Posts belonging to Category 'Dining'

Melbourne Restaurant Review: Yong Green Food, Fitzroy

♥ Photo by wheresthebeef?

When I knew I was going to Melbourne I started researching raw restaurants, vegan restaurants and vegetarian places.

I was surprised to find that since I left there two years ago the raw food revolution hasn’t taken over, it’s barely crept in, or maybe I was looking in all the wrong places.

In saying that I must tell you right now before I explode – Yong Green Food surpassed all my expectations – it was fabulous!

My daughter and I arrived at about 8:30 on a Friday night and as we approached the restaurant we saw a huge group of people out the front, “Surely they’re not waiting to go in” I said to Candice. I haven’t had to line up for a very long time to get in somewhere and I wasn’t too thrilled about the prospect of lining up for food.
But they were.

So, the deal is no reservations, you turn up, go into the restaurant write your name and number down in the book by the drink cabinet and wait to be called.
The issue was there were five names before ours and we were starving!

Sadly by this stage we’d read the menu which looked absolutely fabulous so now we couldn’t go anywhere else.

25 minutes later and it was our turn. The only issue then was how to decide what to eat. We wanted everything on the menu, followed by another serving of each.

♥ Nacho’s with chia chips

Lentil Hot Pot

Grilled Kingfish

We knew that we would be coming back at least one more time before I returned to Perth so we decided on the Raw Nachos – chia chips with cashew sour cream, guacamole and chili as an entree to share. Candice had the Lentil Hot Pot for main while I chose the Grilled King Fish.

The nachos were amazing, the chia chips were light, crisp and divine. Candice did say that she preferred my sour cream (there’s a girl who knows which side her bread’s buttered), but agreed that it was the best guacamole she’s ever tasted.

The Lentil Hot Pot was perfect, it was a bit of a chilly night in Melbourne (surprise, surprise) and the warmth of the dish was a perfect fit.

The Grilled King Fish was lovely too, and if I hadn’t tasted the Lentil Hot Pot first I would have been in heaven, ah the joys of coveting thy neighbours food.

Surprisingly neither of us had room for dessert so we left it at that.

The service was wonderful, our waitress was full of smiles, tips and advice. And we were planning our next meal before we even walked out the door.

The next time you’re in Melbourne you must drop into Yong Green Food and then go down the road to Neo Tokyo where you can pick up your new vegan handbag.

Service: 5 stars
Food: 5 stars
Price: 5 stars

Win win win!

Note: We went back there Saturday night and then again Tuesday night (only because we were in Ocean Grove Sun and Mon) and the food was even better!

Girl crush alert! Ruby Rose was at the table next to us on Saturday night. How gorgeous is she!

In the comment box below I’d love to know anywhere in Perth that serves Raw Vegan food, or just good old-fashioned vegetarian.

Yong’s Green Food
Address: 421 Brunswick Street Fitzroy
Phone: (03) 9417 3338

Yong Green Food on Urbanspoon

Vegetarian Cafe Review: Samudra, Dunsborough.

There are moments in our life when we feel truly inspired; following a challenging yoga session, after finishing reality TV shows like the X-Factor or The Renovators (as we start shifting our furniture whilst belting out Adele songs), when we receive genuine, full-face-smile inducing compliments or for some, simply after we finish a very strong coffee resulting in creativity and inspiration literally buzzing through our veins. Eating at Samudra; an organic, sustainable and vegetarian café nestled in the heart of Dunsborough, is now listed as one of my inspiring moments.

The moment my Tony Bianco boots crunched the gravel path and I breathed in the fresh sea-breeze all thoughts of university essays and the Samantha Wills necklace I’d just lusted after in a shop window peacefully retreated from my brain. I was ready to convert to a Birkinstock wearing, yoga practicing, hippie vegetarian. Accompanied by my lamb-loving fiancé, we weaved through the mass of large, natural wood tables and settled at a table perched on the grass, soaking up some indecisive September sun.

The inspiration began to emerge as my eyes flittered across the pages of the menu in excitement, lamb-lover not quite as enticed, pointing to the safest option Superhero Avo Sandwich- Yallingup Woodfired Sourdough topped w/ cashew cheese, tomato, avocado & alfalfa sprouts. I added to the order the Kombi Breakdown, gluten free – A flavour explosion of cumin, coriander, cardamon, clove and one of our favourite superfoods – tumeric, served w/ quinoa and the Feel-good falafels- raw- gluten free- Delicious Egyptian-style falafel balls made with carrots, sunflower seeds & aromatic spices, cumin & caraway seed, served w/ handcrafted sunflower seed aioli and couldn’t resist the Super Green Smoothie- Pear, apple, lemon, orange & kale.

