About Me
I'm a Melbourne boy, hailing from St Kilda with one ex, one current wife and four kids. Love the outdoors and making new discoveries. I cook a lot at home (cheers from wife) and do some preserving, mostly jams, pickles and fruit liqueurs. This is the diary of a cooking journey.

My Complete Profile

Recent Posts
Fraught Friday
Second Time Around
I'm Back
Bloody Computers!
Feeling Crabby
The Cheese Shop
Photo Op
Pumpkin Soup
The Claw
Herb Me Up Scotty

1001 Dinners 1001 Nights
A Few of My Favourite Things
Abstract Gourmet
Apellation Australia
Becks and Posh
BurgerMary ATX
Cook (almost) Anything at least once
Cooking Down Under
Cook sister!
Cooked And Bottled In Brunswick
David Lebovitz
Deep Dish Dreams
Chef Paz
Chubby Hubby
Eating Melbourne
Eating With Jack
essjay eats
Food Lover's Journey
Grab Your Fork
I Am Obsessed With Food
I Eat Therefore I Am
Iron Chef Shellie
Just Desserts
Kalyn's Kitchen
Kitchen Wench
Matt Bites
Melbourne Gastronome
My Kitchen in Half Cups
Nola Cuisine
Not Quite Nigella
Nourish Me
Seriously Good
Souvlaki For The Soul
Stone Soup
Syrup and Tang
Steve Don't Eat It!
That Jess Ho
The Elegant Sufficiency
The Perfect Pantry
The View From My Porch
Thyme for Cooking
Tumeric & Saffron
tummy rumbles
What I Cooked Last Night
where's the beef
Vicious Ange

Food Blog Resources
Food Blog S'cool
I Eat I Drink I Work
Kiplog Food Links

Food for Thought
Autism Victoria
Autism Vox
forget me now
Lotus Martinis
MOM - Not Otherwise Specified
St Kilda Today

Monday, June 19, 2006
A Big Day Out
My daughter P invited me along to the Good Food Show on the weekend along with her mate S. I kind of didn't want to go as I went last year and didn't find it that interesting, it was mostly big commercial brands on the stands and the set up didn't seem that good, but in the end decided to go anyway.

Now I'm glad I went.

The set up was a lot better, with all the wine stands grouped together and fenced off from the rest and there were a lot more interesting stands this year, still mostly big commercial interests, who seemed to make more of an effort to be accessible, but also stands that piqued my interest. There were cooking demonstrations everywhere and samples galore. We very nearly got stuck at the Lindt stand; can you believe they had a basket from which you could help yourself?!!

We wandered into the wine and beer section and as the girls were only drinking whites we separated so I could have a go at the reds which were of no interest to them. The best I tasted was the Tarrawarra pinot from the Yarra Valley, fantastic wine with sweet cherry flavours, perfectly balanced by fine tannins with great grip. It's probably not as feral as some with no real gamey or forest floor character, but the length was excellent. As the chap serving got into conversation with me over the clones that went into the wine, I could feel my eyes glazing over. Why oh why do they have to call them by dry scientific type names like NV1, couldn't they think of something with a bit more romance to it?

Caught up with the girls again and they were telling me that they were disappointed that Stella Artois wasn't there as it was their favourite beer that they had discovered at the Belgium Bar. Out of the corner of my eye I could see a stand with a Stella Artois sign, so we made our way there. The girls ordered a cherry beer, which they said they loved. My wife D does something similar using sour cherry or raspberry syrup to flavour her beer and she tells me it's common to do so in Poland. They had Leffe on tap, so after a pronunciation lesson - it's pronounced Leff, unless you speak German, then you pronounce it Leff-e, so it doesn't seem to matter at all how you say it, but it is a damn fine beer, very creamy with a lot of mousse and just the right hint of hop bitterness.

It was a bit too early for much drinking, we had arrived at ten a.m., so we ambled out of the drinks area in a pleasant state of mind and over to the chile stands, it transpired that S was a big fan. We hit Byron Bay's stand first and S asked for the hottest sauce straight up, I just sighed inwardly, for I knew that I had to try some, but when you have young kids, you kind of get out of the chile groove and when you eventually go back to the well, you know it's going to be trouble. And so it was. I could feel my mouth go cold then burning hot as a torrent of saliva arrived to put out the fire. S loved it but was keen to try some more, so we headed over to the Redback Chile Co., the people that put on the chile festival over at Jindivick in Victoria every year.

