Australia, Guides, NSW, Reviews, Travel

48 Hours In The Hunter

Looking for a short getaway? Nothing screams weekend getaway more than a 48-hour trip to the Hunter Valley. Food, wine, nature – what more could you want for a blissful getaway from the daily grind.

We departed on a Saturday morning, greeted with friendly weekend traffic at 11am and arrived at Amanda’s On The Edge by 2.30pm for the most divine lunch set in quaint estate territory, that is quintessentially ‘the Hunter’.





Overlooking the serene calmness and echoing sounds of birds chirping over expansive lush vineyards, our first course arrives. Seared scallops with a green pea puree, truffle oil & crispy prosciutto ($23.50).


Seared scallops with a green pea puree, truffle oil & crispy prosciutto ($23.50)

As we entertain the perfectly cooked scallops the Pan seared in garlic & parsley butter with crusty ciabatta bread ($22.50) arrives in the most vibrant blood orange bisque. One of life’s greatest indulgences is a big bowl of soup or sauce with crispy bread to mop it all up.


Pan seared in garlic & parsley butter with crusty ciabatta bread ($22.50)

We order a main to share. Three times cooked duck maryland in sauté leek & shallot with plum compote & golden kipfler potatoes ($39.50) arrives at the table as wafts of caramelised plum permeates the clean country air. Crispy dusk skin, succulent tender meat falls away from the bone with golden strands of crispy leek & shallot for added texture.


Three times cooked duck maryland in sauté leek & shallot with plum compote & golden kipfler potatoes ($39.50)

To finish, we opt for the passionfruit and mango sorbet that is utterly refreshing in 40-degree heat and the perfect way to end what is always a fabulous meal at Amanda’s On The Edge.


In the next post we take you to Spicer’s Retreat, which is one of the finest accomodation you can stay at in the Hunter. With a one hatted chef heading the restaurant and an infinity pool to boot, you’ll want to book this stay at your next trip to the Hunter.

Stay tuned…


Chinese, Guides, Hong Kong, Travel

Hong Kong Travel Guide

From the hustle and bustle of Temple Street Market to the refined sophistication of Central District, Hong Kong has the best of both worlds, mixing both the old and the new – a true East meets West destination you’ll never forget.


The Peninsula

Synonymous with romance, glamour and style, The Peninsula is boasted as Hong Kong’s most luxury hotel, offering guests an unforgettable experience. With stunning state-of-the-art facilities, The Peninsula takes inspiration from the older, quainter times of Hong Kong and Shanghai’s era of grace and elegance. You’ll never find yourself short of something to do, with The Peninsula offering an array of art and music events to fill your calendar all year round. When you’re done admiring the panoramic views of Hong Kong’s iconic skyline by the pool, why not experience the local culture and history with a Gourmet cooking class. Whatever it is that you’d like to do, The Peninsula’s got you covered.

The Ritz-Carlton

With the newly opened sky100 last year, The Ritz has become a one-stop for all accommodation, for those looking for the ultimate experience. The luxury hotel is the tallest building in Hong Kong and seventh tallest in the world, offering unrivalled views of Victoria Harbour from Kowloon. It’s multifaceted facilities is a reflection of Hong Kong’s reputation as a city that never sleeps with a vibrancy matched by world-class culinary delights. Book a table for their Michelin starred restaurant Tin Lung Heen and experience the authentic taste of Cantonese cuisine. End your evening on top of the world at Ozone, the world’s highest rooftop bar on the 118th floor – if you dare.


Hong Kong is known for its iconic skyline and bustling streets with neon signs and flashing lights. With the highest number of skyscrapers in the world, you simply cannot leave Hong Kong without experiencing its skyline. The best place to enjoy the panoramic views would be at The Peak, where you take the historical Peak tram – one of the steepest in the world.

Hong Kong offers spectacular Harbour views that are unlike any other in the world. The Symphony of Lights show is on every night at 8pm and it is not to be missed. If you choose to enjoy the harbour in the day time, make sure you walk along Tsim Tsa Tsui promenade and see the Avenue of Stars, where you can spot the famous bronze statue of Bruce Lee and handprints of Jackie Chan!


