Seeing Anason’s Burak Cebi in action, effortlessly breezing around the restaurant’s buzzing dining space, laughing and joking with diners, and looking after his team - it's easy to assume that Burak is a career hospitality professional. However, he’s anything but.
It may be a new restaurant, but many of The Meat & Wine Co's mainstays remain, such as the use of heritage dining elements, and a familiar selection of contemporary dishes with a touch of South African flavours.
It might be a green papaya's throw away from another four Thai restaurants slinging pad thai and choo chee curries, but there are some standout dishes at this local favourite on Willoughby Road that make it worth a visit.
If you’ve eaten your way along Dotonbori, Osaka’s pedestrian-only thoroughfare for street food, you’ll want to reminisce at Osaka Bar with its impressive renditions of takoyaki, kushikatsu and okonomiyaki.
“So what kind of food do you like?” Yes, you’re in luck - you've got front row seats to a real live first date. And for the rest of your meal, it's impossible not to have your ears pricked for questions around work, travel, play and family; let alone keep an intelligible, flowing conversation going with your poor dining partner.
Sushi train... sushi-go-round... kaiten-zushi... whatever you like to call it, we're all familiar with the wonderful concept of sitting in front of a conveyer belt, watching plates of sushi pass before our hungry eyes, and picking off the ones that look the best before someone else down the line gets a chance.
At school, I always wondered what it was like to be one of those kids that moved around with their families every few years (or less). Having grown up in little ol’ Canberra, I wondered how much more of the world they’d seen; how much collateral knowledge they’d picked up on the way.
Travelling overseas always gives you a chance to get a bit of perspective on things – I guess being removed from your usual surroundings gets rid of the blinkers that influence your day-to-day thoughts and decisions, and gives you a bit of cognitive freedom to explore new possibilities.
As a kid, I never had much of a sweet tooth – I hardly ever ordered dessert when we went out for dinner, and mum even says she used to find Easter eggs from two years ago when she cleaned my room! I’d have happily traded away a chocolate bar for a packet of chips any day of the week.
The words ‘Grease Monkey’ are on everyone’s lips at the moment – and judging by the number of Instagram posts about them, so is the taste of their delicious burgers. If you haven’t heard, Grease Monkey is the newest Braddon hotspot (at least until something new comes along), located on the corner of Lonsdale and Elouera Street.
The Chairman Group has been one of Canberra’s hospitality mainstays over the last two decades. Since opening in 1992, the iconic Chairman & Yip restaurant in Civic has been serving up refined yet honest Cantonese food, attracting a loyal following of politicians and suits along the way. In 2008, the group (headed by Josiah Li) added the Lanterne Rooms to their stable, followed by Malamay in 2012; and both restaurants have been great successes.
Every year, sometime during May, Canberrans suddenly find that they're no longer able to engage in small talk without mentioning the impending doom that is winter. Conversations with co-workers, baristas and gym receptionists, once littered with witty anecdotes about the past weekend's activities, merely become less formal versions of the weather forecast.