Moe’s Tavern – Woolloomooloo Bay Hotel

Woolloomooloo Bay Hotel turned into Moe’s Tavern and brought Sydney Homer Simpson’s favourite Duff Beer on May 23-30.

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“With breathtaking views spanning Sydney Harbour, the Botanical Gardens and the Finger Wharf, The Woolloomooloo Bay Hotel is one of Sydney’s waterfront centrepieces. The Bay is the perfect location for any type of lunch, dinner, gathering or event. With seating available on the ground floor bistro, courtyard, fireplace or level one balcony, the hotel truly does cater to all.”

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Homer Simpson once said, “A woman is like beer. They look good, they smell good, and you’d step over your own mother just to get one.” Haha. #simpsonslove #childhood #adulthood

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In celebration of my fellow intern completing her time at Cancer Council, we walked to the hotel to get some Duff in our bellies. Who doesn’t want to see what the Simpsons were in real life?

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Loved the door. It screams welcome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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On the way up the stairs, we were greeted by kegs of beer. There were many more to come!
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Walking in, the fake windows/mirror shone brightly around the pool tables and surprisingly there weren’t too many people. Just a tip, we got there at around 5:30 before the corporate invasion.

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We approached the bar and of course we ordered a beer! $9.30 but it was light and quite bland. Not really a favourite and I expected it to be more unique.

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I absolutely loved the beer taps though! It seemed like it was the only type on tap for the nights. You could alternatively purchase something else downstairs and bring it up if you wanted.

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Then, we lined up for food.There was only one at the counter…

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The food menu was alright and we accidentally met a girl who told us that the wings were tiny and the beef burger didn’t taste that great. Check out the size of that bun.

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We opted for the seafood basket for $18. The batter on the fish was waaaay too much and the chips were a bit soggy. The squid was the best but where was the pepper?

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The only thing I would get next time would be the pizza. Donuts always taste good but $4 each…?

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Sneaky shot of someone else’s donut

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Wings $10

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Oysters

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There was an outdoor area with some coasters. We were quite sneaky and stole a couple! Who knows, we can sell it on EBay ahahah.

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Loved how the waiters had their Duff Badges, too! If only they had a real life a Homer and the TV show in the background…

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Ohwell! There was enough beer for everyone!

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Btw when we were walking outside, the line was huge! The security guards were strict and tallied numbers. Next time, get in quick.. or buy it from Dan Murphys or BWS: $17 a six-pack of 355ml cans and/or $45 a case from May 28.

Review Rating: =D  =)  =|  =(

Product (Moe’s Tavern): =)

Ambience: =D

Service: =)

Value: =)

Would I recommend going to Moe’s Tavern to friends? The atmosphere was great and that was it. It was opened from 5pm and if you plan on arriving after 6:30 it might not be worth the long wait.

Would I donate the money I saved to a charity? The experience was great but because the food and drink was so expensive, I don’t think I would spare much….especially if a beer normally costs $6 at my local pub. At least entry was free?

Highlight: the media wall! We just had really fun pictures! Also the taps and decoration. The walls were even blue and yellow diamond tinted! Amazing effort designers!

Suggestion of improvement: the food wasn’t the best. The wings portion was minimal for $10, the burger looked big but mostly bun and the seafood was so oily. No go.

Ends: May 30, 2014

Link: http://www.woolloomooloobayhotel.com.au/

Angela Bee

$8 Burger and Milkshake – The Burger Mill Parramatta

Gourmet burger and old-fashioned burger for $8 at The Burger Mill brings the classic vintage days back to Parramatta.

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The Burger Mill is located in the heart of Parramatta’s CBD and adjacent to the station. Drawing inspiration from the American diners of the 1950’s, this restaurant has a funky and retro vibe with checkered floors and the classic combination of burgers and milkshakes.”

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(Sourced: News Limited)

If you walk from the train station towards the lower food court of Westfield, then up the escalators and then outside, head towards Church Street and you’ll find The Burger Mill on the corner. If you’ve passed the Town Hall, then you’ve missed it. It’s quite noticeable and next to a bakery.

Outside there are some simple yellow chairs and tables to just set the mood for when you go inside.

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I actually love the wooden scene and the random strings of vines hanging from the ceilings. It’s quite unique.

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Oh. My. Gosh. I love the yellow topped chairs here! I wished the waiters dressed retro-style too!

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(Sourced: News Limited)

The blackboard has written up the menu of delicious burgers but there’s also a paper version if you’re short-sighted.

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But your eyes will be attracted to this lovely piece of art work on the wall: a tree with burgers hanging off!!  Don’t we wish this all existed? #burgertree

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First up was the Chicken Schnitzel Burger with avocado, cheese, cucumber, baby spinach and house made aioli with a generous serving of chips.

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The brioche bun was tall, fluffy, slightly toasted and actually pretty sweet. It’s normally hardly noticeable but this looked quite yellow! The condiments were an excellent mix but the chicken schnitzel was slightly dry. Ps: look how tall this burger looks! Giant!

