How to get a hangover

I recently celebrated my Birthday. It was mid-week so we did a small cake & dinner with the kids and then for the weekend my Husband organised a night at a hotel in the city as well as dinner. I wasn’t told what hotel or where dinner was going to be…. just when.

My lovely parents were happy to have the kids for a sleepover and once we dropped them off we were on our way.

I didn’t find out until we arrived to the hotel that we were staying at the Park Hyatt in Melbourne, in fact the hotel is right next door to the church we got Married in so considering we did nothing for our Wedding Anniversary in April it was kinda nice to be so close to a special part of our lives.

The Park Hyatt Melbourne.

Park Hyatt MelbourneThe church we were married in almost 10 years ago!

Lutheran Church Melbourne

So we got all dolled up for dinner and I had no idea where we were going so I wore heels. High heels. High heels that I have worn only on two other occasions and heels that really bloody hurt. We had to walk. So yeah…dinner was at 6pm so we walked veeeeery veeeeery slooooooowly to arrive at Grossi Florentino!

Grossi Florentino Grill

Yay!!

We had a Bellini to start which was a little too easy to drink.

Bellini at Grossi Florentino.

Grossi Florentino Bellini

I couldn’t take pics of our food because the lighting was quite dark in the spot we were seated. Our entrée was delicious – pork & fennel sausages & bruschetta to share.

For our mains my Husband ordered a steak with a side of roasted potatoes. I got the mussels with kalamata olives and a tomato broth. I scoffed my dinner and I thought I might be hungry later but I was ok. I also ordered extra bread to soak up that broth.

My darling Husbands in his gorgeous suit & pochette from P. Johnston Tailors.

P Johnson Suit & Pochette

We both drank a glass of Malbec with our dinner. I used to be a huge red wine drink but I had horrible hangovers when I do drink it.

Finally dessert, we weren’t going to get anything, then we were, then we weren’t and then our waitress suggested the donuts. So we got a serve of the donuts to share and good heavens it was amazing. So I was carrying some pretty heavy duty carb bloatage (is that a word?..if not I just invented it…that word is mine!).

I also had a dessert wine which I cannot for the life of me remember the name of but it was amazing. Yum yum!!

Ok, so dinner is over we decided to head over to Lily Blacks for cocktails. Because we had our dinner so early (they have times for dining and the first session started at 6pm) Lily Blacks was pretty empty – a few small groups of people having a drink and we actually preferred it that way. We got our drinks straight away, got a booth to sit at and could talk & hear each other. WIN WIN & WIN.

Lily Blacks Cocktail menu.

Lily Blacks Cocktail Menu

So the first cocktail for the night was Sinnerman – rum, housemade fig & cinnamon bitters, almond & lemon. It was served in a wine glass and this was really refreshing. I enjoyed it and was a little too easy to drink. My Husband had a G&T.

Sinnerman.

Lily Blacks SinnermanSinnerman.

Lily Blacks SinnermanGin & Tonic.

Gin & Tonic

Then it happened. I spied a certain cocktail that I wanted to try in the wild. A non Alex version of an Old Fashioned. It even had it’s own special page, dedicated to variations of Old Fashions so we had to give it a go. Both versions were rum based. Carl got the Cherry & Kola Bitters version and I got the Fig & Cinnamon Bitters version.

Lily Blacks Old Fashioned cocktail menu.

Lily Blacks Old Fashioned

NO FREAKIN CHERRY….WTF?!?!?!??!

Old Fashioned -two ways.

Lily Blacks Old Fashioned

Hmmm. Nice big ass rock of ice in my glass, huge rind of orange that gave both of our cocktails that amazing citrus overtone but no cherry. Nothing. I was sad but I still drank my cocktail. We both agreed of the two, my cocktail tasted a bit better but amazingly we both agreed that my version using Sailor Jerry Spiced Rum was better….Yay Yay. My version just has an added level of depth to it. A nice finish on your palette to be all fancy.

