decoded_ Something for your mind… Something for your mind…

November 24, 2008


Filed under: Films,Food,Music,Travel — decoded_ @ 1:27 pm

The Hotel Windsor

I just had a fantastic w/end away in Melbourne with Joanne, celebrating 10 years together. We stayed at the lovely, old, Victorian era, grand Hotel Windsor. Lots of character, so much nicer than the trendy boutique hotels. Old-school service, porters, concierge, a top hat wearing doorman greats you on entry… “Welcome to the Hotel Windsor”. We took advantage of their pillow menu there, made for great nights sleep. Very enjoyable stay.

We had some fantastic food in Melbourne, as you do!

A nine course French degustation dinner at Vue Du Monde for 5 hours. An amazing experience of flavours, textures and innovative food presentation, such rich beautiful food. It’s up there equal with Tetsuya’s for an awesome degustation experience for me. Going there was the main reason we went to Melbourne, and I’m very glad we did. It’s also exciting not knowing what food is coming next, with no menus. They e-mailed us exactly what food and wine we had the next day. Fantastic personal service too.

We had a great Japanese lunch at Yu-U as soon as we arrived into Melbourne. We had some great modern Spanish tapas dishes and cocktails, dropping into Bar Lourinha a couple of times, which was just around the corner from where we stayed. I highly recommend their ‘Stolen Town Bike’ cocktail. We had more excellent Spanish tapas and cocktails at the very popular Movida, also picking up a copy of their new book on the way out. We caught up with friends at Babka Bakery Cafe for some Russian style food for lunch, which was ok, it’s not as good as it used to be there. We had a great breakfast our first morning at the hotel in the grand ballroom. The next morning we had a late breakfast at Madame SouSou in Brunswick, which was excellent. Moments before heading to the airport we also managed to pop into The Supper Club, just up the road from the hotel, for a quick wine, jamon, and olives fix, seated in the comfy, well worn, old-school, red leather couches, great place, we had it all to our selves, as it had just opened for the night.

We couldn’t visit Melbourne without also having some Trampoline gelato. I love their Likrish, and Peanut Nutter flavours, and managed to find/have them again, which made me very happy. Joanne loves the Lemon, and Lychee n Lime flavoured sorbets.


Chocolate! Joanne enjoyed a Melbourne chocolate tour, and visited many chocolate shops, such as; Haighs, Cacao, KoKo Black, San Churro and more. We also got down to Acland Street St.Kilda, with it’s wonderful cake shops, seems to be fewer of them now though unfortunately.

I’m sure this will all be written about in great detail on Joanne’s blog in the coming days. There’s photo evidence of all the food/drink consumed as well.

I enjoyed looking in clothes shops around the city, in Melbourne Central, and up and down Chappel St, Greville St, Brunswick St and surrounds, picking up a few cool t-shirts. A lot more walking than tram action this trip.

We even managed to squeeze in seeing the latest James Bond movie one night – “Quantum Of Solace”, which was great, not as excellent as Casino Royale, but I still enjoyed it. I don’t recommend seeing movies at the Russell St. Greater Union though, horrible seats, and it sounded like the audio was coming from a single mono central speaker.

It was a really fun, special time in Melbourne. Everything was great, well apart from the weather, which was pretty horrible at times, and very un-summer like. Grey clouds mostly, cold, some rain, heavy at times, even a little hail, and gale force gusts of ice cold wind. Sometimes we saw the sun, but not for long. Rain not unusual for Melbourne though. We managed to avoid being out in the heavy rain which was lucky. Sunday was better weather.

The massive queue to check in baggage that took almost an hour on Sunday night at the airport was also not so great, but life can’t all be perfect.

We could have also seen German/Dutch techno/minimal producer/DJ Patrice Baumel @ Tramp, whilst we were in Melbourne, but didn’t make it there. It was the night of our amazing dinner at Vue Du Monde, not wanting to spoil the memory.

This is one of the most relaxed and enjoyable visits we’ve had in Melbourne, and unusual for us to not include seeing a DJ at some club or dance music event. Must be getting old. I love Melbourne’s cool little bar scene.

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