Twenty 8 Delights – Good Food Gold Coast

Twenty 8 Delights is a fledgling Gold Coast cake baking business that emerged from Covid lockdown.

Sisters Sheryl and Iris Lim both have professional careers, but for Sheryl baking is her ‘happy place’.

Sheryl is an extremely talented self-trained baker who has perfected her craft by learning from the internet and recipe books, improving her skills baking for friends during Covid.

From delicious custard-filled choux buns to passionfruit meringue tarts, hazelnut domes to raspberry macarons, and white chocolate blondies to Oreo cheese cupcakes, Sheryl produces a unique range of large and small cakes, tarts and slices.

Twenty 8 Delight’s pièce de resistance is the full size Entremet cake. The pinnacle of French cake baking technique, an entremet is distinguished by its many different layers of cake, mousse and pastry cream with a mirror glaze. It’s sensational.

“Our goal is to share the delicious cakes that Sheryl makes with the Gold Coast,” Iris says. “Sheryl’s cakes are packed with flavour and too good for us to keep to ourselves.”

With a price point below that of many retail cake shops, you can order Twenty 8 Delights goodies online and arrange pickup at Varsity Lakes or delivery to your home or workplace.

Twenty 8 Delights, 253 Varsity Parade, Varsity Lakes, Queensland 4227 Email: [email protected]

NOTE: Products were gifted to Good Food Gold Coast.

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Biden-Johnson call: The ‘special relationship’ is off to a good start | US News

The state of the special relationship between Britain and America under a Biden presidency has been the focus of intense speculation.

Joe Biden and Boris Johnson are not political bedfellows. Mr Biden has referred to Mr Johnson as the physical and emotional clone of Donald Trump and is no fan of Brexit.

But Saturday’s phone call and its timing will be encouraging news for Downing Street.

Boris Johnson spoke with Joe Biden on Saturday. Pic: Andrew Parsons/ No 10 Downing Street

President Biden did contact Mexico’s President Andrés Manuel López Obrador and Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on Friday and only got round to Mr Johnson the following evening but American presidents always contact their immediate neighbours first.

The fact the prime minister is the first world leader outside of North America to be called by President Biden suggests the so-called special relationship is in better shape than some had feared.

Joe Biden was sworn in as president earlier this month

It was a wide-ranging call and focussed on what the two leaders can agree on, primarily tackling COVID-19 and climate change. Both leaders have made it clear they regard the two crises of paramount importance.

In a statement after the call, the White House said: “The president conveyed his intention to strengthen the special relationship between our countries and revitalise transatlantic ties, underscoring the critical role of NATO to our collective defence and shared values.”

And it stressed the need for co-operation on shared challenges including “combatting climate change, containing COVID-19 and ensuring global health security”.

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Transatlantic relationship ‘can be repaired’

Notably absent from the White House readout was any mention of discussion of a free trade deal.

A Downing Street spokesman put the emphasis on COVID-19, saying the leaders “noted the significant challenges facing the world during the pandemic, but also the unparalleled opportunities to build back better and greener together”.

“The prime minister warmly welcomed the president’s decision to re-join the Paris Agreement on climate change, as well as the World Health Organisation and the COVAX programme to ensure equitable access for vaccines.”

Security, defence, human rights and protecting democracy were also discussed, we are told.

In contrast with the White House readout, Downing Street says the two men talked about “the benefits of a potential free trade deal between our two countries, and the prime minister reiterated his intention to resolve existing trade deals as soon as possible”.

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Mr Johnson is hoping for a free trade deal in the wake of Brexit – something he had pursued with president Donald Trump. Both White House press secretary Jen Psaki and Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen have in the last week poured cold water on hopes for a free trade deal, saying the administration would be too busy dealing with COVID-19 to make it a priority.

Fears of tensions in the special relationship may have been exaggerated, however.

Those who know President Biden well say he is not a vindictive man and is keen to start afresh with allies at the outset of his administration. Mr Johnson may have more to worry about with the people around Mr Biden who resent his description of president Barack Obama as part-Kenyan in a newspaper article.

