Cafe Enzo

Broke Rd &, Ekerts Rd, Pokolbin NSW 2320

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Situated along Broke Road, near the main attractions of what Hunter Valley has to offer, this rustic cafe is a lovely spot for breakfast and lunch. I recommend making a reservation, especially during these times, so you won’t be disappointed. There are both indoor and outdoor seatings; if you do sit outside, you might be greeted with a swarm of flies… depending on the table you choose.

Cafe Enzo is located within the Peppers Creek village; inspired by Tuscan ambience and life. Their menu boasts of handmade and locally produced meals, ranging from continental breakfasts, bowls, delicious/fresh sides, salads, seafood, desserts and much more. We ordered their veg breakfast board and I forget the name of mine, but it had two slices of sourdough, lemon, salmon, cream cheese (?) and it might have been their tomato chutney (?). Everything tasted fresh and lovely, not too heavy for the first meal of the day!

Staffs were lovely, who made sure to check on their guests and gave us enough time to check out their menu. Prices are what you expect, to be mid-ranged and what I liked is stripped down content of their menu. There is plenty of parking in the village itself. Just across and down from the cafe, there is a little green area to stretch out after a satisfying meal.

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Hanmade’s Bakehouse

Shop T30, Eastern Creek Quarter, 159 Rooty Hill Rd South, Eastern Creek NSW 2766

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I get super excited when my culture’s food is represented in the Australian foodie scene! Hanmade’s Bakehouse is located in the hot hub of the Filipino community, in Sydney’s west. The founder of this creative and nostalgic bakehouse, had just recently opened up her retail store this year along within the newly established Eastern Creek Quarter.

From sundaes, cakes, soda/beer float, silvanas , soft serves and their changing seasonal specials, you won’t need to go any where else for desserts! The images below, on the right is the ‘Yema Polvoron’ and on the left is their ‘Ube Leche Flan’. I enjoyed their Yema Polvoron, which was rich in flavour. The sundae was generously filled with vanilla ice-cream, yema polvoron silvana and a small slice of what tasted like Filipino macaroon. Not too sure what the sundae was drizzled with. The vanilla ice-cream used I did not entirely enjoy as it was more on the watery-tasting side, I would have preferred their ice-cream to be on the creamy side. It would have tied everything in the sundae perfectly. The sundaes are served at the price of $14, which I thought was fair because of the large quantity (great to share between 2 people) and quality was still exciting!

I highly recommend their silvanas; although they are priced at $3.50 each, these Filipino sweet things are amazing. Did I forget to mention? Everything in their menu is handmade! If you would like to order a custom cake or desserts for an event, I believe Hanmade takes pre-orders. By keeping and mixing the traditional Filipinos flavours with a modern interpretation/style, I can see Hanmade’s Bakehouse to be a staple dessert getaway for all cultures.

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Pho Viet

11 John St, Cabramatta NSW 2166

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Located on one end of the busy, John Street in Cabramatta, Pho Viet like many of the restaurants nearby serves Vietnamese dishes. It can be quite overwhelming when you first visit the street, as there are quite a number of Vietnamese dine-ins to choose from. I had my eye on one particular dish that they were known for.

Visited for brunch, so it was not difficult to grab a table even when distance restrictions were in place. The establishment is quite spacious inside, casual in dress-code and I recommend wearing your most comfortable clothing so you can eat in peace haha. Their menu encompasses entrees, rice noodle soups, egg/clear noodle soups, signature dishes, vermicelli, clear vermicelli, udon, congee and rice dishes. The soup dishes are almost all customisable, in terms of its base and noodle type. I found the price to be low-mid range, which was surprising as they were quite generous with the amount given. I couldn’t finish all that was in my bowl! As I mentioned earlier, I wanted to try one of their signature dishes ‘handmade noodle with prawn, meat crab and pork’. Honestly, this dish was extremely filling, the yellow noodle was a perfect blend with the peanut broth. Pork was thinly sliced, the prawns and crab cuts added sweetness to the overall dish.

