2016 – My Top Ten List

2016top10.jpgDiners I thought it might be a nice way to finish of the year, by listing the Top Ten places we dined at this year.

These are listed in no particular order and are included for a variety of reasons.
If you hover over and click on the name of the restaurant, you will be taken to our blog entry for that establishment.

I’m sure you all know but I want to say again that these reviews are based on our experience on the day. There are so many variables that could change a dining experience but I can only comment on what happened to us the day we went into a certain place.

Carmel’s at McLaren Vale

carmels2Oh there were lots of reasons why we loved Carmel’s!

From the service to the menu, to the way our food was cooked and presented, it was just a fantastic experience.

Carmel’s is the place that gave me the courage to go from ordering my meat medium-rare to rare.

I will also admit that I’m charmed by the McLaren Vale region so that probably has an influence in including Carmel’s in our Top 10 list but even so, there isn’t too much that this restaurant does wrong.

The Unley

IMG_5499We loved The Unley because of many things, one of which was the way it made us feel as we walked in.
Decorated in a modern style, with friendly staff throughout; We really felt welcome here.

Besides all that, the food that came out was presented beautifully, tasted amazing and was generous in size!
Everything we want from a dining establishment!

Portobello

IMG_5560

I can’t go past Portobello as it was one of the first restaurants after I started reviewing, that really left an impression on me.

Even looking at that pasta is making my mouth water – I can remember and almost taste how beautiful that ragu sauce was.

I love when staff are passionate about the place we’re dining at too and the server we had definitely was – telling us about the history of Portobello.

It’s a shame that this restaurant is a little difficult to get to but I really hope people get down there and try it out for themselves.

Le-Riad

FullSizeRender (19)With Le-Riad we became a bit more adventurous.

Instead of the usual Pub or Italian restaurant, we visited a restaurant where the cuisine was Moroccan and we were definitely won over!

The staff treated us and each other like family (and I suspect they were) and were very proud of the food they brought out; and so they should be!

The meat, so tender, so full of flavour. Le Riad was a wonderful dining experience from the moment we walked in, till the moment we walked out.

Lockleys Hotel

FullSizeRender (73)
There were a few things that set Lockleys Hotel apart for us.

Firstly, the service was just amazing. We had arrived early and yet the servers went above and beyond to accommodate us, even when we said we didn’t mind.

We just weren’t expecting to be wowed and yet we were.

We were also impressed with the amount of diners who must have been regulars as many of them spoke to the servers as if they knew them.
Besides all of this, the food itself was amazing with such attention to detail that left us very impressed.

Two Bit Villains

FullSizeRender (80)With Two Bit Villains, I experienced my first Vegetarian Restaurant.

I’m certainly not opposed to having a meat free meal, in fact, I often do, but I’d never been to a place that was exclusively Vegetarian.

I loved everything from the decor, to the staff, the menu and those amazing soda selections!!

Again, you can tell that the staff are proud of the food they’re bringing out of the kitchen and all this good feeling is very infectious!

I’m so glad we went to Two Bit Villains. It’s definitely a little gem in Adelaide Arcade.

Coopers Alehouse

FullSizeRender (87)
We weren’t expecting much the day we went to Coopers Alehouse and it had been a bit of a stressful day, but all was forgotten as we relaxed into our surroundings.

It was busy when we were here and immediately we noticed that the food coming out of the kitchen looked amazing and they seemed to be generous serves.

We definitely over ordered by accident, but everything we had was cooked so well and I had to be impressed because there was a lot of staff, trying to do a lot of things yet it all worked really well.

This is definitely a place to visit.

Parlamento

par1Ah the good old Adelaide icon, Parlamento. Everyone knows Parlamento in the CBD! Most people have probably already been there too!!

I walk past there most days and had always wanted to try out the food because it seems to be always busy so they must be doing something right!!

And when I visited for myself I could see why. Again, the love of what they do shines. They are passionate about their food but not only that, they want YOU to be passionate about their food too!

We had a lovely rapport with our waiter and that made the whole night really special.
I still can’t stop thinking about Jacki Weaver and that carafe of wine though….


