Open Korea@Camperdown

The wife and me had a voucher for a Korean BBQ at a restaurant called Open Korea in Camperdown.We made reservation’s for dinner,and set off for Camperdown,on a chilly windy night.We arrived there on time and found the place packed and full of buzz.I usually don’t like a packed place as it gets very noisy;but I was so hungry and cold,that I didn’t mind.

Full House@Open Korea

The waitress was quick to apprise us of what was in the deal and brought us the Korean equivalent of Vodka called Soju. It was not so strong as Vodka and slightly sweeter.We liked it!The deal was an All-You-Can-Eat Classic Korean BBQ for Two ($39),Plus Choice of Any Beer, Wine or Soju at Open Korea (Up to $318 Value).


So,we were going to sample a range of freshly prepared barbecued mains like fresh green prawns, succulent pork belly, the popular chicken bulgogi and marinated chilli squid. With an emphasis on vegetables, fresh meats and a minimal use of oil,which makes it a healthy choice.

The chef came and lighted the BBQ on gas for us.We were lucky that our gas lasted,some others were not so lucky.

Chef starts the fire

A portion of the BBQ came next and we started off. They don’t provide any oil,so the wife very smartly started off with the pork belly and used the oil from it to cook the rest.Very smart indeed! The portions were quite huge and 4 people could actually eat off this deal for two.


Smart cooking

The BBQ was yum and we enjoyed it with the Soju.The only thing left to be desired were the dips.They could’ve given a few more variety.Also they scrimped on the kimchi,which was sad. But the BBQ was so nice that one couldn’t complain much.The beef was tender,the prawns were succulent and the chicken bulgogi was so tender and juicy.The pork belly was quite yumm,and the marinated chilli squids were delectable.We asked for a second round of BBQ and with that came some yummm fish.It was so soft that it just melted in our mouths.By the end of round two we felt we had over eaten.

Chilli Squid



KImchi-Not enough for 2

The service was very good and courteous and the ambience was perfect for a cold wintry evening.The walls had some polaroid pictures of patrons and also some korean writings.The one thing they could improve on is to fix the lock in the ladies room.I was advised by the wife that it doesn’t lock so most girls couldn’t use it. Other than that,Open Korea is worth a visit.

Writings On The Wall

Moments Captured

Open Korea
154 Parramatta Road Camperdown NSW 2050
(02) 9557 4993

Hasta la vista

What women are Wearing@King Street Wharf

When I studied Fashion at F.I.T in New York, footwear fashion always intrigued me. I had some really hot looking Swede classmates who modelled part time, and I always wondered how they managed to ramp walk or strut their stuff on those stilettos which looked ‘Oh so uncomfortable‘. One of those girls did confess that these styles did give her ankle aches, but she wore them as they were really hep. Hmm, and we were taught that “Form follows function”, but not for women I guess.
On the weekend me and the wife were at King Street Wharf, waiting to board a cruise, when I decided to use the time at hand and have a look at what the Cool women of Sydney were wearing on their lovely feet. There were boots, high heels, sneakers and flat soles. I’m not sure how many were comfortable in their shoes but they all looked happy. King Street Wharf also houses some of the best restaurants and bars in Sydney,so it’s obvious that women dress up fashionably when they dine here!

So, have a peek at the footwear fashion as seen on King Street Wharf.





Three To Tango


Boots That Go For Miles

Fitness Is Fashionable

Heels Make Calves


Prolonged Heels Wearing Is No Good!!


Legs Maketh The Shoes Or Vice Versa

The Plot Being Hatched



Fashionable Mommies!

Best Foot Forward

Different Strokes


Careful On Those Love!!

So, it seems that winter time is boot time. And all shapes and colours of boots. It is interesting to note that modern fashion evolved around women after the end of WWII. During the war there was a ration on fabrics and advertisers utilized mens’ need to see more flesh and skin by making skimpy dresses. That’s how the hemline went up. Some women who worked during the war days, didn’t want to go back to being house wives. So, many of the clothes/fashion created was based on that requirement and boots being part of that. Like I said earlier, we were taught In F.I.T, that “form follows function,” but I genuinely believe that women defy that theory!
Kudos to them, as they make our streets colourful and fashionable- well at least some of them. Do visit King street wharf as it offers a unique waterfront dining and a fantastic view of the famous darling harbour!!
Hasta la vista