Once we finished our drinks we decided to head over to Liverpool Street where Double Happiness is located. I wanted to try one more cocktail and then we could head back to the hotel so I could relieve my poor aching feet. My Husband walked and I hobbled to Double Happiness and again a few patrons but we got a spot to sit and grabbed a menu to pick our drink drink.

Double Happiness cocktail menu.

Double Happiness Cocktail MenuDouble Happiness – My Husband ordering our drinks.

Double Happiness Melbourne

I ordered Mr Foo which was made up of Chilli vodka, coriander, fresh lime and dry ginger. I liked this cocktail – a bit of an acquired taste. It’s spicy and I actually joked that the only thing missing from this drink was a bit of soy, some noodles, veges and maybe some chicken. I use lime, ginger, chilli & coriander when I make stir-fry. If only I had been brave enough to turn it into a cocktail – sans the food bits.

Hundred Flower Movement & Mr Foo.

Double Happiness Cocktails

My Husband ordered the Hundred Flower Movement with sake, rose syrup, lemon and peach bitters. My Husbands choice was delicious. I could have had about ten of these. I love it when they are easy to drink (doesn’t everyone!).

For our second choice, My Husband decided to have another Hundred Flower Movement and I went with Communist Manifesto with tequila, tamarind, lime, mandarin & Szechuan salt. The edge of the glass was rimmed with the Szechuan salt and this drink was dominated by the mandarin and was fabulous to drink. I really liked this one.

Hundred Flower Movement & Communist Manifesto.

Double Happiness Cocktails

Finally it was time to head back to our hotel. No more drinking because it’s expensive and yeah…no one would want to get a horrible hangover tomorrow…would they!!!

The Windsor Hotel with it’s amazing coloured light display.

The Windsor Hotel Melbourne

To top off my amazing night – a documentary on Elizabeth Taylor and her precious jewels. I was captivated and couldn’t believe the history behind La Peregrina Pearl that she was gifted. Oooh to have a collection like that!!!

My plan was to sleep in until at least 9am. With 2 pre-school aged kids they go to bed quite early in the evening and wake at 7am. I go to bed late and wake early. Instead of my lovely sleep in I woke up at 5am with the worst hangover ever. Needless to say every little bit of water I drank was purged from my body and I felt like crap for the rest of the day.

Bleugh…this is what a hangover looks like. I am wearing a gorgeous black vintage shirt dress with a pink cropped cardi by Revival both eBay purchases.

Vintage Shirt DressI felt truly horrible taking this pic and couldn’t even be bothered fixing my cardi.

Erstwilder Brooch

It was about 11.30am before I could keep anything down and the first thing I had was a coffee. That took the edge off my headache and a bacon, egg & cheese toasty from Argos Loves Company in Fitzroy to help my poor tummy.

So all up I had a fantastic Birthday this year, not to mention the amazing first day of Spring Melbourne had. Sunshine, warm air and just a slight breeze (that picked up a bit later in the day).

I love life (even with a shitty hangover!!).

 

Cheers
Alex

Dinner at San Telmo

We had member of my family come to Melbourne from interstate this week and decided that another dinner was on the cards. We chose San Telmo for dinner and oh…what’s this…they serve cocktails…nooooo. What a surprise!!

I have eaten at Sal Telmo before & really enjoyed it. I love empanadas and love alfajores so as long as I get a serve of both then I am happy.

What to have…what to have!!!

San Telmo cocktails

When we arrived I checked out their cocktail menu and ordered the Malvinas Island Ice Tea. I really enjoyed this cocktail, you see on my way into the city it just so happened that Liverpool FC were in Melbourne. So the city was packed (the MCG had 95,000 people watching the friendly game between Liverpool FC and Melbourne Victory) so I had to park the car in a carpark on Little Collins Street, walk to Collins Street then walk to Lonsdale Street and then to Meyers Place which is kinda near Little Collins Street. My point is with all that walking (in heels!!!!) I was tired and hot so my Malvinas Island Ice Tea was the perfect drink to start with.

