Saturday, July 2, 2011

Day One: Spoonful Cafe and Mamasita

To kick start our week of trying new things Karl took me to Spoonful Cafe on High street for an anniversary breakfast. We walked in the eight degree weather to the little cafe, it was already packed at 10am and we had to wait next door for a table. The waitress was very apologetic and sweet and we quickly got seated at a communal table. The table was covered in fresh flowers and plants and folkish containers.

We perused the breakfast menu, which was diverse and different, and decided on the Bircher muesli with baked rhubarb, apples and vanilla yoghurt and the fruit in rose water syrup.

The fruit salad was amazing but mostly rockmelon which I detest. It was refreshing and light though. The muesli was awesome, I'd never tried rhubarb before and I was pleasantly surprised. It worked brilliantly with the apples and yoghurt.

I would recommend this cafe for those in the Windsor/Prahran/Armadale area but I don't know if I'd make a special trip for it. The food was delicious though and the flat white was milky and strong.

For dinner we went to every one's favourite Mexican restaurant, Mamasita. We arrived at 6pm and there was already a line out the door and down the street (which was expected). We waited in line patiently and were promptly told that it would be an hour wait. We had come prepared and were definitely prepared to wait for what we knew would be an awesome meal. We waited almost exactly an hour before we had made it in the door and to the top of the stairs. We were seated after a further ten minuted of waiting by the bar. The place was filled was pumpin'. We ordered a jug of sangria and our starter: Elotes callejeros otherwise known as "street style" char grilled corn with queso, chipotle mayonnaise and lime.

To be honest, I didn't want to order these, Karl did but he ws convinced that once I tried them I would not stop...and he was right. These were amazing! Literally, one of the best things that has ever entered my mouth. The corn was soft and sweet, the mayonnaise subtle and tangy and the queso (chilli and cheese) was spicy and creamy. It was amazing and I highly recommend it.

Upon devouring our 'wish-they-would-never-end' corn cobs a plate of Tacos de lengua y mejilla ( Braised veal tongue and ox cheek tacos with pickled vegetables and ghost chilli mayonnaise) arrived at our table.

I've never been one to eat the tongue or cheek or face of an animal because it just creeps me out and I hate anything that has been braised so I don't know what made me want to order these. I'm glad I did order them though because the meat was delicious, it didn't taste like tongue or cheek, it tasted like roast beef that had been a little over cooked. I loved it. It was a little dry and I dipped in the hot sauce that is stationed on each table but I really, really loved it and will definitely order it again.

As a palate cleanser, before our mains, we ordered the salmon ceviche with yellow peppers, chilli, orange, lime and mustard oil.

The ceviche came in a tall glass with tortilla chips placed inside for dipping. It was more like a lime soup with delicious salmon pieces in it. It was refreshing and sweet and tangy all at the same time. We ordered some mains, which I unfortunately couldn't get photos of but they were amazing. We ordered the Cerdo en nogada (Mulato rubbed pork fillet, walnut sauce, pomegranate and tequila soused raisins) and the Estofado de cabra (Chipotle braised goat and roasted sweet corn paste) with a side of papas (roasted potatoes with serrano chilli and parsley).

The goat was not to my liking, not because it was bad but because I don't like goat (as I discovered when I tasted this meal). The goat reminded me of how my kitten's head smells and it tasted very grassy and farm-yard like. Karl loved it but the meat was just too odd for me to enjoy. I did love the sauce and the sweet corn paste though.

The pork was phenomenal! Some of the best pork I have ever tasted. It was tender and juicy with a crispy skin. I couldn't taste the walnuts in the sauce but that's fine because I hate walnuts. But the sauce was creamy and aioli-like and it worked beautifully with the pork and potatoes. If you eat anything at Mamasita it should be this meal!

It was a great way to spend our sixth anniversary: relaxing, fun and different. It was a great start to the week ahead.

Photos courtesy of: Myself, The Melbourne Gastronome, Adski, The Juganaut,, Food Odyssey and City Date

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