PFR Archives Interstate Locations

Restaurant locations are generally in Perth but these locations are in other states in Australia outside of WA.


Lucy Liu Kitchen & Bar - Wok Tossed King Prawns & Mussels

Melbourne: Lucy Liu Kitchen & Bar – 12 Nov 2016

For my second night in Melbourne, one of my ex-colleagues recommended a visit to Lucy Liu’s which is an Asian fusion type restaurant. Located down Oliver Lane, the place is packed but I manage to score a table and are seated at one of the high benches overlooking the restaurant. There are hooks underneath the bench, perfect for hanging my bags after a day of shopping. The interior is very chic, covered in criss cross wood formations, yet there is plenty of buzz and is another venue with lots of atmosphere. Turn over the placemat to reveal the menu, there’s plenty to choose from and I seek the guidance of the waitstaff.

I start with a fresh betel leaf. Yummy and hands on way to roll up the betel leaf and consume the lovely tuna and roe. It’s light and refreshing and the perfect start to the meal. I’m a real fan of bao so the crispy pork bun was an easy choice. The soft bun encases crispy pork and contains a lovely sauce to amplify the flavour. The crunch of the pork is distinctive, although a little chewy at times, contrasting against the soft bao which melts in your mouth. Enhanced with some lovely Asian ingredients and the kewpie mayo, each bite is delicious.

For something more substantial, I opted for the wok tossed king prawns and mussels. I didn’t expect to get such a large hearty bowl though. t love the delicious flavoursome XO influenced broth, the succulent mussels, juicy prawns, crispy prawn heads, and the minced beef. The Chinese doughnuts are a distinctive food item throughout many parts of Asia and are perfect for sopping up broth as is the case here. Once soaked, the doughnut takes on the flavour of the broth which is simply yum. So full, I continue walking around Melbourne to walk off my full belly.


Gazi Restaurant - Loukoumades

Melbourne: Gazi Restaurant – 11 Nov 2016

One of my ex-work colleagues told me about this place so upon landing, my first point of call is a visit to George Calombaris’s Gazi Restaurant. Seated at the bar overlooking the kitchen, it was interesting watching the kitchen in operation. There are hooks underneath the bench to hang your jacket or bags which is perfect as it’s a bit cold outside but the heat of the kitchen warms everyone up. The atmosphere is buzzing, plenty of people crammed in but with sufficient space to enjoy conversation and waitstaff rush around to cater for the hungry hords. Despite that, there is no compromise on the excellent service provided throughout the night. There’s plenty of choice from the menu which makes it hard to decide. I asked the waitstaff for some recommendations and chose a number of dishes, though, with the rotisserie in front of me, I rather fancied some dish that incorporated some of those delicious meats. I heard there is the option for takeaway but I’m here in Melbourne for the weekend.

I started with the miso eggplant dip which presents super smooth eggplant dip evoking a strong but well controlled eggplant flavour that is just delightful. Dipping the warm soft puffy Pita into the dip is a delicious and an enjoyable experience.

Next I went with the saganaki cheese – I love cheese so was interested to see what this dish would serve up. Melted cheese on a sizzling hot plate with a golden brown crust and a cumquat citrus sauce. The citrus seems unusual at first, a sweet sensation but it balances against the richness of the cheese, particularly the slight touch of acidity. Yum!!!

I had to grab a mini souvlaki, or souvalkia and opted for the duck version. There’s lots of succulent juicy duck with an Asian inspired fusion. The duck is delicious, though a tad oversalted. Nonetheless, I really enjoyed the dish, the soft Pita and the ingredients it held. I think the Hoison is overshadowed by the mayo to an extent.

Finally, I had to squeeze in dessert and chose loukoumades, Greek doughnuts. Oh wow! What a finish to the meal. Crunchy on the outside, soft and spongy on the inside. Drizzled with honey for sweetness with a touch of nutella to add a chocolate hint, these are to be savoured. I also like the strong Greek coffee flavoured ice cream. Wouldn’t mind more of that. Really full, glad to have some variety and really enjoyed the flavours and experience of this venue. So typically Melbourne, nothing that Perth offers comes close.


Pancake Manor - Regular Stack with Cream & Ice Cream

QLD, Brisbane – Pancake Manor

Pancake Manor doesn’t just serve pancakes. The Charlotte Street venue is open 24 hours so they serve all kinds of meals and they’re available anytime. I ordered the regular stack and received 3 much larger than the picture in the menu pancakes that were soft, fluffy and light. They were really tasty and went extremely well with maple syrup, cream which is rich, and ice cream. Delicious.