Inside Samudra ♥

Gazing around the Samudra landscape, from the organic eco garden where the chefs source the majority of their produce to the timber decked café area, I realized I could keep my boots on as you did not need to have dreadlocks or favor hemp t-shirts to eat here (my apologies for the stereotyping, although a woman who obviously forgot to wear shoes or brush her hair resulting in long dreadlocks was purchasing an organic chocolate macaroon when I was paying at the end…. just saying!). There was a unique display of customers; from the tourists flaunting jeans with sport shoes (true tourist attire) looking slightly anxious reading the menu, to the couple sitting behind us loudly debating spirituality and money. Whether they came to The Kombi café for it’s genuine passion to inspire and nurture their guests by providing sustainable, organic, biodynamic meals or if they were there just because the line at the local Dome was hideously long, the air thick with relaxation and serenity was beginning to work it’s magic on their minds and stomachs!

As our order was placed on the table my inspiration levels heightened yet again. The smell, the colours and the delicate plating was enough to demand any carnivores attention (bringing their thoughts back from daydreams about sausage rolls and meat pies from the local bakery). The simple but favourite combination of tomato, avocado and ‘cheese’ (a cashew cheese alternative) was not a let down and the toasted sourdough provided the perfect foundation for these tasty flavors.

The falafel are one of the best I’ve tried, the dense balls just oozing good-for-you-ness, full of spices and nuts and resting on top of a sunflower seed aioli. The dhal with vegetables was served with quinoa was creamy with a noticeable heat hit and very very moreish. I would be a happy woman if I could eat a bowl of their Dhal each week night whilst catching up on Kids Masterchef, perhaps with a sneaky red wine which I’m not sure would be Samudra approved. My smoothie was a vibrant green colour and it was difficult to refrain from drinking as my fiancé tried to capture the perfect picture of it, however in the end I gave in and gulped down the thick and delicious concotion. Just like the rest of Samudra’s delights it tasted like wellness and health, delectable.

Empty plates!

If you are ever in Dunsborough and have worked up an appetite perusing the streets (in the process realizing you desperately needed several new scented candles, new bathers and of course you needed another decorative elephant statue) I would definitely recommend relaxing and filling your stomach at Samudra. You know they have your health and wellbeing at heart, their recipes are constructed with passion and knowledge with ingredients sourced from the garden, available also for your exploring pleasure. As my boots crunched the gravel during my (reluctant) exit from Samudra, my body and mind healthy and light, I felt inspired to recreate my meals with similar ingredients and love. When we know how beneficial the ingredients that go into your meals are for our mind, body and spirit it’s easy to devour everything on your plate (and still purchase a goji berry bliss ball for the road). So how would I describe my experience at Samudra overall? Well it was absolutely dhal-icious 🙂


226 Naturaliste Terrace
Dunsborough WA 6281


Samudra on Urbanspoon

Article by Jade Jurewicz, inspiration by Samudra. You can find Jade’s blog over @

Be well,


Perth Cooking Class Review: Latashas Kitchen, Leederville.

Thoughtful birthday present definition; the act of finding the perfect balance between sentimental, exciting and budget pleasing gifts. Or an alternative definition; an extremely difficult task. However, last night I was lucky enough to bear witness to my friend Amy completing this difficult task and presenting me the perfect birthday present- an Indian cooking class at Latasha’s Kitchen.

If you are anything like me, a lover of Indian food with the desire to replicate the authentic mouth watering smells in your kitchen, yet after reading the long and intricate essay that is the recipe you decide a store bought paste isn’t really that bad…. then this cooking class is for you! Whilst the ingredient lists are on the unique, longer side and you may not have the spices waiting on your spice shelf next to the oregano and cinnamon, it’s nothing that quick trip down to Liquorice in Claremont, Kakulas Bros in Northbridge or if you’re game an Indian supermarket, can’t quickly and cheaply solve.