The omens from this call are good. The two leaders have decided to focus on what they can agree on. The world is in too parlous a state to let minor differences get in the way. The two men can continue developing their own special relationship when they meet at the G7 summit in June.

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Crafted Coffee Co. – Good Food Gold Coast

‘How do you take your coffee?’

It’s a simple enough question, but one which consumes the Gold Coast, where coffee is recognised for its role in social engagement, leisure, enhancement of work performance and well-being.

Everyone, it seems, has their own preferred style of coffee.

From cappuccinos and short blacks to pour over, vacuum, drip filter and cold brew, coffee is the specialty in this cafe in The Kitchens.

“Crafted Coffee Co. runs on two levels, showing off the diversity and versatility of coffee, just like wine,” Svetlana Bitzios tells us, explaining how an upstairs area provides flow on from downstairs.

Owned and operated by two couples, Gary and Sara Clasen, Adrian Bitzios and his wife Svetlana, who run the roastery, eatery and retail shop between them, each owner with a different role.

With a background in coffee and as a barista, Gary is Head Roaster, sourcing coffee from six different countries and roasting in the PROBAT every Wednesday in the upstairs roastery. It’s this ‘coffee power’ that inspires the whole operation.

There’s also some symbiotic trade taking place with Crafted Coffee Co. supplying coffee to several venues in The Kitchens, Mark Daniels Patisserie supplying bread and macarons for Crafted Coffee Co. in return.

The day starts early in the downstairs kitchen where all the dishes are freshly made to order on site, the eggs free-range.  There’s the flexibility to experiment and change the seasonal café-style menu, also catering for vegan, vegetarian, gluten and dairy free diners with options clearly marked on the menu.

The all-day breakfast carries many favourites, such as Avo smash, the signature Pulled pork bene, the Vego’s dream or sweet favourites such as French toast or Ricotta pancakes served with maple or espresso syrup. The Brekkie menu also includes brunch and lunch favourites of bowls, burgers, sandwiches and salads, as well as a range of light meals.

Maintaining coffee as the hero, there’s a choice of two blends: The Kitchens (a mellow caramel) and their Signature, with dark, chocolate fruity notes or of course a cold brew that’s been bottled on site and espresso martinis upstairs.

A range of sweet treats made fresh daily also feature Crafted Coffee Co’s signature blend as a key ingredient. From tiramisu or mocha macarons to vegan raw cakes, there’s a treat to pair with a Crafted coffee.

Spanning most of the hours that The Kitchens are open, Crafted Coffee Co. takes us on a food journey inspired by coffee. If you need a bit more buzz in your day, it’s well worth stopping in.

The Kitchens, Robina Town Centre, Robina Town Centre Drive, Robina Ph: 07 5562 5626

Open: Fri – Wed 7am – 5.30pm (Sun, Mon close 5pm), Thurs 7am – 7pm

Crafted Coffee Co & Espresso Bar Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato









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Mentoring matters: what makes a good one

I returned, by unbelievable timing, to Melbourne from Florida USA in January of 2020 ,just in the nick of time pre-COVID. I spent 2018 and 2019 as a mentor with the national association of business mentors, called SCORE. This US National Association of Business Mentors, primarily of volunteer business experts, provided expert advice as mentors to small businesses seeking advice and direction to grow their start up or struggling established businesses.

Mentoring here in Australia has been available in private and public sectors in recent years with recognized importance. It is more important now, and is critical for growth planning, and advice to entrepreneurial business thinkers particularly needing pragmatic and unbiased ethical assistance. Regrowing our economy will come from new start-up businesses and young growing firms.

Businesses that may be in a phase of growth, not clearly knowing what’s best to get them to and achieve next phase will search for mentor sources. The benefits of engaging a mentor are myriad, from both the individual and company points of view. Unfortunately, since COVID-19 hit the business world, and resulted in many levels of employee redundancies, or job losses, or evening forcing early retirement for some, there has been an unexpected number of professionals move into the consulting, coaching and mentoring sector, with many of these people quite innocently proclaiming to be much more competent and business experienced than their reality acknowledges.