Malvinas Island Ice Tea (see my cute vintage glass beaded purse!!)

San Telmo cocktails

I drank it a little too quickly. To top things off I had a visit to the Dentist earlier in the day so was in pain & absolutely had to take a panadeine for pain relief, so adding a cheeky cocktail or three helped totally knock out that pain.

Once we were seated at our table I ordered a La Cumparsita. This cocktail blew my mind. Amazing. I had a sip and wished it was served in this glass to the brim. WOW. It was all coffee and caramel and ohhhhhh. So easy to drink and I would have ordered another but I planned on going to sleep later.

La Cumparsita – AHHHmazing cocktail.

San Telmo cocktails

I decided on a final cocktail. Pisco Sour, again another classic cocktail that I can tick off my list of ‘cocktails to try’. This was so nice and a drink that would great in the warmer months.

Pisco Sour – another very tasty cocktail

San Telmo cocktails

Overall I loved all the cocktails that I tried tonight, they are pricey but most cocktails are these days. I can appreciate the effort that goes into making them but I just wish I could have that La Cumparsita cocktail filled in a huge glass!!!

Mmmm Alfajore. Ohh Dulce de leche

San Telmo dessertsMousse de Chocolate

San Telmo dessertsTarta de queso (Cheesecake with poached seasonal fruit & honeycomb)

San Telmo desserts

 

Cheers

Alex

 

The Firehouse

Citrus flavoured drinks were the unexpected theme for the night with all the cocktails I ordered.

Arrrr she be havn’ er share o’ vitamin c to ward off that there scurvy!!! Arrrrr. Ok, that was pretty cheesy pirate talk.

Perhaps because it’s Winter in Australia and every other person has a cold the kind bartender thought it best that we get a top up of vitamin c in all our alcoholic beverages. Ha.

So, a night out with the girls to have a bite to eat, catch up on the goss – child free & see a dear friend of ours that was back in Melbourne for the week saw us at The Firehouse in Ringwood.

We have eaten here a few times, always enjoyed the food. The staff are fantastic & our waitress was brilliant.

Hmmm what would I like to drink tonight?

Cocktails_09

My first drink for the night was the Sherbertini. Wow. Ok…so my friend & I have arrived early our other friends were on their way so we snuck in a cheeky drink and my friend is animatedly telling me a story. My drink is in front of me & I have taken my fair share of pics. My friend has my full attention & I reach for my drink, take a sip and my face erupts into the perfect example of a sour puss – cat bum – squinty – sour face. Even though I couldn’t see it I knew it was funny. My friend squeals with laughter & my eyes water & my saliva glands go into overdrive.

Sherbertini.

Cocktails_01

What a reaction!!! I loved it. I had another sip & this time knew what to expect so the facial reaction was somewhat reduced but this drink smelt like sherbert and tasted very lemony, very tart but the sugar-rimmed edge of the glass helped cut through that tartness. A sipping drink not designed for swallowing in one gulp.

Next on the list was the Raspberry Pisco Sour. Another foamy drink courtesy of egg whites and this was really nice with the raspberry & lime flavour. As I was taking my last sips I was getting these teeny tiny bit of raspberry gems I suppose you could call them in my mouth & it was very moreish. I enjoyed it & would order 10 of them if they weren’t $17 each and made my head cloudy the next day.

Raspberry Pisco Sour.

Cocktails_05

Finally I ordered a jug – yes a jug at $22 each of the Pink Pineapple Mai Tai. My first Mai Tai and it was good. Between 4 people we all got a serve in a glass as pictured and it was nice – perfect Summery drink. I could make this & easily chip away at a jug of this at a bbq or just kicking back on a hot Summers day. Grapefruit juice was the boss in this drink, it kinda overtook the orange & pineapple juice that was also included in the cocktail.

Pink Pineapple Mai Tai being poured from the jug.

Cocktails_06Pink Pineapple Mai Tai.

