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OTTO night to be truffled.

posted by Emmy O'Neill June 19, 2018 0 comments

Fancy a night of decadence? Of divine feasting? Of delicious food? All generously topped with truffles.

Then ‘Holy Truffle Balls’ have OTTO Ristorante got a treat for you. Prepare to be truffled. Like completely truffled.

Last week I had the privileged of dining at OTTO for a media launch of their Truffle Degustation Menu. Just the mere words ‘truffle degustation’ had me weak at the knees and that was before I had arrived at the venue. That was before the aroma of freshly shaved Western Australian Black Manjimup Truffles filled the room. That was before I tasted course after course of delicious meals generously topped with black truffle. My knees were indeed weak and my excitement to feast on in-season truffles could not be contained. What can I say? It was perfection.

Every single mouthful was truffle perfection.

As I said on the night, (whilst savouring every  bite of the truffle gelato with hazelnut praline and fresh truffle); ‘I have died and gone to truffle heaven’. And yes you read that right… there was truffle in the gelato! And it was unlike anything I had ever tasted in my life; creamy, sweet, salt, crunchy and absolute explosion of flavours and textures. The stuff of truffle dreams!

OTTO’s Head Chef Will Cowper is truly celebrating this year’s truffle season with the introduction of a truffle service; which basically means you can add freshly shaved truffles to your favourite OTTO dish. During the winter months from June through to August for $30, you can add 5 grams of freshly shaved truffled to your dish of choice; the truffles will actually be delivered to your table by Head Chef Will himself! And you also receive OTTO’s chocolate truffles to take with you; perfect for the uber ride home.

There is nothing better than the aroma of fresh truffle. At the end of every truffle season I am already  thinking of ways to use them next year. So by the time they are in season I’m so excited to showcase them through specials to our diners,” says OTTO’s Head Chef, Will Cowper.

Will has also created a number of scrumptious dishes, such as house-made fettuccini with slippery jack mushrooms, pan fried gnocchi with truffles, Parmigiano reggiano and fresh truffle risotto and the aforementioned Truffle gelato with hazelnut praline!

If you are a true truffle lover you really can’t go past the Truffle Degustation hosted at OTTO on July 4th. Prepare to have all your senses overwhelmed when you experience Western Australian Manjimup truffles in all their glorious earthy and delicious glory with an exclusive 5-course degustation with matching premium Italian wines.  For more information on how to book this event head to OTTO.

Just in case you still needed to be convinced that heading to OTTO to be truffled is a great idea… here’s some photographic evidence.

OTTO Ristorante | 480 Queen St Brisbane, 4000 | (07) 3835 2888




NEXT time, try Lennons Restaurant & Bar

posted by Teagan West December 11, 2014 2 Comments


There’s no denying we love good food. So when we come across Brisbane’s best restaurants (and there’s plenty of them), we love to shout it from the rooftops. Consider Lennons Restaurant & Bar shouted!

Last week I joined a bunch of bloggers for dinner at Lennons Restaurant & Bar in Brisbane’s NEXT Hotel (Level 2) and demolished three courses of gourmet comfort food that rivaled the offerings of Brisbane’s most luxurious dining venues.

And it’s not just the food that sets tongues wagging – the brasserie-inspired space is edgy and vibrant, the perfect mix of warmth and class. It’s captivating, intriguing and beautiful, with giant glass windows overlooking the bustling Queen Street Mall below and perfect lighting throughout.


The fare is gourmet comfort food at its finest, a concept that has evolved through the understanding that diners want an authentic, nostalgic, healthy, inventive and great value dining experience. And so, timeless dishes with a twist are the go-to!

The Moya Valley organic chicken, heirloom carrots, soubise and sorrel was to-die-for! The chicken was moist and flavoursome and the dish was embellished with the perfect amount of colour, taste and texture to compliment the star component. From my vantage point the Diamantina Wagyu, burnt onions, truffled mustard and creamed nettles looked equally mouth-watering and the Moreton Island flat head tails, spiced yoghurt, coriander and ginger could have easily been mistaken for a colourful piece of art.


Next time I head back (and there will be a next time) I’ll be having the spaghetti bolognaise with Wagyu beef #nomnomnom. However Executive Chef Todd Adams has dreamt up so many delightful dishes that I won’t know for sure until it’s sitting comfortably in the pit of my stomach. After all, it’s not an easy decision when we’re talking about slow-cooked spring lamb, candied butternut and labneh pastry, risotto of spring green vegetables, a perfect steak, Mooloolaba King Ocean prawns and a host of seafood dishes to rival Bali’s seafood haven, Jimbaran Bay.

Something I know for sure though, is that I’ll be getting a side of the Lennons special fries next time – it’s a secret, winning combination that puts them way ahead of the rest. You have to taste them to believe it, but they’re the best dang fries I’ve ever had! Just look at the flavouring on them!


I must also tell you about the dessert. I chose a beautiful construction of Valhrona dark chocolate toffee, passion fruit and candied macadamia. Other sweet treats include coconut sorbet, date and hazelnut frangipane, classic vanilla bean creme brûlée, handmade petit fours and a cheese platter for those who enjoy something more savoury.


