Manly Salt House

SH3Eat.
Drink.
Dance.
Repeat.

Forget stumbling all over town to find all the best things in life, at Manly Salt House you can get all three in one night – with that warm, balmy summer air, instantly transporting you to *Happy Place*.

Renovated to feel warm yet open, this dual space offers service practically on the beach, without the unsavoury sand. Previously U-turn, which you might remember for that U shaped bar that swallowed up the place, the new owners have pushed the bar right back and renovated the impressive space with natural woods, tiles and a few stone facades.

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Here at Manly Salt House you start downstairs, where you can split a platter of marinated king prawns, oregano & paprika dusted lamb and char grilled vegetables ribbons. Or be greedy and order a market fish, wrapped in banana leaf and served with ginger and lemon relish, all to yourself. Hey, no judgement…

Next, grab your still-standing cronies and head upstairs where you can book a booth, order a wine or three and get. up. on. the floor. They’re soon to offer table service, so you can start channelling your inner Celeb Bali Escape vibe now.

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Head up another level to cool off under the stars beneath the retracting roof. Order the Sunset Blvd, served proud in a champagne glass with fresh strawberry, vanilla, vodka and a touch of lavender, then recline and radiate in your endless-summer-bliss.

Salt heals all wounds, after all…

Website: Manly Salt House

Published on Urban Society / 15 October, 2013

Macleay St Bistro, Potts Point

unnamed-28They say good things come in threes:

Charlie’s Angels.
Harry, Ron and Hermione.
The Hemsworth Brothers…

And Macleay St Bistro has you sorted for entrée, dinner and dessert.

New owners and a new Head Chef have swooped into the Potts Point eatery and given it a fresh new look (and menu to boot). A soft refurb has added a relaxed atmosphere to the French Bistro classic. “We welcome locals to pop in for oysters and champagne or just a mouth-watering dessert,” co-owner Phillip Fikkers said.

Sure, you could just swing by for a White Chocolate Cheesecake with Strawberry Coulis at the end of the night, but why hit just one when you could go for the trifecta? Head Chef Tom Williams (Bambini Trust, Forbes on Burton, Tetsuya’s) has you in safe hands.

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Start your night off with Chilled Watercress Soup with Poached Quail Egg. The light flavours will tingle your tastebuds and get you ready for the main event. We highly recommend you try the Spinach and Ricotta Gnocchi with Sage Buerre Noisette; don’t let the big words put you off, that’s simply food talk for unbelievable sauce.

Even after you’re groaning with delight after having finished every spec on your plate, it still won’t be enough. Sit back, enjoy the décor… there’s that beautiful red chandelier by the door, or perhaps that garçon caught your eye? Put off leaving and order dessert. You’re here for the long run, after all. The Hazelnut Mille Feuille with Coffee Anglais is the perfect indulgence to finish.

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This new ownership has created the ultimate Parisian Potts Point place to be – and everyone wants to be there. If you want a seat you might want to make a booking, otherwise you may sadly miss the boat.

Whatever item on the menu catches your eye, there will be no order regrets. Just to be on the safe side, though, you better have a taste of your dining companion’s dishes.

Perhaps you and The Hemsworth Brothers could spoon feed each other?

Opening Hours: 7 days, 5:30-11 pm
Website: Macleay St Bistro
Facebook: Macleay St Bistro


Published on Urban Society / 11 December, 2013

Tatler, Darlinghurst

DSC_8330-1Tatler, Sydney’s original small bar, reopened its doors last week to play host to the ARIA week shenanigans.

Sydney boys Brendan Watson and Tim Clark reclaimed the venue and have been hard at work refurnishing it to reflect the smooth and sophisticated tone of Sydney’s elite. The original sandstone foundations remain, but everything else is brand new: remodelled bars, handpicked furnishings, skeletons dancing on the ceiling… Stumble down the stairs of Tatler and take in the old world furniture and new world values.

Live music takes the form of jazz and soul, while DJs spin remixed 50s classics from decks on an 18th century writing desk. It’s a tantalising combination that won’t let you stop dancing until the walls sweat.

Not your thing? Don’t worry, grab some company and take the party to the outside where you can enjoy city views and fresh breezes.

Tatler

When you get thirsty flag down one of the many waitresses who will bring you a refreshing margarita in a mason jar (what else?). And you wont be able to stop at one, soon your recycled stone top table will be looking like you raided all the best hipster bars in the city. Our other favourite is the Clover Club (pictured, above right), a smooth and refreshing combination of Bombay gin and raspberries. Summer in a sip gulp.

When you’re sufficiently tippled, pick up some of the white cards provided (with a Hemingway quote of course) and let your inspiration, or drunken rantings, flow.

But don’t forget to soak some of that tequila up with a choice of mouthwatering jaffles. Ask for the mushroom filled jaffle with three types of melt-in-your-mouth mushrooms and the smoothest cheese. You’ll be set for the night.

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Get your culture fix here as well: a rotating gallery with works from MCLEMOI. Up first is Tyler Shields: think plenty of red lips and half naked attractive people. Who said a gallery couldn’t come with cocktails?

