Adelaide: Day 3 – Lunch at the Haus

September 28, 2015

Spending a relaxing morning exploring Hahndorf still worked up quite an appetite! We had walked by the Haus earlier in the day and really liked their spacious outdoor tables and large menu selection, which made the decision easy. But if you’d prefer to sit indoors, there is plenty of seating as well!

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Lots of room for Isabelle to enjoy herself

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Laura enjoyed a light lunch comprising of Soup of the Day $10.90 with Ciabatta bread. She couldn’t remember exactly what type of soup, but it was rustic, definitely made of root vegetables and delicious!

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Isabelle enjoyed a Little Peoples meal of Ham, Cheese & Pineapple Pizza ($9.90) that Laura eventually helped her with as well. Decent sized, cheesy and tasty!

We also enjoyed a side of Haus Beer Battered Chips with Garlic Aioli ($6.90) – yum!

Now this is definitely something we would recommend to another visitor – the Beer Tasting Paddle with your choice of 4 Beers/Cider on tap with Local Nuts/Jerky ($15). Definitely ask for the bartender’s suggestions and be adventurous, this is a great deal!

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Michael and I shared the Trio of Wursts – Chef’s selection of German specialty sausages: Bockwurst, Bratwurst & Cheese Kransky with creamy mustard potato bake, sauerkraut, red wine sauce & German mustards ($29.90). Filling and delicious! The favourite between us was definitely the Bratwurst, but we really enjoyed them all.

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Our disappointment in this meal were the Organic Pretzels ($4 each). Perhaps we are used to the soft, chewy, buttery soft pretzels in North America but these ones were unfortunately quite tough and almost dry. We wouldn’t get these again next time.

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Overall a lovely lunch with great food! The service was fantastic and they have quite an extensive menu with something for everyone. We would definitely come back for another meal to try out more of their food selection if we are ever back in Hahndorf. Check it out if you’re visiting!

The Haus Hahndorf Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Adelaide: Day 3 – Hahndorf

September 28, 2015

After breakfast at home with the Laura and Isabelle, we headed off to Hahndorf – Australia’s oldest surviving German settlement in the Adelaide Hills of South Australia.

Hahndorf was definitely worth a visit! Very quaint with many shops to visit – from bakeries, candy shops, finding beautiful handmade candles, puppets and more! And of course, can’t forget the selection of different German restaurants to dine at!

My favourite photo taken in Hahndorf, I hope this will be Michael and I one day! At the very least, our height discrepancies will be accurate! :)

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We almost immediately stopped in Copenhagen for some freshly made cinnamon sugar donuts… mmm!

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With an extensive menu, it was difficult not to order more on the menu, like waffles, pancakes, crepes, and ice cream!

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Mmm, piping hot… could have so many of these!

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My handsome partner!

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Lots of opportunity for nice photos!

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Stopped in for a visit at Heritage Museum Art Gallery. Beautiful handmade pieces of jewellery and art, although no money to buy! ;)

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An empty gallery upstairs with remnants of Autumn Festival lanterns.

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Couldn’t resist a stop into Humbugs to stock up on some sweets! So many to choose from!

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Really delicious selection of fudge!

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Isabelle was definitely excited!

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Quick visit to 3 Wishes Candle Barn to check out their beautiful candles and pick up a gift for our wonderful friend, Amanda!

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Some beautiful wooden works including clocks and puppets at the German Village Shop

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Alpaca fleece products from The Alpaca Shop! Gorgeously soft pieces but also quite expensive!

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All the above mentioned shops are definitely worth a visit! Can surely find a little something for yourself or a loved one without much effort!

Next up – our delicious lunch at The Haus cafe+bar+kitchen!

Adelaide: Day 2 -Dinner at Samurai Teppanyaki House

September 27, 2015

Hungry… Matt, Mike and I were driving down The Parade looking for an inviting establishment for dinner.

Michael spotted the word Samurai and that was all it took to find parking and walk back to the restaurant.

Samurai Teppanyaki House is a tiny establishment with novel decor that serves… you know it, teppanyaki.

Deprived of good Japanese food all year, seeing the chef at work, and watching the patrons happily enjoying their food, it didn’t take much convincing for us to ask to be seated.

The staff apologised that they didn’t have seating for 3 at the grill so we could have a better view of the chef at work. We said it was not a problem and actually didn’t mind sitting at a window table. And, as you can see, we still had a good view!

