. It was disgusting! I asked my mom to take a picture of it so we could show you.  Here it is! P.S. It looks like a pile of dirt but all of it is ants!

Jodie says:  We drove by the Olympus Cafe this morning and saw they had a 'grand opening' sign so we decided to come back tonight and check it out. They have a really big menu selection and a huge pastry selection too. I ordered the Athenian Panini and shared it with Paul. It had grilled eggplant and bell pepper and it was delicious! Their proportions are mixed, Sophia got a huge plate of pasta and Josh had a very small amount of chicken nuggets.  The Olympus has a very casual atmosphere and it's a nice place to relax and have a light meal - we ate everything! I would love to go back and try something else.

Food: ***1/2
Service: **1/2
Atmosphere: ***
Overall:    3 1/2 Ladybugs!

Monday, April 8, 2013

Castray Esplanade Food and Wine

Karen Goodwin-Roberts goes from strength to strength! Drysdale must be absolutely kicking themselves over their loss, a good few years ago now, of Karen from the Cookery teaching team. It might have been a bitter parting of the ways at the time, but I’m sure she’d be of the opinion now that they actually did her a favour, and steered her in the direction she now is travelling.

With her Taste Café at Bahai Centre, along with the catering she has been doing, she now adds this latest jewel to her culinary crown – Castray Esplanade Food and Wine (CEFW), which is where Bec took me last week for a birthday breakfast.

We were the sole diners there, which I loved, but hope they are usually busier, which I gather they are. I absolutely could not fault one iota of the food we had. It was all exactly as I would have made it myself at home in my kitchen, where I reckon I’m the only one who can get my poached eggs the (perfect) way I like them (whites cooked but yellow runny), the bacon crispy and the accompanying sauce (in this case at CEFW today, a salsa verde) light and tasty. The potato rosti served under the poached eggs was stunning. Yeah – potato rosti is potato rosti, but this one had additional flavours which made it fabulous. The dish cost $15 and I would have paid double that for it, more than happily, especially comparing that meal today with the woeful food at Mures Upper Deck last week.

They are currently open 7 days a week, for breakfasts and lunches, but are looking at opening Thursday and Friday nights too.

Both breakfast and lunch menus are true Karen Goodwin-Roberts style. If you’ve eaten off one of Karen’s menus over the years, you’ll understand what I’m talking about. She goes to a lot of trouble to source local, fresh, seasonal food that has been ethically produced, and farmed or fished sustainably. She doesn’t do enormous plates of parmigianas dangling precariously off the sides of a huge dinner plate. She does appropriately sized amounts of good food, professionally prepared and cooked, and reasonably priced.

Both lunch and breakfast menus cater for everyone, and they are happy to adapt dishes for those who would like something not exactly as per the menu.

She will be opening up a third café in North Hobart, Elizabeth St Food and Wine (ESFW), soon (on the site of the former BP service station just down from Republic) – I can’t wait to experience that one as well. Everything she touches screams style, comfort, credibility, good sense, freshness and deliciousness. Bahai is unique in its own way, as is CEFW, but a totally different vibe. ESFW will also have its own intrinsic flavour when it opens, as it will be a providore as well as café, and cooking school.

At a time when many people are slowing down in life, the Roberts’ empire is building on past successes. I absolutely love your work, Karen.

Castray Esplanade Food and Wine
17A Castray Esplanade
PH: 6224 6250

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Dickey's Barbecue Pit!

Sophia says: Tonight we went to a new restaurant that just opened a few days ago called Dickey's Barbecue Pit. We came here today because we have been watching it get ready to open and we got a flyer that said on Sundays kids eat for free. When we got there, it was pretty busy. There was a long  line because you order in line and then at the end of the line you get your food.We waited in line and walked around the restaurant for about 20 minutes. We waited so long  because they were out of everything! When we finally got our food we sat down and ate. The food was pretty good but the service wasn't. After dinner we got a free ice cream. I would come back but in a few months.

570 North Shoreline Blvd., Mountain View 650-933-4939

Josh says: Tonight we went to Dickey's Barbecue Pit!  When we got there, we got right in line. And it was a long line! I ordered a kid's plate that was a pork sandwich. I was going to get a chicken sandwich but they were out of them. We sat in the back and there were a lot of tables. My dinner was delicious and I got lemonade to drink. You get to pour it yourself. I didn't really eat my green beans because I forgot to. After dinner, my dad made me and my sister little ice creams for free!  And that was the best part for me. 

