Meet: Adelaide’s Acoustic Singer-Songwriter Jordan D’Sena

Meet: Adelaide’s Acoustic Singer-Songwriter Jordan D’Sena

Recently nominated in the 2021 SA Music Awards for Best Pop Artist, Adelaide’s rising star Jordan D’Sena is making a mark in the local music scene with his new single “Silhouette.” His single has landed 9th on triple j’s Unearthed chart and 2nd in the pop charts. Now armed with more experience, depth, and confidence, this acoustic singer-songwriter is geared up to take his music to a bigger stage.

Hey Paolo: What inspired you to become a musician?

I remember when I was four years old, my grandfather used to play his guitar in front of us. I was just drawn to his guitar and that inspired me to start playing too. I was 10 when he said, “here, you can have this one” — he then passed his guitar to me. That was also the time I started my guitar lessons. I’ve always loved playing ever since I was a kid.

jordan d sena adelaide musician guitarist performer artist the voice australia

It was only when I turned 17 though when I started singing. I took up singing lessons and eventually felt more confident to do gigs. At 21, I eventually auditioned for The Voice Australia and made it through the blinds.

As a kid after coming home from uni, I always remember watching shows like The Voice, Australia’s Got Talent and Australian Idol. I guess I’ve always wanted to join a show like that.

It was very nerve-racking to be on The Voice stage. The actual performance was for only nine seconds, but the lead up to it was worth many weeks of practice.

Hey Paolo: What’s usual genre that you like performing?

I like being an acoustic-songwriter and I also like pop. I perform a lot of Ed Sheeran’s songs. Another artist that I really like is the Aussie singer-songwriter Dean Lewis. My own single, “Silhouette,” definitely has some Dean Lewis influence in it.

Hey Paolo: What’s the story behind your song “Silhouette”?

A few years back, I was seeing someone and felt like being a shadow. I wasn’t just connecting to her. The line, “if I call you in the morning, you probably didn’t even want it,” meant like, I don’t even know what she was thinking at that point.

“Writing from his experiences and remembering moments left feeling hurt, Silhouette is a vulnerable glimpse into the shared experience of being human. With mellow vocals and relatable lyrics, Jordan hopes listeners can find light in his first release.”

I wrote the base of the song but I also had a couple of guys who helped me produce the track.

Hey Paolo: How can a newbie artist start his/her career here in Adelaide?

It’s important to have local contacts and connections. It’s all about networking. I feel there are more activities and opportunities for artists now. For example, the Fringe is a massive opportunity for us. The Fringe has really helped artists in the arts and creative space.

Hey Paolo: What’s your go-to song at present?

I’ve been listening to a lot of Justin Bieber and The Kid Laroi’s “Stay.” It’s the number one song in the world and I’ve noticed that the length of the song is just 2:20 min/sec. Usually I write songs that are 3:30 min/sec and they always come with bridges. I’ve noticed now that a lot of the new songs are just around the 2:20 min/sec mark with no bridges. But then again, Olivia Rodrigo’s “Driver’s License” is at 4:30 min/sec. I thought I need to try something different in my songs now — they should be either 2:20 min/sec or 4:30 min/sec.

Hey Paolo: Any recommendations for good music spots in Adelaide?

The buskers in Glenelg are usually pretty good. I heard The Lab (63 Light Square, Adelaide) is pretty cool too! Also, the Adelaide UniBar is a good spot.

Connect with Jordan D’Sena via his website jordandsena.com.au, on Facebook, on Instagram, and on Youtube.

Adelaide Fashion: Colleen Stewart of Addison Ash

Adelaide Fashion: Colleen Stewart of Addison Ash

“I couldn’t find anything that I wanted to wear, and so I created my own,” says Colleen Stewart, the creative genius behind the South Australian fashion label Addison Ash. What started as a boutique brand in 2015, Colleen has slowly introduced her craftswomanship to Adelaide and has been building a growing fashion herstory of her own.

Hey Paolo: What is Addison Ash?

Addison Ash is a local fashion label which is made and designed here in Adelaide. The designs are made to be timeless, ethically-made, and are created to complement your body and to make you feel confident.

Hey Paolo: What inspired you to start a career in fashion?

It was by accident… I have been sewing for a long time. I wanted to learn how to make my own patterns and so I went to TAFE in order to learn that. While I was studying and after I left my job as a nurse, I got a job with a local fashion designer and it all started from there.