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For those who aren’t familiar with teppenyaki – it is Japanese cuisine cooked on an iron griddle. Teppan = iron plate and yaki = grilled/panfried. As the grills are often an open space, you can watch the chef prepare your dishes in front of you.

The menu was small, simple, and tantalizing. But yes, it was also pricey. I would not suggest visiting this restaurant unless you were prepared to spend $50+.

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It took a while to make up our minds because everything sounded delicious, but we did eventually.

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All 3 of us decided on a Teppanyaki set which includes: miso soup, coleslaw salad, 3 protein dishes, grilled vegetables, garlic fried rice, and ice cream. Yum!

Both the miso soup and coleslaw salad were refreshing!

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Michael chose Bugs Teppanyaki set – Moreton Bay Bugs with wasabi aoili, Aussie calamari with spicy BBQ sauce, and lamb backstrap with black pepper ($57).

The calamari serving was generous and grilled perfectly – leaving it tender and not chewy.

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Our first time trying Moreton Bay Bugs. Delicious, somewhat similar to lobster, but mildly disappointed that they have so little flesh!

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Lamb backstrap cooked medium rare as he likes it!

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I chose the No. 1 Teppanyaki set – Atlantic Salmon with citrus ponzu sauce, Aussie prawn with garlic coriander, and beef tenderloin with garlic peppercorn ($43). Unfortunately, they didn’t have beef tenderloin so I exchanged with duck breast with plum sauce (+$14). To be honest, I felt that if they didn’t have a component offered on the menu, another option should be offered at no extra cost, but I didn’t say anything about it at the time.

Salmon was not overcooked paired with a subtle ponzu sauce leaving the dish well balanced.

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Only 3 prawns but they were large, fresh, and bouncy! Also well seasoned and cooked too.

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My portion of duck was larger than anticipated (yay) with crispy skin, however, I do wish the fat was more rendered!

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Matt made his own set as he is vegetarian choosing Hervey Bay Scallops, Atlantic salmon, and Aussie Calamari ($41).

His scallops were good but lack the nice grilled/fried colour many like to see.

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Can’t forget our fried rice and grilled veggies – it was delish!

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We finished our night with some green tea and black sesame ice cream – which we haven’t had in almost a year!

An unexpected but delicious and satisfying dinner out in Adelaide which partly satisfied our Japanese cuisine craving! Would definitely recommend a visit to our friends, for the service, atmosphere and food. :)

Samurai Teppanyaki House Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

Adelaide: Day 2 – Mount Lofty & Moon Lantern Festival

September 27, 2015

After a fun and indulging day in McLaren Vale, Matt drove us up to Mount Lofty for a view of Adelaide from a different perspective.

Mount Lofty is approximately 15km east of downtown, where there is a 4km uphill trek to the summit and is one of Adelaide’s most popular exercise circuits – of course, we drove.

Beautiful panoramic views greeted us, followed by a gorgeous sunset over Gulf St Vincent.

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A popular tourist destination, many people had the same idea as us

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The golden rays of sunset reminded me of autumn colours back home… almost.

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Worth the wait, look at this amazing sunset! And if you look close enough, you will see the silhouette of a plane just taking off!

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Beautiful just watching the sun go down…

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We didn’t stick around for long after the sunset as Laura and Isabelle were waiting for us. The moon was already high in the sky by the time we started heading back to the car!

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Visit up Mount Lofty reminded us of Mt Archer in Rockhampton… not nearly the same views though! ;)

We went home to pick Laura and Isabelle up to head into the city and partake in the Moon Lantern Festival – I had not expected to be celebrating Autumn Festival this year so it was a pleasant surprise!

By the time we made it to Elder Park, it was packed with people. Luckily, we were able to grab a spot on the grass while Matt parked the car to enjoy the start of Australia’s largest lantern parade.

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The featured lantern, “the Hong Kong Dragon,” is the largest lantern created for a moon lantern festival.

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A view of the Adelaide Oval across the river

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There were tons of lanterns, including those from participating South Australian schools and community organisations – neat to see them all!

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The Moon Lantern Festival ended with a fireworks show over the River Torrens which everyone enjoyed!

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Slightly chilly, but fun night out!

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And of course, joining the throngs of people escaping!

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It was late by the time we left the festival. We dropped Laura and Isabelle home first to rest and get ready for bed. The boys and I headed back out in search of some dinner! The hope was to enjoy a cuisine not easily found (if at all) in Rockhampton.