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Next up was Aussie Burger with cheese, caramelised onion, pineapple, beetroot, tomato, lettuce and home made mayo.

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I loved the freshness of the salad and the beef patty was pretty standard. I wouldn’t say that it was dam fantastic but I guess average? What did a burger taste like in the 1950s?

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The hot chips were the good ol zigzag ones. Ah McCain you’ve done it again! Ah yes! Crinkle cut is the word and they were lightly salted and crunchy! #hotchipsobssessed

Milkshakes are such a treat! I must admit, I don’t really drink them these days but once in a while it won’t be too bad for your health.. right? I’m not really dairy person so I didn’t finish mine but it was a good punch of sweetness in there.

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Although there are already burger joints such as Grilld (two in Parramatta might I add!) and Coco Cubano, this one is definitely a treat! And I also heard that the owner, Leanne Beck owns Infinity Bakery in Woolloomooloo (close to Cancer Council where I intern!) and Sweet Street Bakery next doors! #winner

Review Rating: =D  =)  =|  =(

Product ($8 Burger and Milkshake at The Burger Mill Parramatta): =D

Ambience: =)

Service: =)

Value: =)

Would I recommend $8 Burger and Milkshake to a friend? Yes! Burgers and chips are normally $10 and a milkshake for $7. The same restaurants have existed in Parramatta for a very long time so its nice to have something new.

Would I donate the money saved to a charity? I’m not too sure if I would normally pay $7 for a milkshake unless its from The Vogue Café.  $12 would’ve been a solid deal so $4 towards a charity.

Highlight: The kinda-sweet brioche! I miss France and I miss brioche! So good! and the crinkle cut chips bring me back to childhood days.

Suggestion of improvement: Maybe is the patties were juicier but next time I’m gunning for the Moroccan Lamb Burger!

Ends: October 19, 2014

Link: http://www.groupon.com.au/deals/sydney/the-burger-mill/718248866

Angela Bee

Pyrmont Festival of Wine, Food and Art

Pyrmont Festival has brought the delicacies of the famous wine region of Mudgee to Sydney from May 16-25, 2014 to celebrate wine, food and art. Included was a free festival on May 17-18 at Pirrama Park where festival goers had a chance to sample 120 wines from 50 stalls.

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“The ultimate event to experience a fabulous blend of city and regional produce and creativity, guests can enjoy wine dinners and tastings, photographic exhibitions and art displays without having to leave the city. Iconic Mudgee wineries participating include Huntington Estate, Burrundulla Vineyard and Lowe Wines. Winemakers and Pyrmont eateries will expertly select wines to match lunches, dinners and tastings across the 10 days.”

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It was a pleasant walk from Townhall station all the way past The Star and to the harbour view amongst the piers. If only I had the money to buy a house here..

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#datview

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The park was picnic-rugged with people when I arrived, all in the sun shine and thank goodness for that!

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The food stalls were close to the stage and the first things I passed. People were lining up but I wanted to see the wine and food first!

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Firstly you had to buy some tokens – $20 for a souvenir glass and 5 tokens, which is pretty good considering that a normal glass of wine these days in a restaurant is $7-8? Just keep in mind that these are samples though.

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Ok, this tomato, pesto, olive, chilli varieties of feta are divine. Buy some if you like feta. Has anyone tried Persian feta? That’s amazing too. #cheeseloversdiet

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There was plenty of wine on sale by the case and who wouldn’t be tempted to indulge in some on a gorgeous day like this?

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Some varieties of oil were also on sample which brought a touch of Italy to the park.

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You could definitely see the passion in the people who have been breathing and drinking wine at their homes #meetthemaker

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To be honest, I don’t think I’ve ever been to Pirrama Park. It’s delightful. There were seats and enough space for everyone to chill.

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Check out the bottles and even barrels of wine!

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Has anyone tasted Chardonnay Chilli and Garlic Jam? or perhaps Cabernet and Cracked Pepper Wine Jelly? #experimentalflavours

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There were also racks of artwork where people could vote for People’s Choice. The theme was ‘Small is Beautiful.’

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There were even some funky balls where kids could roll around and a inflatable slippery dip for the kids!

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This was definitely a wine-lovers weekend retreat without needing to drive 3.5 hours to Mudgee!!

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Review Rating: =D  =)  =|  =(

Product (Pyrmont Festival – Pirrama Park): =D

Ambience: =D

Service: =)

Value: =D

Would I recommend going to Pyrmont Festival to a friend? If you’re a wine-lover and the outdoors this is perfect for you. It’s my perfect match too!

Would I donate the money saved to a charity? I love markets like this because you literally get to meet the makers. Although it is a long drive for them and they have to wake up before the sun rises, I think markets like this really promote their commitment and passion. You won’t need to buy from supermarkets anymore.

