For the love of GIN

I have to be honest – I’ve never been a big drinker.

From time to time I do enjoy some cider, mojitos, moscato and I’m learning to love red wine. But never have I ever gravitated towards having some Gin…until now.

You see, not long ago Adam and I set off with some family, on a surprise expedition to Healsville’s very own gin distillery – Four Pillars. From the moment we arrived we had the most amazing time. The outside glistened in the sunshine from the copper signs and decor, and it was just as beautiful when going inside. We were welcomed by a staff member who explained what they offered, and then showed us around. After much deliberation we chose the $10 tasting experience – yes, only $10!

The four of us spent about 40 minutes with our server, in a private tasting area, where he explained the whole distillery process and showed us some of the machines used to do so. Each tasting of gin was explained, and with the selection of complimentary herbs and spices to smell, we really felt like distilling gin ourselves!

At the end of the day though, it all comes down to the taste – and boy did it not disappoint! As I mentioned earlier, I’ve never been one to gravitate towards gin, but now I do love what Four Pillars has to offer. Ranging in alcohol content and taste, you could really tell the difference in flavours and the various techniques used to create those one-off batches. We also loved the fact that they operate under a ‘zero waste’ policy, which means that all of the aromats used in the gin process, are cooked down to make various jams, jellies, and preserves (all available in their shop).

So if you decide to head out, why not go for a drive to the beautiful town of Healsville, through the Yarra Valley, and pop in to Four Pillars. Reignite or even develop a new taste and love for gin – it will be well worth it!

Let us know if you have any favourite places to visit in the Yarra Valley too! We’d love to share them with everyone for more adventures!

For more information about Four Pillars, visit their website at: https://www.fourpillarsgin.com.au/

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Your eggs new BEST FRIEND

I think it’s safe to say that in the world we live in – most people have heard of Kmart. Situated in the Australian market at bringing affordable style to you and your home, they have really done an amazing job! Our home has many Kmart items, but even though it’s all fantastic, sometimes the quality just isn’t there.

Well, it was about four months ago now, whilst walking through Kmart, that I saw their fry pans – and they honestly didn’t look too bad. I looked around, took some time, and realised that we actually needed a new fry pan to rid us of those terrible mornings when faced with feral looking pans with egg residue. I mean, no one enjoys cleaning that gunk! Anyway, with both Adam’s and my parents being avid home cooks, we were both used to ‘decent fry pans’. Neither of us had ever considered Kmart as a contender. Well fast forward four months and we love our  Kmart $8 28cm fry pan – with no regrets!

Here are some photos I took during a Saturday morning, so you could see it in action…

So with all that being said, here are the reasons why you should buy a Kmart fry pan…

  1. It looks simple and modern.
  2. It is light-weight and easy to handle.
  3. The handle is made from specific material to ensure it DOESN’T heat up and burn you – which all of my high profile branded pans do funnily enough – totally doesn’t make sense I know!
  4. It’s non-stick coating is durable and very easy to clean.
  5. Eggs cook soooooo easily, and will change that dreaded feeling of having to wash breakfast dishes.
  6. For the cost of just $8, you too can experience this little wonder!

Keep in mind…

  1. It doesn’t come with a lid, but Kmart do have other pans that do (all made in the same way).
  2. When storing it, just keep some paper towel or a spare tea towel on the surface to protect the nonstick coating.
  3. Don’t put it in the dishwasher – honestly you don’t need to because it cleans so well.
  4. When cleaning, use a special non-stick coating sponge. You can find many of these in any supermarket, at varying price points to suit all budgets.

Well I hope that has helped solve one of life’s little grumbles, and given you a thoughtful, simple, and cost-effective solution.

Have an amazing rest of the day today, and I can’t wait until we meet again!

Happy adventuring!

M & C

A big HELLO to Hello Fresh

From one friend to another, I’m sure you’ve heard by now about Hello Fresh – the amazing and convenient way to cook healthy meals – all delivered to your door!

Well this week was our first Hello Fresh week and honestly, we couldn’t have been more excited! In the past we’d tried other options for convenient cooking, but nothing had really ‘hit the spot’. Fortunately for us though, I stumbled onto a Hello Fresh voucher at work. So after checking it out I did what everyone else would do, and signed us up! Once I was done our little experiment would only cost us $19.85 – a bargain considering it would give us ten dinners and ten lunches for the week ahead!

Long story short – all aspects of Hello Fresh have really exceeded our expectations! It all began with the friendly text I received on Saturday morning that our box had been delivered. I woke up, opened our front door, and there it was – very big and heavy!

Hello Fresh Box

I have to say that I was very skeptical at first given that we were getting raw ingredients – I mean, how could a company ensure that level of freshness – well they certainly did a good job! Everything was well packed, easy to understand, and there was a chilled insulated bag for all of the perishable items (meat, cheese, sauces etc.).

This is what was in our box, which was the ‘Family plan, 4 people, 5 meal kits’ option – usually $159.80 for 20 servings, at $7.99 per serving.

What's in the box?

I have to say it looked so warm and inviting! Each meal kits vegetables were in brown paper bags. They also came with a meal card, double-sided, with all the information you needed to make that perfect, delectable dish. As an avid home cook, I thought the the detail in the menu cards was amazing – ranging from cook times, to a list of ingredients, what you would need from home (which was barely anything), and step-by-step instructions with photos to boot! There were even some ‘thanks for choosing us’ discounts as well for other lifestyle companies, and a ‘Getting Started’ magazine!

Now you may be wondering (as was I) whether it would fit into your fridge – after all it was a lot of food! Well I thought I would help out and show you some pics – after all, what are friends for! Our Samsung fridge (which is AMAZING) is your regular sized fridge, and in the end I would say that it took up about 1.5 shelves worth.

Check it out…

Okay – so far so good! We got the great looking box, filled with scrumptious ingredients, it was all packed away and ready to go – now all we had to do was cook! Haha!

For our first meal we chose ‘Speedy Honey-Soy Glazed Chicken with Sesame Fries’. The recipe said 35 mins total, but by the time I finished, understood what their processes were, and followed EVERY instruction, it was about 55 mins.

Here are some pics we took along the way.

And the end result. Drum roll please…

Two gourmet dinners, two gourmet lunches, and a successful new recipe idea for the future!

Hello Fresh final

Three reasons to say HELLO to Hello Fresh…

1. Convenience

Hello Fresh is exceptionally convenient. Firstly, setting up delivery is so simple, and with their custom notes section, they can even take on challenges of finding units and apartments. Everything should also fit in your fridge, and with the best laid-out recipes I’ve seen, cooking will be simple and not complicated.

2. New ideas

The variety they have available is quite big and growing all the time. These recipes are great ways of learning new cooking techniques and flavour combinations, which you can add to any off your existing meals you love to cook – or better yet, use them in combination with each other and have fun experimenting!

3. It’s fun!

Hear this – cooking is NOT meant to be a chore. It’s a time to get comfy, chill out, and relax. Use this time, even though your day may be busy, to just have FUN! Hello Fresh is so laid out and simple you just can’t get it wrong. Bottom line – it’s fail safe, so all you have to do it focus on enjoying yourself!

So with that all being said I had better dash as it’s getting quite late. It’s been so great sharing this adventure with you, and I hope to see you again soon!

Until next time – stay passionate, and remember to live life with adventure.

M & C

If you’re interested in Hello Fresh, or want more information, please check out the link below.

hellofresh.com.au