I have been hearing and reading a lot on the Great Wall Motors and the vehicles it has been unloading in Australia for the past 2 years.I have seen many tradies and ladies driving them.Till last year,they were only offered as manual ute’s and pick up’s and also as SUV. Now they have introduced them in auto,diesel and 4wd. It’s a great combination on paper and for $28,990 DA,it sounded great too. So,a test drive was on the cards! I also have a friend who’s planning to settle in Sydney and wanted an SUV when he landed here. Raj Singh from Parramatta Great Wall,Granville,called me and we made several appointments before finally meeting last weekend. He was extremely courteous and welcoming for a Sydney Sales rep.I have lived in countries all over the world and Sydney by far has the rudest customer service.They will get their acts together,when competition heats up. Raj quickly introduced me and the wife to his manager and then took us on a tour of the showroom. The showroom had Alfa Romeo,Chery and Citroen along with Great Wall. The one thing that strikes you first about the X200 Dsl Auto, is its simple yet “getting a second look” styling.I remember reading reviews where the reviewer found it too boxy or old styled! Well,each to his own.Like they say “One can’t compare apples and oranges.” And I found it hard to compare this SUV,at the price offered,with anything else in the market. Raj Singh is one of the many South Africans of Indian origin who have made Sydney their home. He quickly apprised us with the specs of the vehicle. Raj used to be with servicing before,but moved here to meet interesting people,he said.

New Kid On The Block(The Suv)

Getting in and out was easy for me at 170cms,and it wasn’t a fuss for the wife either who is a few inches below! Off we went for the TD,and I felt how light the power steering was.

Adjustable Power Steering

Now do bear in mind that my drive is an FG G6,and so everything is bound to feel different. I found the diesels clatter coming through,but then it was a cold engine,and it didn’t sound too agricultural. As Raj had warned me,there was a slight turbo lag from take off and stopping,but that can be adjusted if you squeeze the pedal right from take off. The indicator lever being on the left,like most European models,was a change. Inside,the seats felt a bit stiff compared to my cushion but it’s something that one gets used to.For the same reason I dropped the Mondeo,for the FG G6. The aircon was fine,but there are no vents for the rear passengers.

Simple But Neat Dashboard

Reverse sensors and parking cameras are standard on the X200,as are rain sensing wipers and auto lights.One has option of selecting drive in auto and manual as well. The wife drove in the back and gave her verdict that it was comfy for 2 adults and three would be a squeeze.Foot space was generous.

Ample Foot Space For rear Passengers

The boot space is decent and one can throw in a pram,and a bike with seats down.

Decent Boot

The vehicle did pull our combined weights uphill and arriving at 90km/h on the M4 was a breeze. Adjustments on drivers seat are electronic,and the steering can be adjusted up and down but not forward.

Light Steering

The 2.0 litre turbo diesel has power of 105kw and torque of 310nm arriving as low as 188rpm. Claimed fuel is 9.2l/100km.

Turbo Diesel Engine

In slippery conditions the AWD can be engaged with a 4WD Lock.

4WD For Slippery Conditions

I believe that Great Wall is soon going to touch the golden milestone of 20k in sales,which isn’t a mean achievement for a company which was welcomed with sniggers and skepticism. As history has shown,all companies like Toyota and Honda,started of similarly,but the advances made by Great Wall in such a short time is stupendous.

Great Indeed

Gut Feeling: Their logo says “Better Than Great” and I can’t help but agree. With the kind of features they are lavishly throwing in at a ridiculous price in today’s cut throat market,if they keep the prices competitive,there’s nothing stopping them.Way to go Great Wall Motors!! Good on you!!!

If you live near Parramatta,do call the friendly Raj Singh and take the X200 for a spin. You will see that this a competitively priced package.

Parramatta Great Wall Motors

Corner Church & Meehan Streets
NSW 2150

Phone: 02-8841 8388

Asta la vista

Billu’s@Harris Park

Harris Park near Parramatta,is a suburb that houses some of the best Indian eateries in Sydney.But because it’s about 26kms away from the main CBD,it’s not so popular as it should be. Billu’s is one of these eateries and clearly the popular one.