Highlight: I was amazed at how many stalls there were! The more I walked, the more varieties of wine there were! Shame I only did a quick walk around but I would love to do a day-trip to Mudgee soon!

Suggestion of Improvement: There was only one wine token station which was right at one end of the festival. I wished there were two stations just in case I casually decided to buy some cheese and crackers to go with my wine and have a nap in the greenery.

Ends: May 25, 2014

Link: http://www.pyrmontfestival.com.au/

Angela Bee

 

Opening Night Lights – Vivid Sydney

Two words: illuminated faces. Yes, to me that was the common theme in quite a few of the installations at the annual lights spectacular, Vivid Sydney, which opened free to the public yesterday and will be on display until June 9, 2014.

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“Vivid Sydney is a unique annual event of light, music and ideas, featuring many of the world’s most important creative industry forums, a mesmerising free public exhibition of outdoor lighting sculptures and installations, a cutting-edge contemporary music program and the spectacular illumination of Sydney’s iconic architecture including the sails of Sydney Opera House.

Vivid Sydney is where art, technology and commerce intersect.”

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My journey started off at Wynyard Station as I walked towards Martin Place. I think I did a good loop of the area covered by Vivid but you would probably need two nights to cover it all.

The first of our illuminated faces appeared as the first installation where there was a camera and people could adjust their face according to the centre piece. Clever and arty.

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We also went past the ‘rare and exotic winter (sky) flower’ made luminous by lights.

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Colour3 is a space filled with industrial water tanks illuminated with LED lights where Sydney’s many food trucks were present including: Eat Art Truck, Poklol, Agape Organic, Jafe Jaffles, Bite Size Delights, Woofys and Cantina Mobil.

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At MLC Centre, they transformed the normally odd shaped food court into something called ‘The Urban Tree Project’. Well, more of a garden with a massive tree with bugs and slugs crawling about.

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There was this massive dome, too.

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Intel had a ‘catch the blue butterfly’ competition but it was ultimately up to luck because everyone ‘caught’ it. #toostressful

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The display they had was beautiful though.

We then walked back down the other side of Martin Place where the business people had their Friday night drinks at the Colour3 Pop Up bar. So jelly. #cantwaittilimwhitecollar

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Ok, my friend and I were deeply contemplating if we wanted to get Messina. Everyone, literally EVERYONE around us was holding a white tub filled with goodness. The camera guys were there and this would be our possibly first and last chance to get some special Psychedelic Psundaes without waiting! Literally 30 seconds for Messina #quickestMessinaserviceever

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Yup, we decided on the Silly Cone Chips. It has delicious mango sorbet that actually takes like a mango, coconut sorbet- which is alright.. and they really need to drizzle more blue berry poopping candy! I love that stuff! The choco chips were pretty nice and the banana caramel was more like a mousse inside a cone. Was it worth $10? I’m not too sure.. you could get half a litre for $10 at a normal store.

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After sitting down the steps for dessert before dinner we walked towards Circular Quar and checked out their Tetris Bin in front of Custom’s House. You basically had to throw in a piece of rubbish when the white light circled towards you and to put down an object. It was kinda fun but didn’t know which shape to expect.

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Custom’s House was the same as last year. It required someone to dance to the beat so the colours on the house would appear. #samesame

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Heading towards Museum of Contemporary Art (MCA), these funky little cicles got the kids rollin’ and screamin’.

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Next to it were buzzing butterflies if you clapped.

Oh, and of course, ‘Strictly Sydney’… really?

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The DF (dance floor) was a popular one for the kiddies too.

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#HiRay gave the opportunity for onlookers to ring a giant bell to keep the lights up on this display.

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Ah! We finally reached the visually appealing MCA after going through all these installations. There were heaps more but I’m just giving you a quick taste!

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And if you ever get stuck, there are information booths with maps to let you know where each display is. It’s best if you just follow the crowd (:

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So we kinda decided we needed solid dinner after sharing a Messina sundae at The Rocks. There were plenty of food stalls and some serious cooking machines.

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I decided on the japanese (made by korean) pancakes with seafood and gyoza! It looked like heaven and when I was walking to MCA to sit down everyone’s eyes were glancing at it! It was pretty yummy!! Might I add the hot dogs looked HUGE and were $10.

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Walking towards Overseas Passenger Terminal, we passed through a cherry blossom

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another facial light

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#vividsydney

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and the most picture-worthy installation- blue hexagoned tunnel.

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There was a massive line to go in but just walk right to the end and you’ll see it without queuing.

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How could I miss the iconic Opera House? This year was better than the random people doing random moves last year! I didn’t really understand last year’s but I loved the designs this year. There was a lightning storm, arty, colourful pattery things.. It changes every day so be sure not to miss it (although I don’t think anyone can..?)

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The buildings in the CBD were also part of the display as they were lighted up and there was a walky person hoping from building to building.

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Every Vivid needs a musical touch! Last year’s was the piano and this year’s is the xylophone !

