Four wheels, three courses
The standout for me at the Australian International Motor Show (formerly the Sydney Motor Show) was Ford Performance Vehicles' new limited-edition Cobra GT, a tricked-out V8 sporting the white-with-blue-racing-stripes paintjob that's been turning my head since boyhood and probably always will.
I should say...much as I admire a well-made automobile, I have no plans to own one. Not after the doco "A Crude Awakening" opened my eyes to the global oil situation. And not unless circumstances relocate me to Woop Woop. Were that to happen, funds permitting, I'd opt for a petrol-electric hybrid.
Now consumers are factoring the environment into their choices, it makes financial sense for manufacturers to act more responsibly - or be seen as horribly uncool. Two small-but-hopefully-trend-sparking gestures in this direction that I noticed at the A/I/M/S were on the Suzuki and Mercedes-Benz stands. Purchase a Suzy Grand Vitara and the company will donate some dough towards saving the Tasmanian devil (decimated by disease) and the black rhino (threatened by poachers). Buy a current Merc and the swish seats will be made from the husks of coconuts grown on small, sustainable plantations in Brazil.
On my way to the Motor Show, I lunched at the Meat & Wine Co., also in Darling Harbour, near the IMAX cinema. Don't go there if you want a cheap feed. Do go there if you're prepared to pay extra for steakhouse fare with a South African twist. As usual, I'm gonna tell you exactly what I ate and drank :-)
With an entree of boerewors (beef sausages, polenta and spicy "monkey gland" sauce), I tried a bottle of Knappstein Lager (clean, crisp and appropriately wine-like). My main was lamb cutlets with root vegies, accompanied by a South African Merlot (Guardian Peak). When the waiter asked, "How would you like your lamb?", I was thrown. I'd only ever been given that choice with steak - lamb was either cooked or it wasn't. "Er...medium, please." I tend to go for "old-fashioned" deserts as there's a reason they've survived so long. Hence: apple and rhubarb crumble with custard and, less traditionally, cinnamon ice-cream for the third and final dish. A glass of water and I was fuelled up and ready to spend hours looking at cars.
Reading: "Silver On The Tree" by Susan Cooper (fifth book in the blah blah blah...).