It is important to realise that mentoring is not a magic wand that automatically creates achievement or business success. A good mentor needs to be more than just a successful individual who has done well in each of the positions they held, in one or more companies in their careers, or the promotions they received. A “best practice” mentor must have personality qualities and the right disposition to develop people and planning with the disposition and desire to develop long-term relationships.  Upon competent referrals and testimonials from sound sources,

Mentors should have: 

  1. Current and relevant industry or organisational knowledge, expertise and or proven skills in practical terms not in conceptual awareness.
  2. The ability and availability to commit real time and commitment energy to the mentoring relationship; it takes time beyond good intentions.
  3. A pragmatic approach to share strengths experienced and developed, as well as to communicate how they experienced failures along the way, which both sides deliver value.
  4. A growth mindset will be open to learning. Business management would prefer to engage and be advised by professionals whose minds are open because they always look to deepen their knowledge.
  5. Fully conscious skill in helping others develop themselves. Included in this area should be very real skills such as active listening, asking powerful, open-ended questions, self-reflection, providing feedback and being able to share experiences including personal anecdotes, case examples and honest insights.

A mentoring relationship must be managed and nurtured. Since it is a joint venture, both parties must be actively involved and attend to its development of achievement. Each party must respect confidentiality, have laser like focus, accept constructive feedback, and have mutually set goals for accountability. These qualities, skills and relevant experiences will define what can be expected from the best mentor.

Jay Johnson, Director, Pelorus International

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My therapy is going good but.. : mentalhealth

I had today off since my therapist was on leave and I need sessions everyday to improve. But I was fine with one day gaps in between, but today I’ve got a overwhelming surge of not going to therapy tomorrow and just being alone.. I do not know why. I haven’t spoken to anyone except my family for over a week or gone on social media. I just feel like a loner and never leaving my bed.

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Kilometre Zero – Good Food Gold Coast

When it comes to running a food business, the ‘frontman’ counts. It’s essential to have a dynamic personality that people gravitate to, a natural charm that entices us off our seats.

Fortunately, Benita Salvatore, the proprietor of Kilometre Zero cooking classes, has personality in bucketloads.

“Ciao e Benvenuti!” Benita greets fellow foodies enthusiastically as they arrive. “Hello and welcome!”

Benita herself has arrived earlier, tool kits in tow to arrange her work area ready to take an Italian cooking class in our home. As host, all I had to do was arrange the dining table and drinks for guests. Simple!

A first-generation Australian, Benita spent her childhood at her mother and grandmother’s apron strings, listening and watching as they cooked recipes handed down through generations. Later the family enjoying the food they’d prepared as it was eaten around the communal table. It was inevitable that, as a young mum herself, Benita would turn out to be a great cook.

There’s nothing quite like Italian food to make you feel like part of a group. It’s like a great big hug. Eat Italian with friends, it’s said, and you’ll stay friends for a long time.

It’s that passion that Benita is keen to share with Gold Coast foodies, her face beaming even as she carries all the equipment and ingredients into our home to hold the class.

There are several options for classes ranging from two to three courses, menus originating in three different regions of Italy: Umbria, Lazio and Abruzzo, with prices per head outlined on the Kilometre Zero website, as well as dietary adaptions available on request.

Together with a bunch of five other foodies, we’re learning the tips and tricks for cooking up an Italian feast from Umbria, including making our own pasta at home, learning how simple it is to make bruschetta (with a little trick), cooking Napoli sauce to a family recipe, and tiramisu to a recipe from the other side of Benita’s family.

It’s always the asides that make a class for me, the little tips that I haven’t known, the shortcuts or substitutions that make a dish a cut above the rest. Over three and a half hours In Benita’s class, I learn how to improve the texture of my Napoli sauce, presentation tricks for tiramisu and the pasta-making equipment that could change my life!

