Friday, 8 December 2017

Molly Adventures Part 4 (Brisbane & Melbourne - Penguin edition)

On Wednesday morning, after a low key breakfast at home, we headed out for some plants at the Mt Coot-tha Botanic Gardens, and spent a lovely couple of hours exploring different gardens, and making friends with lizards and ducks and cockatoos. Molly was impressed that the gardens were free, I had never really considered it before. But it is nice having beautiful spaces like this available for everyone to enjoy.

2017-11-08 11.56.06

Mt Coot-tha Botanic Gardens

Followed by lunch at Loving Hut, because when in a new town, why not try the local Loving Hut? We shared two of my favourite entrees - the summer rolls and the salt and pepper mushroom. Then Molly had the Sweet and Sour Nuggets for her main, and I had the Seven Seas Delight. Sorry for the starkness of the photos - white plates + white shiny tables + bright lights!

Summer Rolls at Loving Hut

Salt and Pepper Mushroom at Loving Hut

Sweet and Sour at Loving Hut

Seven Seas Delight at Loving Hut

After lunch it was home to pack for our trip to Melbourne the next day, and a dinner at home of eating up random bits and pieces before we went away for five days. The next day we are a quick breakfast at home and some sushi at the airport, before our flight to Melbourne. We decided that we would only do one trip to a city other than Brisbane, so that we could have some decent time in both places to eat and explore rather than rushing around the country. Melbourne was the natural choice, as food aside our visit would coincide with some other fun opportunities.

We stayed at my usual choice, Carlton Terrace, which is cute and has a mini kitchen and is within walking distance to many places. Most importantly it is only 10 minutes to Smith & Deli!! Which was out first stop after dropping off our bags. And it did not disappoint. Molly got the Club Sandwiches Not Seals and an Apple Olive Oil Cake with Maple Rum Icing for her lunch.

Molly's Club and Apple and Olive Oil Cupcake with Maple Rum Icing from Smith & Deli

I tried a new to me sandwich, The Parmageddon (Chicken parma, Napoli sauce, pesto & mozzarella, all toasted on a roll), which was nice, though the pesto and napoli sauce were a bit lost in it. I forgot that their chicken schnitzels are made from tempeh, which was lovely! It also attracted the attention of a cheeky pigeon.

Parmageddon from Smith & Deli

I also had a Vegan Breakfast Scroll, which had egg, bacon, broccoli and cheddar. It was so good! And for sweets I got a piece of Mandarin Curd Slice, which was lovely. To refresh and rehydrate, I had a delicious Sugar & Spice Fermented Tea. These are locally made in Fitzroy, so I have no hope of finding them anywhere else. I tried a few other flavours during the trip, but this first one was my favourite.

Scramble, Bacon, Broccoli and Cheese Scroll from Smith & Deli

Mandarin Curd Slice from Smith & Deli

Drink from Smith & Deli

I honestly can't remember what we did after lunch... I suspect we just hung out at the room for a bit because we'd had an early start to the day. But really, whatever it was could not measure up to the excitement of what we had planned for the evening. But first, dinner. We went for an earlyish dinner at Fina's 2 on Brunswick St, a great vegan Vietnamese place. We both enjoyed some fun drinks - I had the Custard Apple Smoothie and Molly had a Honeydew Frappe.

Honeydew Juice and Custard Apple Frappe from Fina's 2

Molly went for the fried side of the menu, with some Spring Rolls (though with lettuce leaves to wrap them up in) and Salt and Pepper Tofu.

Spring Rolls from Fina's 2

Salt and Pepper Tofu from Fina's 2

I was feeling like something a bit lighter, so I had the Vermicelli Salad, with the chili in the dressing left out. This was lovely and light, and included a mix of tofu and spring rolls (next time I would ask for a higher tofu to spring roll ratio).

Vermicelli Salad from Fina's 2

We had dinner a bit early because we had an hour tram ride to get down to St Kilda, as we needed to be there at sunset (which was actually pretty late while we were there due to daylight savings, not until about 8pm).

St Kilda

But why did we need to be at St Kilda at sunset? BECAUSE OF PENGUINS! Somehow, I have never known that there are penguins you can see every single night at St Kilda. Even most of my Melbourne friends didn't know. Molly knew from her friend who is spending a year in Australia from Seattle. I have been missing out on penguins all these years! The penguins are at the breakwater at the end of the pier, so to get down there you will have to prepare yourself to walk through a gauntlet of people who are fishing (poor fish!) and often also smoking. But then, penguins! There was a reasonable crowd there, but not so crowded that you didn't see. They are in the process of building a fence to keep people away from the penguins homes, because of course people try and climb over the rocks to harass the penguins. Ugh. Thankfully there are volunteer guides on hand with stories to tell and to keep people in line. Please enjoy some PENGUINS!

Penguins at St Kilda

Penguins at St Kilda

You have to look a bit hard at this photo, right in the middle where the little hole in the rocks... BABY PENGUINS! They were waiting for their mamma to come home with their dinner.

Baby Penguins at St Kilda

I actually took a million photos and videos, so these are just a couple. It was amazing. They are SO CUTE! And some of them were sassy little performers as well. I definitely want to visit them again next time I am in Melbourne.

On the way home, we were giddy from penguins, but stopped long enough to appreciate the pretty view of the city across the water in the dark.

View from St Kilda

This was such an exciting and special evening. But in the morning we had something equally exciting planned as well, so you will have to stay tuned! I can promise more amazing animals.

Cute Kitty Photo of the Post

Dim Sim

Dim Sim was giving some serious sass with this pose I took the day before we went to Melbourne!


  1. I love club sandwiches not seals as a sandwich name! And PENGUINS!!! I want to live with the penguins! I can't wait for the next installment, I am loving reading these adventures!

    1. I am still excited thinking about the penguins!
      They have fun names for all their sandwiches, but I think that is the best!

  2. The vegan breakfast scroll looks perfectly delicious! Love your photos of the penguins, especially the little babies! Dim Sim looks so regal and elegant!

    1. The baby penguins blew our mind. The guide said they were probably about two weeks old. So fluffy.

  3. I read this post last night and forgot to comment! Sorry! LOVED hearing about the Penguins! These photos are great!!! Soooooo green those gardens!!

    1. The gardens a beautiful, there are so many different plants and environments there. Lots of green!

  4. four detached but identical houses were built side by side in Moreton St, extending from the Hazel St corner to the Bowen Terrace corner. fence contractors aiken sc