"Meet at the corner of Exhibition and Bourke. 6:15pm sharp."
"Bring the goods and I'll give you the money."
"How will I know where to go exactly?"
"There's only one place around, just around the corner from the pub so it shouldn't be hard to find."
Arrangents had been made. An exchange of goods and money would take place at the above location. Was this some black market exchange of illicit drugs? Well, if you consider vanilla beans a drug, then it was.
The above discussion was actually the exchange between myself and fellow food bloggers Duncan and Sarah about a quick catch up dinner. I was going to grab some vanilla beans off Duncan as well and pay him for it. After a bit of email ping pong, Duncan suggested a cheap good Japanese place he knew. But he forgot the name so the plan was to meet on the corner of Exhibition and Bourke. We all got there on time and managed to spot each other (well Duncan spotted me from across the street and I saw Sarah walking along). This meal was actually from a week and a half ago, and I'm the first to write about it. It just shows how slack we all have gotten or how far behind we are on our posting.
The restaurant turned out to be Japanese Cafe Restaurant. Despite Duncan writing that it was around the corner from the pub, I didn't read that properly and would have never found it in a million years. The small restaurant window is hidden under a large shade cloth.
Once inside and seated in our cosy table, we got some drinks and chose our dishes. Look at these wonderfully strained faces because my camera was having trouble focusing in the low lighting and took forever to snap a photo.
For dinner, despite having Sushi and Sashimi for lunch, I decided to have it again. Duncan went for the Teriyaki Chicken Bento from memory and Sarah got the Salmon Rice.
Despite being three food lovers sharing food, we all failed to talk about our meals completely. We were too engrossed in talking about a million other diverse topics, only some of which involved food. It's amazing how you can get to know people well from their blogs and exchanges of comments and emails. A lovely time was had by all and for the record, everyone enjoyed their meals. My sushi and sashimi were quite good, the fish being fairly fres. Only the tuna sashimi was a bit lacking in flavour.
We all finished the meals with dessert, which all consisted of some green tea ice cream and other elements such as fruit, glutinous rice and jelly.
Goods and money were exchanged when I got my aromatic vanilla beans from Duncan. I had them in my pocket on the train trip home and they smelt amazingly good. Now I need to find lots and lots of recipes utilising vanilla beans. Any suggestions would be welcomed.
It was great to meet up with my fellow Melbournian food bloggers. The internet can be used for good and you can meet other like minded people and enjoy their company. Thank you Sarah and Duncan for a very fun meal. May we do it again soon.