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When I first saw this I thought they were rabbits but someone then mentioned that they were kangaroos! It’s like we’ve gone into Alice in Wonderland with these blown up animals!

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A second round of food trucks were closer to the Bridge

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and also a big screen of The Spirit of Patyegarang, which brings to life, and light a fascinating story from our country’s past!

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We walked until we were at Walsh Bay and could finally see the other side of the Harbour Bridge. Didn’t the mX say that Bridge-Climbers were asked to put on lighted vests? I think I saw them earlier in the evening…

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There are also light displays in Darling Harbour, towards the Opera House, Sydney Uni,, Carriageworks and other places. This took my friend and I three hours to do. There are so many pit stops and it’ll be a lights fantasy to your eyes. Light up your day by going to #VividSydney

Review Rating: =D  =)  =|  =(

Product (Vivid Lights Sydney): =D

Ambience: =D

Service: =D

Value: =D

Would I recommend going to Vivid Sydney to a friend? I think I went 7 times last year and I really liked this year’s too. I keep coming back and there is always something I’ve missed out/ haven’t noticed. Defs come, especially if you’re a tourist (you can even be one in your own city!)

Would I donate the money saved to my chosen charity? Is there a charity out there that supplies electricity to homes that don’t have any? I’m having difficulty finding one..

Highlight: Oh defs the displays. Those lucky bums who work around Martin Place and Circular Quay will have the best views. Grab some dinner from The Rocks and sit yourselves in front of the MCA with the Opera House in the background.

Suggestion of Improvement: we. need. more. bins. More. Tetris. Bins. TY. and paybe more seating areas so everyone can soak in the views. It’s crowded so be prepared to walk!

Ends: June 9, 2014

Link: http://www.vividsydney.com/

Angela Bee

$15 Pizza or Pasta for Two – Dulcis Domus

Pizza. Pasta. Pizza. Pasta. The Italian choice is yours for $15 for two varieties with a soft drink or juice at Dulcis Domus, opposite UTS.

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“Dulcis Domus translates to ‘sweet home’ in Latin, and it’s this type of comfortable environment that the team aim to bring to diners. Centrally located in Broadway, diners can expect Mediterranean fare as well as cafe-style snacks and beverages for smaller appetites. Open for breakfast, lunch and dinner, Dulcis Domus is a licensed venue and specialises in wood-fired pizzas, and a range of pasta, meat and seafood options.”

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You know that place we used to call The Clare? Right next to that is a restaurant that opened up earlier this year and the place looks fancy compared to the cheap Vietnamese roll and pho place, or even the Broadway Bar next door. I guess it aims to attract all those new business people at the Living Mall, right?

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Anyways, the staff seemed pretty casual and I spotted some home made pasta not the side.

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The room has a dark but classy vibe to it. Modern and clean. We got seated  and were handed over the Groupon menus to look over. There were soft drinks or apple or orange juice as an alternative. I love the lights at the ceiling!

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.. as well as the nice hints of vintage here and there. I don’t know why but I realised that we were listening to the coffee machine go off whilst waiting for our meals. #needingtowakeup #coffeefix

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Firstly, we ordered the Cappello di Napoleone. Essentially, it was half a calzone and half margherita. Holy crap the calzone was delicious! I wished we got a whole one because the generosity of the ricotta, ham, salami and peppers was to like cheesey goodness poured into my belly.

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Because I used to work in a pizzeria, I’m not too sure the base was up to my standards but it wasn’t burnt or anything. Give me more!

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The ‘Ravioli Alla Casereccia’ was drowned in olive oil and tomatoes so that made the dish very filling. I think I ate 2 pieces and I was full but I kept on powering on because the pasta was amazing! Although there wasn’t as much pasta as I wished, it was still quite tasty with the mushrooms and tomato.

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My orange juice came in a jarred jar but I think it was just fro me bottle. I would’ve expected freshly squeezed since the normal price is $4!!!! You could buy 2-3 litres of juice at the local supermarket! Ohwell what can you do when its only $7.50.

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Great classy place and I hear that they have one metre pizzas! Keep Calm and Drink Wine #lifelessons

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Review Rating: =D  =)  =|  =(

Product ($15 wood-fire pizza or pasta for two with drink): =)

Ambience: =)

Service: =)

Value: =D

Would I recommend Dulcis Domus to a friend? For this deal, it is really hard to beat. I don’t know how big their profit margins are on this one.. especially the pizzas with plenty of toppings. Definitely buy it if it comes up again and I guess the prices there are standard prices at normal pizzerias ($15 for small, $25 for large).

Would I donate the money spent to a chosen charity? Yes. I would shout someone from OzHarvest.

OzHarvest is a non-denominational charity that rescues excess food which would otherwise be discarded. This excess food is distributed to charities supporting the vulnerable in Sydney, Adelaide, Brisbane, Melbourne, Gold Coast and Newcastle.

Highlight: Calzone pizza! Fresh out of the oven is the best time to have a piping hot pizza! MM!!

