Kwan’s Table

Kwan's Table - St Kilda

Kwan’s Table – Street view

Kwan’s table is a Thai inspired café and patisserie that recently opened on Inkerman Street in St Kilda.You can visit Kwans for a savoury meal and stay for the sweets, which is what we did on this fine morning. They do modern Thai inspired meals like soft-shell crab in a brioche burger and deep-fried pork belly with an apple salad. Their desserts are inspired by French technique but incorporate Thai flavours like lychee, coconut, pandan and kaya. They only opened about 6 weeks ago but are already making a good impression around town.

Kwan's Table - Venue

Kwan’s Table – Venue

It’s a cute little cafe. And the staff are lovely.

Kwan's Table - Pandan custard toast

Kwan’s Table – Pandan custard toast

The pandan custard toast was insanely delicious. One mouthful and I was in love. The super thick toast was lathered in a warm smooth creamy pandan wonderland of deliciousness. A generous amount of custard was spread over the toast with toasted coconut sprinkled on top and was cut into bite size squares so it was easy to eat. Loved it. They also have a kaya (coconut jam) custard toast for those who love kaya.

Kwan's Table - Pork belly salad

Kwan’s Table – Pork belly salad

The pork belly salad was lovely and fresh. The pork belly pieces were lightly battered and deep fried. The fresh salad had red cabbage, carrot, lettuce, spinach, slithers of apple, coriander and chopped peanuts in a sweet tangy dressing., which was just what I needed on this warm summer day.

Kwan's Table - Chilli cheese soldiers

Kwan’s Table – Chilli cheese soldiers

We tried the oh-so-cheesy chilli cheese soldiers which was thick toast soldiers with cheese in the middle and cheese on top. It also had sliced red chilli, red onion and coriander scattered over the top. A tasty snack.

Kwan's Table - Lychee and raspberry charlotte

Kwan’s Table – Lychee and raspberry charlotte

The lychee and raspberry charlotte had a beautiful raspberry and lychee mousse inside and was encased in a circular fence of mini sponge fingers. It was topped with fresh lychee and raspberries.

Kwan's Table - Mango and sticky rice macaron

Kwan’s Table – Mango and sticky rice macaron

The mango and sticky rice macaron was great. Mango and sticky rice is a traditional Thai dessert but I certainly hadn’t had it inside a macaron before. It was a large sized macaron filled with layered mango and sticky rice bits. It think it had like a mango and sticky rice custard in there too. I know my mum would have loved this one.

Kwan's Table - Soy latte

Kwan’s Table – Soy latte

And to top off a great brunch date, the coffee was awesome too. They use 5 senses and had bonsoy yay! And also I know I already mentioned this but the pandan toast was bom! I can foresee myself making regular stops to Kwan’s for coffee and pandan toast. In conclusion you need to mosey on down to Kwan’s table for a modern Thai adventure.

I heart Kwan’s Table!

Olives x

Kwans Table
Address: 7 Inkerman St, St Kilda VIC 3182
Phone: 03 9939 3153
Trading Hours: Tue-Sat: 11am-10pm, Sun: 10am-5pm, (closed on Mondays)

Kwan's Table Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato


Luxbite - Street view

Luxbite – Street view

Luxbite is a pastisserie/café on Toorak road in South Yarra. Attention: Yum! Drool ensues. The cakes are inventive, the macarons are scrumptious and they also have tasty savoury dishes. The cakes look stunning and in the taste department they exceed expectations. They had a quote on the window that said “Life is uncertain, eat dessert first.” I really liked that, Ernestine Ulmer was one clever lady.

Luxbite - Venue

Luxbite – Venue

The venue was contemporary and colourful, with lots of light and super high ceilings. There was a grass bunny and some fresh flowers. Really cute. The cake display was impressive. They had a range of full size cakes and minature versions of them too.

Luxbite - Ribena lemonade macaron

Luxbite – Ribena lemonade macaron

So first things first, I ordered a Ribena lemonade macaron. Eat dessert first? Don’t mind if I do. It was delicious. For me Ribena brings back childhood memories and they nailed the flavour. The vanilla crème brulee macaron is really good too. They have some cool macaron flavour combos like lemon, ginger & pineapple, passionfruit & kaffir lime leaf, green tea pistachio and bamboo oolong tea.

Luxbite - Salted caramel hot choc

Luxbite – Salted caramel hot choc

I ordered the salted caramel hot chocolate. The hot chocolate came with the salted caramel in a little pot so you could add a lot or as little as you like. I made the mistake of tasting the salted caramel on it’s own. It was delicious. I ended up eating most of the caramel and drinking the hot choc without the caramel. Both were good individually so I’m sure they would be good together. Turns out you can buy jars of the salted caramel to take home. Excellent!

Luxbite - Lamb, mint & rosemary sausage

Luxbite – Lamb, mint & rosemary sausage

For lunch we ordered the lamb mint and rosemary sausage, which were juicy and went well with the tomato relish, avocado and feta. The 60/60 eggs were perfect and the toast was really thin which was good because I didn’t want to fill up on bread when I had forecasted lots of cake eating in the near future.

