Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Go Mumma recommends: Dead Man Espresso

Dead Man Espresso
35 Market Street, South Melbourne

Early one recent Sunday morning I received a phone call from my darling mother. She asked what we were up to during the day and wondered if we might like to get together for a walk. I told her we had planned to try out a cafe that had been recommended to me in South Melbourne (St. Ali) and that she and her partner Dave were welcome to join us. 

On approaching St. Ali we quickly realised that this was not the place to visit with a big pram and a dog in tow as it was incredibly busy and there was no seating on the street. I pushed down my initial disappointment and we tramped down the street toward another cafe recommended by Dave. He is a coffee snob from way back and South Melbourne is his stomping ground so I felt confident he was leading us to green pastures.

Tucked away, set a block back from Clarendon Street, we found Dead Man Espresso. At first  glance, this place might seem like a run-of-the-mill cafe for the locals but once inside it is clear that these folks take their coffee seriously. Delightful timber walls and tables really warm up the clean, modern decor and an impressive balcony overlooks a few tables out on Market Street (for those of us who like the company of the four-legged variety).

I ordered my standard, a skim latte, but after doing a bit of further investigation I wish I had tried their pour over filter coffee. There is always next time. I did thoroughly enjoy my latte though- it was the perfect temperature, strong but not bitter. Dead Man's signature espresso blend is a gorgeous nutty Seven Seeds blend that leaves a lingering kick at the back of the throat. Seven Seeds coffee just melts me, so they had an advantage before I had taken the first sip. They definitely did it justice with the latte.

(I have been back again since this article was written and tried the aeropress coffee... I will be returning to my original order next time as I didn't really enjoy it. It tasted like basic plunger coffee. Am I missing something? Coffee geeks help a girl out and explain it to me!)

I didn't try the food however I did glance at some of the dishes being served and I am quite excited to return again for breakfast some time soon (hands up who wants to babysit!?).

We admired the lovely simple detail on the take away cup. These touches do matter folks! To aesthetically focused people like me, a little extra effort goes a long way.

To the right of the counter is a display of delicious looking hand crafted products. I assume this display changes as products go in and out of season (when I was there a few days ago it looked completely different to these photographs). This jam got me a little excited for my own jam making (we are in the midst of an apricot glut!). Such simple, pretty detail!)

Here is the delicious Seven Seeds blend made especially for Dead Man Espresso. Mum kindly shouted us a bag and it lasted only a few days. So delicious! I think it was about $13 a bag (trying to read the sign in the photo but it's too tiny and blurry). Well worth the money.

And yummy yummy rooftop honey!

All-in-all, I give a big thumbs up to Dead Man Espresso and I look forward to my next visit!

Thanks guys!

Thursday, 17 November 2011

Go Mumma Recommends: White Rabbit Record Bar

Click the image above to be taken to White Rabbit's Website

White Rabbit Record Bar
176 Bellair Street, Kensington

It was only by chance that I happened to find myself eating lunch in the glorious sunshine outside White Rabbit yesterday. I had purchased some thongs (flip-flops, jandals...) from a popular deals website (sucker!) and, as I have heard happens quite frequently, the deal went sour due to the factory not managing the influx of orders. So I was refunded my "deal bucks" and it just so happened that White Rabbit Records in Kensington (only a few km from Melbourne's CBD and a one minute stroll from the station) was offering lunch and coffee or wine for two for exactly the amount I was refunded! Score!

I have never visited White Rabbit before... correction.. I have popped my head in to peruse their great selection of vintage and more recent records, but I have never ordered any food or drinks as I have been a very loyal customer of another cafe on Bellair Street, Fruits of Passion and more recently have discovered The Premises (Please see review by my friend Lauren over at The Footscray Food Blog) and have not wanted to deviate from the known goodness of these two places... as the old saying goes, "when you're on to a good thing...."