Suggestion of Improvement: It would’ve been nicer if the waitress gave us our drinks to have before we got our meal. We kinda forgot about the drinks because the food was delicious! Could have some improvement with the drinks and probably less oil in the pasta and have more actual pasta on the plate please!

Ends: October 23, 2014

Groupon: https://www.groupon.com.au/deals/sydney/dulcis-domus/718257681

Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/DulcisDomusRestaurant

Angela Bee

Dulcis Domus on Urbanspoon

Hard to Swallow the Truth about Healthy Eating – Think Act Change

The Australian Museum was a hub for panelists such as Sarah Wilson from I Quit Sugar, Alexx Stuart from Food Revolution Day, Jess Miller from Grow It Local, Thea Soutar from Youth Food Movement and Dom O’Neill from GRUB Butchery to discuss the Food Revolution at 6:30pm on Tuesday May 13, 2014.

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“Diet related illnesses are on the rise, cooking skills are dropping and people seem more confused than ever before about what healthy eating actually means. It’s time to get back. Basics when it comes to food…”

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Last time I went to the Australian Museum was to go to Jurassic Lounge. Guests went through the side door on the left and our names were on the list from Eventbrite.

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What I loved about the ticketing was that there was a section for Students/Unemployed! Thank you!! Saved me $5 so I bought my tickets for $11.59. #unemploymentisarealstatusfinally

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Fashionably early me arrived there at 6:30 and a nice lady gave me a Mountain Goat beer. Needed it after a busy day interning at Cancer Council.
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There were a range of meatballs that included pork and beef thanks to Grub Butchery.
Think Act Change - photo 4For the nibbles like me, I enjoyed the vegetable sticks with pesto, nuts and raw chocolate in chilli, ginger, and others from RawC, Eat Me Chutney and Rawsome Chocolate.Think Act Change - photo 5

I actually knew some of the people who attended  and some at I didn’t know would attend! It was a great time to generally talk about what we thought about the movement and what we thought would happen on the panel.

At around 7ish, we gathered in a small theatre. I think there was around 120 of us.

Firstly, Avis talked about her personal experience with food and how it affects her body. I don’t know if you’ve noticed but I feel like that the older I’ve got, the more people I know with dietary requirements.

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Sadly the audience didn’t really have an influence on the discussion of panellists including Alexx Stuart from Jamie Oliver Food Revolution Day, Jess Miller, Thea Soutar from Youth Food Movement, Sarah Wilson from I Quit Sugar, and Dom from Grub Butchery.

Avis lead the discussion about knowing what gluten free means, food wastage, growing produce, how food affects health, palm oil, baby coconuts…

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Everyone can change. No, doesn’t mean that in one day I’m going to buy organically, use leftovers and possibly cook every single meal. Changes occur slowly and in my opinion, it’s a gradual lifestyle change.
My suggestion: figure out what your body agrees and disagrees with (in terms of veg, protein, carbs etc) and slowly adjust. Make going to the markets a weekly catchup win your girlfriends, do what Sarah Wilson did and collect leftover bones from meat and make it into a stew to give back to her friends, and start cooking at least once a day.

The discussion was really helpful in that every panelist was extremely knowledgeable (as expected) but they also had a real passion and are where they are out of their own experience.

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“Arm yourself with knowledge so people can’t bullshit you” – Grub Butchery

I think the quote pretty much applies to everything but it’s ever so true!

At the end of it Avis asked everyone to give a piece of advice:
Dom: ask questions and make little changes
Sarah: minimise waste and have fun, quitting sugar is a way of quitting processed food
Thea: ask yourself why you buy the produce you do now, share food with friends
Jess: grow something (preferably not from Bunnings because the gold specks in the soil aren’t ideal so it’s not your fault if the plant dies!!!)
Alexx: let go of guilt and get excited about what you can do!
Avis: be a role model and not judgemental

Great food for thought there 🙂

Review Rating: =D  =)  =|  =(

Product (Think Act Change meetup): =D

Ambience: =D

Service: =)

Value: =D

Would I recommend going to Think Act Change meetup to a friend? If you are passionate about food and wanting to make a change then this is the place for you!

Would I donate the money I saved to a nominated charity?

“YFM aims to be a nation-wide movement that brings young people together around food.   We strive to make our generation aware of their power as conscious consumers by building understanding and value for the food we eat. We also aspire to be a collective voice for young Australians so that together we can have our say in the decisions that impact our food future.”
Highlight: learning that gluten is the protein in grains. No, not in bread. It was pretty awesome having Sarah Wilson and her experience with food. She’s even been consulting for Unilever! It’s amazing that supermarkets are slowly following the food trend, hopefully!
Suggestion of improvement: I wished everyone in the audience was allowed to take part in the discussion, whether it may be collating a series of questions given by the audience like Q and A, which may make it more engaging? But other than that well organised. Oh, and I wished people stuck around afterwards. The crowd seemed to disperse quickly.
Ends: Think Act Change Meetup meets once a month

Mother’s Day exclusive La Dolce Vita screening – Castle Towers

I gave my mum the red carpet experience yesterday thanks to Castle Towers Management, with two free tickets (for mum and I ) to a Mother’s Day exclusive screening of La Dolce Vita at VMAX.