Luxbite - Sticky rice w ginger chicken and shitake mushroom

Luxbite – Sticky rice w ginger chicken and shitake mushroom

We also got the steamed sticky rice w ginger marinated chicken and shitake mushroom on flaky pastry. This was yum and flavoursome and the fresh lettuce and cucumber lightened the dish. It came with Malaysian chilli sauce, which had quite a bite.

Luxbite - Lolly bag cake

Luxbite – Lolly bag cake

We tried the famous lolly bag cake that featured as one of the challenges on Masterchef. It tasted just like a lolly bag. For realsies! It had banana lolly Joconde (almond sponge cake), freckles crunch, mandarin jaffa ganache, musk mallow, spearmint leaf buttercream, topped with a Redskins glaze. This cake is extraordinary! It’s creative, inspiring and imaginative. A single mouthful takes you back to when you were a kid. The ever so familiar flavours are faultless. The combination has a perfect balance and it’s not too sweet. It takes you to a happy place. What a wonderful cake. Now I’m curious to eat a redskin, spearmint leaf lolly, banana lolly, jaffa and a chocolate freckle at the same time to see if it tastes nice. I’ll report back later with my findings.

Luxbite - Endless love (lychee, rose & raspberry macaron)

Luxbite – Endless love (lychee, rose & raspberry macaron)

The endless love was a big macaron w lychee ganache, rose cream, lychee and fresh raspberry. It was spectacular! It looked so pretty I didn’t want to eat it. This dessert took macarons to another level. It was delicate and delcious.

Luxbite - Maxaron

Luxbite – Maxaron

Max was mesmerised by it’s beauty. He had never seen such a macaron.

Luxbite - Banoffee

Luxbite – Banoffee

The banoffee was a fine slither of deliciousness. This sweet, salty, creamy crunch sponge was delicious. It had a hazelnut sponge, banana ganache (fresh banana flavour yum!), Sichuan pepper chocolate crunch and salted toffee buttercream.

Luxbite - Meringue monster (green tea sponge, watermelon yoghurt, strawberry mousse)

Luxbite – Meringue monster (green tea sponge, watermelon yoghurt, strawberry mousse)

We ordered the meringue monster, which is Luxbite’s signature cake. You can get the full size cake but the mini ones are just adorable. This gorgeous little cake really looked amazing. The meringue looks like it has a striped pattern with little peaks at the top. It’s incredible and truly a little masterpiece.

Luxbite - Meringue monster exposed

Luxbite – Meringue monster exposed

And oh my it was delicious. It had green tea sponge, pistachio, watermelon yoghurt, sour strawberry mousse covered in meringue. The combo of flavours was outstanding. Yum! Yum! Yum!

Luxbite - Bread and butter pudding w pandan anglaise

Luxbite – Bread and butter pudding w pandan anglaise

The bread and butter pudding was not your everyday b n b pud. It tasted like the classic home favourite with a twist. The little glazed square of bread and butter pudding was eaten warm with a generous amount of pandan anglaise which was absolutely delicious. The pudding was soft and had a nice cinnamon flavour, which went perfectly with the pandan englise. The pandan englaise had the perfect amount of pandan, it was superb. The green coloured custard was heavenly. I could have seriously eaten a whole river of the pandan englaise. Augustus save some for later.

Luxbite - Caramel cravings

Luxbite – Caramel cravings

The caramel cravings cake is for the caramel lovers out there. It was a slab of delicious caramel between a layer of chocolate and a coconut base with two teeny-weeny salted caramel macarons on top (so cute). This looked incredibly decadent at first sight but you can actually get through the whole mini cake without it being way too sweet. It was basically a caramel slice, but a really delicious one at that.

The staff are friendly, kind and just really lovely. It’s definitely a place that you will visit time and time again. In fact we got some takeaway cakes last night. I left my bread and butter pudding on the table (my mistake) and when I wasn’t looking that little sneak Max jumped up on the coffee table and got his mitts on it. I was completely devastated and was left to drown my sorrow in the pandan englaise that remained. Drinking the pandan on its own spawned a brilliant idea. What about a pandan milkshake? I would love it if Luxbite made a panda milkshake! Now that would be pretty awesome. The desserts at Luxbite are inventive and are a beautiful expression of their love for food. Any sweet tooths dream come true.

I heart Luxbite!

Olives x

Address: 38 Toorak Road, South Yarra VIC 3141
Phone: 03 9867 5888
Trading Hours: Mon–Sun (7 days): 10.30am – 7pm

LuxBite on Urbanspoon

Chez Dre

Chez Dre - street view

Chez Dre – street view

This hidden gem is discretely positioned down a narrow street in South Melbourne. There is an amazing display of cakes, macarons, pastries and baguettes, a patisserie-boulangerie. The décor is chic and takes you into another world. There are big wooden share tables, cute little jars with fresh flowers in them and bright red watering cans against the brick wall. It is a lovely setting to have brunch or to just stop by for a cake or two or three.