And believe me, using the authentic and unique ingredients makes a huge difference both to the final taste and the satisfaction you will receive when the aromas are wafting around your kitchen (and your housemate or boyfriend start to linger in the curries’ vicinity like an impatient cat waiting to be fed).

At 6.00pm we were greeted by Latasha herself, a passionate and knowledgeable Indian woman, with a huge and contagious smile on her face (probably from eating amazing food all day!). After the five of us were led into the back kitchen the class commenced and Latasha constructed 5 delicious meals in front of our eyes. From the toasting and grinding of aromatic spices, the adding of what seemed like buckets full of vibrant (very hot) fresh chilli’s, that unmistakable smell of sautéing onion, garlic and ginger taunting our senses and being introduced to new ingredients (one of which smelt like socks worn with your oldest but most favourite boots all day) I was taught the secrets of Indian cooking.

It is now safe to say I will never purchase a store bought curry paste again (unless it’s a freshly made one that can be purchased in store at Latasha’s Kitchen of course). There was so much love that went into Latasha’s family, home-style recipes and the demonstration flew by as she made us laugh with her stories from her younger days in India. At the end of the class we sat down, now sporting Latasha’s huge smile on our faces, with our thali of curries, saffron rice and eggplant pickle. The curries were spicy, rich and delicious and I was surprised at how healthy the cooking methods and ingredients were, no greasy, oil laden curries here!

I would highly recommend the vegetarian cooking class at Latasha’s kitchen, I left with an impressive amount of Indian cuisine knowledge and a very full stomach! However I must unfortunately highlight two downsides. Firstly all friends and family have begun requesting that I replicate the delicious meals Latasha created and inviting themselves to dinner and secondly you must wait for 3 hours in the mouth-watering smelling kitchen as the food cooks before you get to taste the food, but believe me it is well worth the wait.

(Left to right: South Indian Sambhar, Eggplant Kasaundi, Butternut Pumpkin Masala, Mix Vegetable Pal Khari and Saffron Rice)

Where: Latashas Kitchen, 745 Newcastle St Leederville
What: Vegetarian Indian cooking class
How much: $130 for a night of learning to prepare (then devour) a vegetarian feast!
More details:

Latasha's Kitchen on Urbanspoon

Review by future Indian dinner-party queen, Jade Jurewicz (

Spa Review: Health and Spa at Brookleigh, Swan Valley.

A day at a day spa… the scene was set with a perfect, blue-skied, almost winter day with a latte, Johnny Cash bellowing poetry on the speakers and my GPS pointing me in the wrong direction.

When heading out to the dreamy wonderland of Brookleigh – don’t trust your Sat Nav, people! Fortunately, I knew Brookleigh was next to Belvoir Amphitheatre and a lot closer than the GPS suggested. And it’s a problem the owners of Brookleigh have dealt with a lot, so get your directions clear before you hit the road unless you want a 45-minute detour.

So, back to the blue skies, latte and Johnny Cash… I arrived feeling pretty peaced-out and ready to relax. I met the wellness consultant and personal trainer, Rachel and owner Nikki on arrival and was impressed by how healthy they both looked. Both had glowing skin, very fit bodies and huge smiles… these were happy people and I was ready to discover the secret to their sunshine.

A Brookleigh horse

My day began with a personal training session with Rachel. We jogged past the beautiful horse stables (Brookleigh started out as an equestrian centre and still is an Olympic training venue), the chateau where the spa resides and guests stay and a “roundabout” which is a gorgeous, meditation-style garden.


We kept on joggin’ past all of these beauties and out the back of the property where an “obstacle course” awaits. It’s also an equestrian training area but nicely doubles as a people fitness area too. The jumps were utilised as push up, dip and sit up stations while a trotting area was used for some punishing sprints (it was here the heart rate monitor I had to wear really betrayed me, sounding like a hideous alarm going off as if warning everyone I was about to drop dead).

After the PT workout, we stretched by the small lake where Brookleigh hosts weddings every weekend throughout October to May. You can see why, with a quaint gazebo overlooking the lake which is perfect for the ceremony to take place. Huge trees, the neighing of horses and the surrounding paddocks combine to make you feel as though you are far, far from civilisation.