Ride on a Junk

Despite Hong Kong’s status as an international modern city, it still maintains it’s traditional charm with its unique blend of the old and the new. Why not get on a ‘Junk’ and experience what Hong Kong was like 100 years ago, as a fishing village. Load up the picnic basket, pop open some bubbly and set off into Hong Kong’s surrounding islands and enjoy a picturesque sunset. Traway do eight-hour charters that pick you up from Central Pier 9 or Kowloon Public Pier.

Go to a street market

Hong Kong is all about the street markets, it’s where people shop, eat and hang out. There’s a market for practically everything and if it exists, you’ll find it in Hong Kong. Temple Street Night Market is one of the more popular ones with tourists, selling everything from lightbulbs to Louis Vuitton handbags (albeit counterfeits). For something different head down to the Goldfish Market, where you will see rows and rows of bags filled with all types of fish. For a full list of Hong Kong’s markets go here.

Have Breakfast at a Cha Chaan Teng

A Cha Chaan Teng literally translates into, Tea Meal Lounge, which pretty much sums up the experience perfectly. It’s noisy, fast-paced but offers authentic Hong Kong style comfort food that really hits the spot.

However, don’t expect to get your sweet and sour pork here, the food at a Cha Chaan Teng is basically a mix of Hong Kong and Western cuisine that started during British colonialism.

Experience what the locals like to eat for breakfast, it’s a world away from the Weetbix and oatmeal we have here in Australia that’s for sure! Carb-heavy and at times butter loaded, Hong-Kongers as they like to call themselves, sure know how to kick start their day. The typical breakfast would include macaroni and ham soup with a slice of toast and Hong Kong milk tea.

Those who prefer something sweeter can opt for the ‘pineapple bun’ (which doesn’t really have pineapple in it, the top just looks like one), served with a wedge of ice cold butter in the centre – definitely not one for the weight watchers. Another popular favourite is a ‘piggy bun’, doused in condensed milk and – you guessed it – some more butter! Tsui Wah have a number of locations around Hong Kong and is well-known for giving the authentic Cha Chaan Teng experience.


IFC Mall

Located in the heart of Hong Kong’s Central Business District, IFC (International Finance Centre) Mall houses luxury brands from A-Z and fine dining options to suit every taste. Enjoy the spectacular architecture both inside and outside, while grabbing a light lunch at Pret A Manger or an afternoon sweet treat at Petite Amanda.

Hysan Place

New malls are always popping up in Hong Kong with great success, and this latest edition is no exception, offering up a wide range of dining and shopping options. Most people come to visit the highly anticipated Taiwanese Book store, Eslite, that focuses on arts, creativity and the humanities. Eslite’s doors were open for 24-hours on the opening day, attracting a swarm of people to camp out at the bookstore.


If you’re looking for a uniquely luxury experience, then Elements is the place to be. The mall is split up into five zones to represent the five elements of traditional Chinese culture. The ambience is unparalleled with state-of-the-art washrooms and art and music to tantalise your senses.


For something off the beaten track, go to K-11 – the world’s first art concept mall. Adrien Cheng founded the mall in 2008 with a focus on three core values: art, people and nature. It feels like you’re walking into a museum, except you can shop and dine at the same time. It’s a great way to experience the work of local artists and to enhance our appreciation of art and nature.


Little Bao

Serving up trendy food to a contemporary Hong Kong dining scene, Little Bao succeeds in stepping outside the boundaries of traditional Chinese cuisine. From mac and cheese made from rice rolls to the cult favourite LB Ice cream sandwiches, Little Bao is always surprising and delicious.

Ming Court

Michelin Star restaurant specialising in Cantonese cuisine that combines innovation and authentic flavours. It pays homage to the Ming Dynasty, from the moment you step into the restaurant you are transported to a by gone era with ink landscape paintings and delicate pottery. For the adventurous, don’t leave without trying the shark fin crystals that look like jewels out of an Emperor’s treasure chest.

Lung King Heen

Literally translates to ‘View of the Dragon‘, Lung King Heen is the first Chinese restaurant in the world to receive three Michelin stars. Located in the prestigious Four Seasons Hotel, LKH offers spectacular harbour views so you can dine and unwind. LKH serve up high quality seafood and dim sum that looks as good as it tastes, combing the freshest ingredients with a team of regionally renowned chefs – no foodie should miss out.