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Wednesday, 29 April 2015

10 Minutes By Tractor

10 Minutes By Tractor

I have wanted to go to 10 Minutes By Tractor for a about a year now and had planned to go with a group of friends for my birthday. That ended up not happening but our friends decided they would still take us for me as my birthday gift. They picked us up at 7pm as the booking was for 8:00pm. It is a 45 minute drive down to Main Ridge and it is a beautiful drive as it is in the country. It was raining quite heavily but that did not dampen the mood as we were excited to be going.


  I could not get any good photos because of all the rain and being dark from the front. It is a small restaurant and most customers were dressed like you were at a expensive establishment except for a few who had t-shirts and jeans. They had an extensive alcohol list including a limited range of cocktails but the wine list is amazing.


 They do A' la carte or the Degustation and the Degustation is either a 5 course or a 8 course. We had all not really eaten to save space so we went the 8 course. Most of the fine dining experiences we have done  give you small portions but not here. We should have done 5 courses but we know for next time. With all fine dining restaurants the presentation is the main key and it makes you want to eat the food straight away. Being a two hat restaurant i had some expectations.

We ordered a bottle of wine of
2001 Jean Raphet et Fils Gevrey-Chambertin 1er Cru Lavaux St. Jacques which was the best wine i have ever had, no tannin and was so smooth. 


I am not sure what the first taster was i was so focused taking pictures.

For starters we had Somers Soft Goat Cheese with slow roasted grapes, fennel and celery relish with a walnut crunch.


I don't really like goats cheese but the flavours worked well together with the roasted grapes. It was sweet, creamy and salty all at the same time.

Second course.
We had Grilled Yellowfin Tuna with marinated eggplant, compressed cucumber, tomato salad and black olive crunch.


The tuna melted in your mouth and worked really well with the eggplant and salad.The eggplant was not over cooked and not undercooked. The vegetables are grown on the property so it is all so fresh.
 The serves were big but that did not stop me eating the bread. The bread had a warm homemade garlic butter that was addictive and amazing.


Third course.
The third course had Seared Scallops with roasted pumpkins, chickpeas, green beans and artichoke chips


I really don't like artichokes normally but like any male you fry something and make them crispy, you change the flavour to an amazing chip and it goes down well. The Scallop were quiet big and the pumpkin was soft and juicy.

Forth Course.
We got some more seafood, pan seared local Mussels with zucchini and pomme puree (apple).


The thing i love about Degustations is they make food that i don't like taste soo amazing. i did not realise i ate mussels until just a moment ago. The mussel was not tough like a lot of places do it and thats probably why i did not realise what it was.

Fifth course.
My favourite course Roasted quail with pearl barley fig puree and a beetroot vinaigrette and a brioche bun.


The quail was sweet from the puree and beetroot and fell apart as you ate it also the drumsticks are so cute. We had all eaten our buns before i realised i did not have a photo. We were starting to struggle now as we had eaten a lot of food and still had three courses.

Sixth Course.
We got Roasted Duck Breast  with golden raisins, pumpkin and chestnuts.


It was a big piece of breast but like with all the other meats was cooked so well....perfection. The pumpkin and gravy just added some more flavours. i was in heaven almost as i had Quail and Duck cooked just right.

Seven course.
The last of the dishes was Grass Fed Cape Grimm Sirloin Steak with open ravioli beef cheek, sauteed mushrooms and sauce.


I really struggled to finish my meal but i managed too finish it. The cheek and steak had no fat as it was top quality meat. The steak was rare on the inside but a bit crispy on the outside. It was the perfect meal to finish of the dishes.

We got a sorbet grapefruit palate cleanser.
It was a bit sour in order for you to taste and appreciate the desert that much better. 


Thank goodness it was a light thing to eat and then we got dessert


For Dessert we got a Chocolate Ganache with plum orange and pistachio chocolates.
The ganache was the best thing i have eaten in a while. So smooth and creamy and sweet.

We then got chocolates but i felt so sick from eating i could not take the pictures.
The staff were so friendly and accomodating. the food was just amazing and went beyond my expectations and i will be back as soon as i can. Thank you so much for an amazing night.

Thank you Kathy and Sam for a fantastic night and it was an amazing birthday gift. I felt so special to be treated to such a spectacular dinner.