Hey Paolo: What is Slow Fashion?

Slow fashion is clothing that is timeless and can be passed on to generations. It basically means looking after your clothing and the environment and you can wear your clothes for a longer period of time.

Hey Paolo: Who are the women who wear Addison Ash?

They are driven, strong, and confident. They want a point of difference in their clothings.

Colleen also offers sewing classes and they run weekly on Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays.


MY SEWING CLASS EXPERIENCE:

I recently attended a two-hour sewing session with Colleen one Saturday evening. I came in extremely nervous as I have never learned how to sew before. Will I get bored? Will I be interested in this at all? Will I ever use these skills in the future?

I’m a person who likes trying new things, but this one’s something I never thought I’ll ever do in my life.

Colleen was the most patient in teaching me her tricks. We used various machines, cutting techniques, and stitching methods — all in the span of just two hours. And I completely surprised myself that day. After a few tries here and there, can you believe I eventually made my very own tote bag? Here’s my cheeky “I accomplished something” smile. Thanks Colleen for helping!

Addison Ash. SHOP 38, Regent Arcade, 101 Rundle Mall, Adelaide SA 5000. M: 61 408 832 253. info@addisonash.com.

2020: A Year In Review

CAN’T BELIEVE THIS HAS BEEN SITTING IN MY DRAFTS FOR MONTHS NOW. PUBLISHING IT 10 MONTHS LATE. I’m a couple of days late doing this, but life got in the way. Happy New Year everyone! I hope everyone remains excited and hopeful this new year.

2020 has been uneventful for most people due to the consequences brought about by this pandemic. But looking back, 2020 brought some fantastic personal experiences and memories to me.

JANUARY

FEBRUARY

MARCH

APRIL

MAY

JUNE

JULY

AUGUST

SEPTEMBER

OCTOBER

NOVEMBER

DECEMBER

McLaren Vale’s Newest Gem: Heidrun Estate, Home to Rohan Family Wines

McLaren Vale’s Newest Gem: Heidrun Estate, Home to Rohan Family Wines

A new cellar door, Heidrun Estate, opened its doors in the world-renowned McLaren Vale wine region and it promises to take its patrons to a first-class epicurean journey.

Home to the award-winning Rohan Family wines, Heidrun Estate finally opened its doors last 12 September 2021. With a beautiful cottage-inspired winery cellar, their venue does not only offer wine tastings, but also curated lunches prepared by Chef Billy Petropoulos of Billy’s Table.

Highlight: Sipping a glass of the Rohan Family sauvignon blanc while sitting inside the Heidrun birdcage, enjoying the cool spring breeze and the smell of the fresh lavender garden, and adoring the picturesque vineyard views.

What I enjoyed most about their cellar door is that there’s so much space to move around: you can sit on the swing, on the grass, or in one of the picnic tables.

Chef Billy’s food is amazing as always. I wonder if he’ll be servicing his fantastic pizzas too at Heidrun? The vibrant colours he uses in his food matches the overall vibe of Heidrun Estate: fun, friendly, and homey. I can’t wait to go back and bring my friends!

Their trading hours are as follows: Fridays, Saturdays, and Sundays from 11:00am to 5:00pm. Address: 67 Kays Road McLaren Vale SA 5171.

Meet South Australia’s Leading Online Butcher: Meat At The Mount

Meet South Australia’s Leading Online Butcher: Meat At The Mount

Ten or 15 years ago, ordering fresh meat online was atypical — it wasn’t even a thing back then! But gone are the days when the only option we have is for people to purchase their meat from a physical market. Things have evolved now. We now live in a world where ordering food is, literally, at our fingertips —click and you shall receive!

Here in Australia, an online butcher business has been leading the way in providing innovative and quality products to South Australian families: Meat at the Mount.

With a brand promise of delivering the freshest and highest quality meat and ingredients straight to your doorstep, Meat at the Mount attracts a new exciting South Aussie demographic: the efficient, practical, and time-savvy grocery shoppers.

Sample list of Meat at the Mount products:

What I love about Meat at the Mount is their very dynamic website. They present their products so well, I am enticed to endlessly scroll and just “add to cart” every single item. Well, that’s also me: a compulsive buyer. Hey, I’m attracted to good visuals, okay!

You can place their products side-by-side the same items from your local supermarket and you’ll be surprised that they’re very much comparable in terms of prices too.