Pho Viet also takes delivery, so you can eat their homely, generous amount dishes from the comforts of your own home! If you want to start eating your way through John Street, start with Pho Viet and work your way up.

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KorBQ

13 Petrie Plaza, 2/131 London Circuit, Canberra, ACT, 2601

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A hidden gem in the bustle of Canberra Civic, you might just miss it and unfortunately miss out on the deliciousness of the meals! Book ahead, since the restrictions are still enforced and there are limited seatings. Also, I don’t believe I saw a second level, just the ground floor. Reserved for a 6pm dinner and one by one, the tables slowly filled up. There were high and low tables, with ample seating for large groups. The seats on the low tables were super comfortable.

Immediately seen from the interior, KorBQ sets itself apart by serving both traditional and modern Korean cuisines. The menu was exciting to browse through and not too hard to follow. You are given a variety of dishes to choose from, meat bbq cuts, fried chickens, soups, bibimbap and big-pots. Since we were three that night, we opted for a set menu, so we can try the various meat bbq cuts and the additional sides! The quality of the meats were delicious, evenly cut, clean and the right amount for the group. The sides were just as great, with the ox bone soup being a major highlight for me and their kimchi fried rice. The set menu we ordered was called ‘After Work Refill’. The creamy fried chicken was yes, creamy without it being soggy. The chicken’s taste reminded my of KFC.

Service was efficient and friendly! I loved how timely the food came out and the waiter didn’t have to change the grill. KorBQ can be found across two branches, the other in Belconnen. A great dinner to catch up with friends, family or for after work dine in, as you are sure to work out feeling well fed. Dishes are mid-range priced, casual in its dress code and you are sure to be eating in comfortable furniture. I highly recommend KorBQ, as they set the bar high for how Korean BBQ should be presented and served.

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13.5 – 19.5

“Don’t you understand that we need to be childish in order to understand? Only a child sees things with perfect clarity, because it hasn’t developed all those filters which prevent us from seeing things that we don’t expect to see.”

-Douglas Adams


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13/5  Another nippy morning and got a work meeting scheduled later this afternoon. Got my nail brush kit yesterday and now I don’t know how to clean-off the nail polish from the brush. I tried soap and water, but it didn’t come off mmm. In other news, there’s quite a bit of content I’d like to write about and share. But even after waking up at 5am, I still find there’s still so little time left. To be honest, I might be playing Animal Crossing Camp on my mobile a little too much, generally playing it during the period when I have another task on. Happy Wednesday everyone!

14/5 It’s upsetting hearing about the unemployment statistics of Australians. With some restrictions being lifted tomorrow, with the 10 people at a time in bars/restaurants/pubs, it does bring a little sunshine in the past gloomy days. Although, personally I would like order takeaways and support establishments via distance. Until there’s a vaccination available, I’ll be keeping a large distance. I don’t know how my body would react and I know for sure how awful the normal flu is for me.

17/5 Visited Cabramatta yesterday after such as long time. As usual for a weekend, the place was packed by the time we got there at 10am. Luckily we found a parking spot at one end of the road. It is amazing how cheap produce and meats are there, compared to the ones in big supermarkets. Plus, the variety of Asian snacks and Vietnamese cuisines! Cannot wait to go back, hopefully this weekend. We didn’t get to eat some pho, but we did try out some $3.90 rolls. Be sure to eat on an empty stomach, practice social distancing there if you can, wear a mask and be hygiene smart.

18/5 Stomach growls and I’m not hungry nor nervous, its an annoying effect caused of my crippling bad gut health. Sigh. I started a new workout program this morning, which will be running for a month, after taking a week off from exercising. I was obviously dying throughout, but finished it nonetheless.

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Lazy Cats

Jl. Raya Ubud No.11, Ubud, Kecamatan Ubud, Kabupaten Gianyar, Bali 80571, Indonesia

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Lazy Cats is a well-known stylish cafe along the bustling Jl. Raya road. The cafe is also centrally in the midst of Ubud, surrounded by boutique retail stores, well-being stores, eateries and around the corner from a museum. Lazy Cats was just a walk away from my accomodation, from memory there was limited side parking or you can just get dropped off.