Stay tuned for the next post!

ADELAIDE: DAY 2 – MCLAREN VALE

September 27, 2015

Day 2 in Adelaide was full of awesome firsts!

We started the day with breakfast with Matt, Laura, and Isabelle before heading out to Pete’s house and meeting his wife Chrissy and their 3 children. We also met another one of Matt’s colleagues, Chi, his wife Joan and their 2 children (plus grandparents)!

Thank you to Matt’s lovely colleagues and families for welcoming us and including us in their day out to McLaren Vale!

Only approximately 35km south of Adelaide, the drive out went by quick! We also passed by John (another one of Matt’s colleagues) and his family on the road, who would also be joining us for the day.

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Isabelle and I mastering selfies during the drive :)

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The McLaren Vale region is known for its dry red wines, which meant our lucky day! We were very thankful that Chrissy had organised the day so well. McLaren Vale would take days to weeks to properly tour and we really enjoyed all the stops she had planned.

First up, Mollydooker Wines Cellar Door. The first thing you notice is the breathtaking view of vineyards against a hilly backdrop.

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Today, I learned that Mollydooker Wines was not only started by Sarah and Sparky Marquis, a husband and wife team, but that mollydooker is also an Aussie term for left-handers. You guessed it, Sarah and Sparky are also lefties! They have a pretty interesting story, you can read more here!

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The Cellar Door had a quirky, retro themed tasting room with easy going staff and generous tastings we must say!

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The boys loved some of the red selection, particularly the Velvet Glove Shiraz and Gigglepot Cabernet Sauvignon. It was also my first time trying Miss Molly (Sparkling Shiraz) and Girl on the Go (Sparkling Verdelho), both of which were great. And we were even served some beautiful, warm home made bread with olive oil and dukka – yum!

They had a promotion going at the time of our visit. Post a selfie with Mollydooker’s Girl on the Go and receive a free bottle of Girl on the Go or a pair of flutes. Was too good not to pass up ;)

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Beautiful backdrop and outdoor seating area to really soak in the surroundings.

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Thanks for a great visit Mollydooker Wines, hope to be back in the future!

Next stop was Serafino Restaurant for lunch :)

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The grounds are immaculate and is the perfect location for a wedding or special occasion – there was a baptism lunch the day we visited – very eloborate!

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I remember waiting a long time for the food to arrive, but it was delicious! Mike had the Beef Wellington and I enjoyed an herb crusted lamb rack with baby veggies and gnocchi – yum! Definitely on the pricier side but worth a visit for a special occasion!

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Last on our McLaren Vale stops – Penny’s Hill Cellar Door. Rustic and charming, it was a relaxing way to end our visit. I also love their elegant and distinct packaging.

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Lots of sitting area, even a restaurant! Can watch grazing sheep or check out the chooks. Great for kids to hang out as well :)

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Both of us concentrating on a game we don’t know how to play

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Isabelle visiting the chooks

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Wine is serious business

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Can’t get over the amazing views in McLaren Vale!

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Took some photos of Laura, looking fabulous at 36 weeks!

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Soon it was time to head back as we thanked and said good bye to our new friends for a great time!

Mike and I absolutely loved McLaren Vale (or maybe we just love vineyards) but definitely hope to visit again… for much longer!

We couldn’t buy too much, but did leave with a nice bundle of souvenirs to enjoy at a later date ;)

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Adelaide: Day 1 – The Lewingtons & Adelaide Night Noodle Markets

September 26, 2015

With a bit of help from our lovely colleagues, both Michael and I were able to swap some shifts to have 5-6 days off together.

Mike’s best friend, Matt, his wife Laura, and their daughter Isabelle had recently moved to Adelaide to live and work for the year. As promised, we were able to find some time for a short visit!

We left on Saturday morning from Rockhampton to Brisbane to Adelaide. Perks of being a Qantas Club Member – priority check in and lounge access… which means food if you’re hungry! ;) And a comfortable place to hang out during your layovers!

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I wish we had more time in Brisbane to see some friends and visit some of our favourite restaurants, but maybe next time!

We landed in Adelaide around 6pm – thank you to the Lewingtons for picking us up and being such wonderful friends and hosts during our stay!

Our visit in Adelaide started with the well timed Adelaide Noodle Markets, in association with OzAsia Festival (Sept 24 – Oct 4) where the city’s Festival Centre precinct was transformed to an Asian hawker-style market. Loved it.