Following the class, Benita emails us all the recipes for the dishes we made in class, her own family classics that will soon become our own home favourites.

Passionate about her heritage, Benita leads a class full of culinary tips and family stories. Several times she tells a joke and even breaks out into song as she cooks.

Using recipes simple enough to cook easily at home, this class is a total pleasure mostly because of our teacher. Benita’s enthusiasm for making fresh, simple, delicious Italian food makes us fall in love with Italy all over again…and we don’t even have to leave home to visit.

NOTE: Class details can be found on the Kilometre Zero website.

Good Food Gold Coast dined as a guest of Kilometre Zero.

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Do teacher shortages make education a good career option?


Earlier this week, the NSW Teachers Federation revealed that schools in regional NSW are scrambling to find staff, with some principals now turning to social media to fill positions.

One principal took to Twitter to invite “anyone who wants to have a crack at teaching science and is an enthusiastic and competent teacher” to apply.

The federal government has reduced the fees for teaching degrees by about a half in a bid to attract more students into the field.

But do the shortages and cheaper fees make this a career worth considering?

While many teachers find the profession has a noble purpose in helping shape and improve children’s lives, the path to a permanent job and future career progression can be less clear.

Studies have found teachers are drowning in paper work and face stunted opportunities for career development and progression.

For new graduates like Ms Price, the early career opportunity to work in a rural or remote area can unexpectedly turn into an enjoyable lifestyle choice.

“Never in my wildest dreams did I think I would move to a rural area. I always thought I’d be living in Sydney or overseas,” she said.

“Moving to Wagga Wagga to teach here [at Holy Trinity Primary School in Ashmont] was the best decision I ever made, seeing the difference I can make in so many children’s lives.”


Origin Energy said the program aims to help schools in low socio-economic communities.

“High achieving teacher graduates are almost twice as likely to be employed in affluent state or independent schools rather than disadvantaged schools that need them most,” Sean Barrett, head of the Origin Energy Foundation said.

Professor Claire Wyatt-Smith, director of the Institute for Learning Sciences and Teacher Education at the Australian Catholic University, said there was a lack of adequate workforce planning data collected in Australia to help identify and properly plan ahead for future teacher shortages, including those currently being experienced in maths and science.

“What we need is a systematic approach to looking at who is coming in, who are the candidates attracted to teaching, what are the areas of shortage we can project and what is our response … rather than just saying put your hand up and get the ATAR,” she said.

“We need dependable data to inform workforce planning and identify projections of oversupply and shortages, especially with population changes.

“Most countries have workforce planning for teaching. Australia has ‘this is what you need to get into teaching’ and then we wait for shortfalls and supply issues.”

Professor Wyatt-Smith said the reasons for teacher shortages were complex and included working conditions, the status of the profession and its failure to retain many teachers beyond their first five years.

“Some of the teaching profession actually discourage the best and the brightest from going into teaching,” she said. “In the Republic of Ireland, teachers are highly regarded. In Australia you have seen overt criticism of teaching as a career of choice.”

The type and severity of teacher shortages varies across different parts of the state and around the country.

“The picture of shortages is a complex tapestry of geography, discipline area and phases of schooling,” she said.

“It is time for Australia to get smart about workforce planning, workforce studies in teacher education.”

NSW Teachers Federation president Angelo Gavrielatos describes teaching as “one of the noblest of all professions”.

“That said we have some serious challenges ahead of us as a result of system failures that have exposed the system to some risk. There is no greater risk than a looming teacher shortage as a result of those system failures,” he said.

“We are now seeing a system where teachers are seriously overworked, underpaid and undervalued.”

A spokeswoman for the NSW Department of Education said teacher supply is always fluctuating and would “continue to be a challenge in an education system as large as NSW’s”.

“Everything from sudden changes to school enrolment, professional development, illness, the economy and graduate availability play into the staffing needs of schools,” she said.

“Over the next ten years we will be implementing a staffing supply strategy that will help mitigate these factors.”

