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The Turret Cafe Sturt Street Ballarat Victoria

WP_20170712_14_23_16_ProDropped in for a coffee and cake at the Turret Cafe ballarat on Sturt street, just down from the base hospital.

As usual, there was a lot of activity, with people both staff and customers scurrying about everywhere, and nomming into delicious looking lunches.

The atmosphere in the cafe is absolutely beautiful, refurbished in a sympathetic style that highlights the history and charm of the building the turret his housed in – “linden”- upstairs is accommodation that can be booked out on air B&B under the name No.1 Errard boutique accommodation.

As we waited patiently for service, mouthwatering fragrances wafted from the sorely tempting looking lunch options as the waitresses rushed about, but sadly we just didn’t have time to stop long enough to enjoy the offerings properly.

The refrigerated cake cabinet was what we were here for though- numerous sumptuous and some rather unique treats, baked in house beckoned!

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We went with one of the more unusual and exotic offerings- a “Croissant” and raspberry cake…

And that was what it was- literally.. but they failed to mention in the description the best part- the fact the Croissants were drowned decadently in dark chocolate fudge sauce, cocoa and the layers of raspberries were interlaced with huge chunks of high quality chocolate. Its quite a creation worth experiencing, and it truly is an absolutely exceptional triumph for the patisserie staff behind the scenes.

Coffee was great too, staff are wonderful. Needless to say, we plan to come back, and try out those meals as soon as possible too.

http://www.turretcafe.com.au/menu.html

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802 Sturt Street
Ballarat, Victoria 3350

Tel: 03 53344744
Fax: 03 53344722

 

Tutto Italiano, Ivanhoe, Melbourne

Gelato and wood fired pizza bar in Ivanhoe town Centre.

This cafe is kind of a cross between a high end italian pre-prepared industrial food manufacturing plant

The industrial kitchen, made for big batches of hundry Italians!

The industrial kitchen, made for big batches of hundry Italians!

(look around the back), a cafe, a milk bar, and a pizza parlour.

With such a diverse mix, you would think, that they do not do any of these thing well, right? totally wrong!

The Gelato is delicious! some of the BEST i have ever had in all of melbourne

The pizza is AMAZING, and very well price. $10 for a wood fired pizza, eat in. can’t go wrong, and the ingredients are top notch.

The locals seem to love the pre-prepared pasta dishes and fresh pasta that can be purchased from the fridges and freezers.

The very impressive home made gelato bar.

The very impressive home made gelato bar.

AND, the coffee is EXCELLENT, while the very pretty, very tasty patisserie style cakes are super cheap, at $4 to $5 each, and they would cost $8 to $10 anywhere else.

If you are in the north, and don’t know where to go for lunch, dinner, a coffee or an icecream.. you MUST visit this place!

 

 

The cheapest Patisserie style cakes in the northern suburbs of Melbourne- forget northcote! drive a bit further down the road to check this place out!

The cheapest Patisserie style cakes in the northern suburbs of Melbourne- forget northcote! drive a bit further down the road to check this place out!

 

official website

http://www.tuttoitaliano.com.au/contact-us.php

http://shopinivanhoe.com.au/businesses/tutto-italiano/

other reviews

https://www.tripadvisor.com.au/Restaurant_Review-g1006537-d7146569-Reviews-L_Artigiano_Ristorante_Italiano-Ivanhoe_Banyule_Greater_Melbourne_Victoria.html

https://www.zomato.com/melbourne/tutto-italiano-ivanhoe/menu

 

Tin Roof Cafe & Pizza- MacArthur Street- Soldiers Hill- Ballarat

This little place just opened up a couple weeks ago just down the road from my usual neighborhood, and I decided to give it a go on its opening day.070520161899

The cafe’s fresh fitout is quite nice, and well thought out, with an emphasis on being light and airy.

That said, it isn’t anything original and unique, which screams “This is where da crew from Soldiers Hill hang out, alright”  and there are no low_riders parked on the curb…..

Ok, enough references to cypress hill. the band. Lets get back to the cafe. and all its copy-cat, me too potted plastic succulent table number markers.

070520161902The concept here seems to be cafe + pizza parlour + Souvlaki. Ok, that’s original. trying everything I suppose to see what the residents of the b-rat’s most famous and oldest neighbourhood want I suppose?

Upon entering, i was most dazzled by the horde of staff milling about- about a 2-1 ratio for the 6 odd customers that were settling in over lunch. Enthusiastic, young new starters, obviously, and hopefully getting paid for their likely “Trial day” I hope!

Anyway, the girls were friendly and cheerful, and I couldn’t fault the service, they certainly were keen, chatty and attentive, as was the probable owner, an older lady.070520161901

We ordered a couple coffees and a “soldiers hill special” pizza.

The pizza took a while to come out, and was tasty enough, but for $20 I was a little unastounded.

To be honest, it was probably the presentation that ruined it for me- the cheap looking shredded ham, highly visible on top of the pizza reminded me of a home modified Mccain or Pappa Guiseppe supermarket pizza, like the sort I might cook when feeling lazy, adding extra cheese and quality ingredients on top.

Maybe i’m being harsh though- the actual pizza is in the pic above- zoom in and take a look, judge for yourself.

Being an establishment that seemed like it was pitching for the more gourmet end of town, I was naturally nonplussed- I had imagined a kind of “pizza pie”, or wood fired deliciousness like I had had at other similarly priced Italian restaurants before.

That said, the pizza was pretty good, just not any better than I could make myself, which was what I was dearly hoping for. I spoke to the chef about, how it tasted a lot better than it looked, sensitively, of course,and he angrily rebuffed my feedback, suggesting I buy a “gourmet” line pizza off the menu next time, not a traditional. Maybe he was right, the other pizzas might be better.

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The silly hipster plastic pot plant of a succulent. Looks nice till you peer closely… then its just tacky.

Comment below if you give these guys a try. With an arrogant chef that doesn’t take feedback though, I’m not sure how long, he, or the business will last if the business model relied off late night pizzas.

One thing i do have regrets about though, was not trying the souvlaki they had on offer instead.

One of the excitable serving girls was having lunch next to us, and had chosen a big, tasty lamb souvlaki. We could SEE how big,  good, and fresh it looked, and could smell how delicious it was, even from the ten paces away to her table. We waved her over, and had a chat to her- she confirmed how ridiculously tasty it was.

Either way, the only competition is a little fish and chips place down the road on Doveton north, which I have tried, and their souvlaki was pretty average.

I’d say its a pretty safe bet that if you want a Souvlaki in solders hill, the Tin Roof might be a good place to go. It’s pizza, however, isn’t likely to be serious competition to THE FORGE on armstrong.

The coffee was ok, and i’ll come back here because its nice and close to where I regularly loiter in this neighborhood.

UPDATE! – I visited Tin Roof again a little while back, and tried out a souvlaki, and have just uploaded the pictures- you can read more about it here and see what the verdict is.

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