Mumbo Zumbo

Word on the grapevine is that Adriano Zumbo will be opening a cafe in the newly built wing of Star City Casino.

🙂 heart.

– ant –

Queenstown – Places To Eat

Kia Ora! When we were planning our trip to Queenstown, NZ we couldn’t find a lot of reviews for food places in Queenstown. The only recommendations were Fergberger, Vudu Café and the elusive Joe’s Garage. There was also a mention of Patagonia Chocolates and Aggy’s Fish & Chip kiosk.

It is unusual for me to travel without planning at least 2 days worth of meals so I felt somewhat apprehensive as we approached Queenstown. Luckily we were smack in the middle of the ‘CBD’ and food was in no short supply.

Impressed by:

Les Alpes
A French restaurant which we visited for breakfast. It was an inviting and cosy place by the wharf, run (I think) by a most friendly and energetic Frenchman. Their menu looked so good and their promise of free jazz that evening so inviting that I almost went back for dinner but unfortunately was distracted by other happenings. The waffles with chestnut puree and whipped cream was absolute heaven. I really need to find a bottle of that stuff! Will definitely be back! p.s. order a ‘trim cap’ if skinny cappuccinos are your thing.

16 Church Street, Queenstown
(03) 442 6060
Open: 8.00am – late, 7 days

Best Onion Rings Ever:

Frank ‘n’ Burger
Tucked away in a little corner, it has 2 entrances and post-it notes for décor. The portions are, like all the burgers here, massive and is pleasant enough though nothing to scream about. Worth mentioning, though, are the onion rings. Large and crisped to golden brown perfection; Burger King’s onion rings look like it was churned out by some roadside wallah compared to these beauties. Never have I had such satisfying onion rings. Interestingly, this place doesn’t feature in the ubiquitous ‘Queenstown Menu Guide’.

1/66 Shotover Street, Queenstown
(02) 442 8211

Kept Checking But Never Actually Ate Here:

Slurp’s Soups
This takeaway joint is a dieter’s nightmare. Not only is everything liquid; but it’s rich, fatty, cholesterol laden liquid. The extensive list of soups take turns being on the daily menu, where about 5 or 6 are featured and get sold out very quickly. The reason I kept checking was because I wasn’t particularly interested in what they were offering on the days I popped in. By the time they were selling what I wanted (Smoked Chicken & Mushroom Minestrone), I was thoroughly tempted by the colourful display of gelatos further within the shop and bought a gelato instead from Lick’s Gelatos. I will definitely try a soup the next time I visit though!

Slurp’s Soups/Lick Dessert Bar & Espresso
40 Shotover Street, Queenstown
(03) 441 8505

Really Wanted to Try But Wasn’t Open:

The Noodle Ninja
I wanted to eat here because I love eating out of noodle boxes. It makes me feel like I’m on the set of ‘Friends’. Also, there’s an inside joke between us regarding ninjas. Also, they claim to have rickshaw deliveries by trained ninjas! We spent a good half hour looking for this place but it turns out its only open at certain times. The other half of the time the venue turns into a guitar pub or something. Very strange…. Would still love to try this place out when I return.

The Noodle Ninja (Under Monty’s)
13-14 Church ST., Queenstown
(03) 442 7685
Open Mon-Fri 11am – 4pm

So Disappointed By:

Mandarin Chinese Restaurant

Being a Sydneysider you get really spoilt for good Chinese food. We decided to try out Mandarin Chinese Restaurant by the water. Perhaps this is the standard, I’m not really sure as we only ate Chinese cuisine at this venue, but I was sorely disappointed. I ordered a medium-sized combination chow mein – I expected it to be crispy and have a good assortment of “combination” – being char siu (roasted sweet pork), some seafood, chicken and an array of vegetables. However, what came out was a plate about the length and width of DL sized envelope (regular envelope for folded A4 paper) and had noodles which were pretty much soggy. Asian greens and carrots were sparse; there were a few pieces of char siu and two prawns. It was very much smaller than what I was expecting for the money (NZ$13+). We also ordered a bowl of rice and a sizzling hot plate, which was no larger and nothing exceptional. It was fairly bland and the bowl of rice was around NZ$3 for a small bowl of two scoops. Overall, I was fairly disappointed. It also made me appreciate the quality back in Australia.

Mandarin Chinese Restaurant
65 Beach Street, Queenstown Central

– ant – & /~Owl~\


Make a real Difference

In just 1.5 months the film hit $200 million domestically and due to popular demand, kept showing for 7 months running in cinemas. It was nominated for at least 24 awards and won at least 10. Top critics around the world rated it mostly 4 out of 5.

What made ‘The Blind Side’ such a huge success?

I think it’s the same thing that makes movies like ‘Schindler’s List’, ‘Patch Adams’ and ‘The City of Joy’ successful. It’s feel-good, inspirational and above all, based on a true story. In this violent, cut-throat world that we live in now, we want to know that there are people in the world who still care and we like to see that caring can still make a difference.

World Vision and Compassion are two organisations which give you an opportunity to make a difference in the lives of poverty stricken youths. Much like the reflections of Mrs Touhy at the end of the movie, the lives of these children could turn out differently if they only had the opportunity to break away from the poverty cycle.

Opportunity is a strong word. It tips the balance in favour of one thing or another but this can only happen if people actually act upon the opportunities presented to them. Time waits for no man and these kids really need a helping hand, so please take some time out to care and to make a real difference by sponsoring one of the youths.

– ant –

MALM IKEA drawers to guitar case storage

We bought two Malm IKEA chest of drawers (3 drawer set) in white. Probably the best buy from IKEA yet (in recent memory). I made them into a guitar case holder using grip mats (cheap variety shops) on top of the drawers and then using the wall to lean the cases against whilst resting on the top of the drawers. Now, not only do we now have great extra storage for clothes with the deep drawers, but also a good way of keeping the cases out of the way and easy to access. Using these drawers to prop up the cases has made a significant difference in brightening and tidying up the space. For $99 a unit the MALM were a great investment and have helped to utilise all that previously wasted vertical space. I’m glad we went with these and not some of my original guitar holding ideas! When we went to IKEA they even had the “eat your discount” on too in Sydney! Score!

Here are some pictures of what it looks like.

Basically, you’d only be as limited as your wall space and if you don’t need all the space for guitars the drawer tops make great storage space for anything else you might want to display or have easy access too, so you could have half guitar case storage, half a space for your books etc.

I also got Ant to help make some plaques which I place behind each resting head of the case, this helps to:

  1. keep each guitar in its place;
  2. keep the cases from marking the newly painted walls; and
  3. help me identify which guitar is in the case.

Name plaque made of good cushioning cardboard

What are some of the ways you get around storing guitar cases? I would love to hear other suggestions or novel ideas!



When the sun is shining really brightly, the sidewalks along Harris Street in Pyrmont sparkle as you walk. Its all very mesmerising.

– ant –