Extras | Tip Top Tours Pty. Ltd.

Extras

Fun interviews and proud publications!

Publication Features

Winner of the Authentic Tour Operators award in the 2016 Luxury Travel Awards! View our feature here!

Blog Features

Featured on Broadsheet writer and photographer, Martin Eade's blog - Morsels! Click here to see Martin's fantastic review!

Featured on The Adventures of Buttercase Blog! Click here to see our feature on the top 10 things to do in Melbourne.

Featured on meetoo's blog! Thanks to Kate for coming on our tour! Click here to read.

Ten Questions with Tip Top Tours

We've held interviews with some of Melbourne's most exclusive restaurant and cafe owners. View our collection of Ten Questions with Tip Top Tours interviews below!

Interview with Ganache owner and Master Chocolatier, Arno Backes - Ganache offers the finest chocolates Melbourne has to offer. Having 2 stores located in South Yarra and in Collins St, Arno and his team have won numerous accolades including a gold medal at the
Royal Melbourne Fine Food awards. Read our interview with Arno below by clicking here!

  1. What is your favorite chocolate and why?
    I've made over 450 different types of chocolate, and it's the one that I can't get quite right, the one that challenges me that is my favorite. It's called the Figaro. It's a hazelnut praline with shaven roasted almonds, diced pistachios and amarena cherries from Northern Italy.
  2. What inspired you to become a Master Chocolatier?
    To put it simply, the creativity of the pastry kitchen.
  3. What is the most unique or interesting chocolate you've ever made?
    It's an ever-changing industry and I always face different challenges. My highlight would include making honey and almond chocolates for the Royal Family. And making a blue cheese truffle, that was also very unique.
  4. What are some exciting things you've been doing in the past couple months?
    The team and I at Ganache are working on an exciting new Christmas range. We've also discovered new edible flowers that we can use in our products and are creating new desserts for our customers. We're also offering mulled wine, inspired by one of my apprentices.
  5. Tell us an interesting fact about chocolate.
    The English native world considers chocolate as 'junk food'. However, high quality chocolate is good for you. It's a superfood. It's full of antioxidants. I eat 1kg of chocolate a week and I'm healthy!
  6. What do you do in your spare time?
    I love to ride motorcycles. I travelled around the world on a motorcycle while chocolate exploring. I have undertaken 2 long trips, each over a year. In between trips, I was the head chef of a prestige patisserie that started in 1535 40km north of Munich and I was also part of the team that holds the world record for the longest chocolate ever made at 375 meters.
  7. Where's your favorite place to travel in the world?
    Argentina and Bolivia. These places bring back the fondest memories. I was exploring the origins of chocolate, tasting the differences, understanding how to harvest it, exploring different looks, smells and tastes. It was amazing. Panama was also great.
  8. If you could have dinner with one celebrity who would it be?
    Nigela Lawson. She is very natural and very pure. I enjoy the way she presents and admire her strength for bouncing back after what she went through 2 years ago.
  9. What's one restaurant you like eating out at?
    A La Bouffe just down the road. Classic French food.
  10. Describe this interview in one word.
    Great.
  11. ***If you were to go on Australia's Got Talent, what would be your talent and why? And it can't be chocolate related.
    I'd fix things. I'm proactive. I repair things rather than throw them out. I restore vintage motorcycles.
Interview with SOS Cafe owner, Electra Tomasino - SOS Cafe is located in the iconic South Yarra Square and has a menu focused on infusing the best organic, local and nourishing produce available. SOS Cafe is literally saving souls! Click here to read our interview!

  1. What's your favorite dish at SOS cafe and why?
    Definitely the primal plate. It's such a healthy breakfast but it doesn't taste like it's meant to be healthy. It contains jap roasted pumpkin, mushroom, red wine, smashed avocado, poached organic eggs and house made harissa dressing. Nothing is processed and it's all good things on a plate - The kind of thing you would want to make at home.!
  2. Why did you decide to open a cafe?
    I don't have a background in hospitality but I'm very passionate about making health accessible to everyone and making it convenient and affordable. SOS cafe is an extension to my cafe experience and to me, it's all about the purpose behind the cafe rather than the business. It's the desire to make people feel healthy.
  3. What do you love most about the culture at SOS cafe?
    I love the laid-back feel we provide. We have white marble brass inside, a stunning dining area outside and all of this provides a very calm feel. We want food to be the focus, so given the interior is black and white our food is naturally vibrant and bright - Just the right balance.
  4. Where do you see yourself in 10 years?
    This is the hardest question ever! I'm honestly not sure. Life is very fluid. I like to keep my opportunities open. Life always changes so all I know is that I would like to be an advocate for health and well being.
  5. Tell us an interesting fact about your one of your dishes/or coffee?
    Our tiramisu pancakes... You can say this was a labor of love. It took 3 months with Chef Dan to refine the recipe! Balancing the various flours to ensure the best consistency was such a difficult task. But we got there! They're completely gluten and dairy free and taste delicious.
  6. What do you do in your spare time?
    I work out, I do yoga and I'm addicted to watching Power on Netflix. And how could I forget, I love eating out at cafe's and restaurants.
  7. Where's your favorite place to travel in the world?
    Byron Bay. I love the sun, the surf, healthy food and the markets. I try get there once a year!
  8. If you could have dinner with one celebrity who would it be?
    Arianna Huffington. She is super inspiring.
  9. What's one restaurant you like eating out at?
    It's a tie. I love Asian and Mexican so my answers have to be Chin Chin and Radio Mexico.
  10. Describe this interview in one word.
    Fun!
  11. Bonus Question: If you went on Australia's got talent and had to perform, what would be your talent?
    I'd make people smoothies!
Interview with Fig & Walnut cafe owner, Vera Xanthis - Fig & Walnut is an absolute gem by the tracks of Seddon. With an amazing Mediterranean influenced menu and some of the best coffee you'll taste, we interview Vera to get an insight into the wonders behind Fig and Walnut! Click here to read our interview!

  1. What was the inspiration behind opening a cafe?
    It was all about giving back to the community.
  2. Why did you call it Fig and Walnut?
    Our landlord is an old Italian man who was in World War 2. When he was younger, he used to work for a wealthy family. He always wanted to get a fig off the tree but was never allowed. He then promised himself when he was older that he would plant fig trees wherever he would go. In our backyard at Fig and Walnut, he planted four fig trees, 2 walnut trees and an almond tree. We used him as inspiration and that's how we came up with the name Fig and Walnut.
  3. What's your favorite dish on the menu?
    Crushed avocado with pomegranate syrup and Meredith's goat cheese. I love avocado.
  4. What are you growing in the vegie patches out the back? And what gave you the idea to do that?
    We wanted to give the area a homely feeling. We're growing some beetroot, celery, herbs and mint and plan to use it in our dishes this spring!
  5. Tell us about your background before you opened the cafe?
    I used to be in Sales at Westpac. I also used to be in side catering and more recently, my family own Alfa Bakehouse in Seddon and Yarraville.
  6. If you could have dinner with one celebrity who would it be and why?
    Robert De Niro. He's intelligent, good-looking and a great conversationalist.
  7. What do you do when you're not working?
    I love socialising. I also have a 6-year-old daughter that I need to entertain.
  8. What's one restaurant you like eating out at and why?
    Rosetta. Great food!
  9. If you could live in one country or city in the world, where would it be and why?
    Paris. I love the food, the culture, the aesthetics and the history.
  10. Describe this interview in one word
    Fun.
  11. Bonus Question: Do you have any hidden talents?
    I have a double-jointed thumb! Does that count? I also love cooking. My favorite dish to cook is a mixed paella.