Author Archives: JuliaVsLife

Party round my neck Part 3

Assalomu Alaykum! (That’s hello! in Uzbek) The gorgeous girls from Melange Boutique have a constant stream of lovely jewels, accessories and clothes…here I’m wearing their lovely “Torah” medallion necklace along with a clutch from Mediterranean Living – all the way from Uzbekisistan, hence the opening line….aren’t we clever Google Translate!

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Party ’round my neck, Part 2


Dannijo Medine bib necklace from Alexis Dawn, Turkish Suzani Clutch from Mediterranean Living.

Alexis Dawn never ceases to amaze me, the minute you walk in you’ll be hit by a burst of fresh colours and along with their label Alexis Dawn also stocks Rebecca Minkoff, J Brand and of course Dannijo accessories. Here I am wearing the Medine bib necklace in red, a worthy investment piece if you ask me!

PS: The Dawnies are having their 2nd Annual Sale this Saturday with all of their signature stock at $100 a pop and 50% all other items….helloo Rebecca Minkoff bags, Mama’s coming home!

Be sure to say hello to the gorgeous girls and pick up a great piece (or five!)



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Party ’round my neck, Part 1.

There’s nothing better than updating your outfit with a few accessories, as you may have gathered from my previous posts, I happen to be having a ‘rainbows and unicorns’ love affair with my suburb.  Gone are the days of standing in an overcrowded Westfield trying to get to your favourite store via screaming 3 year old chucking a tanty in the food court and the snooty high schoolers making out in front of Big W.  I feel extremely blessed to be within seconds of James Street and have sternly advised my husband that he just has to keep earning more money in order to avoid exile to the outskirts of the city once I’m up the duff. Please Lord, let me never leave this sanctuary of great coffee and gorgeous shops! Speaking of which, all the accessories featured in this fashion series are all James Street Precinct-ers, I guarantee that if you do visit – you will be hooked to their inspiring goodies.

In this series I have styled a simple Bassike tee, Arizona pleat skirt from General Pants and last season’s RMK Dakota thigh highs with the lovely wares of Alexis Dawn, Melange Boutique and Mediterranean Living.  Be sure to check each of these stores out!

Part 1 look:

Holst + Lee rope necklace from Alexis Dawn

Turkish Suzani clutch from Mediterranean Living

Photography by the lovely Prue Pettett 

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From Tartufo, with love…

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I know for a fact that any words describing my incredible experience at Tartufo would not suffice.  From the fresh warm interior-crusty exterior bread served to us immediately upon entering the gorgeous Roman-esque interior to the ‘Start planning my funeral, I’m happy to die here’ mini calzones with fresh sugo – this place, my friends, is one of a kind.

The generous, hard working, passionate and super friendly Tony Percuoco is the proud owner of this establishment, and judging from my 3 hour degustation of bliss I believe he has single handidly put Tartufo as Brisbane’s number 1 must visit Italian restaurant. Tony’s passion for food and art are visible in every corner of this sophisticated establishment, I couldn’t recommend it enough.

When it comes to Italian food, both my mother and I are what you would call A-grade snobs. Rightly so, as every dish for us isn’t just a food slapped on a plate  – but a memory or a connection to our time back in Italy.

Mama and me, somewhere in southern Italy

This is where I think Tartufo differs from all the other Italian restaurants, the dishes are simple yet stylish. They are more than adequate representations of what a typical Italian family would feast around on a special occasion: like the end of a week, the day after Nonna bought 50kgs on special or your distant cousin’s 42nd birthday – you know the drill, right?

Mum and I were recommended to have the nine course degustation, and by the end of it I thought I was going to slip into a fully satisfied food coma. It was one of the best meals of my life – sorry Nonna! (I may regret saying that, if you haven’t heard from me in a while – safe to say Nonna just found out her tiramisu has been trumped!)

It’s really difficult to narrow down the highlights…especially since Tartufo prides itself on excellent customer service (the non-Italian waiters even take the time to practice the correct pronunciation of dishes! Very impressed!) a childhood favourite, the Vitello Tonnato was definitely a standout as were the gorgeous melt-in-your-mouth mini calzones with home made sugo. Incredible.

A few glasses of immaculate vinos and half a glass of Sicilian dessert wine later…I can still remember how each dish tasted, THAT my friends, is not only an achievement in itself, BUT a sure sign of an amazing experience.

To book your Italian ‘experience’ complete with hilarious jokes, lovely family-like staff and a good drop of Italian red visit  your life will never be the same!