Chef Adams, you did good! I don’t know why I was so surprised really, he’s the man who’s helmed the award-winning Stokehouse Brisbane, Urbane, the Euro Brasserie and Epicure Brisbane. He’s a seasoned pro, and there’s no denying Lennons will rise to the top of Brisbane’s foodie scene in no time at all.

Oh and one more thing – Lennons Restaurant & Bar is open for lunch too. There’s a whole menu to choose from, or you can pick the Express Yourself lunch option of the day – 3 courses for $35 in 60 minutes. I’m loving Thursday’s offering of roasted baby beetroot, pear, lentils, goat curd and creamy cashew dressing; wood fired free range chicken burger, slaw style salad and chipotle aioli; seasonal berries, mascarpone cheesecake and oat biscuit. Each day has a set menu that promises to treat your taste buds and get you back into the office with a full tummy in 60 minutes. What more could you want!

Lennons Restaurant & Bar is located at 72 Queen Street, Brisbane.

Level 2, NEXT Hotel Brisbane, Queen Street Mall (above Forever 21).


Top 10 Venues for a Cheeky Sunday Session

posted by Teagan West December 3, 2014 0 comments

We all know the saying “A Sunday well spent brings a week of content.” So go forth and spend your Sunday wisely – we’ve got you sorted when it comes to a couple of cheeky Sunday bevs and a good feed with your best pals in tow.

Blackbird Bar and Grill

Riverside Centre, 123 Eagle Street, Brisbane

Blackbird Bar and Grill is possibly ‘the’ riverside hotspot every day of the week, Sunday included. The newly launched Sundays at Blackbird is complete with a beast on a spit that is carved into tasty sliders, boutique mix & match beer buckets, summertime cocktail jugs, a new bar menu with lots of casual dining options and a luxe afternoon vibe above the river.


Archive Beer boutique

100 Boundary Street, West End

For craft beer enthusiasts look no further than Archive Beer Boutique and its 22 rotating drought beers on tap and over 400 domestic and imported bottled beers. It’s the perfect place for an afternoon catch up over a couple of beers.

The Fox Hotel

71-73 Melbourne Street, South Brisbane

The Fox Hotel has had a facelift recently, making the shift from teenage party hub to a more chilled out atmosphere with a quality food and drinks menu. Soho Sundays on Dandy’s Rooftop is definitely a thing when a spicy chorizo, sweet corn and feta pizza and mango Weisbar inspired cocktail is on the menu.


Cobbler Bar

7 Browning Street, West End

Cobbler is a whisky and cocktail bar with a twist. Sure it has 300+ whiskeys from all over the world, but it’s the food menu, or lack of, that intrigues me most. Cobbler is BYO food! Yup, you heard correctly, you can take whatever food you wish to consume with you – a DIY cheese board, selection of desserts, takeaway from nearby restaurants… let your imagination run wild.

Alfred & Constance

Corner of Alfred and Constance Street, Fortitude Valley

Alfred & Constance is synonymous with quirky hipster, it’s colourful, fun and unpretentious. There’s three bars and so many areas to explore – the White Lightning Tiki Bar, The Vanguard Beer Garden Bar, The Alcoholic Juice & Smoothie Station, the underground Fever Club and a number of foodie hotspots to fill the gap between drinks. And you get lei’d on arrival.


The Normanby Hotel

1 Musgrave Road, Red Hill

It’s the place to be on the northside come Sunday afternoon, with flowing drinks, hearty food and many areas to mix and mingle until your heart is content.

Woolly Mammoth Alehouse

633 Ann Street, Fortitude Valley

Although Woolly Mammoth is the new kid on the Valley block, the contemporary beer hall has gained a large following with its rustic off-the-bone menu, large selection of craft beer, crowd-pleasing entertainment and indoor activities to the likes of Bocce, Giant Jenga and Shuffleboard. Enjoy a Mammoth Sunday. They also provide a little something extra for the craft beer lovers.


Dutch Courage Officers’ Mess

51 Alfred Street, Fortitude Valley

Dutch Courage Officers’ Mess is a gin bar with all of the trimmings. Inspired by the British colonial outposts of the late 19th century, Dutch Courage specialises in gin cocktails and has a well-planned selection of share plates and tapas on offer. For those basking in Brisbane’s gin scene – this is the place to be.

Riverbar & Kitchen

Riparian Plaza, Promenade Level
71 Eagle Street, Brisbane

Spectacular Story Bridge views, plenty of seating, a colourful menu and drinkies abound, Riverbar and Kitchen is as casual as it gets without compromising quality and atmosphere. Come at me jug of Passionfruit Sangria!