The department said it has a range of initiatives to to fill teacher shortages including through its website, social media, scholarships and sponsored training.

The Teach.MathsNOW scholarship covers $50,000 in course fees and provides a $5000 one-off training allowance, part-time employment as a para professional during the final three semesters of study, a $5000 study completion grant and a permanent teaching position as a maths teacher.

The department employs more than 74,000 teachers in NSW public schools, with 1250 permanent permanent positions currently vacant.

The Australian government said it provides $28.7 million to address shortages of high-quality school leaders and specialist teachers working at disadvantaged schools.

The federal Department of Education said understanding and addressing the issues that affect teacher supply and demand was essential to retaining teachers and school leaders.

“At the national level, the government is committed to the development and implementation of the Australian Teacher Workforce Data (ATWD) collection,” a spokeswoman said.

The data would track teacher education and the experience of teachers in the workforce to provide a better understanding of supply issues. The department said it expects the data initiative would be implemented by the end of this year.

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Dr Dre ‘safe and looking good’ after hospital stay, says Ice T | Ents & Arts News

Rapper and producer Dr Dre has returned home after a stay in hospital with a reported brain aneurysm.

Dr Dre’s friend and fellow hip-hop star Ice T said he was home from hospital and “looking good”.

He tweeted: “Update: Just FaceTimed with @drdre He just made it home. Safe and looking good.”

Dr Dre, 55, was taken to the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles earlier this month but has since told fans that he was “doing great” and receiving “excellent” care.

Dr Dre, whose real name is Andre Young, has produced hits for Tupac, Snoop Dogg and more, and won seven Grammys.

Born in Compton, he broke out on the music scene as a co-founding member of NWA, producing some of the group’s groundbreaking 1988 debut album, Straight Outta Compton.

He launched a successful solo career with 1992 album The Chronic, became a renowned record producer and was instrumental in the careers of fellow rappers Eminem and 50 Cent.

But it was his relationship with record executive Jimmy Iovine – documented in HBO series The Defiant Ones – and the launch of their Beats headphone range that secured his position as one of the wealthiest names in music.

Beats was purchased by Apple in 2014 in a deal worth $3bn (£1.94bn).

Dr Dre has been locked in a bitter divorce battle since the summer.

His estranged wife Nicole Young is asking for half of the rapper’s estimated $1bn (£730m) fortune. The pair have three children.

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A Great Guide to Good Drinks For Dry January

There is no need to stop drinking even if you are doing dry January—or if you are living a dry lifestyle.  Good Drinks by Julia Bainbridge is your guide to “Alcohol-Free Recipes for When You’re Not Drinking for Whatever Reason” as the subtitle informs.  

I gave a copy of this book to a friend for Christmas.  He drinks both alcoholic and non-alcoholic cocktails but when he is in one of his no-alcohol phases, he still wants a celebratory libation to enjoy along with everyone else who is imbibing.  The drinks in this book are a welcome change from the often underwhelming non-alcoholic beverages that he usually buys.

Bainbridge is a food writer who decided to stop consuming alcohol but not to stop drinking. Good Drinks is the delicious result of a cross-country road trip in pursuit of the best non-alcoholic craft cocktails that she could find.  This refreshing book is a collection of the answers that she received from bartenders when she asked them, “Can you make an outstanding non-alcoholic drink?”  

The drinks that are featured in the book are the ones that she couldn’t stop thinking about.  After she stopped at a bar or restaurant and tasted the drink, she would drive in quiet and mull over them. If the thought of the drink still lingered days later, she knew it was a keeper and would be included in the book.  It is important to note that all of the cocktails and drinks in the book are worth making, and worth drinking no matter where you stand on the alcohol spectrum.  

After her trip, Julia re-created the recipes in her own kitchen.  Kitchen is the operative word, because many of the drinks involve cooking to make the components of the cocktails.  Remember without the spirits, liqueurs, wine and beer typically mixed to make drinks, you will need to create a substitute liquid with similar flavors and depth using raw ingredients found in your pantry and beyond. 

