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Here Comes the Birthday – Bungalow 8

Forgive me reader, for I have idled. It’s been a number of weeks since my last post.

Almost sounds like a blogging confessional, huh? :)

I’ve been meaning to get back to take two of my evening with food bloggers at Bungalow 8. I even had the photos ready a couple of weeks back.

Then life interrupts.

No longer though. So without further ado, to borrow the catch phrase of a fellow food blogger,

Here Comes the Post

All you can eat mussels and chunky fries. Quite an appealing proposition on its own. However, couple that with the prospect of meeting up with fellow food bloggers, for a belated birthday celebration with birthday cake from chocolatesuze no less, who can turn down such an offer…

The day is Tuesday. Bungalow 8, the venue of choice. The invitee and belated birthday boy, FFichiban (Here Comes the Food). Invites are sent around and four bloggers end up meeting over dinner – FFichiban, figuromo (A Table for Two), jenius (Jenius) and yours truly.

Whenever the topic of all-you-can-eat comes up, there almost always seems to be an element of competitiveness involved. It’s like there is some sort of symbiotic relationship between the two, which seems to also coincide with the need to get as much food for your all-you-can-eat buck.

Then again, perhaps that’s just me :)

Hearing that Helen (Grab Your Fork) had set the benchmark with a record of four pots (at least among Sydney food bloggers that I’m aware of), all attending make the attempt to beat this record.

Each Tuesday evening, Bungalow 8 serves up all you can eat mussels and chunky fries for the rather appealing price of $22.50. These delightful molluscs are served in 1kg Belgian pots, which are reminiscent of miniature cauldrons. They’re available in five flavours:

  • Laksa – lemongrass and ginger in a spiced coconut sauce.
  • Provencale – bacon, tomato, shallots and garlic in a Napoli sauce.
  • Thai Green Curry – coriander, bean sprouts and bamboo shoots in coconut cream.
  • Tom Yum – galangal, lime and chili in a fragrant Thai broth.
  • White Wine – chives and onions in a cream sauce.

Overall, the mussels were nice enough. They weren’t overcooked and were generally pleasant to eat. The flavours were quite mild though, which on the one hand allowed you to actually taste the flavour of the mussels but in some instances, did little to impart any complementary flavours.

With the concept of all you can eat dominating the mindscape, little thought was given to either the broth at the bottom of the pots, the unremarkable chunky fries (moist with little to no crunch; the worst kind of chip in my opinion) or the complementary bread.

figuromo bowed out early in order to make the long trip back home, finishing up with three pots. I’m sure if given enough time, he could have finished another pot at least.

The record for the night was held by FFichiban at four pots. Jenius reached a commendable three pots. I end up only finishing three pots, the provencale (the best by far), tom yum (least favourite but not particularly bad) and the white wine. The white wine one was disappointing as a lot of mussels still had their beards attached.

No matter the circumstance, contact between my lips and a beard is just not my thing.

With about as much mussels as we can manage and our appetites appeased, we take our leave along with some parting photos.

When there’s confirmation that there will be no cake for the night due to unexpected circumstances, the prospect of dessert is raised. However, we end up calling it a night and head off to our respective homes. With the birthday cake or other celebratory dessert off the cards, it seemed a travesty to not end a meal such as this without dessert. I made do with what I was able to get my hands on at my weekly petrol stop.

The Monaco Bar was something of a favourite back in my childhood. Either it no longer lives up to its former glory or my palate has moved on as I found it somewhat dissatisfying. The ice cream is more gelatinous than creamy and the chocolate biscuits just felt soggy. However, this minor set back did little to dampen an otherwise interesting and entertaining dining experience with fellow food bloggers.

FFichiban, as belated as your birthday celebration was, and as even more belated as this post is, for what it’s worth, happy birthday! :)

To read the accounts of the other attending food bloggers, please read on at Here Comes the Food, A Table for Two and Jenius (link to be included once she posts her account). Posts regarding the birthday cake, check out Here Comes the Food and chocolatesuze.

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{ 4 comments… add one }
  • billy@ATFT April 28, 2009, 12:56 pm

    welcome back! Hope you don’t have a backlog as long as Jen’s! LOL…
    I see you went for a monaco bar too, I agree, I don’t feel it with Monaco Bar. I am still a Maxibong man I think…

  • Betty April 29, 2009, 12:05 pm

    i was completely disapointed with the monacco bar aswell. i always had in my mind that they were AMAzING, and when they came back, i tried one and it was so unsatisfying… maxibon totally trumps monacco bar.

  • Simon May 5, 2009, 5:10 am

    Hi Billy!I haven’t been blogging as long as Jen so let’s hope not! :)

    Not too sure on the Maxibon. Will have to give it a go sometime.

    Hi Betty!I hear that sort of thing i.e. memories of greatness of the past, happens a lot.

    That’s two counts for Maxibon. I’ll have to try it out now!

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