Chez Dre - venue

Chez Dre – venue

As you walk in, there is an open kitchen on the left and seating on the right, which then opens into a big seated area with a nice courtyard out the back.

The cake display was impressive. I think they were sparkling in the light. They were so super shiny and glossy they looked fantastic.

Chez Dre - cake display

Chez Dre – cake display

They had some interesting macaron flavours like orange tonka bean, lime-basil, rose-raspberry, apple cinnamon and green tea-kalamanzi. Along with the common faves like vanilla, chocolate, salted caramel etc.

Chez Dre - macarons

Chez Dre – macarons

Their assorted baguettes looked really good. They were thin and crunchy and had a good range of flavours. I liked the sound of the poached chicken w apple, capers, cornichons, mayonnaise, witlof & celery mmm.

Chez Dre - baguettes

Chez Dre – baguettes

The croque madame was a smoked ham & emmental (swiss) cheese sandwich grilled with béchamel (basically a fancy ham and cheese toasty) with a fried egg on top. It was nice and had a kick of mustard, which went well with the pickles in the side salad.

Chez Dre - croque madame

Chez Dre – croque madame

The slow roasted lamb salad was good it had freekah, barley, goats fetta, heirloom beetroots,
baby kale, green harissa & sherry vinaigrette. The lamb melted in your mouth. It was fresh and tasty.

Chez Dre - slow roasted lamb salad

Chez Dre – slow roasted lamb salad

The braised mushroom ragu was a combination of swisse, field & button mushrooms on a bed of
 soft parmesan polenta with a poached egg
 and truffle oil. This was nice, the flavours were good but it was screaming out for some texture like a piece of crusty bread or something. Well actually truth be told, I did have all of my wisdom teeth extracted this week (ouch ouch) and probably couldn’t eat a piece of crusty bread. But unless they had extrasensory perception and knew that my wisdom teeth had recently been extracted (and so omitted the element of texture) then this dish was way too mushy.

Chez Dre - braised mushroom ragu

Chez Dre – braised mushroom ragu

The chorizo and smashed peas with mint, lemon & parsley,
goats chèvre & poached eggs
on sourdough was simple and fresh.

Chez Dre - chorizo & smashed peas

Chez Dre – chorizo & smashed peas

Now for my favourite part of Chez Dre… the cakes!

The fruits of the forest st. honoré is delish. It is like three raspberry petits chou (mini profeteroles) with a red fruit chantilly (berry cream) sitting on a lime-vanilla sable (like a round shortbread biscuit). It looked really cute and was yum.

The lemon-hazelnut tart had lemon mousse, praline, lemon crème and a hazelnut dacquoise. It was like a complex lemon tart, it had the familiar elements (lemony and biscuit base) but had extra layers of technique, which made this extra special. Lemon and hazelnut are a perfect pair, who knew.

The lychee, raspberry & coconut looked amazing. When you cut into it, there are lots of layers. It had a coconut dacquoise, lime curd, raspberry jelly and lychee mousse. It was feminine and had a beautiful delicate flavour.

Chez Dre - cakes ready to be eaten yum!

Chez Dre – cakes ready to be eaten yum!

We chose the passionfruit-chocolate mousse because it was the shiniest of all the shiny cakes. There was a passionfruit macaron shell on the bottom with the chocolate mousse and passionfruit crème. The chocolate mousse was quite dark and had a yummy tropical truffle sitting on top. There was a little sesame seed tuile but I wished it was bigger or there was more because it was paper thin and utterly delicious.

The banana caramel slice is absolutely delicious! It has many layers: banana, caramel & ghana milk chocolate caramel bavarois, banana créme, passionfruit ganache, hazelnut-crunch. The banana layer has a marvelous fresh banana taste, which is dominant enough to stand its ground against all the other caramel and chocolate layers. It’s flawlessly smooth but there are also elements with crunch. It was outstanding and definitely my favourite cake. Yum!

Chez Dre - dark choc passionfruit & banana caramel

Chez Dre – dark choc passionfruit & banana caramel

We took some cakes home for later. They were oh so shiny, the compelling gloss of the cakes turned my hand and forced me to buy more cakes. Well it was either that or that I was lacking restraint. Probably the latter.

Chez Dre - takeaway cakes.. so shiny

Chez Dre – takeaway cakes.. so shiny

As usual Max thought the cakes were for him, it was hard to break the bad news.

Chez Dre - chez max

Chez Dre – chez max

Chez Dre has a great atmosphere, the staff were nice and the cakes were amazing. It’s a good idea to proceed with caution when approaching the cake display because the remarkably shiny cakes may hypnotise you into eating more than you probably should.

I heart Chez Dre!

Olives x

Chez Dre
Address: 285-287 Coventry Street, South Melbourne 3205
Phone: 03 9690 2688
Trading Hours: Mon–Sun (7 days): 7.30am – 4.30pm

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