Anyhow, I expanded my horisons yesterday and boy am I glad I did! We had an absolutely delightful experience and felt very well taken care of by the friendly bearded/grandpa-hatted fellow who served us. We ordered a delicious grilled haloumi salad- a generous pile of golden, squeaky haloumi cheese on a bed of tender baby salad greens, tomato and thinly sliced red cabbage. It was lightly dressed with a vinaigrette and we happily gobbled up the lot. We also shared a smoked chicken and mozzarella toasted wrap which also came with salad and was thoroughly enjoyable.

Now, the point of the review?


I was extremely impressed with the quality of my latte. Always skeptical, it takes a pretty delicious brew to win me over but White Rabbit far exceeded my expectations! It was smooth and creamy, not extremely strong, silky milk, drinkable temperature. Ticking all the boxes so far! They score extra brownie points by using fair trade beans so all-in-all, Kudos to you White Rabbit!!

On another note, I wanted to thank the bearded waiter/coffee making fellow for being so pleasant and chatty to us and to our wee man. Those are the kinds of gestures that will make me a return customer!

Have you ever been to White Rabbit? You have?! Let me know what you thought in the comments!

Home made laundry liquid

In an attempt to further our frugality I decided to try making laundry liquid. 

Here is the recipe which I found at Frugal and Thriving. It works out to around 1c per load apparently (but I didn't do the calculation so you can either trust my second hand info from internetland or do the calculation yourself.. :P)

11/2 litres of water
1 bar of soap, grated (vegetable soap, homemade soap, laundry soap or lux flakes)
1/2 cup washing soda crystals (you will find it in the laundry isle)
1/2 cup of borax (also in the laundry isle)
  • In a saucepan, combine some of the water and the soap and stir over a medium heat until the soap is dissolved.
  • Add the washing soda and borax and stir until thickened.
  • Pour the mixture into a 10 litre bucket and then fill with hot tap water. Stir to combine. (It will become like egg whites)
  • At this point, you could add a few drops of your favourite essential oil for fragrance (eucalyptus or lavender are great).
  • When cool, store in a plastic container.
  • Use 1/4 cup per load

This recipe filled the three blue bottles, one Earth Choice bottle and half the nappy bucket!

I won't be needing to make any more for a LONG time! 

Sunday, 13 November 2011

Go Mumma Recommends: Coffee snob series!

I am currently working on the first of a series of Melbourne coffee review/recommendation posts. 

I am a self confessed coffee snob and make it my mission to find decent coffee wherever I go!

Stay tuned!

Monday, 7 November 2011

Reversible sling bag... with tutorial link!

I have been looking for a quick, easy and super cute bag to make for Christmas presents this year but have been a little daunted by tutorials with loads of steps and processes so I was delighted to find THIS tutorial over at Crap I've Made.

This bag took me around two hours however I think I could probably halve the time next attempt now that I understand the processes. I am a VERY beginner sewer so I imagine most serious sewers could knock one of these up in well under an hour.

I made a rookie mistake when cutting my black & white fabric and ended up with four panels instead of two however I was able to sew them back together and carry on as planned.

The tutorial warned that you will wonder how on earth you will be able to manage turning the whole thing right way round via the small hole in the strap but to persevere gently as it will happen... This prediction was exactly right for me as I thought I had stuffed the whole thing up during this process but like predicted, it did happen eventually! What a relief!

Next time I will give the strap a little more length but all-in-all I am very happy with this bag! 

Now I need to go op shopping again for more lovely vintage sheets so I can make some more!

Thanks to Cintia at My Poppet for being a constant source of sewing and general creative inspiration!

Apologies for the crappy photos. It was very bad light. iPhone no likey bad lightey!

Wednesday, 2 November 2011

Zig zag crochet with video tutorial... so easy!

If you are a beginner crocheter like me you might like to try this lovely (super easy) project!

Here is my latest effort:

It's the beginning of a rainbow blanket. I could leave it like this as it is long enough to be a scarf however I aim to make it large enough to fit Molly's bed. 

I taught myself to crochet by watching youtube tutorials so I thought I'd share the fantastic videos I used to learn chevron (zigzag). I totally love this guy!

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