Soleil Pool Bar

Podium Level, Rydges, Corner of Grey and Gleneig Streets, South Bank

Poolside bars are the It-Girls of the Brisbane nightlife scene when it comes to hot days and sunset hangs. Although Soleil Pool Bar has only just opened, it’s set to become a Sunday go-to thanks to its luxe interior, tasty bar menu, summertime drinks list and inviting pool begging you to take a splash.

teagan west


Global Flavours in the CBD

posted by Teagan West November 13, 2014 0 comments


Brisbane is a hub of cultural activity at the moment as the city prepares itself for the arrival of the world’s leaders ahead of the G2 Summit. Everything spectacular about Brisbane is on show, including its fabulous restaurant and dining scene that we can’t get enough of.

So to celebrate, a collective of the CBD’s best and most diverse restaurants are participating in Global Flavours, a culinary party of sorts showcasing Brisbane’s international-standard cuisine and local produce.

From November 1-30 you are invited to traverse Brisbane’s food landscape and enjoy special offers, live music and more as you go on a culinary journey through the city, from the Eagle Street Pier to the Queen Street Mall and beyond.

The City is home to the largest contingent of Good Food Guide awarded restaurants, and with worldly influences from the Asia Pacific, Europe and South America, the month-long festivity is definitely one for the foodies.

As if you didn’t need an excuse, Global Flavours is the perfect opportunity to dine your way around the city, sample Brisbane’s best fare and discover a new restaurant.

Participating restaurants include Alchemy, ARIA, Bavarian Bier Café, Black Bird, Fat Noodle, Jellyfish, Madame Wu, Malt Dining, Pony Dining, Public, Sono, Spring, lab bar + restaurant and so many more! See the Visit Brisbane website for more details and a description of each special offer. Mmmmmmm

And thanks to our friends over at Brisbane Marketing, we had the pleasure of joining three restaurants to sample their fare. Here’s our verdict, along with some drool-worthy pictures!

Sono Japanese Restaurant

Level One, Tattersall’s Arcade, Cnr Queen & Edward Street, Brisbane

Teagan: Sushi and sashimi lovers pay attention – this one definitely can’t be missed if you’re a fan of authentic Japanese dining and enjoy a collective of seafood dishes (I lost count) devoured in quick succession.

I was treated to the bounty that makes up the Zen Degustation at Sono Japanese Restaurant – scallops, tuna sushi, prawns, lobster, sashimi salmon, wagyu beef in miso sauce and eel. Barefoot, chopsticks in hand and peaceful music in my ears, I was immediately transported to a charming restaurant in the back streets of Tokyo, dining on small plates but filling up fast. Pick of the night was definitely the lobster.

Each dish appeared and then disappeared shortly after the waitresses, all donning traditional Japanese dress, explained the contents of each plate and how to eat it. They were welcoming and undeniably hospitable, adding to the delightful aura Sono encapsulates. Sono Japanese is a crowd favourite for authentic Japanese dining, so go forth and enjoy.

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Urbane Restaurant

181 Mary Street, Brisbane

Scott: My global flavours experience at Urbane reminded me how much contemporary dining can be compared to contemporary art. The components are readily available, however very few have the depth of experience, the command of the medium and the divine inspiration to produce something that is truly worthy of awe and admiration.

My favourite meal of the evening was the baked quinoa in cucumber shells with an apple reduction, in part because it was ridiculously delicious and in part because it was such an ingenious use of ingredients. In my hands, it would have come together as one of the worst salads in history. In co-owner and Executive Chef Alejandro Cancino’s hands though, we are treated to a dish so elegant – on the plate and on the palate – that calling it anything but art would be an insult.

Urbane specialises in degustation. It’s like making your way through a famed gallery, pausing in each room to savour the masterpiece within. In one room, a perfectly cooked piece of Wagyu is adorned by a single oyster, surrounded by oyster reduction and a beef tendon puff. In another, grilled octopus and artichoke bathe in indulgent squid ink peppered with millet.

Even simple dishes like the accompanying macadamia bread or the palate cleansing apple sorbet on marshmallow are worthy of praise. They are like the evocative sketches in an old master’s visual diary, full of warmth, beauty and freedom of expression.

I could risk pushing the metaphor too far by suggesting that the atmosphere at Urbane is also much like a gallery. The music is soft and understated. There’s simple décor and surroundings serve to direct focus to the pieces. The patrons are enraptured by what’s on offer, expressing their delight in low, muted tones.

It was an exceptional night out, possibly the best meal and dining experience I have ever had. I’m not certain whether the meal we enjoyed was a regular feature or something special that Chef Alejandro put together for the Global Foods Festival. Either way, I emphatically recommend that any lover of fine food (or fine art) make a booking at Urbane during the Global Foods Festival.

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Pony Dining

Upper Level, Eagle Street Pier, 45 Eagle St, Brisbane

Victoria: If the view isn’t enough to woo you, the food most certainly will! Pork and truffle sausages, double baked soufflé with figs and fire roasted hazelnuts and beautifully seared tuna with smoked tofu are just a few of the amazing dishes to be tempted by at Pony. Dessert lovers won’t be forgotten either with coconut macaroons and raspberry cinnamon donuts to satisfy even the sweetest tooth! As they say, the pictures speak 1000 words!

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