Saturday, 28 May 2011

Naked For Satan, Shocolate & Books For Cooks

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Multicultural Cuisine of... Spain... and France

Naked For Satan
285 Brunswick St,
(03) 9416 2238

Another day off, another opportunity to food blog :) ahh the good life! After my trip to Smith St yesterday, I'm feeling like heading back for more, as I didn't have enough time to meander yesterday. I'm catching up with an old friend (we've known each other for 20 years now!) for lunch, and we're both fans of Brunswick St, so we decide to meet up there. Once we both finally secure car parks (no easy feat on a Saturday), we decide on Naked For Satan - a place I've been to a couple of times and absolutely loved, and one that Poo had never been too, but was eager to try out, given the large variety of little foods.

For those of you who haven't heard of this venue yet, you must be living under a rock. Naked for Satan is fast becoming a Brunswick St institution, with their range of infused vodkas and pintxos. Pintxos are basically a bigger version of tapas, Spanish in nature, and generally served on bread. 

Now, Naked For Satan is primarily a drinking hole, with little nibbles while you beverage. Once you walk in and grab yourself a seat (no waiters asking if you'd like a table, just stroll on in and make yourself at home), you're welcome to grab a plate and help yourself to the pintxos.

The food is set up buffet-style - you simply grab a plate, help yourself to whatever takes your fancy, and save the toothpick that is stuck in each pintxos. They operate on the honour system: you pay per toothpick at the end of your dining experience, $2.00 per piece (or 80c per piece at lunch times and dinner Mon - Wed).

We take a seat on the higher level/balcony area, on a comfy couch, and have no sooner sat down than are visited by a waitress with a plate of hot pintxos; the ones on display are all cold, and wait staff roam the venue with hot plates fresh out of the kitchen. They do not last long.

Meatballs with parmesan
We're presented with some delicious looking (and smelling) beef meatballs smothered in tomato sauce and parmesan cheese. We haven't grabbed our plates yet, so she brings us one each and we tuck in. Yuuuummmm.

With that done, we jump off the couch, plates in hand, to grab some more.
The pintxos are all set up with a mini black board explaining what they're all about - we grab the tongs and fill our plates! Here's what we devoured...

Rice ball on cream cheese and quince paste.

Carrot puree with beans, red onion, tomato and coriander

Frittata with aioli

Fried eggplant chip with honey on blue cheese

Chicken croquette

Chorizo with apple cider sauce and onion

Plus a couple of cocktails, of course. So, why "Naked For Satan?" Basically, a Russian (Mr Satanovich) distilled some vodka under prohibition, it got warm so he did it in his undies. In return for the vodka, his fans helped him make it. Because it was all quite illegal, the secret code was "getting naked for Satan." Hazaah. We take our cups of toothpicks and head to pay. With the lack of dessert options available, we decide to head across the road for a sugary finisher. All in all, I quite enjoy the food, although the hot pintxos are nicer than the cold ones. Great value for money, great variety, and great vodka!

Would rate it 8 out of 10.

Naked For Satan on Urbanspoon

3/296 Brunswick St,
(03) 9415 6556

Across the road from lunch, we find a small A-frame black board claiming Melbourne's best chocolate macaroons. I decided I must try these macaroons that had allegedly been voted Melbourne's best - I pride myself on being an experienced campaigner in all things chocolate. 

We walk in and are met with a wall of assorted chocolatey delights, and while I'm initially distracted by the various shades of brown, I suddenly see the macaroon window. Wow. There are some bright colours in there. I quickly study the menu - my choices include blood orange, salted caramel and lemongrass. I decide on the "black and white" - the one voted Melbourne's favourites, and a fluro blue vanilla one. 

I tuck into the vanilla macaroon first - the blue shell is perfectly soft, literally crumbling away under my fingers. The vanilla ganache is sweet and soft and smooth, even better than I hoped. I was wondering how the chocolate one was going to live up to this!

Looks nice. Feels soft and fresh. Smells chocolatey. It's a white chocolate macaroon with white chocolate ganache. Wasn't the big, brown, milk chocolate I was hoping for, but hey, I love white chocolate too - I don't discriminate! I bite in... to find...

... a soft, milk chocolatey, ganach centre! Ohhhh my.... ok, I'm starting to understand why this got the vote of Melbourne! It was delicious anyway, but to get the surprise of chocolate in the middle, with the cocoa hit in between the sugary sweetness of the white chocolate, was just divine!

Would rate it 9 out of 10.

Shocolate on Urbanspoon

Books For Cooks
233 - 235 Gertrude St,
(03) 8415 1415

Before I head home, a quick stop to possibly my favourite shop in all the world. Books For Cooks. If you haven't been here and you're a foodie, go now. Seriously. Drop what you're doing and go. If you have been here and you're as avid a cook/baker as I am, you'll understand.

Wall to wall, floor to ceiling of cook books, old and new, magazines, books on how to plate up and what makes chocolate so special, how to make beer and how to taste wine, how to cook gluten free and how to make full fat cakes. If it's got food in it, it's there. Best end of the day ever. Before I realise, I've been in there for an hour (and what felt like all of 15 minutes) - time to get going coz my parking is done!


  1. hehe you're making me hungry for Melbourne now! :P and thanks for explaining about the name, I was wondering why they called it that!

  2. Ahh well you're making me crave Sydney, so I guess we're even! With every new post of yours, I look forward to my Sydney trip even more! Only... 125 sleeps to go! hehe :)