The Bended Elbow

A few weeks ago the boyfriend and I went to The Bended Elbow for a Birthday lunch. We were tossing up between a couple of pubs we haven’t been to yet, but decided on The Bended Elbow after looking at the menu online, and seeing well priced meals, with some vegetarian options. Menus can be accessed here. The lunch menu has $10, $12 and $14 options, with desserts priced at $6. If you’re too lazy to click on the link and have a look for yourself, the menu has quite the variety, with meals ranging from steaks to burgers, from pasta to risotto, from tempura to voluvents.

Having never been to The Bended Elbow, I found the decor quite interesting. Some people may be put off by the deer head mounted on the wall, but overall, I found the pub warm and cosy, and a welcome change from the storm outside.

I had a hard time deciding between the Prawn and Avocado Voluvent, Flash Fried Calamari and Eggplant Parmagiana. But, ended up going with the Eggplant Parmi.

Eggplant Parmagiana

Was happy with how this tasted – good amount of sauce and cheese with thick pieces of eggplant.

The boyfriend ordered Chicken Schnitzel.

Chicken Schnitzel

Chicken was cooked well, wasn’t dry, and the gravy tasted good.

When we originally got the meals we thought the chips were a little light on, however, after clearing our plates we were quite full, so more chips wouldn’t have been necessary. The salad, pictured in both pictures had no dressing, and was disappointing. It really needed some dressing – even just something basic would have been fine.

Overall, the lunch menu seems like good value. Will be back to taste the calamari and voluvents. Head up to the counter to place your order.

Details:

The Bended Elbow

69 Yarra St, Geelong.
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Details:

True Spice

140 Moorabool St, Geelong.
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Bush Inn Hotel

After browsing through recipe books for far too long on a Saturday night, I decided to head out for some dinner. My group was originally planning on heading to The Carlton, but it was completely booked out. We took a suggestion from a girl at the bar and walked down to the Bush Inn Hotel.

The menu had a fair selection including frittata, veal and chicken schnitzel, veal and chicken parmigiana, Caesar salad, calamari, fish fillets, etc. Pretty much the usual pub grub. I was looking forward to the calamari with chips, but upon ordering found out that the kitchen was out of calamari for the night. I browsed the menu again and struggled to find a vegetarian or seafood dish. I could have ordered the catch of the day – flake, but have recently decided against eating flake for environmental reasons. I saw oven-baked salmon on the specials board and decided to go with that. Our table also ordered some garlic and cheese bread.

After waiting over half an hour for some food, and seeing a table that came in after us get their meals before us, we were starting to wonder how much longer it would be. The waitress came over and told us that our garlic bread had turned black in the oven, and would now be due to come out with our mains. I would have preferred getting the bread earlier, as the meals were quite large, and with the bread we struggled to finish our meals.

Here’s what we ended up ordering…

Oven-baked Salmon with Pesto

The oven-baked salmon with pesto ($19.95) came with chips and a salad made with rocket, sundried tomatoes and fetta, and was dressed in a balsamic dressing. The skin was sitting on top of the fish and was quite crispy, which to me indicates the skin was taken off before placing the fish in the oven to ensure the skin stayed crispy. The salmon was cooked to my liking, and the salad was tasty. I should mention the chips were a bit soggy, but I actually like them like that!

Chicken Parmagiana

The chicken parmigiana ($15) came with chips and a basic salad. The chicken was possibly a little dry, but the tomato sauce was tasty and had chunks of onion throughout.

Filet Mingnon

The filet mingnon ($29.95) was from the specials board and came sitting on a bed of mashed potato and spinach, covered in mushrooms. The meat was not cooked as ordered (slightly overcooked), but overall was a filling and tasty dish.

Beef and Guinness Pie

The Beef and Guinness Pie ($11) was also from the specials board. It came with chips and a basic salad. The pie had good flavour, but was let down by some soggy pastry.

Nobody from our group ordered dessert, but the specials board had Sticky Date Pudding, Mississippi Mud Cake and Passionfruit & Peach Cheesecake.

Details:

Bush Inn Hotel

58 Corio St, Geelong.

 

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Hahndorf’s Fine Chocolates

I frequently drive along Pakington Street, but rarely stop for a coffee or a quick bite to eat. I’m not too sure what I was looking for on this particular day, but I found myself walking into a chocolate shop, a few doors down from Rixon’s (River end), a pub and a couple of bakeries.

Hahndorf’s on Pakington St

The store is a cross between a chocolate specialty shop and a cafe, with benches and stands full of chocolate goodies placed close to the tables and chairs. On these benches you’ll find things like licorice bullets, chocolate coated jelly raspberries and much more. I was surprised to see so much variety on offer.
If you wander towards the back of the store, you’ll see baked treats on offer, in addition to individual chocolates that are available, with no minimum purchase.

I ended up walking out with the following chocolates…

Selection of Hahndorf’s chocolates

Left to Right -> Sticky Date, Devonshire Tea, Peanut Butter Cup, Lavender Heart.

I’m quite fussy with chocolate, having made my own and won’t settle for anything even average, so was eager to give these chocolates a go. The Sticky Date chocolate tasted of a good caramel, which reminded me of sticky date pudding sauce. Devonshire Tea was extremely creamy tasting. I was expecting more of a tea flavour that I’ve had in chocolates before, but really enjoyed the creaminess of this chocolate.  The Peanut Butter Cup was indeed peanutty, but not peanut buttery – as it should have been. It doesn’t compare to a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup at all. I’d feel a lot better about this chocolate if they had called it a Peanut Cup, because it definitely delivers on the peanut flavour. The Lavender Heart had a light lavender flavour, which could have been made slightly stronger. Definitely an unusual flavour, but it wasn’t unpleasant.

The chocolates are good quality and melt well in the mouth. I paid about $5 for four chocolates, which I consider a good price for handmade chocolate.

I’m not sure how popular this store is, as I’ve never had a good look when driving past. There was only one table of customers when I was in the store, with another customer waiting on an order at the back of the store. I’d like to go back and buy some packaged lollies, such as the licorice bullets and see how the chocolate compares to the handmade chocolates I purchased. Some companies tend to concentrate more on quality of their chocolates produced in smaller quantities, and aren’t as focused on the quality of larger batches.

If you’re thinking of buying chocolates for a gift, come and see what’s on offer. There seems to be more variety in the handmade chocolate here than what’s on offer at The Chocolate Room, a few minutes down the road. Chocolate lovers are sure to like the chocolate sold here.

Details:
Hahndorf’s Fine Chocolates

354 Pakington St, Newtown.

Open 7 days a week.
Monday – Saturday 9am – 6pm
Sunday 10am – 5pm



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One response to “The Bended Elbow

  1. Just a thought – Bended has recently changed hands, chef and menu, might be worth another shot! Waiting time for food is a pain here though.

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