Meat at the Mount offers a variety of food items ranging from pork, beef, chicken, lamb, fish & seafood, and sausages. They also offer an impressive array of creative box options such as the Adelady-inspired Box, Best of Meat at the Mount, Homemaker Essential Box, and the Gym Meal Prep Box. Head to their website to get lunch or dinner inspirations via their Recipe and Guide sections.

What’s the best way to enjoy your box? Invite your friends for a BBQ party! Here’s the box I have received from Meat at the Mount.

To learn more about Meat at the Mount, visit their website at: meatatthemount.com.au.

Learning a New Skill at WEA – Adult Learning

Learning a New Skill at WEA – Adult Learning

Growing up, my mum taught me to never stop learning — maybe that’s also part of reason why I approach life with so much gusto! After all, life never stops teaching, so why should we stop learning?

Months back, WEA- Adult Learning South Australia reached out to see if I’ll be keen to enroll in one of their short courses. Although I may be time-poor at times, “discovering and learning new things” is something I ALWAYS HAVE to make room for. In life, opportunities to upskill one’s self don’t necessarily come often, so whenever they come knocking on your doors we gotta catch ’em all.

WEA (wea-sa.com.au/subjects) offers the most extensive options for skill-building. They range from creative arts, food & beverages, health/home/lifestyle, IT/business/training, to languages and culture. They have so many classes to choose from depending on your requirements and interests.

Despite knowing some basic knowledge about Adobe Photoshop, I decided to enrol myself in the five-week Adobe Illustrator course. Graphic design is probably one of the key marketing areas that I need to step up my game in. Found myself learning heaps of new things after attending their face-to-face classes.

DID YOU KNOW: WEA South Australia was founded in Adelaide since 1913? They are also SA’s largest non-government adult community education organisation. They’ve been operating for many years now and have helped thousands of graduates through their classes.

If you wish to look at their most popular course, they are:

  • Potter for Beginners
  • Groom and Trim Your Dog
  • Delicious Dumplings
  • Beekeeping for Beginners
  • Art Sampler
  • French for Fun and Travel
  • Know Your Wine
  • Subdividing Land and Property Development
  • Create a Website with WordPress
  • Millennials and Money

Now’s your time to upskill and learn a new life tricks!

Visit WEA South Australia to learn more about their various class offerings. wea-sa.com.au. T: 08 8223 1979. 223 Angas Street, Adelaide, South Australia 5000.

Mimada: Filipino Pastries in Adelaide

Mimada: Filipino Pastries in Adelaide

What started merely as a hobby during the pandemic for both Mimi and Irma, Mimada has now quickly evolved into a sought-after Filipino pastry brand here in South Australia. And true to its Spanish meaning, Mimada is here to spoil everyone with Filo sweetness and goodness.

Story posted on behalf of Spark Community — empowering Filipino entrepreneurs in Adelaide, South Australia.

Hey Paolo: When did you start your business?

We first started in 2020 during the lockdown. Along with the rest of the world during the pandemic, we got bored at home. We started baking and sharing our goodies to our friends — and to our delight, they loved it! We started posting our treats on social media and the interest grew significantly. All of a sudden, friends of friends, and even strangers, want to try our ensaymadas.

Hey Paolo: What are the products that you currently offer?

We offer: seven varieties of ensaymadas, a cheeseroll, and gourmet bibingkas in three flavours (only available during special occasions).

Hey Paolo: What inspired you to start Mimada?

We are inspired by the wonderful feedback that we get from our amazing customers. This makes us more motivated to create more products and to offer more variety. We are amazed at the lengths our customers would go through, just to satisfy their Mimada cravings!

We have regular and repeat customers who travel all the way from Murray Bridge, Kangaroo Island, Port Lincoln & Victor Harbour, and even from interstate just to order a box of ensaymadas. It’s inspiring to see how a simple lockdown hobby can grow into something that can bring joy and happy tummies to our kababayans and even to non-Filipinos too.

Hey Paolo: What were the challenges you’ve encountered while starting your business?

Primarily, time. When we started Mimada, we both had full-time jobs and we can only bake during our day offs. And as the demand continue to grow, we can only accept limited orders based on what we can physically accommodate.

