It’s been long overdue, but I finally managed to catch up with an old friend, Sam. He’d been asking me to come out to eat for a while, but the timing hasn’t been very good (terrible excuse, I know… sorry Sam!). Happily, we nominated a night where we were both free and had a pre-dinner dessert first, naturally.
I love yoghurt (though I suspect not as much as Minh but it’s pretty high up there on my list) and I love ice cream too. So when Sam mentioned a place that sold frozen yoghurt and that we would have to go there first before our dinner, I absolutely had no problem with it. Effectively, I’d have two desserts by the end of the night – a win-win situation really.
I got there a bit before Sam and used the time to peruse the menu, noting the must-haves for when he arrived. One of these must-haves was the Wow Sticks. I personally thought it sounded a bit silly, but it made me want it anyway.
Wowcow offers several different flavoured yoghurt and when we went there were: natural, apple pie, chocolate and vanilla. I wanted the large-sized apple pie flavoured yoghurt cup, but Sam cautioned me that it was deceptively filling and we still needed to have dinner – drats.
The wowsticks were like a healthier version of churros and I really liked how they were crunchy and warm, a nice contrast to the yummy frozen yoghurt; the chocolate flakes and strawberry coulis were a nice touch too.
When I walked into the store, I immediately thought, “Wow… cow…”. It was a bit surreal to have a cow hanging over your head like that. The paranoid side of me wondered the chances of it ungluing and falling down.
I definitely will be coming back to try every thing on the menu, armed with my Moola card where I get a small super chilled yoghurt and topping for free after my 10th purchase.
Just Another Restaurant
We literally wandered the streets in Darlinghurst through to East Sydney trying to decide on a place to eat at. It was so difficult to decide with so many choices and I hate it when everything yet nothing seems to tickle my fancy even though I’m famished. What’s even worse was that we both were on a budget and so couldn’t eat anywhere too fancy.
We ended up at JAR, or Just Another Restaurant, which reeled us in with their Early Dinner Menu at $29.50 for three courses or $25.50 for two courses.
Sam chose the parfait, as I had already called dibs on the confit of salmon. The parfait was actually quite smooth and the pear chutney added a touch of sweetness.
I’m starting to find that restaurants don’t serve you enough bread with parfait/pate/terrine. What’s up with that? Sam had to slap heaps of it on to the bread to finish both.
When I saw my dish, I realised that whatever I thought gazpacho was was totally wrong. Gazpacho, good ol’ Wikipedia tells me, is a cold Spanish tomato-based raw vegetable soup.
The salmon was pretty nice, maybe a tad overdone, and I quite liked the avocado mousse. Sam really enjoyed the tomato gazpacho while I remained a bit undecided, though I couldn’t quite pinpoint why.
Despite the pork belly being a bit tough, the flavours were really nice and it was well-seasoned. The mango added that just a touch of sweetness to the pork and there was hardly any kick from the chilli. Since this is coming from me, Sam tasted no chilli at all – much to his disappointment.
We had a bit of a laugh at the mash potato: Sam thought it looked like poo, but I liked the swirly effect they had going on. It was pretty decent mash potato too.
I broke my rule of “no risotto” for dinner because besides the pork belly nothing else quite caught my eye. Risotto, in general, is an inevitably huge dish for me and I can never finish it, no matter how hard I try. This time is no different. I had heaps of it left – about half I would say – and embarrassedly mumbled an apologetic excuse to our waiter for not finishing it.
It was fairly decent, though it was a bit salty because of the ham. The asparagus did manage to cut through some of the saltiness, but it wasn’t enough to stop me from ending up eating just the asparagus, leaving a swathe of pink ham bits behind.
I’m glad that we didn’t have to fight over dessert. Sam immediately picked out the white chocolate brulee. We were both pleased to see the thick layer of burnt sugar on top, breaking with a most satisfying crack.
I quite liked the brulee – it wasn’t overly sweet and it was quite smooth.
I really enjoyed my choice of the apple crumble. The only complaint I had was that it wasn’t deep enough! Though really that’s just my greedy guts talking and I couldn’t even finish it all despite my complaint.
The crumble on top was slightly crunchy and the apples underneath in its gooey glory was lightly cinnamon-flavoured, all of which was wonderfully warm and contrasted nicely with the vanilla ice cream.
Leaving JAR, I found myself being quite full and vaguely satisfied. We had a pretty decent dinner for a pretty decent price and to me, it would seem that it was really just another restaurant: decent but nothing outstanding.
The Early Dinner Menu is available from 5.30pm to 7pm, Tuesday to Thursday, and on Friday to Saturday from 5.30pm to 6.30pm.
Shop 2, 304/308 Victoria St
Darlinghurst, NSW, 2010
Ph: (02) 9326-0400
Just Another Restaurant
85a Stanley Street
East Sydney, NSW, 2010
Ph: (02) 9331-5375