When me and the wife landed in Sydney in 2006,one of our friends brought us for a quick lunch. That time it had that Indian sweets/take away kinda look,but six years down,things have changed..for the better. It has become more popular and on a Thursday night,it was not so empty!

All decked up

In fact after we settled down,it started filling up.

Ladies busy at the counter

The wife was in a mood for Dosa(Indian crepe).I fancied chole bhature,which is a deep fried Indian bread made of white flour,accompanied by spicy chickpeas. But my bad luck,they only serve chole bhature on the weekends.Damn them!! So the Wife settled for a Paper masala dosa- it’s a looong Indian crepe that has a potato masala filling.

Paper masala dosa-$10.90

Potato masala filling

Dipping into the Sambar

Me and the Wife are from Kerala,in the South of India.We rarely go to North Indian restaurant’s like Billu’s, for dosa’s,which originate from south. But we were so disgusted with the quality of dosa’s at south indian restaurants in West Sydney,that we decided to try Billu’s.I’m not sure if their chef is from the south but he knows what he is doing. The Wife is a difficult customer to please and she sure knows her dosa’s. She was happy with her dosa. I ordered a Ghee masala roast,which is similar to the Wife’s except that its not so long and it has dollops of ghee(clarified butter) on top.It has the same masala filling.

Ghee masala roast- $10.90

Both the dosa’s were accompanied with Sambar,and two Chutney’s-one white and one red. Sambar is a lentil based vegetable stew and is used a lot in south indian homes. The white chutney was ground coconut based and the red one was a tomato chutney. The sambar and white chutney were not to my taste.I make better white chutney at home,but the red one was not bad.But the dosa’s got our full marks and at $10.90 each,they were a steal. We will definitely be returning; hoping that they maintain standards. The problem with Indian eateries is,the constant changing of Chef’s. Anyway,let’s hope for the best and good luck to BILLU’S,after all they did win the the Gold licence caterer certification.



62-64 Wigram Street  Harris Park NSW 2150

(02) 9687 7785

Hasta la vista

Brekky@Hungry Jack’s

On lazy Saturday morning’s, me and the wife prefer to go to our nearest Hungry Jack’s for a hot brekky with a read of the morning paper.


For the uninitiated,brekky is short for b/f and Hungry Jack’s is also referred to as Hungie’s or Hungrie’s and sometimes as HJ’s. Yeah,they love to shorten everything which I say is their way of re-christening everything as Ozzy. It gives a sense of belonging I reckon. For instance,they call Mcdonald’s as Maccas,football as footy and barbeque as barbie.We can’t identify with all that re-naming thingy. Ok,sorry for the deviation and back to business as usual. So today we went to Hungry Jacks. We were disappointed to hear that newspapers were no longer available and we could watch the news on TV.I usually love to suck in all the car news and some editorials, whilst the wife reads up on fashion and books et al. We didn’t see the sense in taxing our eyes watching an insipid person reading the news. Anyway today both of us had the organic beef wrap meal($6.95) that comes with a small cap(cappuccino) and a hash brown (a fried potato patty).


The Wrap....mmmmm




Also a side order of small onion rings for $3.00(The wife usually tries to be strict with these…but today I got away,maybe she was too sleepy!)

Onion rings..WICKED!!

The Capp

We go there because it’s close by,quality has been more or less good and we get a decent booth to sit and read.Now because of the newspaper being made redundant,we don’t know. I guess good things don’t last forever,but then we have to take the good with the bad! The decor was always red and bright..and usually clean since its not near the station or a market place.Those tend to get a lot of visitors and get dirty pretty fast. It would be nice if they played some music channel instead of the news.Same old boring stories!

Jack's the man

TV news? Oh no!!


Sweet attendant


The best moment of the day though, was the sight of two old timers having brekky! It was a cute sight! Both of them,with their silver grey hair glistening under the sunlight streaming through,watching tv,and having a warm brekky. That was cute! Unfortunately,due to size limitations,I can’t post that pic! For a warm brekky check out Hungry jack’s!