Red & White Peruvian - Tasting Peru

Qld, Brisbane – Red & White Peruvian Restaurant – 2 May 2014

Take a relaxing walk from the CBD to Southbank and you will find Red and White Peruvian Restaurant, the only Peruvian restaurant in Brisbane. I had the tasting plate to start where there are smaller versions of 4 dishes from the entree menu. This gave variety and different flavours. I really liked the 2 ceviche dishes which were very different from each other, the octopus in a mushroom like olive sauce, and the milder potato and tuna dish which was a welcome relief to the stronger flavours of the other dishes. The Peruvian chilli is unique, not initially pungent, but providing some real burn that keeps building in the background. I had a Peruvian herbal drink, emoliente, which was interesting and quite tasty, providing relief to the chilli. It’s quite a filling drink too. For mains I really enjoyed the paella. Lots of seafood and I loved the succulent prawns and scallop. The white wine flavour provides a richness to the flavoursome paella. An absolute steal at just $22. I had an excellent experience and loved the food, but was really disappointed to walk away without dessert as I was too full.


Qld, Brisbane CBD – Saj & Grill – 2 May 2014

It’s always wonderful to discover something new and different and while this may seem like any other Lebanese joint where you pick up a wrap and off you go, this is certainly not the case. The Saj is a traditional Lebanese bread cooked on a clay dome oven and the taste is just delicious. Nothing like the normal pita breads you get at the shops or eateries like this, but something completely different. It’s really tasty, light, and flavoursome. The filling was also delicious. Warm gooey melted cheese, tender chicken pieces with ample garlic flavour, succulent mushrooms, soft olives, and a moist delicious garlic sauce. I really enjoyed this meal for a late breakfast. Fantastic.


Embassy - BBQ Smoked Pork Ribs

QLD, Brisbane – Embassy Bar

Based on the comments from Urbanspoon, a visit to Embassy Bar is a good choice if you want some true American fare. The much talked about ribs is what I ordered but I found them really underwhelming. A lot of gristle and inedible stuff on the ribs, while the pork meat didn’t come off the bone easily. The marinade on the ribs was pretty good but it needs to increase it’s intensity in flavour. The cornbread is delicious, a lovely corn flavour with just that hint of sweetness. The green beans were a little crispy for my liking and would have preferred further cooking. It’s good value at $20 considering the serving, but an improvement on the cooking and cut of ribs would make this dish fantastic.


Aria - Chocolate Centred Cherry Souffle & Coconut Ice Cream

QLD, Brisbane – Aria Brisbane

For $72, a meal at Aria delivers lovely views of the river and represents excellent value when you receive 3 carefully crafted courses in a smart, sunlight filled environment with professional service. I liked the entree of kangaroo but felt it was overpowered by the acidity of the vinaigrette. Further there could have been a greater serving of kangaroo and if it were cut thickly one could get the rich flavour, allowing the other elements to come into play. The succulent coffee infused chunk of brisket with bits of fat was delicious, though needed far more jus to add additional flavour to counteract the meatiness of the beef and richness of the puree. It becomes a little one dimensional and may be better enjoyed with a side or the complimentary bread. The cherry and coconut soufflé was superb, especially with that tease of chocolate at the bottom. Please, some more chocolate! Paired with a light coconut flavoured creamy ice cream, this was a fantastic dish to finish. If the entree and mains were at the same tastalicious level the dessert deliver, this would have been a knock out meal.


Est - Goat's Feta Panna Cotta

NSW, Sydney – Est

The service element in this fine dining restaurant is once again highly professional. I particularly appreciated the service provided by one of the men who was professional but still friendly. Sometimes service can become very stilted. The whole dining experience at Est was excellent, as was the high quality food served. I find the style of cooking is to use quality ingredients, not do too much to them, and use other elements to provide the flavour, thereby keeping the integrity of the proteins intact. The first course of goat’s curd panna cotta was absolutely outstanding and the highlight of the meal. Unfortunately, while the following dishes were delicious, they didn’t meet the same standard set by this fabulous dish. The silky smooth panna cotta had a lovely creamy texture, a slight richness, but was counteracted by the vinaigrette and Jamon. The Moreton Bay bug and other seafood elements were cooked perfectly and the butter sauce provided the flavour with the peas providing a freshness. The Murray cod was super tender and the ginger vinaigrette provided a lovely Asian inspired flavour to the dish. I also loved the complimentary half bowl of shoestring fries which were crisp, golden brown, and moorish, perfect. The slow poached quince was another dish with beautiful presentation, however, the differing types of sweetness from several elements and the richness of the vanilla cream, overpowered the dish and threw the flavour balance out. A few slight tweaks and this dish can be excellent. I had a really lovely dining experience and am very full.


Lobo Plantation - Pulled Pork Tamales

NSW, Sydney – The Lobo Plantation

Plenty of people started filling in to the bar which is always a good sign. I was only after a simple dinner and the bar food menu fitted the bill. The golden puff pastry was delicious and the mince filling was good too with the lovely dipping sauce. The tamales are really soft, a nice mixture of soft pulled pork, polenta, and corn, but not too rich. The tomato salsa on top provides a nice tartness to the dish. They’ve certainly created an environment fitting with the name of the bar. Nice atmosphere.