Cocktails_04

After my 3 drinks I wasn’t drunk. I was happy not tipsy & I felt great. Then I did something stupid. I ordered a glass of wine. Red wine. I love red wine but I probably shouldn’t have had that glass because it made me feel a bit blurghhh. I had the wine with my main meal – the Wagyu Beef Burger that was so tasty and yes it was noticed by everyone on the table that I had been quiet since my meal arrived – too busy eating to talk!!!! Chips & a pickle on the side completed my delicious meal.

Yes – I had a cheeky bite of the pickle BEFORE taking the pic.

Cocktails_03

We shared desserts but I didn’t take any pics of that. We ordered the apple crumble and the chocolate brownie. I only tasted the brownie and omm nom nom. I love anything with salted caramel on it and well..salted caramel ice cream just made this brownie perfect. We ate it all!!

Oh and I included a cheesy selfie – my hair didn’t quite do what I wanted. I put it in hair roller but only for 5 hours or so. About 1 minute after I took the rollers out the curls dropped. Boooooo. So into a pony tail & just a simple forward victory roll.

Cocktails_02As we were leaving the restaurant they had this backlit sign near the entrance.

Cocktails_08

I hope you all had a fabulous Friday night.

Cheers

Alex

 

 

Gin Martini

Yay! My first cocktail post.

 

It’s Friday!!

I don’t drink during the week and save myself for 1 or 2 drinks on a Friday evening with dinner.
Tonight I decided it’s only fitting that I should make my very first cocktail post be a Gin Martini.
I don’t drink them as often as I used to but I still really enjoy slowly sipping on a martini. In particular I really love a dirty martini with 3 olives. A friend of mine introduced me to the dirty martini many years ago. 3 olives are important because it’s kinda like having a meal with your drink. Ha ha!
So, I have listed the recipe I have used below and to make it dirty just add a teaspoon or two (to taste, I guess) of the brine that the olives are sitting in.
I prefer to have something to snack on (other than the olives!) while I drink so tonight I made cheats nachos with guacamole & sour cream.
I have ice & my martini ingredients inside my cocktail shaker.
martini3
Gin Martini Recipe
45ml gin
15ml vermouth
5ml olive brine/olive juice (the stuff the olives were soaking in before you yanked them out of the jar!!!)
Method
Pop some ice in your martini glass if you haven’t chilled it in the fridge already, once you have made up your martini the ice gets the toss and your glass should be nice & cool.
Over ice (more ice) in a cocktail shaker pour all your ingredients. **DON’T SHAKE!** This will break up the ice and water down your martini. Just a gentle stir and then strain it into your ice less martini glass.
martini1
Pop your olives onto a toothpick, toothpick with olives goes into the martini glass and enjoy…responsibly. You have to get up tomorrow and too many of these bad boys will mean a very sore head tomorrow.
See the 3 cheeky olives!!!
martini2
Now for my cheats nachos. This is not a gourmet recipe, this is a slap it together quick meal with extremely stupidly high calorie count and is to be shared with friends or family.
Cheats Nachos
1 bag of your choice of corn chips – I used Doritos
1 jar of salsa – I used the Doritos brand
Jalapeños – The pickled version (you can find them near the olive section in the supermarket)
Cheeeeeese – I had pizza cheese in the fridge so I used that.
Method
Heat the oven, I give it a good 200 degrees Celsius to heat up and then when the nachos are ready to be put in the oven I drop it down to 180/160.
In a heat proof dish, add the corn chips, then add the jar of salsa using a spoon to distribute the salsa evenly.
nachos1
Add the Jalapeños (I cut them to smaller pieces) and then smother with cheese.
nachos2
Stick it in the oven for about 5-10mins – keep your eye on it because the corn chips will burn. If you have a grill option in your oven you may want to turn that on to brown/melt the cheese, but please don’t leave it unattended.
I added homemade guacamole to the nachos when they were out of the oven (mash together avocado+salt+pepper+lime juice+tabasco sauce+chopped coriander) and some sour cream.
nachos3
It’s hot so don’t start scoffing it yet, please let it cool down a little.
Cheers
Alex