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Read your emails!!!!!!!!!!

“As a Castle Towers VIP Indulge member you are invited to an exclusive screening of 1960 classic La Dolce Vita for Mother’s Day. A double pass to this exclusive screening is available to the first 125 VIP Indulge members to RSVP!

The screening will take place on Saturday May 10 from 10am at Vmax Event Cinemas. Upon arrival, guests will receive complimentary champagne, morning tea, a gift bag and popcorn and drink to enjoy throughout the film!”

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Just an FYI- you can sign up for FREE here.

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The best feeling is when you know you’ve already ‘bought’ your mum a present for the much anticipated Mother’s Day. Honestly, how many of you kids stretch your minds inside-out not know what to give your mum every year? Luckily I received this email and before I knew it I had two complimentary tickets.

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Management told us to arrive 5-10 minutes before and indeed we did at 9:51 and there was a neat line leading towards Cinema 1.

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There were some Roman-inspired statues heading inside with plenty of green vines to get us into the Italian mood.

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Oh, and how could you ever not have a bicycle to set into the Italian theme?

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I was so surprised that there were a delightful range of scones with jam and whipped cream, cakes, pastries and quiches to enjoy for morning tea! I wished I didn’t have breakfast beforehand!! For me, the quiches and scones were the best.

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What I’ve learnt from organising uni events is that most of the time only 50% of people actually come to the event. There was tons of leftovers and they even encouraged us to eat while we were watching the three hour movie.

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Next to the food stand there were a few vintage and cute chairs and tables…

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with a joyful three-person band singing!! I thought I was transported into the countryside of Italy!

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Then I made my way up towards the champagne and orange juice table.. oh yeeeeeeeeeaaaah. I had my champers topped with OJ for the cocktail touch.

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My mum, grandma and I then walked up into the seats. OK, I must admit I don’t go to the cinemas these days because its so expensive and I’m very bad at concentrating on a movie for an extended period of time.. but VMAX is amazing! It wasn’t quite Gold Class but the seats are coupled together with extra wide comfort and even space to put our glass of champagne on the edge.

There was even boxes of popcorn, a bottle of Mountain Franklin water and a goodie bag waiting for us at ours seats.

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I felt so overwhelmed!!! There was enough time to have a chat amongst ourselves and the movie started at 10:20.

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At first it was all in Italian and no one could understand anything!! It was hilarious and it challenged me to remember all my Italian words from Year 11 and 12..haha.

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Oh well, the subtitles were on but La Dolce Vita is a long ass movie. I think around 50% of people had already left before it finished including us…

When we got back home we had a good look at what was inside: gift cards from a variety of clothing shops, perfume samples, shower gels, Roman Holiday DVD and just tons of magazines and everything! Crazy!!

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It was heaps of fun while it lasted and definitely worth signing up for those VIP emails. It’s FREE!

Review Rating: =D  =)  =|  =(

Product (Free morning tea, champagne): =D

Ambience: =D

Service: =D

Value: =D

Would I recommend signing up for Castle Towers Indulge VIP? I know we all get overwhelmed with emails so if you’re in the area, definitely. Their weekly emails have a ‘special offers’ section which takes up a majority of the email.

Would I donate the money I saved towards a charity? “The National Breast Cancer Foundation is the leading community-funded organisation in Australia raising money for research into the prevention and cure of breast cancer.

Since the National Breast Cancer Foundation was established in 1994, more than $105 million has been awarded to fund over 370 Australian-based research projects to improve the health and wellbeing of all those affected by breast cancer.”

With bottomless champagne and a hearty morning tea, I think this experience would’ve been no doubt more than $40 per person. If I was working I would give that one off donation to NBCF.

Highlight: The food was delicious, the atmosphere was delightful, the seating was comfortable and both my mum and my grandma were boasting about this to all their friends. Loved it.

Suggestion of improvement: Everything was fabulous maybe except the film? I think it normally goes for around three hours and my attention span is not that great.. It would’ve been nicer with a fun girly film? Thank goodness Castle Towers doesn’t have a three hour parking limit!!

Ends: May 10, 2014

Link: http://www.castletowers.com.au/whats-on/events

Angela Bee

50% off Everything Clearance- SES

50% percent off clothing is the massive clearance sale at every store at SES that everyone should go to as soon as they can.

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“SES Fashions is a successful ladies retail store located across suburbs within Sydney, Canberra and Gold Coast, operating to provide qualit clothes and accessories to our customers at the best available price, offering the latest up to date fashion trends, as well as basic tops and bottoms.”

