Tuesday, November 13, 2012

East Taste

The Challenge Is Back.

After a brief (10 month) hiatus, we are back, pounding The Gouge (a nick-name for Gouger Street I haven't discussed with Mel yet). And THIS TIME, it's serious.

It is serious for a couple of reasons:
1. The rules have changed.
2. Things are serious.
3. We're on the South Side.

The South Side of The Gouge, isn't like the North. The first thing you notice is that it attracts a certain type of person. More specifically: a wealthier type of person. Which brings us to Rule Change No. 1: No more ordering the most popular thing on the menu. 
We simply can't afford it. A quick perusal of the South Side menus has turned up a few places where a main can easily be $45. Each. 
While on the North Side, we could happily order the popular ribs, or the must-have chicken, and still not spend more than $30 between us. On the South Side, we are just one specialty-suggestion away from blowing our food budget for the month. In fact, selecting "The Gouge" as a new nickname was probably very well judged.
Nothing makes reality kick in like having no money.

I'm stealing bikes now! How are you going to pay for your meal?

Rule Change No. 2: No more ordering the weirdest thing on the menu. Paying $15 for a disgusting photo got real old. Paying $45 for the same joke is not happening. 

On with The First Contender:


In short: we have discovered a new Ying Chow. East Taste is everything Ying Chow used to be: loud, friendly, delicious food, fast service. When the waiter scolded us, shouting "Chop chop!", she wasn't telling us to pay our bill and GTFO, she was admonishing us to move our plates out of the way to make room for more food

We kicked the night off with class. A few drinks, a little driving.

Eyes on the road, Franzy ...
When we rocked up (one never simply 'arrives' in The Gouge), there was a last-minute request to add three extra people. At Ying Chow, this would have gotten us thrown out. Or at least told to wait for another 40 minutes. At East Taste, they performed a curious arithmetic that I believe looks something like this:

More customers = More $$$ = Good

And lo and behold, they squeezed more people in and immediately brought them drinks. They are business geniuses.
And brought out simultaneously. How did they think of that. 
 The food was excellent in all sorts of delicious ways that will be outlined below:

Shallot pancakes: Excellent. This shot was taken 7 seconds after the plate hit the table.

Flaming Kangaroo doused in fire: excellent. BBC (lower left corner) - like an old friend who never lets you down. Except for that one time at Ying Chow: excellent.

Hot eggplant thing in a bowl: despite the lack of meat, excellent.

Thanks everyone for your patience over the hiatus. We have been finishing PhDs and some other stuff. Normal programming will resume as of now.


  1. Shallot pancakes, I'll have to try those.

  2. Love Mele's top - very glam and shallot pancakes, oh how we used to love scoffing those down the Gouge...

    AUD $45 for a meal here will get you a soggy pasta dish better done by yourself at home on a Monday night. Filets de perche et frites is just fish and chips that cost around CHF 44 and come straight from the freezer. And yet their restaurants are heaving with people. Do they ALL have full Swiss bank accounts....?

    1. Mele's top is in fact a dress and she, at least, is setting the standard for glamour on the South Side of The Gouge.

      In light of your culinary situation, I will tone down the bitching about prices. I'm guessing their Swiss bank accounts are a little less full after a plate of fish'n'chippes!

  3. Awesome food, great prices too and of course awesome company. Yay the Gouge adventure finally begins again!!


An explanation of The Joy Division Litmus Test

Although it may now be lost in the mysts of thyme, the poll below is still relevant to this blog. In the winter of 2008, Mele and I went to live in Queensland. In order to survive, I bluffed my way into a job at a Coffee Club.
It was quite a reasonable place to work: the hours were regular, the staff were quite nice, it wasn't particularly taxing on my brain.
There were a few downsides: In the six weeks or so that I worked there, there was about a 90% staff turnover (contributed to by my leaving). This wasn't seen as a result of the low pay, the laughability of staff prices or the practice of not distributing tips to staff, rather it was blamed on the lack of work ethic among Bribie Island's youth.
However, one of the stranger aspects of the cultural isolation that touched our lives during our time "up there" was the fact that nobody at my work had heard of the band Joy Division.
The full explanation is available here.
But please, interact a little further and vote in my ongoing poll. The results are slowly mounting up, proving one thing: people read this blog are more well-informed about Joy Division than anyone who works at the Coffee Club on Bribie Island.

Have you heard of the band Joy Division?

Chinese food, not Chinese Internet!

Champions of Guess The Header

  • What is Guess The Header about? Let’s ask regular “Writing” reader, Shippy: "Anyway, after Franzy's stunning September, and having a crack at 'Guess The Header' for the first time - without truly knowing what I was doing mind you - I think I finally understand what 'GTH' is all about. At first I thought you needed to actually know what it was. Don't get me wrong — if you know what it is, it may help you. I now realise that it's more Franzy's way of invoking thought around an image or, more often than not, part of an image. If you dissect slightly the GTH explanatory sentence at the bottom of his blog you come up with this: “The photo is always taken by me and always connects in some way to the topic of the blog entry it heads up.” When the header is put up, the blog below it will in some obscure way have something to do with it. “Interesting comments are judged and scored arbitrarily and the process is open to corruption and bribery with all correspondence being entered into after the fact and on into eternity, ad infinitum amen.” Franzy judges it, but it's not always the GTH that describes the place perfectly that gets it. “The frequent commenters, the wits, the wags and the outright smartarses who, each entry, engage to both guess the origin and relevance of the strip of photo at the top (or “head”) of each new blog and also who leave what I deem the most interesting comment.” It generally helps if you're a complete smartarse and can twist things to mean whatever you feel they should mean - exactly the way Franzy would like things to be twisted." - Shippy Blogger and GTH point scorer.
  • Nai - 1
  • Lion Kinsman - 2
  • Will - 2
  • Brocky - 2
  • Andy Pants - 2
  • The 327th Male - 3
  • Mad Cat Lady - 3
  • Miles McClagen - 4
  • Myninjacockle - 4
  • Asheligh - 5
  • Neil - 5
  • Third Cat - 5
  • Adam Y - 6
  • Squib - 6
  • Mele - 6
  • Moifey - 7
  • Jono - 8
  • The Other, other Sam - 14
  • Kath Lockett - 15
  • Shippy - 19
  • River - 32