Have you been here?
Leave a comment.
Kind E-gards
Dale Stewart
Ten Minutes by Tractor on Urbanspoon

Sunday, 26 April 2015

Pour Over Instructions

Pour Over Instructions

Normally i do pictures for my blog but i wanted to do a video for a change.



I recorded it by myself so it is a little shaky and editing takes ages. I spent about 4 hours editing and putting it together,
But here are my instruction.

1. Put filter into the pour over.
2. Rinse the filter with hot water.
3.Weigh out 13 grams of coffee.
4. Empty out cup with rinsed water.
5. Pour ground coffee into the pour over
6. Pour in 45 grams of hot water and let bloom for 30 seconds
7. Pour another 45 grams of hot water and let it sit for another 30 seconds.
8. Pour 80 grams of water for 30 seconds.
9. Pour the last 80 grams of water.
10.The coffee Should finish pouring in about 3 minutes in total.

If you like the copper stand here are my instructions Copper Stand.

I will do a few more videos over the next few weeks and hopefully i will have a tripod to do smoother videos.

Thank you for watching.
Leave a comment if you would like to help me improve.
Kind E-gards
Dale Stewart


Saturday, 18 April 2015

Izakaya Jiro Grill & Sake Bar

Izakaya Jiro Grill & Sake Bar

 We have behaved lately and not gone out as much because we are saving money for our next holiday, but on Tuesday I really wanted Japanese for dinner so we went to Samurai but it was closed for renovations. There was another Japanese restaurant called  Izakaya Jiro and on urbanspoon it had 89% so that was good enough for us to give it a go. It is  more expensive than Samurai but was still good. The serving sizes weren't as big but i think they went for the higher quality than quantity.


 
 

  It is a big place but from the front it looks really small, the decor is lovely and it has a good selection of beers, wines and sake.


 For starters we ordered the lotus root chips and they were crispy and lightly salted, they are probably the best i have ever had.  Our friends ordered a selection of skewers because the sounded different. They ordered some vegetarian and beef. some vegetarian dumplings and some other random dishes




For my main dish i ordered the Beef Yokisoba, it has egg noodles, beef, a selection of vegetables and Katsuobushi (fish flakes). The beef just melted in your mouth and the sauces tasted really good but it was not big enough for me.


Kim ordered the tempura udon and it had the usual udon noodles, tempura battered prawns and mixed vegetables. She said it was very good and plenty of food for her. 


I was still hungry after so we ordered desert. We ordered strawberry mochi, we always enjoy mochi and it was fresh. The skin was not hard and was not easy to take a photo because of how white it was but it was a tasty desert and a great way to finish the meal. 


The food was good and the staff are friendly but it was expensive. It is good to try somewhere different for a change.

Thank you Kathy for the pics as my phone had died again.

If you like the pics please leave a comment.
Thanks for reading.
kind E-gards
Dale Stewart
Izakaya Jiro Grill & Sake Bar on Urbanspoon




Sunday, 5 April 2015

Plantation Shutters

Plantation Shutters

Kim has always wanted plantation shutters so in November we decided to get some quotes, how hard should it be?
We called about 3 different companies and all the prices had been comparable. Then we came across The Modern Group but they are very disorganized  and after multiple cancellations we nearly gave up on them but they finally came over and gave us a quote. Most people don't like them because there has to be both partners in the house when they do the quotation so you they can get you to sign up on the spot. The products are very good and the price was right. We also got an electric security shutter for the spare room because it is too light for me.




Here is the photo before we moved in.

We received a call on monday saying that the shutters are ready and they can come in on tuesday, we told them that we work and was not possible, they suggested we just take the day off which is not possible when you get the call late afternoon? 
The installer said he could do it on Saturday which we really appreciated, he arrived at 11am and was really nice.

 I started to remove the curtains and because the person who installed the original curtains used random screws which i don't have drill bits for, The shutter guy removed them or me.


They put all the frames together outside then brought them in and they sit inside the window frame and get screwed in.


Plantation shutters give you more space and look amazing, especially that we can close the top sections and leave the bottom open for the cat while we watch a movie so the light does not reflect off the screen.We got three done, two in the lounge and one in the bedroom.


This is another photo when we brought this house



We ordered the shutters in January so it took just under 4 months to make.



The security shutter only took about a month to build and install.


Do you have plantation shutters?

Kind E-gards
Dale Stewart