Hasta la vista



Wentworthville Nursery

The wife is a gardening enthusiast,so courtesy her digging sessions,we get some organic chilli,mint,lettuce etc. from the community garden where we have a membership. So,we went last week to a nursery near our home. It’s basically a nursery and a florist. We have been there before and I was really taken aback at the warm welcome we got. Sydney folks by and far(from my experiences) are not very welcoming people; I guess that’s a way of life now.People are too busy,but at least when you have a business,you should by default be nice.That’s what I feel! Anyway,going back to the nursery,the owners and staff are a nice and friendly bunch. You feel at home there instantly. While the wife looked around for her potting mixes and seeds,I roved around with my roving eye-my D7000. Too many pixels,but too good!

Wenty florist n nursery

They have pretty much everything you will need for your gardening needs like seeds,mixes and other material supplies. They also have a beautiful flower shop within! I took many lovely pics after asking one of the lovely staff there for permission to shoot. She just requested not to shoot the staff,which was fair enough. But like the wife said,I just went trigger crazy and took a whole lot of pictures but I’m just posting a smattering of those! The place had some interesting sculptures and colourful pottery.Some of the flowers were gorgeous! I just enjoyed roving around. What makes it different from other nurseries is the attitude of the staff who let you roam around and are there if you need them. Very different!


Hanging Pot

Man in red undy

White flower

If you live nearby or are ever in the vicinity,do drop in and check it out.It’s quite tranquil in there!!

Four punnets of any herbs or veggie saplings cost $15..which according to my wife is good value as you get almost 6-7 saplings in each punnet. A 15 litre bag of organic potting mix is $10.95.Not bad at all!!

Wentworthville Nursery

394 Great Western Highway, Wentworthville NSW 2145

(02) 9631 8495 ‎

Hasta la vista


Circle Cafe’@Balmain

Last friday night,me and the wife were sitting and watching television. While flicking through channels,a scene of Montmartre,Paris came up. Nostalgia struck and I remembered our bus ride in Montmartre with a Parisienne friend. It was a lovely suburb with a lot of hills and the bus went up and down so fast,that we got a bit scared. Now, I couldn’t take wifey to Montmartre, but I could take her to the Montmartre of Sydney! So,off went the three of us to BALMAIN! I had a voucher for b/f,which she had no idea about. I love giving her surprises. The voucher was an all day b/f deal for 2 for $19. Yes!!

circle cafe',Balmain

It was a nippy day when we arrived at Circle Cafe.Must admit that it was a bit difficult to locate this cafe’ as it was sandwiched between two buildings. The cafe’ itself seemed to be part of some uniting church. I had read some terrible reviews of this place and arrived with some trepidation. But it was put to rest immediately by two welcoming ladies. There was a waiter there who could do with some energy! Maybe like most kids his age,he probably was hungover. Anyway,once I gave the voucher I told wifey that she could order any b/f item she wanted. She was surprised and relieved! We have to go inside and give the order,which I made the wife do,whilst I clicked some pictures.

Elbon coffee

I had read that they served the famous(I didn’t know) Elbon coffee. Going back to 1957,it is located in Double Bay. It is a family owned and run business that has been supplying freshly roasted 100% arabic coffee for over 50 years. Its multi award winning roasters John and son Andrew Lowlett, roast daily . Anyway,I ordered the big breakfast which had scrambled eggs,sausages,hash browns and two sourdough toasts with cappuccino. Wifey ordered a Big veggie b/f which had tomatoes,poached eggs,spinach and sourdough toasts with cappucinno.

Elbon capp

Big veggie b/f

Big b/f

Normally this much would cost app. $40 bucks or so but we got it for $19. Not bad,eh? Well, we enjoyed our Montmartre like cafe b/f and wish it were a bit more sunny,then I couldve got some nice skylines of the city. Another day I guess,but we must say that the overall ambience,service and the grub was really good! Hope they keep it up!!

Circle Cafe’ 344 Darling Street  Balmain NSW 2041

(02) 9555 9755

Hasta la vista

Pancakes On The Rocks

Don’t be alarmed guys,it’s just a fancy name! They don’t serve pancakes on top of some rock,but their pancakes are to die for. Pancakes on the rocks was first opened in Sydney in the Rocks area by the owner Roger Meadmore. When Roger made a road trip from New York  to Miami,they ate a lot of pancakes at Howard Johnson’s restaurants. From there the idea was born to start a pancakes restaurant. It seems that he used to import the flour till it could be made locally. Anyway to cut the long story short,we are lucky to have a restaurant near to where we live. So off we went,the three of us,on a cold April morn to eat pancakes. The three of us would be me,wifey and our Bogan express. I christened my Ford G6,The Bogan express and now you know what I mean by that.No? Well in Sydney,the ford’s and commodore’s are identified as Bogan carriers. No,no,we ain’t Bogan’s,thanks very much!  It was a chilly day and I looked forward to some hot pancakes,and the wife who feels cold even in summer,definitely looked forward to it!