S again asked for the hottest sauce and when she tried some she exclaimed that this was VERY HOT! Oh dear god, I put some in my mouth, but guess what? My chile groove kicked in and I found it to be rather pleasant. S bought a three pack of the cutest bottles with pictures of skulls and the word death everywhere. She seemed keen to sneak some into her dad's food, who it seemed was in the naughty habit of sneaking hot sauce into her food, then laughing at her and her mum when they soon realized that they'd been got. Some hot karma was headed straight for him!

After all this we decided to have a cup of coffee and a sit down and we found a place near a book stall. Looking at the stall I saw a lot of people queuing and figured they were doing good business. After the coffee the girls were keen on another stall, but I can't miss a good browse in a bookshop so headed over to the stand and soon discovered the reason for the long queue. It was a book signing queue and at the very head of it was Bill Grainger, author of Bill's Food.

I now know the reason for Bill's success. It's not his cooking abilities, fine and all as they are, it's his smile. I've watched him on the telly and he does smile all the time, but the camera doesn't do it justice. Bill's smile is gorgeous - not in the gay sense, though there could be one or two boys who would have to tell their beating hearts to be still, but gorgeous like on a cold, drab winter's day when the sun suddenly breaks through and everything lights up and even though it's winter you feel warm from it. His smile is instantly warm and affectionate and he had all the women in the queue swooning for him.

After browsing the book stall I looked for the girls but couldn't see them, so started to search and check out a few more stalls, taking little samples as I went. At a pancake stand there was a plate of little pancakes, fluffy little pillows dusted with icing sugar, looking very scrumptious. As I reached out to try one, the woman next to me said I could have one and I popped one straight in my mouth. Imagine my surprise when she then pulled out her purse and paid for them, they weren't samples at all! We all had a good natured laugh at my embarrassment.

After I caught up with the girls again, we decided that three hours of eating and drinking was enough for us and we headed off. Would I come again next year? You bet.
  posted at 10:46 am

At 11:59 am, Blogger Changeit said...

Do you still live in Melbourne? I'd love to visit Australia sometime. I have some travel pics at my blog.

At 7:14 am, Blogger neil said...

Yes, I'm still in Melbourne. You would love it here, it's a great place. BTW nice pictures.

At 8:29 am, Blogger Gigi said...

This sounds delightful! I know what you mean about the wine chat chap, although I think all the romance is in the descriptions by aficionados, "It's probably not as feral as some with no real gamey or forest floor character, but the length was excellent..." What could be headier than that?

A mere 3 hours? And you call yourself a foodie. That's why god invented the siesta. ;D

At 11:14 am, Blogger neil said...

Thanks gigi, I probably needed that reminder, sometimes it's sooo easy to get carried away.

And man invented the stomach pump!

At 8:11 am, Blogger Reb said...

It's on in Sin City starting tomorrow and 'though I totally would have gone anyway, with the same reservations re last year, you have provided me renewed enthusiasm!

At 11:03 am, Blogger neil said...

Hey reb, you will love it if it's anything like Melbournes. I do recommend eating something before the booze tasting. The hot chocolate stand was to die for. If you like all things Indian try the Mango Mescut - green mango with tons of heat and not sweet at all, at the Goan Cuisine stand.


Post a Comment

<< Home


Recipe Categories
Cakes & Desserts

November 2005
December 2005
January 2006
February 2006
March 2006
April 2006
May 2006
June 2006
July 2006
August 2006
September 2006
October 2006
November 2006
December 2006
January 2007
February 2007
March 2007
April 2007
May 2007
June 2007
July 2007
August 2007
September 2007
October 2007
November 2007
December 2007
January 2008
February 2008
March 2008
April 2008
May 2008
June 2008
July 2008
August 2008
September 2008
October 2008
November 2008
December 2008
January 2009
February 2009
March 2009
May 2009
June 2009
September 2009
October 2009
November 2009
December 2009
January 2010
February 2010
March 2010
April 2010
May 2010
June 2010
July 2010
August 2010
September 2010
October 2010
November 2010
December 2010
February 2011
March 2011
April 2011
May 2011
June 2011
July 2011
August 2011
September 2011
July 2012

Prev ~ List ~ Random ~ Join ~ Next
Site Ring from Bravenet

Site Feed

counter easy hit

Blog Design by:

Image created by:
Ximena Maier

Powered by:

Photos, Original Recipes, and Text - (C) Copyright: 2005-2010
At My Table by Neil Murray, all rights reserved.
You may re-post a recipe, please give credit and post a link to this site.

Contact Me
Neil Murray

Follow messytable on Twitter