 For a known cafe, I loved how Lazy Cats was not filled with tourists. The interior was filled with modern art, vintage furniture and leafy plants would be sure to attract foodies and passionate ‘Instagramers’. The foyer felt like walking into someone’s modern, stylish home, which was juxtaposed to the laid-back rawness of the environment outside. No reservations was needed, as there was ample social seatings indoors and outdoors on their balcony. The industrial interior, with clear, wide windows on the roof and towards the street, allowed for ample sunlight to flow in. I can only imagine how it would look and feel like in the evening!

The menu consists of breakfast dishes, bowls, regional coffee specialties, cocktails, juices, all-day lunch plates (burgers, tapas, sweets, snacks, classics) which conveniently caters to meat eaters and vegetarians. Their wide menu selection, makes Lazy Cats cafe an ideal spot to unwind and eat or drink in your own pace. You also get to choose plates that are healthy, refreshing and are in decent size. Service was timely and I honestly didn’t see much staff on the day.

A lovely cafe, Lazy Cats is a cafe I’d definitely revisit to try out more of their dishes, a place to read, talk or just listen from out on their balcony.

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Folk Byron Bay

1/399 Ewingsdale Rd, Byron Bay NSW 2481

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You’ll mistaken this charming cafe as somebody’s home, with a cool blue roof, white wooden panels surrounded by some leafy greens. Folk is a well-known, frequently Instagrammed cafe in Byron Bay, just a few minutes away from Belongil Beach. There is not much information on Folk through their website, however their value and commitment is to serve local and ethically made vegetarian meals, whilst also being environmentally conscious.

Visited Folk for brunch, on an empty stomach and coffee-free, to ensure I get to taste what they have to offer. I came across Folk through searching online and Instagram, cafes most people had visited. Folk was no exception to an ‘Instagrammable’ cafe, from their colourful, healthy-look bowls and bohemian-styled seating areas. Plus, I heard their coffees were pretty decent. Parked on the side of the road, walked in with no reservation and sat down at an empty table out on the veranda. The inside was gorgeous, splashed with wood, patterned rugs, hanging plants and white paint, it made Folk a truly relaxing place to start the day. There is plenty of space inside, limited and a bit narrow on the veranda. There’s a little picnic spot in the front, that’s filled with pattered pillows, a floor table which I’m sure so many people have taken pictures for their social media.

Service was friendly and not surprisingly laid-back, with our coffee coming out first and our food following shortly after. The ambience as you can already guess was calm, filled with friends and couples who dressed typically of people who visited Byron Bay. You’ll see what I mean, just do a quick online search! I love the timber bench tops and stools against the white finishes, it really fits the feel of the place. Oh did I forget to mention its next to a holiday park? I’d imagine it would get busy during the holidays or when there’s a festival. The menu is mainly filled with vegetarian bowls, with cheese and eggs making a side feature. Aside from locally-produced bowls, there are dishes that can be eaten at anytime of the day and are quite filling. Although, I did find my dish lacking in flavour. You won’t be disappointed with the coffee milk options here, from full cream, almond, almond, cashew and more! The cool thing is that you don’t have to pay extra for the milk type too. Priced on the mid-range, which is not surprising if they’re using organic and local produce and ingredients.

Folk is a charming, sun-filled cafe that is contemporary and with the times of catering nutritious, wholesome and locally produced vegetarian meals. With plenty of outdoor and indoor space to offer, away from a busy road but not too far away from points of interest, Folk is a beaut of a place to dine, chat and relax. Nothing beats a cafe that ticks all the right laid-back boxes.

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6.5 – 12.5

“The struggle you’re in today is developing the strength you need for tomorrow. Don’t give up.”

-Robert Tew


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6/5 Nothing much today, attended at least 3 webinars today. Not really looking forward to the rest of the busy, packed week.