The place already had visitors by 730am when we got there. The youngest was a cute bub(ozzy for baby). I saw his mother feeding him some cappuccino froth.He did indulge in some pancakes also later.

Bub in action

I ordered my usual of pancakes with scrambled eggs and sausages, and wifey ordered one with bacon. Best of both worlds!  So, just pancakes with scrambled egg is $9.95 and for just $2.75 more, you can add bacon or sausage! It’s a steal!! Since I lived in the US and ate heaps of pancakes there,I can assure you that these are just as fluffy and tasty!!

Pancakes w/sausage n scrambled

I must add that we have been here before and the staff is so polite,welcoming and efficient.Too many adjectives? Well,that’s what I felt. It’s not at all easy to please wifey,and even she couldn’t help praising them. You have to wait to be seated and they are prompt to seat you. Orders are taken quickly and the food also comes promptly! The pancakes are to die for,and the prices not too dear. I have eaten a lot of atrocious food at unearthly prices,so this is a pleasant change.

With Bacon

I haven’t been to the other locations,but how far can the apple fall from the tree!

Diggin' into it in earnest

From all my travels, I can say with confidence and a certain amount of chagrin that Sydney has the worst customer service in the world. So,places like these are like manna falling from the heaven,and we lap it up with both hands. Hope,they keep up the good work!

Pancakes On The Rocks-

Hasta la vista



Chinese cuisine was never to my liking in Australia,and I’ve eaten Chinese fare all over the world except in China. Closest was Hong Kong! So,the next best option, when it came to Asian food would be Thai. But,Thai is not as cheap as Chinese. The good Thai restaurants nearby to where I live would be in Parramatta,and parking in Parra(as it’s known) is a Nightmare on Elm street Part 3! We had only one Thai restaurant in Wentworthville aka Wenty called Vna and the food was good but the service was nothing to write home about. A Thai restaurant in Westmead,a close-by suburb, was closed on Sundays I reckon. And,me and wifey always forget that. So off we went to Vna in Wenty. But when we arrived,wifey noticed that the name had changed to T.TOP THAI. I was so hungry that I didn’t even notice that even though I was clicking the signboard.

Top Thai signboard

Then the wife found out from the waitress that the ownership had changed hands.I remembered her from before,when this place was called Vna. She was a chirpy little thing albeit a little forgetful. The decor seemed the same,but somehow,it looked a bit different; a bit more welcoming than before!

Buddha on wall


Wifey was beaming from ear to ear when I went in. I thought she was pleased because the owner’s had changed,but that wasn’t it. They had “Lunch Specials” now. She couldn’t be happier as she loved to save money and I can’t be bothered when hungry):

Lunch Special

The icing on the cake was that these were available on weekends also. So, one could opt for a choice of veg/non veg/seafood with rice or noodles or as a dish with plain white rice. I opted for a cashew nut chicken n sauce with plain rice and the wife chose chilli basil noodles with chicken. My order came reasonably fast and it looked very appetizing.

cashew nut chicken in sauce w/rice

Wifey’s came soon after but the chirpy thai waitress bungled up the order.Instead of noodles,she brought rice. She was embarrased,and wifey is always willing to give a lesson in customer service. Miss chirpy quickly said a sorry and rushed back to the kitchen.She returned a while later with the correct order.

Chilli basil chicken with noodles

Both the dishes were scrumptious and portions generous. All our complaints vanished with the yummy thai lunch specials! The lunch specials also came with 2 drinks. All in all we were happy; more because of the new owners and the real value for money lunch specials! In any normal Thai eatery,a meal for 2 with drinks will easily be between 35-50 dollars. This cost us just $23.80 and we were feeling rather bloated as the portions were large. So,good on you TOP THAI,and hope you will remain on top with your service and prices!! Cheers

T Top Thai Restaurant is open from 11am to 10pm, seven days.

Lunch specials are available between 2.30 pm seven days.