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This weekend I visited both Hurstville and Castle Towers stores to maximise my chances of finding something I liked… even though I didn’t need anything. #shoppingproblems

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The Castle Hill shop is massive. Lets just say that it has expanded and takes up the space of two shops.

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There were jumpers for those who always avoid winter and go overseas to summer countries but can’t go this year because they’re too poor (me).

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Flamboyant cardies for those self confessed hipsters (me – I mean they’ll go well with a plain pair of pants and singlet top!)

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Colourful pants for those themed parties like dressing up as power rangers (me).

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Cheaper blazers for those at work or doing unpaid internships (me).

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Nice cutesy dresses for those who want summer 24/7 (me).

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Maxi dresses were only $9.99 but I wished I was tall to wear nice long clothing.

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And all for the discounted price off the original price (not the yellow sticker). Like all places, it was pretty hard finding a size 8 or 10 so just be mindful that common sizes do go quickly.

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You also can’t go wrong with $2.49 singlets (yes, we snagged a few basics).

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Like most shops you can try your goods before but beware of the lines and I suggest everyone abide by the 4 items or less rule please!

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Just be aware of the 2% surcharge when paying with credit cards. They know how to deal with these minor expenses well! Oh, and of course no exchanges or refunds!

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Anyways, there was a huge variety at the Castle Hill store and same with Hurstville.

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Review Rating: =D  =)  =|  =(

Product (50% off everything at SES): =D

Ambience: =)

Service: =)

Value: =D

Would I recommend going to SES’ 50% off clearance sale? Yup yup!! If you can’t get yourself  to the factory outlets then this will be as close as it gets before we hit winter!!

Would I donate the money saved to a clothing charity? Remember the Smith Family and those huge bins we has to throw our clothes into back in primary school? Or even now when you give your clothes to op shops like The Red Cross and Vinnies? Definitely giving my old clothes there to recycle and give to others.

Highlight: I liked how there was a selection of winter clothes. I know a lot of shops are trying to get rid of their summer stock and its just not a necessity since the freezing cold has already come upon us!

Suggestion of improvement: those change rooms need monitoring. It says on the sign 4 items or less and I saw these women bring in more. We were left waiting for ages…

Ends: I think either Mon or Tues this week…

Link: http://www.sesfashion.com.au/

Angela Bee

$7 Arepa, fruit juice, coffee – La Latina Chatswood

I’m shamelessly going to promote two of the best countries in the world- Columbia and Venezuela… this time not for their nature, but their food in Chatswood. $7 for an arepa and fruit smoothie.

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La Latina aims to present authentic South American flavours, with a menu of Venezuela and Colombian favourites including arepas and empanadas and sides including cassava chips and fried plantain. Wherever possible, La Latina uses local and organic ingredients, for maximum flavour and authenticity. Gluten-free options are available.

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The little joint itself is on the way to Chatswood Chase on 82 Archer Street at the big intersection.

Ok, let’s face it. I miss Latina and South America so when I saw this on Groupon deal my jaw dropped. Where else would I get a papa relleno, plantains, yuca and empanada? No one else understands my words!!

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The salsa music was in the background, the counter front of Colombian goodies. My Colombian family would be so proud of me right now.

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I looked in the freezer section and they have yuca croquettes, rellenos de queso, ice blocks… Mmm! Yuca is a type of potato and rellenos de queso is cheese filled balls of potato and rice goodness.

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Also loving the simplicity of chairs and seating.

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Check out the bottled caps too and the salsa- yum! I miss little bottles of salsa at a dining table as a staple.

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I love the pictures on the menu. I’m sorry this blog is about my past travel experiences but this one time I had a 12 hour wait in Venezuela and it’s not be best country to travel in because it’s pretty communist so the advice the police gave to me was: stay at the bus station where there were lots of people and protection. I sold arepas for a ridiculous 50 cents or something with this family and it was so much fun! Each person gets either beef, pork, chicken or whatever and put as much salsa and salad on top. It’s wonderful!

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Here was their full menu and yeah, not as cheap as Venezuela!! I chose the shredded beef arepa but there was also chicken avocado on the menu which is not really what you’d see normally…

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This experience was a little different of course but similar indeed. I think i waited for around 20 minutes? The lady there was by herself for the first ten but I guess it does take some time and there were a few customers. She made four at once in the hot plate.

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In typical Venezuelan fashion, the arepa came out wrapped in aluminium foil and also in a paper bag because I asked for it to be taken away.

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You could tell that the arepa was slow cooked and had this nice crunch on the tops and bottoms. Arepas are made from maise, which is a corn, and the shredded beef was not dry and you could see the stringy cheese melted in between.

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They are quite dense and extremely filling.

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For the drinks, it was so hard to choose between soursop, lulo and feijoa. I remember having soursop and lulo in Colombia because I remember going to this huge supermarket with Cec, my Colombian host mum, and raiding their produce section tot try everything I’d never seen before.

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I opted for feijoa this time round, which was slightly sour but still delicious. From memory lulo is very sweet and the lady working there said they actually import the fruits from Colombia.