We are also challenged by resources. As this started just a hobby, we had very limited resources and equipment. Our home oven can only accommodate limited baking pans at a time which restricted our ability to bake as much as we wanted. Creating our ensaymadas from start to finish requires seven-eight hours. We eventually decided it was vital to source additional equipment and tools to increase efficiency. Each Mimada piece is still handcrafted individually as we want to ensure consistency in the quality of our product.

Hey Paolo: What’s one business tip you can share to fellow entrepreneurs here in South Australia?  

Starting a business comes with uncertainty. You need to have a positive mindset that will keep you focused. Build your online presence through social media. Think of it as free marketing (Facebook & Instagram), and later on, decide what’s best for your brand. It is important to build your credibility, reputation and brand, and you can do this by having a presence in social media.

Hey Paolo: What makes Filipino entrepreneurs exceptional in business?

We are extremely hardworking and driven.

Hey Paolo: How can people purchase your products?

We have a multitude of resellers that believe in our products, so you can satisfy your Mimada cravings from anywhere in Adelaide. You can also contact us directly on 0415 355 885 or via Instagram & Facebook messenger to place your orders.

Rosewater Hotel’s Pizza Junkie Specials

Rosewater Hotel’s Pizza Junkie Specials

Celebrate Father’s Day (or any other day, really!) with pizzas at Rosewater Hotel.

Growing up, pizzas have always meant reunions and celebrations with family and friends.

Pizzas are meant to be shared and not eaten alone. It’s meant to be sliced and everyone gets a piece. Agree? Say amen.

Among those that I’ve tried at Rosewater Hotel, my personal fave is the Rosewater Special (Napolitana sauce, fior di latte, prosciutto crudo di parma, fresh buffalo mozzarella, and basil). The sauce was refreshing for such a savoury slice.

Talk about their pizza crust — the garlic pizza entree was already a league of its own! Mmm!

Meet: Chef Damian Vasilevski of Ellenika

Meet: Chef Damian Vasilevski of Ellenika

Delivering an array of luxurious Mediterranean flavours to the stunning Marina Pier, Ellenika serves modern Greek culinary opulence under the helm of a young visionary, Chef Damian Vasilevski.

Hey Paolo: What’s the inspiration behind Ellenika?

Behind everything is my family. This is the kind of food we cook at home; this is what we eat at home. This is the way we speak, the way we laugh, and the way we communicate. Ellenika is a big space and it can accommodate a lot of people. It’s family-oriented.

Photo from Ellenika’s website

Hey Paolo: What’s your culinary journey like?

Back when I was 15 years old, one of my first kitchen jobs was working for an old restaurant here at Marina Pier. I really loved it! But I was still at school at that time.

When I finished school, I took over a 21-square-metre coffee shop in the city which was then closing down. From the day I opened that cafe, all I could ever dream of was to own a bigger restaurant and have a bigger team — and I’ve made it as my personal goal.

After the cafe stint, I’ve moved on and worked for another restaurant at the Marina Pier (which was already then named as Ellenika). I was initially working here as a staff for six months and at that point, the restaurant went up for sale. With my savings and the money I have under my belt, I ended up buying Ellenika.

We work hard for the things that we create here. I still want things to be special in our offerings and it doesn’t matter how big the space is, I still want a family-oriented service. I want to walk into a restaurant that I own and I know the people dining; I want to be able to talk to them.

Hey Paolo: Are you more a chef or an entrepreneur?

I used to work in this kitchen at Ellenika. I eventually came out of the kitchen to run a restaurant; but I also bought the restaurant to run a kitchen. From a person who started in the kitchen, I think everything should begin in the kitchen.

Being a restauranteur is a hard task. I started running Ellenika when I was 21 — who would want to listen to a 21-year-old? As I wanted to be a restaurant owner, I know I have to be hands-on with everything.

Hey Paolo: What are your greatest learnings?

I think of my restaurant as my little world. At the end of the day, people will follow the example that you lead. If you don’t take things seriously, people won’t also take things seriously. If you are not passionate enough, people around you won’t be passionate too.

If you love this industry, you will eventually find the people who feel the same way — and I have those people now in my team. It took a bit of time, but I have all of them now.

There aren’t many second chances in life. You achieve what you want to achieve. I knew I wanted to be a chef. I knew I wanted to cook. I wanted to make people happy.

Hey Paolo: What’s your favourite dish on the menu?

