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HOT: Aviv Cakes & Bagels, 412 Glenhuntly Rd, Elsternwick

I once held a bake-off amongst my friends where everyone had to bring a baked dessert for judging (and eating). J and B brought a beautiful chocolate babka which was suspiciously excellent…and after a few drinks it was revealed that on a friend’s tip they had bought the babka from Aviv Cakes & Bagels! I’ve […]

HOT: Up in the Air, Classic Cinema, 9 Gordon St, Elsternwick

Up in the Air does the almost impossible – it makes redundancy humorous. Ryan Bingham (George Clooney) is a corporate downsizing gun-for-hire who flies around the country firing employees for bosses who are too cowardly to do the dirty work themselves. He’s a smooth operator, full of pretend concern and oft-repeated platitudes but with just […]

Ask the Doctor: Where to buy Japanese ingredients

Help me Doctor!: Do you know where in Melbourne I can buy black sesame paste and matcha powder (green tea in powder form)? I have not noticed them in Asian grocery stores. – Jenny T Your prescription: Perhaps you would have better luck with a Japanese specialist grocery store? Here are a list of Japanese […]

NOT: The Boys are Back

NOT: The Boys are Back

The Boys are Back is director Scott Hick’s (Shine) latest film about family, fatherhood and boys. The movie is based on ‘The Boys are Back in Town’ the 2001 memoir of The Independent columnist Simon Carr, and it was shot on location in South Australia, turned into an almost unrecognisable romantic landscape of swaying golden […]

HOT: An Education, Classic Cinema, 9 Gordon St, Elsternwick

HOT: An Education, Classic Cinema, 9 Gordon St, Elsternwick

[Spoiler alert] On paper, the storyline to An Education sounds very trite.  A pretty and smart 16 year old girl from the suburbs ditches school and the possibility of attending Oxford in order to marry an older, richer man who shows her the ways of the world…but who’s hiding a mysterious past. That’s until you […]

HOT: First Tuesday Book Club, ABC Studios, 8 Gordon St, Elsternwick

My second Melbourne Writers Festival event was another TV show, this time the filming of the ABC’s popular First Tuesday Book Club, screening next Tuesday on 1 September (look out for me in the front row clapping and laughing on cue). There was a palpable sense of excitement from the mostly middle-aged women as we […]

HOT: Glick’s, 362 Glenhuntly Road, Elsternwick

When I lived in Montreal I discovered that Montrealers are as passionate about bagels as New Yorkers. Everyone declared allegiance to one of two bagel shops: Fairmount Bagel Bakery and St Viateur Bagels. Residents argued passionately about the superiority of their preferred bagel shop and could never be swayed that the other shop’s bagels were […]

HOT: Sunshine Cleaning, Classic Cinema, 9 Gordon St, Elsternwick

It’s hardly a surprise that perenially sunny Amy Adams is the star of the movie called Sunshine Cleaning. But it’s not all singalongs and pastel cupcakes – the film is about a former high school cheerleader, now single mum Rose (Adams) who teams up with her flaky, dope-smoking sister Norah (Emily Blunt with a very […]

HOT: My Year Without Sex, Classic Cinema, 9 Gordon St, Elsternwick

Wow. In all my blogging history, I’ve never received such angry comments as those received in response to my NOT for Samson and Delilah. But if I’m going to open up HOT or NOT to anonymous commentators, then I know I have to be ready to receive (and post) dissenting views. Hey, even the Cannes […]

HOT: The Boy in the Striped Pajamas, Classic Cinema, 9 Gordon St, Elsternwick 3185

It’s not often that I’d say that a film adaptation is better than the book, but to my surprise that was the case for The Boy in the Striped Pajamas. I really didn’t like the book, mostly because I thought the protaganist Bruno was rather annoying and frustratingly dim about what his Nazi commandant father […]


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