6 January 2010

My Delicious Holidays

After finishing my degree on 20 November, I had planned to work on my novel and get it to the completion stage. The good news is that I did manage to write a fair bit before the Christmas period so that I have about 9 days of writing to go before starting the editing process. The bad news, is that recently, I have been distracted by far too many social events...my alibi for not yet having completed my novel's 1st draft.

So here is a snippet of the fun I have been up to.

On 12 December, I attended a lovely housewarming at a friend's place. She lives in Newfarm and her riverside apartment offers gorgeous views of the Story Bridge. Again, it made me seriously consider moving to Newfarm.

Over Christmas, I stayed at my boyfriend's place in Teneriffe. For three days, he cooked delicious food for me and we saw Lovely Bones and Sherlock Holmes at the cinema on Boxing Day.

Apart from the wonderful sets, costumes and witty screenplay, one aspect I most preferred in Sherlock Holmes was Hans Zimmer's playfully engaging soundtrack. It is now one of my favourite soundtracks. I interrupt this post to share with you my top favourite film tracks of all time:

1. Hans Zimmer- The Might of Rome for Gladiator

especially from 1:21 onwards

2. Vangelis - End Titles for Blanderunner

3. Lisa Gerrard - Whale Rider

4. Hans Zimmer - Discombobulate for Sherlock Holmes

5. Mark Isham - Flames for Crash

especially from 2:18 onwards

Now, where were we???

During the new year period, I tried three Brisbane restaurants with a good reputation.

The first one was Belle Epoque at Emporium.
I would have liked this restaurant more if the chef had not chosen to share his fastidious aversion to cooking a well done steak.
I would also have liked it more if the Steak and Frites had arrived heaped up on a plate as in most parts of France, rather than as it did, bite size with the fries served separately in what looked suspiciously like an ashtray.
I lament that this restaurant served to reinforce negative French stereotypes. I can assure you that eating out in places like Lyon, Corsica and Marseilles, is a casual and generous affair. None of this attitude.
I ordered the Bouillabaise. It was delicious with generous portions of fresh seafood. But the saffron aroma was more voluptuous in Bistro Vite's Bouillabaise which I had in Melbourne three years ago.
Overall, lovely rustic decor.

On New Year's Eve, I booked in for a celebratory night at the Hilton. Shane and I had dinner at the Hilton's Atrium buffet restaurant. All the meat dishes were exquisite and I loved the baby bocconcini & tomato salad. My favourite dessert was the cheesecake although I was disappointed with the spongy pavlova.
Breakfast was also fantastic!

Finally yesterday, Shane took me to Garuva in the Valley. This was by far my favourite place this summer. So three cheers for Garuva!

I had not been there for almost five years. I still adore the jungle feel in their lounge with its large animal print cushions laid out all over the floor and the green palms glowing under dim lights. When we arrived, the cocktail lounge was conveniently empty so after one eager sip of my juicy Garuva Ecstasy, I proceeded to crawl onto the stage and do a seductive dance before realising I hated the song. Oh, I forgot to mention that while crawling onto the stage, I was giggling so hard that I choked and began to cough furiously. Basically, Laura and alcohol do not mix.
Anyway, we were then escorted to our draped enclosure in the dark dining area.

Now if you haven't been to Garuva, the dining area consists of low, Asian style tables flanked by couches. Each table area is enclosed by white silky looking drapes suspended from the ceiling. Overall you could be forgiven for imagining that you are in a Japanese gothic story and that the drapes are floating in mid air swaying under ghostly breezes.

Oh dear, I have been distracted by the ambient decor and have not given due attention to the food. Absolutely fantastic. The Baha Beef was tasty and tender, coconut prawns were delicious, I could barely finish the bountiful tempura vegetables and the BBQ fish was one of the best fish I ever had. Overall, 11 out of 10 for meal size, flavour and quality.
Now the only thing I would have liked more of in Garuva, is privacy...

So that's for my dining experiences this summer. If that wasn't enough, I am heading to a film screening/pool party at a friend's place on Friday night. I am very much looking forward to it, everyone is so nice and so positive. I love creative and positive people who are not concerned with matters of consequences. They truly are amazing. Oh, wait, it's not the end. The day after that, I have to submit myself to a photoshoot which I admit I have organised for my vain self. But it will be lots of fun.

I may just be able to write this week but for now, I am still enjoying my delicious holidays.

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