Next up was the spa treatment. I met with the lovely consultant, Lisa, and discussed facial options and confessed my skin woes. Breakouts in certain areas were plaguing me and I definitely needed help. I was treated to a lime sugar exfoliation to start, which sloughed off any dead skin on my legs. Despite Lisa warning me it might hurt a little as the sugar did its job, the scrubbing felt just right and my skin was glowing by the time it finished. The smell of lime was delicious. The massage was next and thankfully Lisa applied just the right pressure for the knots in my muscles to be erased while sending me into a state of utter bliss. Despite trying very hard not to, I also fell asleep in the later stages but I guess it’s a sign of ultimate relaxation so I tried not to beat myself up about it too much.

Guinot Facial @ Brookleigh.

The facial did wonders for my skin. Brookleigh has either Guinot or the local, organic range Joi Pure. Despite trialling Joi Pure previously and knowing it was delicious, my skin was in need for something a little stronger and Guinot was enlisted. I had the classic facial and Lisa used a peel around the troubled areas to break up the congestion. Despite my skin glowing afterwards, it was also a tad red and it wasn’t until a couple of days later that I really noticed the benefits. My skin really cleared up and it totally confirmed what I’d suspected all along… I need to be getting regular facials.

To complete the day spa package, I had lunch at Stewart’s Restaurant which is also a part of Brookleigh. Stewart’s is one of the best restaurants in the Swan Valley and has plenty of healthy options to complement the day spas and health retreats that are on offer. I had the salmon with roasted beetroot and pumpkin with a lemon sauce and holy yum, it was sensational. And post-meal, I felt as though my body was being further nourished rather than overly-full like you might at many of the wineries boasting first class restaurants in the area.

Urban Spoon rsetaurant rating: Stewart's at Brookleigh on Urbanspoon

Nikki and Rachel mentioned the three and five-day health retreats now on offer and I think they sound fabulous. Half a day out at Brookleigh and I felt rejuvenated and as though I’d been much further from Perth than the 45-minute drive it was.

If you’re looking for a girls’ weekend (classy hens’ weekends would be perfect there), doing something for your health or simply a getaway from the daily grind without travelling too far, Brookleigh is the place you’re looking for.

Check out their website to see enticing pics and more info, call (08) 9296 0018 or email Nikki or Rachel on

Brookleigh is located at 1235 Great Northern Highway,
 Upper Swan in the Swan Valley.

Article by Lisa O’neill, Freelance Journalist and Brookleigh’s newest devotee!

Restaurant Review: Genesis in the Hills, Roleystone.

When was the last time you really fell in love, disappointment free? I fall in love over and over again when my will leads me towards the scenic hills landscape of Roleystone.

Where to? Genesis in the Hills; where the division between food and love is negligible.

You’ll know you are on your way to something special when the road starts winding and the still of nature starts to permeate.

The organic garden @ Genesis

You will be welcomed through a fairytale pathway which leads to the outdoor decking of this beautiful eatery, dressed with both lounge and formal style seating, naturally bathed in morning or afternoon sun. Inside the French doors; you will be greeted by a homely feeling that will bend your will, just enough. Yes, you’ll be staying, a little longer, than you usually would.

People are an essential ingredient to the overall effect of Genesis in the Hills. You will feel openly welcomed by Ita and Rivka, the women behind the concept, who, without fail, express a warmth that couples perfectly with winter chills and warm vegetarian food.

Genesis in the Hills is open Thursday to Sunday every week. 10:30-5pm on Thursday and 8:30-5pm Friday to Sunday, I adore mornings, simply because, a smile is a perfect way to meet the day. You can expect delectable cakes, quality coffees, elegant teas (like Persian rose and Sencha green) and simply scrumptious mains (vegetarian/vegan friendly).

Yum! ♥

I favour a spiced fruit and sweet potato cake with a soy cappuccino or raw juice with ginger, but I have pleasured in many other taste delights, from herbed sour dough breads to soups, salads and open sandwiches (unclose-able because they are so generous).

Aside from boasting incomparable coffee, food and atmosphere, they also host Art exhibitions throughout the year, which makes every visit to this location, a complete sensory experience. Unequalled, Genesis in the Hills is a love worth experiencing at least once. I guarantee it, but don’t hold me accountable if you become addicted! It is only natural. Enjoy!

Contact details:

Genesis in the Hills
124 Croyden Road
Roleystone WA 6111

Ph: 9397 7799

Genesis in the Hills on Urbanspoon

Genesis Facebook page
The next up and coming event at Genesis in the Hills!

Review by Lavida Rose.

Be well,