Buon Appetito!

x Juju

Ristorante Tartufo on Urbanspoon

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Today’s breakfast – ‘Osh-nana-tella-sanga’

Brioche, banana, nutella sandwich.  A perfect Sunday brekky smash hit or a naughty snack. This sanga is what the Russian Babushkas are to Eurovision = golden gold.

If you are thinking “what can I substitute to make it less fattening?” then stop. Walk away and grow some koftas. This a breakfast TREAT! Impress your friends, eat during a self-pity binge  – that kind of treat. Capish?

1 banana
2 slices of brioche bread
1 tbsp brown sugar
1 tbsp butter
2tsp mascarpone
Crushed pistachios to decorate


Heat butter in a heavy set saucepan, add brown sugar while butter is bubbling away. Once sugar starts to caramelize, add in sliced banana. Turn banana pieces over after one side is a lovely brown yet slightly crispy texture. Repeat on the other side. Place cooked banana on a paper towel.

Heat a grill pan to medium heat then add brioche slices, cook both sides until zebra-like lines appear on bread. Spread one side of sanga with nutella and the other with mascarpone.  Place bananas on top of nutella side and then add the other slice. Top off with a good dollop of mascarpone and decorate with a few crushed pistachios.

Wait for pop sound, that’s your artery. Whatevs. Eat up!!!

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I need your vote!

Hello world,

So this little blog has been selected as a finalist in the ‘Food’ category for Pedestrian.TV’s Blogster Awards! Exciting!

In order to be in the running to be crowned winner in this category, I need your vote! You can vote by clicking ‘like’ here > 

For your votes and general feel-good support…I shall leave you with the harmonies of Boyz 2 Men. They pretty much sum up my gratitude (and love for 90s threads!)

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Lend me some sugar, I am your neighbour….

” The creative options with sugar are endless. I can caramelize it, bake it, whip it, stretch it. The results are always something that make people happy.”  Gena Karpf,  Sweetness.

I recently had the honour of meeting Gena at the Noosa Food and Wine Festival. This incredible woman was so passionate about her products. Her words of wisdom, like sugar itself, made you just want to go back for more.

It’s no doubt that I’m not the only one who thinks Gena is pretty rad, in fact in 2011 her addictive Macadamia shortbread was a finalist in the Delicious Magazine Produce Awards.

This year is no different, Gena has come out guns a blazin’ with her gourmet flavoured ‘mallows, English toffee and (my personal favourite) Candied Oranges dipped in chocolate.

I was lucky enough to take home some goodies from her stall, including this ‘melt-in-your-mouth’ chocolate flavoured mallow. Yes. Chocolate! Perfect with a cup of spearmint tea or (if you are feeling creative) a killer ingredient to bake with…choc chip and choc mallow cookies anyone?

Check out all the sweetness here >

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How bazaar.

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It pays to stroll your local ‘hood, in fact…on a beautiful Autumn day I did just that.  ‘Twas on this stroll that I walked past a lil boutique in Newstead, filled with gorgeous homewares, lamps, furniture and other lovely things from distant and exotic lands. A gorgeous fresh-faced Alison greeted me as soon as I walked in to the shop (cue flamenco guitar music) and I was instantly drawn to her passion for all things beautiful and all things Mediterranean.  Most of Alison’s wares come from Turkey and Spain, she is extremely knowledgeable in the techniques used in the dying, stitching and embroidery process.  So why not pop in and have a chat?

These are just some of the lovely things I came across (and I still find myself daydreaming about that incredible clutch!)

Check out Mediterranean Living, Shop 2 29 Chester Street, Newstead or visit them on good ole FB here

Show me your buns!!

What’s better than soft, fluffy tasty buns with delicious fillings? Soft, fluffy tasty buns on wheels!!! Yes. You heard right, buns are running this town Jay Z style.

The cool kids from ‘The Bun Mobile’ (TBM) are satisfying bun cravings all around Brisbane and if you stalk them like a pro as I do on a daily, you may find them at a feeding spot near you.

Follow their tracks on Facebook here and tuck into daily specials such as their ‘Sous Vide Pork Belly’ bun or ‘Confit Duck Caesar’ bun.

Note:  TBM’s ‘Caramel Banana with salted Peanut Praline’ bun is sure to send you hyperventilating like a mama in labour – complete with tears of joy at the end.

Bun Mobile on Urbanspoon

Sh!t nonnas say

Good to know that all Nonna’s are all the same. So so funny!!!