Last week Tatler was a melting point for the who’s who of the music industry. Judging by the smiles on satisfied customer’s faces, they’ll be coming back again and again.

Stop in, drop by, or settle in for the summer. You won’t want to be anywhere else.
Opening hours: Tuesday – Saturday, 6pm – late
For more info: Visit the Tatler website

Published on Urban Society / 03 December, 2013

Walk on Water at Lake Baikal

Baikal.adventure.walk_.on_.water_Hey there, you big nomad.

What if we were to tell you there’s a frozen lake the size of Belgium that would take you four days to walk across?

Fascinating enough to quench that wanderlust?

This is something to go on every thrill-seeker/Insta-bragger’s bucket list. If the frozen lake isn’t quite enough to pull you across the line, theres the ancient Buddhist communities (“I really connected with the locals, man.”) and adrenaline filled dogsled rides.

But first you’ll have to experience it all.
In Siberia.

Yes, Siberia. Don’t let it’s chills-inducing name put you off – where else except in sub-zero temperatures can you walk across a picturesque frozen lake?. It’s one of the oldest, deepest and largest lakes in the world, not to mention one of the most beautiful. Nothing like the freezing crisp mountain air to make you feel aliiiiiive.

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Included as part of the UNESCO World Heritage List, Lake Baikal features 120ft of clear, fresh water. In warmer months you can grab a wooden boat and take in the beauty above and below you, but we suggest planning for colder weather.

In winter months (February to April) the lake freezes over and transforms into a wonderland the size of Belgium. Here is when the magic happens and you can walk, or take a dogsled, on water.

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Also on the check list when you inevitable head Siberian way: check out the history of nearby Russia, take a Russian cooking class, go on a jeep expedition, explore crystal caves, see the holy Buddhist stupa, meet the indigenous people of Russia and go ice rafting.

Or, for those less-inclined to do such pedestrian activities like actually planning a trip, book a tour and leave it up to those other suckers. 56th Parallel has tours starting from $4950, so you better start pinching those pennies.

[Image Source]


Published on Urban Society / 19 November, 2013

Too ugly to eat at the front of the restaurant?

Night.Time_.Outdoor.Cafe_.Paris_You wait two weeks to get a reservation at the best new restaurant.

You wear your best clothes and prepare your wallet for the best food.

And finally you arrive, and what happens? You’re placed out the back, somewhere between the shouting chef and the constantly swinging door of the toilet.

The place isn’t even that busy, so what’s with that?

Well, sorry to break it to you but you just may not be attractive enough.

Reports from former waitresses at major restaurants in Paris prove that they were told to put the best-looking customers at the front and move the less attractive further along, out of sight, to create a view of an ugly-free Paris.

Le George, an upmarket restaurant on top floor of the Pompidou Centre, and Café Marly, which overlooks the Louvre, are both landmark Parisian eateries and have been accused of being biased snobs.

The waitresses say they were getting in trouble for not following this policy, with the owners and managers asking: “What are these ugly mugs doing at this table? Everyone can see them when they come in. It’s very bad for our image.” (Let’s just take a step back here and remember that this is the city with a dedicated cat cafe).

The only ones exempt seem to be celebrities, who get to enjoy the Parisian view without having to worry too much about having a face like an angel. (All’s well for Gérard Depardieu, then.)

Even the hostesses don’t have it easy, with the criteria for a job at either restaurant stating anyone “without a model’s physique and over 30 need not apply”. They were also told off for not showing their boobs and wearing long skirts.

And don’t even think about bribing the staff, with the boss of Le George, Gilbert Costes, visiting his restaurant periodically to “harp on about the house principles of which he is very proud, as he invented them” as one of the former waitresses told The Telegraph.

Looks like you may need to find a new favourite restaurant, or plastic surgeon.

(Image Source)

Published on Urban Society / 12 November, 2013

Most promiscuous mechaphile in the world

carloverIf you thought you loved your car just because you wash it more than once a month you have nothing on this guy.

Edward Smith is a 62-year-old car lover from Yelm, Washington who claims he has had sex with 1,000 cars. This makes him the most promiscuous mechaphile in the world. Probably not something to write home about.

Mechapiles are people who love cars a little bit too much, or feel an insatiable sexual attraction to cars. Smith claims he has never felt sexually attracted to women, not even consummating his relationship to his only girlfriend, 12 years ago.

Smith’s attraction started with his neighbour’s Volkswagen Beetle, which he lost his virginity to, and since then he’s taken numerous cars for a ‘test drive’. “Some guys look at boobs and bums on beautiful women. I look at the front and rear on beautiful cars,” he said.

“There have been certain cars that attracted me and I would wait until night time, creep up to them and just hug and kiss them,” he confesses. But you no longer have to worry about discovering your car being humped by a stranger as your wander home after that binger of a Friday night, as Smith is now in an ‘open relationship’ with a second-hand Volkswagen Beetle named Vanilla, an 1973 Opel GT called Cinnamon AND a 1193 Ford Ranger named Splash.

