It was Sunday, it was a beautiful day and so I thought I would take my family out to lunch. Because it was such a beautiful day we decided to drive down to Brighton which I covered briefly in the the post titled The Arch Of Remembrance And Brighton Wind Chimes. On that occasion we just had an ice cream but this time we wanted a proper sit down meal. Rather than eating at one of the many cafes I thought we should give the Esplanade Hotel a go.

The hotel itself is quite impressive sitting there right on the esplanade on the corner of Jetty Rd. commanding a great view of the Jetty and surrounding seascape. The staff were very friendly and the menu had a lot to offer.

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Eating Experience At The Esplanade Hotel

I decided on the Gnocchi Genovese because I haven’t had a good plate of gnocchi in such a long time and also because I’ve never had it Genovese style. The menu described it as “potato dumplings tossed with pan fried pancetta , roasted garlic, burnt butter and sage”. The burnt butter of it sounded a bit weird but I just figured they were using a chef’s poetic licence or something. When the gnocchi arrived I was positively salivating.

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It looks good doesn’t it? Unfortunately the experience ends there. Rather than having a explosion of exquisite taste once I sampled my first morsel I was bitterly disappointed. It’s not that it tasted like shit or anything it just didn’t taste like anything. It was beyond bland, it had no flavor at all. It was like I had lost all my taste buds. I immediately looked at my meal a little closer. Rather than pancetta it looks like the chef substituted common bacon. At least the bacon had some flavor and so I wrapped what bit of bacon I had with the gnocchi so that I tasted something at least. Unfortunately I ran out of bacon pretty quickly and was left with tastless dumplings which I proceeded to eat, as I did pay for it after all.

Oh well, at least the rest of the family enjoyed their meal. The moral of this story is, if you plan on eating at the Esplanade Hotel in Brighton, stay away from the Gnocchi Genovese!

PLovells Bakery SignIt’s a beautiful Autumn Sunday and the wife and I decided it was too nice to be stuck at home. Actually I was quite happy to stay at home but it was after lunch, we hadn’t eaten yet and she had a craving for a fresh hot cornish pasty. That meant at the very least a country drive. Oh well, at least being at home in Australia we didn’t have to search for car hire usa which would have been necessary if we were in the States having a holiday. So, we hop in the car and head to nowhere in particular as long as it was in the country. I have to admit I love driving in the country and it seemed like no time at all when we drove into Birdwood where we pulled over at Lovells Bakery. We strolled into the store and I was Pie Oven surprised at the selection of pies, cakes and bread that it had. I took a photo of the pie warmer just so you can get an idea of what was available. I mean check out some of those pies will you? I mean who ever though of putting spaghetti in a pie? Yep, they had a spaghetti pie, heck they even had a lasagna pie, which actually sounded pretty cool.

Even so we both settled for cornish pasties and a couple of cappuccinos.  The young lady behind the counter was just about to total it off when I spied a Birdwood Slice. I didn’t know what the heck it was but I figured it wouldn’t hurt to find out. Birdwood SliceOnce we paid for the goods we decided to have it outside, what with it being such a nice day and all. Let me tell you, that was a bloody great tasting pasty! Even the wife thought so. It had nice chunky veggies in it and the pasty was really flaky. We both had pasties with sauce and because of health regulation a liberal amount was spread on top if the pasty. I would have preferred to have it inside the pasty but like I said, they’re not allowed to do that, even though I’ve never heard of anyone who’s died from eating a pie or pasty with sauce.

The strange thing about going out for the day is that we had a lovely conversation, something that does not happen when you’re at home. That’s probably because there’s so much distraction at home, what with the kids, TV and the internet. It was really nice just sitting there enjoying the view, company and the cornish pasties. The only thing that wasn’t the best was the coffee but shit you can’t have everything can you? 😉 So, if you’re ever driving through Birdwood and you see  beer truck that seems to be flying then pull over because Lovells Bakery is directly opposite it.

Beer Truck

Oh, just so you know, the building the beer truck is attached to is the Blumberg Hotel. I reckon that will have to be where our next meal is coming from 😀

Because we enjoyed their pasty so much we bought a Port Power donut for the brother in law, a couple of honey sticks as well as some other cakes and a preservative free sliced bread to take home. Just so you know everyone was more than happy with those goodies.

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Last Friday I decided to go for a little drive to Hahndorf and who better to take with me than the wife. Although a fairly cold day the sun was out so I thought a country drive would be nice so we headed off to Hahndorf. We’ll leave that for another post though as this one is about our experience at the German Arms Hotel, a hotel that has been in existence since 1839. This hotel is steeped in history and what better place to read about it than at their own website.

As you can see from this photo the hotels breathes rustic charm, something that you see a lot of in Hahndorf. What I love about this hotel is that they tried to maintain that when they refurbished the hotel in 1990 by using 500 year old timbers. I’ve seen some classic hotels which in my opinion were butchered because they tried to meld the old architecture with new.

From Scenic Adelaide

As we walked inside we weren’t disappointed to find the charm we felt on the outside was continued on the inside. We were greeted by a warmth that radiated from more than that just the fireplace we walked past as we were led to our table. Although they had a pretty extensive menu which included both Aussie and German tucker we settled for their Famous Giant Hahnburger.

As I am want to do I took a photo of the burger so I can post it in this blog. What you’re seeing here isn’t my burger, it’s my wife’s and yes she did attempt to eat it with a knife and fork and believe me, that alone made the whole trip worthwhile. As to the burger, we both had different experiences when it came to our opinion of it.

As far as appearances go it made you hungry just to look at it. The wife found it a little dry but that could be because the meat patty was a lot bigger than she was used to. I, on the other had thoroughly enjoyed it. Sure the patty was thicker than what you would get in MacDonalds or Hungry Jacks but at least it was actual meat that you were eating. As far as I was concerned, I loved it as it was most flavoursome and not bland like those I just mentioned. I don’t know what herbs and spices that mixed in the patty but it added to the overall taste sensation.

This next photo is of a chair just outside the entrance. It’s been there for as long as I can remember and as you can see it is a little worse for wear. Perhaps they are waiting to find some well aged leather that would do it justice?

Finally, I leave you with this photo of the smiling German Bartender who resides just outside the German Arms Hotel.

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