Author: Jacqueline Langford

Dog friendly weekend stay: Kims Beachside Retreat

I’m always hanging for another road trip – and better yet, when dog friendly stays are on the cards too. Just over an hour’s drive from Sydney’s CBD, you’ll find the beautiful Kims Beachside Retreat on the Central Coast, in the beachside town of Toowoon Bay. This accommodation caters for guests aged 12-years and over only, and is pet friendly. Yes, you read right a boutique beach resort, with suite or villa rooms, that only cater for adults… and allows pets. Can you believe it?! I certainly couldn’t at first. We don’t have children of our own and whilst I have no issues with them (quite a few of my friends have kids), it’s rare to find waterfront getaways that cater for just adults – and dogs can join too. On arrival, there are two main parking bays; the Terrace level car park is generally better parking (it was empty most times we left and returned), however you’re required to walk several steps down to reception and then on to your room. For anyone driving …

Deliciously good Filipino desserts, made by Tita’s Cakes in Sydney

Ever craved bite-sized, traditional Filipino desserts or cakes on-the-go? Located in Western Sydney is Tita’s Cakes – prepared by master chef and baker extraordinaire; Percy Morilla. I was first introduced to Tita’s Cakes through the recommendation of a friend, Jen. She knows I love desserts – well, eating Filipino food in general too that is – and boy what an awesome find. I’m not the best Filipino dessert maker at home, which is why buying these types of treats makes it all the more exciting. And when I find great places, it’s even more fun when I get to share the experience with others. Jen told me to keep a look out for Tita’s Cakes weekly Instagram story announcement (posted on Wednesdays), so I was onto it in a flash. The actual dessert menu changes for these mixed boxes each week, and the options are led by the team at Tita’s Cakes, so it’s an element of surprise where you don’t get to choose the individual cakes yourself. And bam… there it was… Calamansi Soufflé …

Jägerstube Essentials Market Day now in Schofields

Did someone say European markets? I’m in. Through the recommendation of a neighbour who recently visited the new Jagerstube Bavarian Restaurant, I was searching their Facebook page and noticed upcoming pop-up markets also advertised. Having recently relocated from Cabramatta to Sydney’s north-west in Schofields, the new Jagerstube Essentials Market Days are now in the area too, showcasing European food suppliers and their local delicacies & fresh foods available for purchase. It was their first opening at Schofields, and with only a handful of vendors – about 10 or so – you could comfortably walk around and peruse these markets within about 20-minutes. I first swooped into the line of homemade jars of delicious goodness by Gourmet Favours. There was a variety of honeys, jams, marmalades, pestos and chutneys to choose from that I was having difficulty deciding what to choose. So I asked the seller for a recommendation.. and what a win. Imagine crackers, cheese, and a thin spread of olive tapenade #mmm #yum.. coupled with an afternoon beverage.. ahh, yes please. I walked away …

Lot 19 Cafe and Coffee Shop, Rushcutters Bay

Tucked between high rise apartment blocks and the leafy suburban homes of Rushcutters Bay, is the French-inspired Lot 19 Cafe. Before visiting, I checked their Google rating and at the time of writing this post, with an astounding 4.7-stars (out of 5) by more than 100+ reviews, I knew it surely must be a hidden gem local. From the moment we walked up to peruse the main menu visible from the kerb, we were greeted by a warm and friendly staffer offering a detailed run down of what to try. We mentioned we hadn’t been here before, and he was more than happy to assist with any of our questions. Think light breakfast and brunch menu items such as Le Vert (avocado smash on white sourdough) from AU$8, Le Bourgeois (bacon and egg wrap) from AU$10, or a handful of delicious, warm La Crepes starting from AU$7 each. Get ready to put on your best french accent when pronouncing each of these whilst ordering.. They also have a range of beverages available; your choice of …

Fine Dining with Water Views: Pilu at Freshwater

If you’re planning a celebratory lunch, romantic date or looking for a fine dining restaurant that offers stunning water views, then Pilu at Freshwater might just be the restaurant for you. Located on the edge of Freshwater Beach, this is a beautiful venue to dine at – with water views from most seats in the house. Between 7am and 7pm daily, expect metered street parking nearby (charged from AU$8 per hour). Do keep in mind you’re competing with beach go-ers, so if the weather is amazing, parking can be a little tricky at first. As soon as we sat down, service was prompt, offering the choice of tap or sparkling water to start. We opted for the three course a la carte menu (AU$98 per person) and were offered freshly baked breads with a side of delicious ricotta truffle oil. Imagine modern, contemporary flavoursome Italian dishes delicately prepared and well-plated upon serving – your taste buds will be sent on a magical food safari. Primi – Spaghettoni allo zafferano con calamari e ‘Nduja Primi – …