I’ve just had my best pal come out to Australia for three weeks of fun, food, and a lot of talking after nine whole months apart. Katy and I packed a lot (of calories) in, had a couple of near-death experiences, and even managed to get up to Byron Bay for a couple of days to splash about in the sea.
OBVIOUSLY, the first place we went when Katy arrived was Lucky Coq. I take literally every visitor I get here, not for the rooftop garden or decent music, but for the FOUR DOLLAR PIZZAS. It gets better. They have a pizza called the ‘Poncho,’ which is PIZZA with NACHOS ON TOP. Need I say more?
In nine months, I have never ordered anything but the (el?) Poncho, nor will I. We went back a couple of times…
Day 3 was a cliff jumping trip to Mount Martha, 60km out of the city. I (bravely) conquered the huge (3m) jump into icy (not really) water last, in order to keep a supervisory eye on the others jumping in (terrified). After a higher jump (hero), Katy was waiting for the other gals to join her in the water when we spotted a stingray floating around the little bay. With Steve Irwin’s name being mentioned quietly at the top of the cliff, we gently advised Katy to get out of the water, “just in case”. It was only two days later that she discovered they were dangerous, and so began toasting her “new found appreciation for life.”
I also got stung by a jellyfish, which looked just like this one. I managed to fight it off, with my bare hands, save my leg, save the world and live another day (hero).
Taking Katy to Byron Bay meant taking her to the one and only Arts Factory. That scene in the Inbetweeners movie with Will…
We had a lovely, chilled few days splashing around on the beach and feeling smug in the sun, as Melbourne got beaten up by the rain. We didn’t leave Byron with dreadlocks, but we left with memories (and some freckles).
P.S. If you’re ever in Byron, head to Asian Joe’s for cheap, rich Thai food!
Katy persuaded me to show her this bookshop on Chapel Street, where three huge furry cats live (she’s obsessed with them). I didn’t want to go, but she twisted my arm. It was okay, I suppose.
Charli joined us for brunch at Drugstore Espresso, one of my favourites. A warm day and mild hangover called for a “coconut husk bowl with fresh coconut water, banana, cacao powder, chia seeds, sesame seeds, brazil nuts & dates,” while the others opted for, “avocado smash with a poached egg, charred corn, semi dried cherry tomatoes, feta & polenta prisms.” Quite a mouthful indeed. A big man with an ever bigger dog happened to stroll past as we ate, methodically stopping at each table of girls for a ‘casual conversation.’
On Katy’s last day, we took a trip down to the Mornington Peninsula and to the natural hot springs. For only $35, you are granted access to what is essentially an incredibly beautiful natural spa for a whole day. With over twenty different pools and jets, you can move around all day and enjoy the views over the peninsula whilst bathing in 38 degree water. It was probably my favourite day in Australia, ever.
Other favourite moments (meals) included cheesy jalopeños and beers at Brother Burger, a Mexican feast at Fiesta, a veggie banquet at Pattee Thai, Italian at Il Gusto in Carlton, and a morning at Journeyman, when Brick came to brunch…
We ate in, well, once…
…but who comes to Melbourne to cook?