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Because I went on a Tuesday (and this also applies on Wednesdays), i received a free small Colombian coffee. Surprisingly this tasted absolutely amazing. Great coffee and totally unexpected!

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I used to work in Chatswood and had no idea this place existed! There are so many asian eateries but I’m wanting to come back for the tamales and empanadas!!

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Review Rating : =D  =)  =|  =(

Product ($7 Arepa, fruit juice and coffee): =D

Ambience: =)

Service: =|

Value: =D

Would I recommend the $7 deal with arepa, fruit juice and coffee to a friend? Yes yes yes! If you want to try food from Colombia and Venezuela, there aren’t many places that do so! There’s a place called ‘Boca’ near Messina but thats all I can think of. Do you guys know any?

Would I donate the money saved to my charity? I really can’t believe how much and how full I was after this meal. This is definitely my moneys worth. If you can’t make your way north of South America, I’ll give you $7 to try it.

Highlight: the hot arepa with its delicious fillings. Ok, I must admit, maise isn’t for everyone but when its cooked so that there is that crunch, it doesn’t matter. As you eat your way down you will probably notice that it gets a little soggy at the bottom as you do with burritos, etc. Have a go and see how it goes!

Suggestion of improvement: the wait was slightly long although there was only one person cooking and serving. I felt bad because I saw two other people wait for a long time and a family needing to rush off but didn’t have their coffees served. Once someone came I got a coffee straight away but the drink and arepa took some time. Maybe a little ‘could you please come back in 15 minutes’ or ‘it will be a 15-20 minute wait if thats ok’ would’ve been nice.

Ends: October 13, 2014

La Latina Website: http://https//www.facebook.com/LaLatina2012

Groupon: http://www.groupon.com.au/deals/sydney/la-latina/718215944

Angela Bee

La Latina on Urbanspoon

$5 for 2 coffee-caramel buns and drink – Pappa Roti

Fresh out of the oven, into a paper bag and then into your hands could be two perfectly rounded caramel-coffee buns and a hot or cold drink from Pappa Roti for just $5.

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Pappa Roti is known for their crispy, fluffy, fragrant coffee cream coated bun with buttery filling. They’ve popped up at a few places including Macquarie Centre, Blacktown and on the way to UTS from Central station.

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From Event Cinemas, walk down the escalators and head immediately to the right. Pappa Roti’s bright lights and desserts will attract your attention. This voucher is only available at Macquarie Centre though.

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Pappa Roti is not just the buns, but the ice cream range…

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And desserts too!

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And please don’t forget about these tempting Malaysian drinks.

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Today’s deal was two buns with a drink worth $5.40. Oh man, it smells so good! I’ve been here a couple of times and every time they make the buns straight away and they are steaming hot from the oven. The person kindly asked if we wanted the buns before the drink.

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Eating any kind of breads, cakes, muffins without any cooling time is the best in my opinion. The coffee on the top crisped up extremely well, forming a semi hard surface so when we initially bit into the middle, the munch on the crust formed was evident. Look how perfectly round this bun is!

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It was extremely fluffy inside and quite sweet too! The centre was magic. If you like melted butter, then this treat is for you! Look at the yellow ness! Yup, one bun was eaten even before receiving our drink #bunmagic

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My mum ordered the Milo Godzilla. The difference between the milo dinosaur and godzilla was that the Godzilla has ice cream. It was massive compared to the other drinks available and my mum scooped up the ice cream and devoured it. I drank the milo because I don’t exactly fancy vanilla ice cream…

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This was a super sweet morning tea but a super sweet deal! Thanks for bringing a taste of Malaysia to us! I hear they have Nasi Lemak and Chendol too!!

Review Rating : =D  =)  =|  =(

Product ($5 for two coffee-caramel buns and drink): =D

Ambience: =)

Service: =)

Value: =D

Would I recommend the $5 for two coffee-caramel bun and drink to a friend? Yes yes yes! If you live near Macquarie Centre then this is for you! My mum has already bought another one for her mum when she comes to Sydney so defs.

Would I donate the money saved to my charity organisation? A coffee-caramel bun is normally $2.50 each so we are getting a free drink. Something cold and refreshing needs to go with the combo so I would say $3 would go towards a charity.

Highlight: the tops of the coffee- caramel bun. If you know me well, I’ll eat muffin tops only. I love going from a hard to a light texture and the tops of these are amazing. Love!

Suggestion of improvement: have more branches in local areas and share the bun love.

Ends: July 8, 2014

Link: http://www.groupon.com.au/deals/sydney/papparoti/718201795

Angela Bee

Pappa Roti on Urbanspoon

Pappa Roti on Urbanspoon

Update (8/5/2014): Today my mum went again and she said that the bun wasn’t as great because it was flat, a tad burnt and the buttery centre was not in the middle. Also, we tried the Bandung (rosewater drink) and that tasted extremely artificial. Stick with the Godzilla!