It’ll be the Katsiki Sto Fourno (16-hour slow roasted goat) served with potato garlic puree. I love goats and I find these animals very interesting. For one, a goat constantly travels the farthest compared to other animals (such as a pig) to just find the source of its food, such as a plant to eat.

Hey Paolo: What’s your cooking style?

I respect traditions and flavours. But you also need to put your own twist on everything.

Hey Paolo: What’s the future of Ellenika?

Ellenika is now on its 4th year. It has been a staple not just in Glenelg but in South Australia.

Ellenika will stay Ellenika. I’m hoping that in the next three or five years, I can further push Ellenika to be in the fine dining space.

Hey Paolo: Who is Damian outside Ellenika?

I love my family. I’m a family man. I love spending time with my parents, my friends, and my brother. My brother and I are very close. Damian outside Ellenika is all about the family.

I like fitness too and spending time with my dog. If I’m not at Ellenika, it’s nice to just relax.

Whenever I finish work way too late, there’s only one place I go to: the Kidman Pizza House. With a movie, my airpods on, and an order of a large pizza, I just sit at one corner of the pizza place. Sometimes you just need some alone time.

Ellenika Ocean Grill. Marina Pier Lights Landing Holdfast Shores, Shop 6/3 Chappell Drive, Glenelg SA 5045

Mr Chu Brings Southeast Asia to South Australia

Mr Chu Brings Southeast Asia to South Australia

Discovering a Southeast Asian food haven in the posh and urban district of Norwood is almost like finding a golden pot at the end of a rainbow. Mr Chu is that eureka moment: yes, I’m having Southeast Asia in South Australia!

Having lived in Singapore for over a decade before migrating to Adelaide, I have had an amazing foodie experience of gaining easy access to an array of quality yet affordable Asian food. With neighbouring countries such as Malaysia, you get to taste the same dish in a different country, but cooked with a slightly different twist. Same-same but different.

Those days in Singapore, you just have to step out of your home, and within a hundred steps or less, an entire new world awaits you: a Disneyland-esque, culinary melting pot called hawker centres. Mind you, this is your gateway to laksas, mie gorengs, xiaolongbaos, briyanis, and every other good Asian food you can probably think of at less than 10 bucks per order.

Back here in Adelaide, I have always been hungry for Southeast Asia (deliberately using the word “Southeast Asia” as I miss the whole concept of being in and experiencing that region in general). That particular week, when I got invited by Mercy Me Marketing to attend Mr Chu’s launch of their winter menu, was no exception. It was a perfect timing to relinquish my nostalgia — and apparently, the best way to solve my personal issues: feed me, baby!

Owned and managed by Malaysian-born Chef Daniel Chu and business partners, Mr Chu serves a range of Southeast Asian fusion dishes primarily catered to the South Australian audience. Their menu boasts something for everyone: a breakfast menu with quintessential Aussie favourites such as the Bacon Benedict, a vegan offering such as the Chef’s Vegan Laksa, and a range of drinks perfect for any Asian food pairing.

With a big focus on Chef Daniel’s Malaysian heritage in the dishes, one may argue: are they serving something authentic? The answer is probably no, which I’m assuming they will confirm too. Mr Chu delivers more on the sweet side and a fun Aussie take on generally savoury Asian dishes.

But in this day and age, what is authentic heritage food anyway? Isn’t food supposed to evolve according to the wants and needs of the audience? I’m with Mr Chu and their fusion food. It’s hip, modern, and comforting.

My personal favourites were the stir fried chicken, seared scallops, and salmon sashimi. Majority in our table loved Mr Chu’s version of the rendang. Although it was indeed good, I’m personally much more critical with my rendangs as they’re my ultimate favourite. I judge the rendang based on the colour, curry & coconut aroma, and the tenderness of the meat. Just a big fan of rendangs, I get too critical at times — I suppose the same way Italians treat their pastas?

While in the middle of the table service, I whispered and shyly asked one of Mr Chu’s service team: “by any chance, do you have any teh (pulled tea)? ” When he said he’s happy to serve a few cups on the table, I squealed with delight. I haven’t had one for ages! Drinking traditional coffee and tea in Singapore/Malaysia after main meals is something quite typical. It was almost like our hobby.

Special thanks to Mr Chu and Mercy Me Marketing for the invitation. Will I come back? YES. Will I recommend Mr Chu to my friends? YAAAS!

Mr Chu Contemporary Eatery, 220 The Parade, Norwood SA 5067.