Thursday, 23 October 2014

Miinot Gelato {Review}

I travel across town for ice cream. That makes it sounds simpler than it is. I travel across Melbourne for ice cream, and by across I mean West to East. Anybody who has ever been to Melbs knows you don't want to be going sideways anytime, ever, the traffic is always bad. But I go. Because ice cream is important and so far my faves have all been in the east.

But then a magical thing happened. Two cool cats who know a thing or two about gelato opened Miinot in Pascoe Vale South. In the West! Well north west-ish really, but the point is I don't have to battle traffic to get there. However, on my first visit I did have to battle crowds. It was school holidays and the queue was snaking out the door. I don't do queues so I left with a sad face. But it made me all the more determined to go.

Situated on Melville Road, it is an unlikely spot for a gelato parlour. Bordered by abandoned shops and on a busy main road there is a risk you might miss it (apart from the enormous smiling ice cream out the front). Clearly the Pascoe Valeans have realised their good fortune though and if the crowds are anything to go by, those abandoned shops may not stay that way. But I'm getting ahead of myself.

The fit out is exquisite. Little touches like the ornate mirror and vintage till would not be out of place in a luxury boutique. Which is really what Miinot is. A luxury gelato boutique.
seeking victory pascoe vale south

seeking victory

The gelato is gorgeous. Miinot distinguishes itself from many of the new gelato stores in Melbourne by getting back to classic and traditional gelato. This is not the place for crazy flavours and huge chunks in your ice cream, instead you will find beautiful intense fresh fruit gelatos, perfectly balanced creamy/chocolatey numbers and just a few quirky options. It is the freshness of the flavours and the silky texture that is luring me back for more.

seeking victory pascoe vale south

On this occasion I tried Strawberries and Cream and Old Salty, a subtle, not too salty take on salted caramel which reminded me of a rich sticky date pudding (in gelato form).

In addition to the usual cups and cones you can you can choose your own flavours for a well-insulated take-home pack. Which is handy because I get the feeling there are going to be some East-siders popping over for ice cream :)

miinot gelato pascoe vale south

Up to date hours can be found on the Facebook page

Please note: This post was unsponsored. All opinions are my own and all food was paid for.

Miinot Gelato on Urbanspoon

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Fat Mum Slim Photo a day

I had been wanting a camera for over a year. I felt like a little kid, saving my pocket money, putting a little aside each week to buy something I really wanted. I researched. I saved. I lusted. About a month ago the camera I really wanted went on sale and I bought it.

But I didn't know what to do with it.  A huge manual and tricky controls had me terrified I would break it, so it stayed in its case for a week. Then I took it out and put it on auto. After a few days of this I knew that if I didn't start teaching myself how to use it soon it would stay on auto for the rest of its days and I would be very disappointed in myself. About the same time Chantelle of Fat Mum Slim announced her October Photo a Day list; a real treasure-hunt list using the alphabet. I decided that I would set myself a little challenge, to participate in Photo a Day and only allow myself to use my new camera, the Olympus OMD-EM10 (and some photo editing done with Little Moments App, PS Express, VSOCam and Instagram).

If you aren't familiar with Photo a Day, it is a little initiative Fat Mum Slim, a pretty famous Aussie blogger, started in 2012. Each month she publishes a list of prompts and people all over the world take photos and share them on social media using #fmsphotoaday. You can use whatever kind of picture-taker you have and it is all just good, free, community-building fun.

So here is my effort so far, the first half of the month:

A is for... Antony, one of the vineyard workers. He is the best storyteller in the world, getting so animated and excited as he talks that he makes everyone laugh.

B is for... Barrels. Something quite romantic about wine quietly resting in the barrel.

C is for... Cherry. A brand new resident of Australia, she named herself after her favourite fruit.

D is for... Dandelion. We used to call them Santa Claus' when I was little. We would whisper our christmas wish-list and blow the 'whiskers' away.

E is for... Edward. He moved to Melbourne with us. As flatmates go he is pretty quiet but needs a dust now and again.

F is for... Fresh. Only 5 days old.

G is for... Green. The leaves just suddenly appeared on the trees that (I'm sure) were bare only a week ago.

H is for... Hayfever. These seed pods just kill me, but they are so pretty.

I is for... Ink. My work buddy helped me out after no ice idea didn't work.

J is for... Jute. Every Friday night for my entire childhood I would wait eagerly as my dad cut the jute tying up the chicken before he carved it for dinner.

K is for... Kransky. A big cheese kransky- which is apparently the Australian name for a Slovenian sausage.

L is for... Luxury. The little luxuries are important, a nice glass of riesling at the end of a long work week with lovely company.

M is for... Miinot Gelato. Check out my review tomorrow.

N is for... Nicole. Nothing more. No make up, hair scraped back wearing a cardigan covered in Ted hair.

O is for... Once Upon a Time. The way all the best stories begin.

P is for... Pom pom on my Pretty Parcel cape.

I would love you to follow me on Instagram (@nicole_rouge - cause I have red hair geddit? :) and watch my photography journey continue.

Which social media challenges or link-ups are your favourites?

Monday, 20 October 2014

Happy Monday

I've had a week of ranting and frustration, mostly at myself. You know that Wake Up Call post I published, oh, 5 days ago? Yah, forgotten it already. Hit snooze by focusing on the really unimportant detritus like worrying about not enough people 'liking' me on Facebook or 'following' me on Twitter and Instagram. Has it ever occurred to anybody else how banal these terms are- follow and like. People 'followed' Jesus and I am not promising anything like the kind of stuff he was; and well, we all want to be 'liked' but I would much prefer to be 'loved' or 'respected' or any number of other less passive conjugated verbs. Even 'hated' is a much better, more passionate emotion (is 'liking' an emotion) and so much less schoolyard. I was never very popular at school. I always wanted to be 'liked.' I thought I had grown out of that need but it seems not.

I think it's time to move on from 'liked.' By all means please 'like' me on Facebook if that is a way you will keep up with me and read my words. I want you to read my words. But I'm going to try not to worry about those silly little numbers anymore.

Wanna know who doesn't 'like' me?
Nothing passive about my boy. He LOVES me, he WIGGLES me, he IDOLISES me and sometimes he FARTS on me. All big passionate verbs and far more important.
Things that made me happy this week:

Thursday, 16 October 2014

Go for the food, stay for the wine {Green Park Review}

The last night of September I sat glued to Instagram as photos streamed in from the launch of Green Park. I know what you are thinking... 'Heck Nicole, you lead a rocking life!'
In my defense it was a Tuesday night. There's nothing on TV on a Tuesday night (I don't even watch TV :)  Besides, the Instagram viewing was far better than any soul-destroying reality show. It was very clear to be that I needed to voyage over to North Fitzroy ASAP.

I managed to rope one of my wine-appreciating buddies into a Sunday supper, not that Eat Quaff Laugh (EQL) needed much convincing, she had been tormenting me with Instagrams of her Green Park breakfasts and wanted to try the bar menu too.

seeking victory blog