The Great Australian Cookbook


The Great Australian Cookbook just about sums the who’s who of Australian cuisine, and guess who tops the contents page? That’s right, none other than Abla! And that’s even though her chapter actually appears on page 116. It’s one of the charming quirks of this book that contributors are not listed numerically but alphabetically, and by first name rather than surname. You can’t do better than ‘AB’ to head this star-studded list of Australian chefs, bakers and assorted providores. (Unless of course your first name happens to start with the unfortunate ‘AA’ —apologies to award-winning chef Aaron Turner of Geelong’s Hot Chicken Project.)

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The Fat Felafel


It’s no secret Heston Blumenthal flew into Melbourne a couple of weeks ago and snuck into Abla’s just to get a taste of one of our world-famous dishes, The Fat Felafel!

Okay, okay, that’s not quite how Blumenthal came to dine at Abla’s. Truth be told, it so happens that one of our loveliest and most loyal patrons is an acquaintance of Blumenthal’s, and, as everyone knows by now, he was in town to oversee the set-up of The Fat Duck, which is due to open in early 2015. He took it as an opportunity to sample some of the culinary delights that Australia’s food capital has on offer, and so naturally our dear patron decided on taking Heston to his “favourite Lebanese restaurant”.

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Hall of Fame


The Age held its annual Good Food Guide awards a couple of weeks ago and Abla’s was one of handful of restaurants inducted into the Vintage Hall of Famers. 

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Ladlefuls of Love


Winter can be hard. But if you’ve grown up in a country village as I have, you come to understand winter as down time after the headiness of summer. That’s all it is, really — getting cosy around an open fire, or rugging up and huddling into ourselves, and the food we cook is all about keeping alight the hearth within us.

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