Paul says: The line was total chaos. The food was good but they were out of most everything. They have a nice room in the back but be prepared because if you eat there you will leave smelling like bbq smoke.

Jodie says:  Dickey's opened only 3 days ago and I don't think the staff was prepared for how popular it was going to be!  We got there at 5:30 and there was already a line that almost reached the door.  We waited about 25 minutes and when it was our turn to order they had run out of their bbq ribs, chicken and turkey.  They had ham, sausage and pulled pork left. Paul had the ham dinner and I had a baked potato. It's a little confusing to order because you order from a few different people and they were all really busy. We had fun making the ice cream cones and when we left there was another group of people waiting in line.

Food:  ***1/2
Service: **
Atmosphere: **

2 1/2 Ladybugs!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

Mures Upper Deck 2013

2008 was the last time I ate at Mures Upper Deck, and was so disappointed with the food, I swore I wouldn’t go again. Well, I went back last night – and had all my fears realized, in spades. Not only was the menu unadventurous, but the food was very average, and the service severely lacking, with the prices being too high for the quality of food I got.

I watched two tables leave without ordering, leaving half drunk glasses of water and menus on the table, after being well ignored by the many totally disorganized waitstaff on duty. There was no rhyme nor reason to the way they seemed to be operating. All staff going in different directions, showing new arrivals to their tables then managing to forget or overlook them until a hungry customer stopped a passing waitperson and requested their order for food and drinks be taken. This happened to us and all the tables around us.

I had the Upper Deck Selection ($33.90). No matter how much wordage you devote to making menu items sound appetizing and delectable, the fact remains that when a simple plate of badly cooked battered scallops, crumbed fish, and two extremely chewy calamari rings, with chips, arrives at the table, you can’t help but feel ripped off!

The occasion was a birthday celebration for Rita – made not at all notable by the food and service at Mures Upper Deck.

Bad luck Mures that I was approached as I left by two tourists staying at Grand Chancellor, who had been told there was a one hour wait for a table in the Upper Deck, and wanted my opinion as to whether or not it was worth the wait for them. You can guess at my response!

Mures Upper Deck – you could do so much better. As Aunty Jack would say – “Get it together, cavemen!”

Monday, April 1, 2013


Sophia says: Happy April Fools Day Readers! If you read our blog, and you do not celebrate April Fools, it is always on April 1st and it is a day where you play tricks on people. So we decided to do a review at McDonald's! :0) When we got there, my brother and I both ordered a "happy meal" with a cheeseburger and chocolate milk.  There were hardly any people there and  we went at dinnertime. Once we sat down and got settled we saw our Uncle Tony and our cousins Will and Matty! I have 2 Uncles named Tony just so you know. In my happy meal there was a cheeseburger, french fries, apple slices and a toy.  I thought my dinner was good. We come to McDonalds maybe once a year so this was a fun treat! I had a great time. Happy April Fools!

                     1060 N Rengstorff Ave, Mountain View,  (650) 428-0960

                            our cousins Will, Matty and Uncle Tony!

Josh says:  Happy April Fools Day! We went to McDonalds for dinner! The most fun part was that we saw my cousins Will & Matty! The service was really fast. First I ordered at the counter and then got my number and then we sat down and waited for the people who work there to call our number.  I ordered a happy meal and my cousins ordered one too. Then we started to eat. We never get to eat here and I had a fun time.

Paul says: I had a quarter pounder with cheese. It was about a quarter pound of meat and cheese. I also had a Dr. Pepper soda with as many free refills as you can drink. If I'm in a hurry, I might stop here again and feel guilty.

Jodie says: I ordered a crispy chicken wrap and french fries.  Our fries were a little cold like they had been sitting out and we brought them back to the counter and they replaced them with fresh ones.  And I shared Paul's Dr. Pepper. I thought it was going to be a lot busier at 6:00pm but McDonalds was pretty empty. The high point for us was running into our cousins. We will go back in 2014 and try it again!