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After being in Rockhampton for a long while, so good to see such a gathering of good Asian food! You can click HERE to see a map of all the vendors and the dishes they offered!

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Best buddies reunited!

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Isabelle being very independent, as usual! :)

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The Lewingtons! Plus Baby #2 in Laura’s belly!

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We enjoyed a number of tasty dishes including:

  • BBQ pork buns from Let’s Do Yum Cha
  • Chili Crab Bao from Baotime
  • Gyoza (Japanese dumplings) from Zagyoza – The Home of Gyoza
  • Vegetarian samosas and pad se-iew from SpanThai
  • Banana fritters with ice cream from Shallot Thai

Would have loved to enjoy more delicious Asian food for days! ;)

Ended the night catching up with Matt and Laura. We even got to be happy taste testers for Laura who made her first, quite successful, pavlova! Topped with custard, whipped cream, and fruit – yum!

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Birthday dinner at Tsuruya

September 22, 2015

Celebrating Michael’s 36th birthday with a special night out! After much anticipation, we drove down to Capricorn Resort Yeppoon for our 6:30pm dinner reservation at Tsuruya Japanese Restaurant.

From their website:

Indulge yourself in the authentic, personalised interactive table cooking and tradition of the exquisite and delicate flavours of Japanese cuisine. Tsuruya also features a Sushi Bar for made to order sushi rolls and the freshest local seafood sashimi prepared right in front of your eyes.

We were greeted at the entrance on arrival and shown to our table. Happy to find that they had given us a table in a corner by the window, a little quieter and more private. The female servers were dressed in nice kimonos which added to the ambiance of the restaurant.

How cute are the place settings? The kimono napkins were a nice touch!

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The birthday boy!

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Didn’t expect the restaurant to be very busy on a Tuesday night during down season, but surprisingly it was! Lots of families with young children throughout the evening.

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Chef at the sushi bar, keeping an eye out on his guests :P

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After perusing the menu, we finally decided on some sets.

Michael chose Sushi (C) Course ($69.50) which included the following:

  • Appetiser
  • Dobin Mushi
  • Steak ‘Japanese style’
  • Assorted Sushi

I decided on Sushi (B) Course ($59.50) which included the following:

  • Appetiser
  • Ebi Shinjoh Age
  • Dobin Mushi
  • Chawan Mushi
  • Yakitori
  • Assorted Sushi

Our appetiser Gyu Sashimi – Raw beef thinly sliced and served cold with a vinegar flavoured soy. We had never had anything like this before, very refreshing taste!

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With the above appetiser, I also received my Ebi Shinjoh Age – Deep fried prawn & fish cake. Nice that there were 2 pieces so I could could share one with Mike! A little on the dark side from frying but good flavours and a nice chewy texture.

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Sitting by the window, we saw a kangaroo come by for a graze on the lawn!

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Our next course – soups!

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Both Michael and I received Dobin Mushi – Seafood, chicken and mushrooms in a clear soup served in a traditional Japanese pot. Absolutely loved the presentation. Served in a teapot, we were instructed to add a bit of lemon juice and pour the broth into the teacup to slowly enjoy. The broth was clear and so incredibly intense in flavour! Also lovely to eat all the morsels of seafood at the bottom of your pot as well.

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My set came with a second soup – Chawan Mushi – seafood, chicken and vegetables cooked in a hot savory egg custard. Extremely delicate, silky and delicious, never had anything like it!

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Onto our meat dishes!

For me, Yakitori – pieces of chicken and onion on bamboo skewers with homemade BBQ sauce. Chicken was super tender and well flavoured. Loved this! Again, the portion was large enough to share with Michael, which was nice!

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Michael’s steak came with a hot stone that allowed him to further cook the steak at his seat, it also came with a light dipping sauce. The steak was tender but served a little overcooked (to his liking) since you’re supposed to cook it more, and a little under seasoned, even with the dipping sauce.

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And finally, our assorted sushi box! Beautifully presented with a mix of scallop, prawn, eel, and fish – with a side of ginger and wasabi. We have heard raves of how fresh the fish is at Tsuruya, but unfortunately for us, we didn’t find the same that night. Some pieces were better than others, but certainly not the buttery textures we were expecting!

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Overall a lovely night out for the birthday boy with some incredibly tasty food! (Except for the sushi unfortunately…) Also great value for money and we look forward to coming back to try the lunch menu :)