header image



This past week, I was sent out to another part of Australia for work. I don't mind travelling, in fact, I love it. But for work purposes, I did not sign up to move to Melbourne just so that I would be sent out of town for 4+ weeks at a time. Anyway, no more griping for now. One of the best ways to get over stress is to eat. This past weekend, we ventured over to Collingwood to visit Proud Mary's. This is a brunch spot that has been mentioned by many of our friends here in Melbourne so we knew it was going to be good.

p r o u d m a r y

There was a great vibe to this place, it was packed with people that were there for both the delicious looking breakfast (served all day) and the famous coffee. Some have mentioned the coffee served here to be the best in Melbourne. If that isn't a tall feat, I don't know what is (it was fantastic though). The lineup was out the door but somehow we got a spot within 5 minutes of arriving - we're not going to complain about that! The coffee was fantastic, bold and strong, it was exactly what I needed to start the weekend. We both ordered the hash which came with grilled bacon, roasted kale, and a poached egg. The portion size was enormous but it wasn't just the quantity that got our attention. Our breakfast was amazing and would easily rank with the best we have had in Australia. We will definitely be coming back.

Proud Mary on Urbanspoon



Brunch. It is one of my favourite meals of the week (I say week only because the only opportunity I get to eat brunch is on the weekends). Back in Vancouver, you had some great places for brunch if you knew where to go (ie. Café Regalade, Fable, Oakwood, Sopheez, and the list goes on) but here in Melbourne, they are literally everywhere. After being here for over 2 months, you get the feeling that you could go to a new brunch place every week for a year and you would still be able to find a new cafe or brunch spot serving great coffee and interesting dishes. Recently, we visited Fitzroy’s Brunswick Street where we found Slow Poke. Fitzroy is a hip neighbourhood with lots of café’s, restaurants, pubs, and boutiques. Kind of grungy in character but in a good way!

Slowpoke was a small establishment but I liked the layout of the place. The walls and the paint were frayed and imperfect, the picnic style table was aged and well used, but the natural light and the simplicity of the layout just makes this place an attention grabber. The menu is limited but that’s not a bad thing, just means that they do the things that they have, well. The concepts of the items on the menu are not unusual but had their twists that made them unique from the next brunch spot. I had the baguette with smashed eggs, jamon, and lettuce. The baguette was fresh, warm, and crispy and the portion size is substantial. The coffee was pretty great too (seems redundant to say that about coffee in Melbourne).

We would definitely come back. Having brunch here then spending the rest of the day wandering through Fitzroy is not a bad way to spend the weekend!

s l o w p o k e

Slowpoke on Urbanspoon



When we arrived in Melbourne, work gave us about 2 weeks before starting so that we could settle in and find a place to live. We had the idea that if we could find a place to move into within the first week that we would travel somewhere so what do we do on the day that we sign the lease? We went online that night and before we knew it, tickets were booked for the following morning and our hotel was reserved and waiting for us in Bali. Just a short flight (5.5 hours) from Melbourne, Bali was the closest thing to an exotic vacation that we could do before getting back into work mode the next week. Having arrived at the tail end of Melbourne’s winter, we were looking forward to spending a few days in 28 degree weather in Indonesia as well.

We stayed in the Nirwani Pan Pacific Resort. Situated about 1.5 hours away from the airport, the resort was absolutely stunning. Once you walk up the stairs to the foyer/lobby, you look right out into the green court yard and the waves of the crashing sea. We were greeted with a cold Balinese tea and wet towels. We were then escorted to our ocean and pool view room where we couldn’t help but snap photos and take a deep breath just to take in our surroundings. Although this was maybe a bigger hotel than most would like in a place like Bali, this is definitely a first class resort.


Bali is one of those places that you go to relax. I’m not normally one for sitting at a resort as an idea for vacation but this was much needed before starting work in a new country. There is a lot that you can do when in Bali but we chose to do two days of activities. One of those days we went to the Elephant Safari and Adventure Park. We loved it. Aside from the horrid customer service when it came to processing the payment (another story for another time), the experience of being able to be up close to the Asian elephants was one that we will always remember. We got to do an elephant ride around the park and we even got to feed and pet the big guys. Our elephant was called… Derwee (I must have brutalised the spelling) haha.

When I think of Southeast Asia, for some reason, the imagery of rice fields comes to mind. So we made sure that we got a chance to go to the Jutiluwih Rice Fields in Tabanan. It was beautiful and vast but also extremely hot that day. We were sweating up a storm but it was still neat to walk through the rice fields and snap photos along the way. We love exploring and this was a different kind of exploring than you could do in North America or Europe so we loved how different the landscape was.


We had a great time in Bali. From the things we did or didn’t do to the resort that we had the pleasure of staying in, we thoroughly enjoyed our stay. Bali is a place that we will definitely revisit. It feels good to scratch our first Southeast Asian country off the list though! Time to start planning for future trips to Vietnam, Cambodia, Thailand, Malaysia, and Singapore!



Or "Melbun" as they like to call it. This is over a month overdue but this is finally a blog post on Melbourne. We both packed our bags and moved over to Melbourne, Australia in August this year as we both had that itch to see the world from another perspective. Vancouver is a place I will ALWAYS, proudly call my home but when you get a chance to move and live in the city that has been named the world’s most liveable city for three years in a row, you take that chance. It helps that everyone that I have ever met from Australia seem to be such down to earth, cool people too. We heard a lot about Melbourne before we moved over here, the most paramount of here say being that the food and coffee is out of this world. Having been here for over a month, it’s safe to say they were right about that. We have really enjoyed this city so far but some of the highlights has to be the following:

This city is well known and rightfully so, for its food, wine, and coffee. Being so multicultural, Melbourne is a city where you can find food from cultures all over the world. The Asian food here is actually better than what I had in Vancouver and that is saying a lot. Australia is also home to some of the best big red wine regions in the world. Being a big and bold red wine drinker, I have loved the varietals of shiraz’s and blends that I have had the opportunity of trying. The best thing though? Being able to buy a very, very decent bottle of shiraz for about $15 (back home in Vancouver, you’d have to be really looking to get something good for under $20-25 after tax). As for coffee… well I think that’s self-explanatory given the only two posts I have made about Australia thus far have been of coffee shops that I have visited (and I still have about 3 – 4 more places that I have yet to blog about). The only danger related to food in this city is the risk of being overly self-indulgent.

Melbourne is a place where artistic perspectives are appreciated. At least that is my impression upon exploring the city. From Hosier Lane to the quirky decors of the restaurants and coffee shops that we have been to, you get the distinct feeling that being different here is a good thing. It is a stark difference from most of North America where, while some appreciate the quirky and the new, most prefer to be comfortable and roam to the nearest Starbucks or Tim Hortons. I guess one way of describing it is… most places look roughly similar in North America, not so much for Melbourne. Some examples of what I am talking about can be seen in any of the multitudes of coffee shops in town. From broken down old chairs that date back to my elementary school days to wooden chairs hanging off the ceiling for décor, to exposed brick and concrete, the one word to describe the designs that we have seen here is, unique. And you know that feeling you get when you find a good hangout/bar/restaurant in a hole in the wall or an unassuming place that no one else knows about? Well, the best restaurants, bars, and coffee shops are all in laneways (narrow alley ways with cobblestone) and not on main roads. I still love my home all the same but it goes to show that we have a long ways to go in being unique and different.

There is a lot to like about this city and I’m sure I haven’t seen all of it. We look forward to spending a little bit of time here. Who knows, we may like it so much we could stay here for 5-10-15 years. At the end of the day we’re just going to enjoy this and make the most of the opportunity to live here.