Nonna and I

fullsizerenderThis place is still recent in our memories and I’m still gushing over how good everything was here.

From Chef Khalil’s passion, to the food he served, it was absolutely a perfect dining experience.

Out of all the places I’ve reviewed, this is probably the one that I’m most keen to revisit.


Fedoras Restaurant

fed3
Last, but certainly not least is Fedoras Restaurant, another place that took us completely by surprise.

Again, the attitude of all those working from the guy in the parking lot, to the people behind the bar and wait staff made an amazing different.

We were treated as if we were the only ones dining in that restaurant that night.

There were four in our party when we were at Fedoras and each one of us got an amazing meal – That’s not always something that easy to do!

So there you have it, the first Spoon You Fork Me Top 10 list!
I hope we’ve given you something to think about for the next time you’re looking to dine out.

There were many more places I could have mentioned but alas, there is only room for ten in a Top Ten list!

The Spoon You Fork Me team are going to take a little holiday break, but don’t despair, we’ll be back with you early in the new year with lots more views and reviews to come!!

We wish you much love and happiness as we enter this holiday season.
Stay safe, and eat well!!
cooltext220125764176858.gif
Till next we chow….

Advertisements

Parlamento

Today on the Dining Diaries…

We enter an establishment that is not too proud to name drop
We watch a dining room go from lay back chill to exciting, loud and happening and
I’m served a pasta sauce that was just begging to be mopped up with bread.

Diners today we were at Parlamento, that well known Italian restaurant opposite Parliament House – hence the name – and Adelaide railway station.

I waited inside for my dining partner and was seated at a table right up near the window which allowed me to people watch in anonymity.
Because it was still quite early in the evening, there were only a few people in there and it was quite relaxed and chill. Jazz music played quietly in the background and the dim lights and soft tones were quite comforting. That changed dramatically as the evening progressed!

I was impressed by the nature of the wait staff. They  were respectfully cheeky – they also knew when to come and take our order, and when to leave us alone. That probably comes from years of being in the business.

I had a look through their website before arriving and they are not shy about naming the celebrities that have dined there. They quote an article which I assume was written for the Adelaide Advertiser where they even call “Jacki Weaver” a Hollywood darling and mentions her regular meal was a risotto and carafe of red. I’m not sure I’d like that to be public knowledge myself!

When it came to ordering my hunger leapt with delight as I saw they had a Fettucini Ragu on the menu and that was exactly what I had been craving for! My dining partner had a few diet restrictions and the waiter did what he could to accomodate her and made a few suggestions. In the end she chose Penne alla Puttanesca (no I’m not swearing)

They didn’t take too long to come out, not that we would have noticed as there was non stop talking going on at our table…. and when they did come out, they did not disappoint!! They looked fantastic and the aroma’s from each were just delectable.

par2
Penne alla Puttanesca

The Penne had a strong tomato and basil flavour.

We took a minute to enjoy the aroma before beginning.

Unfortunately for my dining partner, she said the flavours were a little lacking.

To be fair to Parlamento’s, they do normally serve this dish with anchovies and my dining partner asked for them to be removed.

However she still enjoyed the dish and said the pasta was cooked al dente – as it should be.

par1
Fettucini Ragu

I was in raptures with mine it was everything I was hoping it was going to be.

If I’d been allowed to put on that Parmesan myself, I’m sure I would have put a load more but the nice waiter was doing it for me and I was too embarrassed to say “more… more… more… more.. ok stop”

Again the smell of the sauce was so captivating and I’m glad they’d given us some bread because I was going to be mopping that up whether it was the proper etiquette or not!

There was a generous amount of tender flaky meat in my dish and that pasta was cooked perfectly. It really was an enjoyable dish.

The Parlamento menu had a lot of pasta’s but it did have some other restaurant favourites too and I had to wonder if I would have enjoyed those equally as much. It definitely makes me want to go back and try!

By the time we were leaving the place was packed to the brim of people enjoying each other’s company and enjoying the food. The atmosphere was quite alive!

Who knows, maybe I’ll even have the risotto and a carafe of wine? Oh Jacki….

Have you been to Parlamento’s?
What did you think?
Let me know in the comments below!

Till next we chow…