If these cars are jealous of one another, they don’t seem to be honking their horns in frustration.

“I will not deny that I look at other cars on TV or at shows and still get those old impulses and desires – but those were the early days,” he says. He’s admitted that, of all three of his ‘lovers’, his heart belongs to the Beetle. “Now I want to settle down with Vanilla. There’s something about her that I can’t fully express on an emotional level except it’s very powerful and very sincere.”

Guess that just leaves more humans for us to enjoy.
Published on Urban Society / 15 October, 2013

Blueberry Coconut Popsicles

Recipe_BlueberryCoconutPopsiclesIf there’s one thing to put on your summer to-do list, it’s Blueberry Coconut Popsicles. You can thank us later.

Super easy and super sweet you wont want to eat anything else all summer. And with organic and delicious blueberries and chia seeds full of fibre and omega 3, you wont really need anything else.

Ingredient:

2 cups frozen blueberries
1/4 cup shredded coconut
2 tablespoons chia seeds
2 tablespoons honey
juice from 1/2 lemon
5 ice cubes
1/2 cup water

Instructions:
1. Add all ingredients to food processor and blend until smooth.
2. Pour into popsicle molds and freeze.
We weren’t lying when we said it was easy.

[Recipe Source]

Hungry while you wait for them to freeze? Try this Pumpkin Bread Pudding.

Published on Urban Society / 04 October, 2013

Watermelon Whole Fruit Popsicles

Recipe_WatermelonPopsiclesToo hot to leave your lounge? Watching too many episodes of Mad Men and need something to cool you down? (We know, Jon Hamm can do that to you.)

Don’t sweat. We’ve got you covered. These Watermelon Whole Fruit Popsicles will keep you going.

And they look so damn pretty.

Ingredients:

3 cups seedless watermelon puree (about 1/4 to 1/2 a watermelon)
1/2 cup fresh blueberries
1/2 cup chopped fresh strawberries
1 kiwi, peeled and sliced
1 peach or nectarine, diced small
handful fresh cherries, pitted and chopped

Instructions:

Cut the watermelon into chunks and then puree it in a blender until smooth. Set aside.
Set out about 1 dozen popsicle molds (amount needed will vary depending on size of molds).
Fill each one with the chopped fresh fruit.
Then pour in the watermelon puree until each mold is full to the top.
Place a popsicle stick into each one.
Place into your freezer and freeze for about 6 to 8 hours.
When ready to serve, run the popsicle molds under warm water for a few seconds and then pull each one out

[Recipe Source]

Published on Urban Society / 04 October, 2013

Argentina Ghost Town new tourist attraction

Underwater2Would you believe that this place was a bustling tourist town just thirty years ago?

It’s called Villa Epecuen, and lies just south of Buenos Aires in Argentina.

In 1985 the town experienced a particularly heavy rainstorm, followed by several wet winters. A dam finally bursting on the 10th of November, 1985, submerging the town in water. People waited on their roofs for two days for the water to recede, something that didn’t occur until 2009.
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Established in the 1920s, the town used to be a thriving spa resort. Now it features dead trees and signs pointing to nowhere. Remnants of tourists can also be found among the rubble, including coke bottles, plates and glasses. The most unnerving feature is the trees, which still stand in neat rows.

In a twist of fate, the Argentinian town is a tourist attraction once again, but this time as a ghost town, attracting visitors who come to gape at the ruins.

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Villa Epecuen was home to 5,000 residents and thousands of tourists. Now only one man lives here: Pablo Novak. The 83-year-old, who has lived in the town since his youth, never left. He was the only one to return when the town drowned, living there ever since in a stone hut with a fridge and a basic cooker.

“Whoever passes nearby cannot go without coming to visit here,” Novak said to The Associated Press. “It’s getting more people to the area, as they come to see the ruins.”

Many of the other residents fled to nearby Carhue, building new hotels and spas.

Published on Urban Society / 04 October, 2013

Strawberry Cream Popsicles

StrawberryPopsiclesIt’s that time of year again.

Strawberry season!

Where you can pretend you’re running through strawberry fields and munch on them all day. Or if you’re feeling a little hot, suck on these Strawberry Cream Popsicles.

They’re the best sort of sweets. And (you know us) a healthier version of a tasty treat. We’re all about healthy desserts.

Prep Time: 15 minutes/ Cook Time: 4 hours/ Serves: 6

Ingredients

1½ cups of coconut shreds
3 cups of boiling water
½ tsp of cinnamon
½ tsp of vanilla
¼ tsp of cardamon
¼ tsp of sea salt
3 cups of strawberries

Instructions

In your blender or food processor add your coconut shreds, vanilla, cinnamon, cardamon, sea salt and boiling water.
Blend for 3 minutes.
Strain your milk through a nut milk bag.
Rinse out your blender and the coconut milk you just created and the 3 cups of strawberries.
Blend for 1 minute and pour into your popsicle tray. Freeze for 3 hours and then enjoy!

[Recipe Source]

Want some food while you wait? Why not try Adam Liaw’s Salty Lime Prawns Recipe.

Published on Urban Society / 01 October, 2013