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2011, The Year That Was

Somehow 2011 has slipped by us and we’re coming up to 2012. It’s been a crazy year with a lot of celebrations, hard to imagine it’s all coming to an end already.

It was a year of eating, drinking, and yes again… weight gain.


Fried fish at Spice I Am, KFC at Arisun, Berowra Waters Inn, Movida Aqui

Fried fish at Spice I Am, KFC at Arisun, Berowra Waters Inn, Movida Aqui

Somehow it just seems right that we started out the year by visiting a couple of old favourites, they’re classic restaurants for a reason and always among the fist few restaurant I recommend to anyone visiting town.

Howard paid the blog’s 3rd visit to Berowra Waters Inn (Teresa’s & Qing’s visits), proving that you can never have too much of a good thing. He also conducted the world’s ugliest study on the Usability of Restaurant Websites, not pretty on the eyes but definitely food for thought.

I popped over to Melbourne for a quick weekend trip and finally experienced the glory that is the Movida restaurants.


Ghibli in Japan, Momofuku in New York, Hainan Chicken @ Sinapore Shiok, Epic easter weekend

Ghibli in Japan, Momofuku in New York, Hainan Chicken @ Sinapore Shiok, Epic easter weekend

Squishies made her first visit to the land of the rising sun, taunting us with photos of food and snow while Teresa took things one step further with a pulled pork spectacular in New York’s Momofuku Ssam.

I ate the first of many (many!) Roasted Chicken Rice sets from Singapore Shiok, and confirmed that Howie was right, it is the best Chicken Rice in Sydney. I also baked for the first (and last) time this year with a Double Rainbow cake inspired by Steph.

Of course, it’s not autumn without an epic Easter Feast!


Dear Kettle Chip Company,

It has come to my attention that you have discontinued the chilli flavourfrom your Kettle Chips product line. Not only that, you have also changed the branding and packaging to what I feel is an inferior design which makes it difficult to differentiate between your closest “deli” style rival, Red Rock.

Could you please explain why chilli, perhaps the greatest Kettle Chip flavour of all time has been discontinued? You were the only brand to have a decent chilli flavour. Even though over time the chilli flavour was turning a bit mild rather than hot, I was still a loyal customer. I find it hard to believe that chilli flavour wasn’t one of your best sellers, it constantly had a shorter shelf life than the other flavours, perhaps going neck and neck with honey baked ham.

Also, could you please explain why you are dabbling into chip flavours which your rivals have covered? Why not stick to the original flavours, flavours which are timeless and which many of your loyal customers have grown up with?

While I’m here, could you also explain why the packaging size has decreased 200g to 185g whilst the price has increased? Lighter packaging or less chips?

In a nutshell, please reconsider the decision to discontinue the chilli flavoured Kettle Chip. It is without doubt the only flavour worth buying and quite frankly, the current new flavour range pales in comparison, no matter how exotic you are heading with the flavours (Peri-peri chicken?)


An ex-Kettle Chip customer who will return one day, when Chilli flavour returns.

We kicked off Winter with the most ridiculously viral post in the history of es&t, Howard’s open letter to Kettle about their Chilli flavoured chips. To date, it’s sitting on 124 comments and is undoubtedly the post of the year.

Oysters down south, Kicking up a storm in San Francisco, Do the Dip!, Dessert Tables

Oysters down south, Kicking up a storm in San Francisco, Do the Dip!, Dessert Tables

It was an all American celebration, with Howard and Teresa on opposite ends of the states. Teresa conquered giant oysters down in The Big Easy while Howard kept things going on the west coast in San Francisco. Don’t worry, they did eventually meet up on the east coast, even if we have no post to prove it *cough Howard*.

The Dip opened up in Sydney, forever cementing itself in my heart with their selection of hotdogs, pulled pork nachos, beer and above all, being open until midnight.

Linda expanded her dessert domain by starting up Dessert tables at weddings, she tormented us with pictures of macarons, cake pops and brownies that we had no access to!

I also popped back down to Melbourne for another weekend of eating and drinking, however this time I squeezed in a terrifying talk in front of 300 people at Nuffnang Blogopolis 2011!


Honda's Engagement, Wellington, a Crave 2011 experience, Secret Dinners

Honda's Engagement, Wellington, a Crave 2011 experience, Secret Dinners


All together now, nawwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwwww.

There was also a visit to the homeland for our resident kiwi, Howard.

October crept around, bringing with it the annual Crave Sydney International Food Festival (formerly known as Good Food Month!). Squishies went to town with pop-up dinners and lunches, but the best was easily the whimsical Alice in Culinary Land dinner. Linda who was not content with catering wedding dessert tables and her own engagement party, decided to take on 3 Secret Dinners with Fouad at Restaurant Atelier.

I was missing in action for most of October, on an epic road trip in America (posts coming soon I promise!).


Because you’ve got to go out with a BANG, we closed off the year with the award for Most Original Blog Design at the Nuffnang Asia Pacific Blog Awards 2011!

It’s amazing to see what we’ve achieved, and the differences from last year. Thanks to all of our friends and readers, 2011 was a great year and let’s make 2012 even better.

I can’t believe I’m saying this already…

Happy New Year y’all. Bring on 2012!


  1. happy new year! you guys definitely had a busy year and I can’t wait to see what 2012 brings for es&t!

  2. Wow what a fantastic year you guys have had! I refuse to believe that any of you have had any weight gain though! Congratulations on the Nuffnang award too! What a perfect finish to the year.
    Happy New Year and I am looking for more yummy posts ahead!

  3. fantastic post, love how you broke it up into the seasons! have you tried kettle chilli lime chips, its pretty good!

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