The restaurant is at 73-75 Dunmore St, Wentworthville. Tel: 9636 5599.







Teppanyaki Smokey Dinner

Welcome back guys and as the title suggests,me and wifey had a teppanyaki voucher to utilize. She had a lot of expectations from this one,as she had to put in a lot of effort to get a reservation. Between language barriers and getting a suitable date,she had her blood pressure going up a few times. The best part was that the reservation was for 6PM. Yes,you read right,6PM! Even by western standards its a tad early. I had the good fortune of visiting Japan with all expenses paid, and the earliest we ate dinner there was six thirty or so!

tem ichi

Anyway,me being the eager beaver landed up with wifey at sharp 6PM at Tem Ichi. Not too much of a tongue twister, is it? There was a bit of a confusion at the reception,despite my wife’s many reconfirmation calls,including one that afternoon. Anyway, we were ushered to a teppanyaki seating area and my mouth was watering. As some of you maybe aware, teppan means iron plate and yaki means grilled. So basically,its grilled food on an iron plate. To our utter chagrin a large group of  guests’ were soon seated next to us,and we suddenly felt very insecure. They were about ten of them, a large family get together I reckon. We chose to move around,to let them sit together. A little later an older couple were seated next to us. The Iron chef or teppan chef started cooking and told us and the other couple that he would be cooking for us. More people joined in and another chef also joined in,he didn’t look like an iron chef,more like a clay chef.

prawns n scollops

My studied better half advised that there were 11 items to be served,and I should be counting. She was barking up the wrong tree. All the smoke and the confusion had made me very hungry and impatient.All I wanted was to eat and scramble.But that was not to be, as the night had other plans for us. From what I saw(pic) there were prawns and scollops being served to the group,but we got none.Probably they were not on any voucher! Anyway, the prawns were grilled to perfection and very succulent. While the prawns cooked,they served us some salad and miso soup. Are you counting?

spring rolls

Then came the spring rolls, 3 of them with bbq sauce on top.That was a bit weird!

green tea

The group next to us got green tea earlier but we had to ask for it thrice before they obliged. I loved the green pot. These were then followed by some beef,chicken and fish. Are you counting,as I have lost count! ): I heard the group asking for the beef to be well done and the chef in hurry just dumped some blood oozing beef pieces on our plates. My wife wanted to experiment but I forbid her. I told the chef that these are individual tastes and need to be asked before making. I refused to eat it. He was a bit taken aback and told the clay chef to re-do it for us. He gave such a grumpy look that our beef buds disappeared.

Bleeding beef

The clay chef did make some beef for us that was well done,but it can’t hold a candle to the kobe beef I had in Osaka. Mmmm.. that was sooo good!! Then came the fried rice which was burnt at the bottom and had no taste.We had to add some sauces they provided for the entrees. All this happened,as the iron chef left the rice to roast,while he played childish games with the group. He made yummy looking omelettes,folded it into tight crepes and threw them at the people in the group.Some caught with their mouths and others didn’t. What a waste. The omelette that went into our fried rice was no great shakes.


egg throwing

As you can see above ,eggs were being arranged to be thrown at the hapless guests’ and they had to catch it in a bowl without breaking it on themselves. Ha ha,it was fun to watch them,but we didn’t participate. Why?Because we don’t like to! They also had plastic bowls stacked up to throw at the guests’ and the some chef’s on other tables were throwing food at unsuspecting guests’ and babies. This is definitely not Japanese and no Ozzy would waste food like that.Wonder where that came from?

Bowls to throw

It was so hot and smokey in there that I was sweating and the camera lens was all fogged up,giving the pictures a soft focus look. I apologize for that!

Tem Ichi before the smoke

We didn’t bother with the ice cream because there were no clear instructions on what to do and confusion reigned. The large group abruptly left after the games and congregated in another side of the restaurant. When asked, a steward said that ice cream was being served there. We left the place and came back home to have some yummy gelato and walnut liqueur. I would recommend that people go there as a group,then they are more willing to give you reservations. Otherwise,you will get shunted around like us. Overall it wasn’t too bad an experience!Its unfair to compare with what I had in Kobe. Arigato Gozaimasu Tem Ichi!!

Tem Ichi
Level 1, 51 Phillip Street Parramatta Map.c7a8e47
 NSW 2150

02 9893 9594