Food, Meet Drink

Since we as a species first exited the primordial soup and started eating more than just what was immediately in front of us, there’s been a desire to combine the joy of eating with the pleasure of drinking. Despite knowing that any good meal is only improved by (almost) any good beverage, in the intervening years there have been a whole manner of rules and stipulations thought up by those who pretend to know better.

Now, perhaps it’s time to re-evaluate those combinations, handed down from an etiquette school that we cannot even remember the name of. Of course, there’s nothing wrong with wine and cheese, but beer and cheese, or whiskey and cheese sounds just as good, at least to us.

Your guilty combo could really be a culinary innovation to be proud of, and if you enjoy it, who’s to tell you that it’s not the way so-and-so says this particular libation should be consumed? Whether infected by a rebellious spirit that comes from too much time spent in the kitchen, or because spreading the no-judgement love needs no excuse, Australia’s sommeliers, distillers, brewers and viticulturalists are looking for ways to break down stereotypes of which drinks should go with which food, and reengage with the spirit of a good time, however that may be expressed. This week, Drink Easy showed us there’s strong interest in overturning norms of drinking, and in the next week, there’s a few ways to put that into practice.

Matt Preston Hosts a Johnnie Walker Dinner

The man whose cravat needs no introduction will be leading a dinner at The Star’s BLACK Bar & Grill on Tuesday, June 4 from 7pm. Each of the four courses will be accompanied by a different Johnnie Walker whiskey, and Preston, along with Katie Nagar, Johnnie Walker’s Australian whiskey ambassador and Dany Karam, executive chef at BLACK, will give a bit of context to the pairings. Starting with an 18 year aged whiskey to go with an appetiser of ocean trout and oyster, the entrée of duck breast is combined with the Johnnie Walker Blue Ghost + Rare ‘Brora’ while the wagyu rump cap main is paired with a John Walker & Sons King George V.

For more details and to book, see here:

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Scents of Place

Something to warm your cockles during the chillier months, on each Saturday during the months of winter, Melbourne’s Gin Palace is hosting a gin lunch. Getting into the spirit of things is the first lunch with gin from South Australia’s Never Never gin. This highly awarded gin will compliment a feast by chef Donovan Cooke, which includes gin marinated Ora King Salmon, seared scallops and chicken infused with juniper berries.

For booking information and details on future lunches, click here:

Mary’s Undergound Opens with a Motza of a Wine List

You may already be aware that the Mary’s crew have re-opened legendary jazz club the Basement in Circular Quay, but with their full-service restaurant now open, have you read the wine list? Designed by head of wine at the Mary’s Group Caitlin Rees, and delivered by sommelier Charles Leong, the whole thing is a testament to drinking wine the way you want. Infused by the devil-may-care attitude that the entire group embodies, wines here are unusual, of a diverse origin and described in a way that you can take it how you wish.

For bookings and info, click here: