Daily Archives: August 15, 2010

Elephant Rock Café – 776 Pacific Parade, Currumbin Beach QLD 4223 Website: http://www.elephantrock.com.au

We chanced upon Elephant Rock Café quite by accident. Only because it rained and there was no where to take shade except this unassuming little restaurant in front of Currumbin Beach.  In fact at first glance you would not think it was much of a place because it was not crowded as it was way past lunch time.  Anyhow we plodded in all soggy and wet and  I caught sight of their pastries and cakes and what caught my eye instantly was their Tofu Cheese Cake. Now I have always like Tofu Cheese Cake and have yet to find one that was good. I am talking of a yearning that dates back to Oprah Winfrey’s Cookbook in 1993  which featured this recipe but I never ever tried it.  I have had Tofu Cheesecake before and it was catastrophic! Not once, not twice, but many a time. But I decided to take the chance today.

Ok before I get started, I have to say there was no signboard except for the little blackboard, now this made me raise my eyebrows a little bit wondering if this cafe was an ordinary cafe with a little bit of thrills and frills thrown in.  Well, NEVER JUDGE A BOOK BY ITS COVER! or in this case NEVER JUDGE  A RESTAURANT JUST BECAUSE IT DOES NOT HAVE A SIGNBOARD!

Dan of course said he was not hungry, but that as usual is always left to be seen.  In the end he ordered  a Spicy Tomato Juice, with the Menu of the day which was a Trevalla  with potatoes and vegetables with a tangy creamy sauce topped with a tomato salsa.

Now I really did not know what to expect as while sitting inside Elephant Rock Café and having the Owner and her very beautiful daughter sitting in front of you, you realize this place is a nice hangout on a lazy afternoon. Perfect for the Ladida kind! In fact the Owner and her Beautiful Daughter and their friends that day with the cute baby did look the perfect picture of the Ladida Kind!

Then looking at the menu which you can actually find on their website, you realize that this is actually quite a nice place which features very modern Australian Cuisine, something that I had yet to try, and in fact all through our holiday, we never ever had the chance to do so again.

I never hung out at Elephant Rock when I lived on the Gold Coast because we always hung out at Surfers Paradise. But somehow in the last ten years, the more happening places seem to be moving south.

The Spicy Tomato Juice was simply divine.  It was different and with the black pepper sprinkled over it, it went down your throat with a funny feel, that was refreshing yet heaty.  It was a cold beverage but suitable for a cold wet day.  I had a pot of tea because I was wet and cold and was having dessert.

My Tofu Cheese Cake was just simply scrumptious. It was like satin and absolutely no taste of tofu whatsoever, it was milky but in a lightish soy kind of way, and being a person who is only so so with cheesecake, this was really nice.  Comforting, light and in a modern setting. I could have had another piece, but weighty issues did not permit me.  But now looking at it I wish I did.

Now Dan’s fish was really out of this world.  The taste was a mixture of sour, sweet, tangy, and you could distinctly taste the ingredients in the dressing and it went superbly with the potatoes and the vegetables.  The fish….. coming from a non fish eater was perfect as the picture. It was perfectly cooked, just a slight bit underdone as it should be crispy on the outside, wet and tasty on the inside.  When you eat this fish you will know what a Trevalla tastes like. In fact if the chef cooked ten different types of fish exactly the same way, you would still be able to distinctly tastes the ten different flavors of each fish. I believe the chef was that talented. And the sauce which was divinely satiny similar to a lemon Beurre Blanc, but with a tinge of something I could not get my finger on.  Perhaps Dan was eating too fast and I did not have a chance to taste it enough.

The gelling of Eastern and Western Flavors was done so naturally it made fusion cuisine look really look passé.  In fact the whole menu was like a perfect combination of flavors from the two different worlds.

Kudos to the chef of Elephant Rock Café.  Kudos to the Owner for creating such a scrumptious little place. And finally the bill presented with love, now who can argue when something is so lovingly presented.

Do check out the website as it gives you a whole picture and trust me it’s all true! I will 100% go back to Elephant Rock Café when I go back to the Gold Coast next year. I would describe this restaurant as a very well thought of restaurant which will give bigger names a run for its money in the near future.

Elephant Rock Café has far to go.  It should be somewhere more major to take on the big guys! Thumbs up Elephant Rock Café!

Hachi – Level1/1136 Gold Coast Highway, Palm Beach

It was a horrible day on the Gold Coast as it rained non stop from the night before. We woke up to the loud pitter patter of rain and it rained so much that the billabongs in Vera’s yard (a very large yard) was to its brim. It was no fun because we could not go out and pluck oranges and mandarins for juicing  as it was just too wet.  It was so wet we had to cancel our trip to Movie World that day.

So after our activity at the kindergarten Ana, Tomislav and Maia go to, Vera hurried us and took us for lunch before driving up to Springfield Lakes.  So she suggested Hachi, which was up the road and through the rain we found a park and entered this rather out of the way Japanese Restaurant which seemed to have a good following of the locals who were all there waiting and ordering their food.

We went through the menu and so we placed our orders, one thing that caught my eye was Agedashi Cheese.  We had no clue what it would taste like now how it would look, so that was the good part of it all.

I ordered a salad, Dan ordered a Salmon and Vera ordered Ginger Pork.  The restaurant was filling up something I thought was rather strange as it was a working day and mainly it was locals having Japanese on a rather cold late morning.

Miso soup came, and I never touch Miso Soup as it gives me cold sweat.

So Agedashi Cheese comes and we were quite shocked to see how it was served. Unlike Agedashi Tofu which is usually half immersed into the soy bonito soup, this was like a soup.  We were all a bit apprehensive about the taste but a mouthful of it told us otherwise. It was nice. It was a strange kind of nice, because the fried cheese actually blended well with the soup. It had a nice balance of salt and sweet and the creamy tang the mozzarella cheese had.  I guess the way it was served was left to be desired, but it was certainly something I would try again.

Vera’s Ginger Pork was nice, rather gingerly but nice on a cold rainy day. It had to be eaten with rice, and since it was part of the set, it came with the works.  I would not say it was the finest Japanese Food, but it was more so in the comfort food category.  Something that may not look so nice but still can hit the right taste buds.  That was how I would describe the Ginger Pork.

As for Dan’s fish, it tasted nice, obviously it was frozen salmon so of course the taste not the best, but with the sauce, and the accompaniments it had a nice taste to it.  I am biased here because I do not really like fish especially the frozen kind. For the price we paid in the end, it was not too bad, all our food was under AUD50.

As for my salad, I must say it was the best.  It was light, it had a nice tangy taste to it and the combination of the dressing and leaves made it finger licking good.  No complaints at all.  I could have had another bowlful actually.  The amount of dressing was just enough and did not overpower the whole dish, and while the acidity of it was there, the vegetables still maintained its freshness.   Ok maybe I ate it fast J

So if you’re on the Gold Coast, out near Palm Beach, and you come across this unassuming restaurant, just walk in.  You’ll be surprised. I wish sometimes we had some small Japanese places like this in KL, a place that has no pretense and serves good Japanese Grub.