For example, to make Rob Brouse’s Pimm’s Crown from Acadia in Chicago, you will need to make the “Pimm’s” from scratch with citrus, two kinds of tea, juniper berries, orange bitters and gentian root among other common ingredients.  I had never heard of gentian root before I read this recipe, but I learned that it is used in some bitters recipes, gives the bitter aftertaste to New England’s Moxie soft drink as well as alcoholic aperitifs and digestifs.  So, without even making Brouse’s “Pimm’s,” I understand why it is included. 

This recipe would take advance notice for most people to make as I don’t know anyone who has gentian root in their spice cabinet, but it is very intriguing and Bainbridge recognizes this and provides the reader with a source to buy the gentian root.  She acknowledges that there is a commitment level to making these drinks and defines four levels with one being the easiest.  Pimm’s Crown is a level 4 out of 4. For someone who cooks, it is not that difficult to make, but sourcing the gentian root categorizes it as a 4, a.k.a. weekend project.   

There are many level 1 drink recipes in the book including my favorite pictured above, The NYC Special from Lainey Collum.  The base of The NYC Special is an easy-to-make coffee syrup spiced with cinnamon stick and star anise. The syrup is layered with sweetened condensed milk and topped with Coca-Cola—I used Mexican Coke—to create a fizzy, peppy version of Vietnamese-style iced coffee.  Luckily, I don’t have to wait until it’s 5:00 p.m. to drink it—it’s the afternoon coffee-break beverage that I’ve been searching for my whole life.  Good Drinks is available where ever books are sold.

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Sydney Sixers too good for Sydney Thunder in BBL derby

“He’s honestly like a coach,” he said. “He’s come into our environment and he loves being here, he loves all us boys and he loves his two little spin brothers in [Ben] Manenti and [Lloyd] Pope … I think that perspective allows him to be super relaxed out there.

“He just keeps doing the job for us.”

Stephen O’Keefe celebrates the wicket of Sam Billings.Credit:Getty

The match began with a shaky fumble from the boys in magenta. A misfield by wicketkeeper Philippe handed the Thunder five wides to start the day and left many questioning whether the Sixers were nervous.

Manuka Oval has been the closest thing to a home ground for the Sydney sides this season due to COVID-19 rescheduling. The Thunder had played five games at the venue this season before Wednesday, winning four of them.

But even at their temporary fortress, the Thunder couldn’t capitalise on the Sixers’ early nerves.

Opening batsman Usman Khawaja, who has been unshakable in partnership with Alex Hales in recent weeks, was dismissed for two by Jackson Bird. The departure had every Sixer on the field grinning from ear to ear.

Josh Philippe taking on the Sydney Thunder bowlers at Manuka Oval.

Josh Philippe taking on the Sydney Thunder bowlers at Manuka Oval.Credit:Getty

The wickets continued to fall.

Captain Callum Ferguson had departed for just three when O’Keefe stepped up to the crease. He took no prisoners.

First, he sent Sam Billings to the sheds for 15 and then took the crucial wicket of Hales (54) just before the 10-over break. O’Keefe struck again to dismiss Alex Ross (3), eventually finishing with figures of 3-15.

Ben Cutting went for eight to leave the Thunder wobbling. After missing the Thunder’s last two games due to concussion protocols, Daniel Sams proved their saving grace. Hitting four off the final ball to finish on 50 not out, Sams gave the Sixers a respectable target of 167.

With a rain delay during the break, the chase was reset – and the Thunder refused to go down without a fight.


Justin Avendano was sent for 17, and then a slow ball from Cutting dismissed James Vince for seven. Young star Tanveer Sangha showed the depth of his potential again, dismissing skipper Daniel Hughes for seven at a crucial point in the match.

Despite multiple lifelines, Jordan Silk managed only 13 – putting huge pressure on Philippe to see it through.

There was a last-minute scare for the Sixers when the youngster was bowled in the second-last over, but the damage had already been done.

Carlos Brathwaite finished the job, hitting a boundary with eight balls to go.

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