7/5 Woke up to another freezing morning. Winter has not even started and its blistering cold. Well I’ve got two webinars to tackle today and the rest will just be working on my assignment draft, blog and an online course. I should’ve taken more pictures during this time, to see the gradual effects of the pandemic to our everyday lives. I see more people out and about, people taking their outdoor exercises more actively. Which was a natural progression, due to the closure of gyms and other indoor activity venues. With June around the corner, I wonder if we can start to finally eat indoors, go back to the gym or maybe go physically back to work? Even if a vaccine has not been found. My 2 cents here, but wouldn’t it be safer to go back to normal business once everyone has been vaccinated? If restrictions are loosened, without a full understanding of the virus, the loss of lives will still occur. Are we then to say, the loss of lives due to the pandemic is now a new norm and saving the economy is more important? The pandemic will definitely have far-reaching affects to how we live for the next few months or year, not until we can all get vaccinated. I’m still be cautious in how I behave in public, still wearing a mask, keeping my distance and hand-sanitising/washing frequently. The virus may not have tragic implications on my directly, but may impact the lives of others around me.

9/5 Tried my hand in making an Aperol Spritz but I can’t make it taste sweet enough. I really think the type of Processco used and by using a high-quality soda water, will make a fabulous Aperol Spritz. I’m actually thinking of purchasing a cocktail making kit, which I should have purchased earlier in the iso life.

10/5 Happy Mothers Day to all the moms, new moms and the soon-to-be moms out there!

11/5 I couldn’t find a cocktail making set in the major retail department stores near me. I don’t want to order online, just because the ones I’ve seen are just a tad bit too expensive. Slept in a little bit longer this morning, which was nice and fair because I did go to bed later than usual. Plus, today did not have a workout program scheduled.

12/5 Cleaned another part of the place, it’s much better to dedicate a day to clean a particular area. You end up deep cleaning better and you don’t get flustered with the amount of areas to clean for the day.

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Wing Shack

1/178 Sunnyholt Rd, Kings Park NSW

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Wing Shack had opened its doors in the last few years, with the vision to cater America-style fast foods.  The restaurant, otherwise seen as a ‘professional looking market stall’, is situated next to the busy Sunnyholt Road in Sydney’s west. Parking is limited in front of the restaurant, so you can always park in the fronts of the other stores along the road. Otherwise, the nearest train station, Blacktown station, is a good 10-15 minute walk.

There was a slow influx of American-style restaurants opening up in Sydney, with a tiny amount located in the western suburbs. From the exterior, Wing Shack looks just like any casual Australian eatery, with laid-back service, high-tables with matching high-seats and food served in takeaway containers. No reservations of course, but the good thing during this time are takeaway services! Wing Shack is found on two major Australian delivery services, Uber Eats and Menu Log.

It must just be the food that has the American influence. I ordered from the single counter and on its side was decorated with packs of soft drink cans. The menu showcases a range of chicken mains, from American Southern chicken wings, whole tenderloins and Nashville style spicy wings and whole tenderloins. Pieces can be bought in 2 or up to 5 pieces, price averaging around $7 to $28. The buttermilk biscuit was highly reminscient of Popeye’s version, are buttermilk biscuits a popular item in America? Wing Shack’s biscuits were much more on the softer, milkier side than Popeye’s. The single loaded fries was cut in my favourite type of cut, as shoestrings. The fries were crisp with the right amount of salt and the added cheese sauce, shallots and bacon bits gave that needed final fatty topping. The tenderloins were evenly crisp on the outside, almost flaky and what I enjoyed was how it was not too oily. The skins were awesomely thick and the inside was evenly cooked well! The original tenderloins I ordered were not overly juicy, more on the leaner side. My partner ordered the Nashville spicy tenderloin, which I avoided because it was spicy. This was served with white bread slices and pickle slices.

Wing Shack’s meals will absolutely fill your stomach to the brim. The chicken pieces are quite hefty, so it’ll make a decent filling meal. However, the taste for me was quite mediocre, I was expecting something juicy, exciting and something not so Australian.

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