Published in the City Hub and City News.
The clever folk at Brisbane-based Good Vibes for You have come up with Australia’s first fully biodegradable and recyclable bottle. It uses an organic compound that alters the properties of traditional PET plastic, allowing it to naturally biodegrade. Basically, if it ends up in a river it will eventually become usable soil! Their Australian bottling plant recycles all materials used in production, and most of their staff ride electric bikes to work to reduce their overall carbon emissions, contributing to the company being completely carbon neutral.
Markets By Moonlight
With electricity bills climbing and any thought of overseas travel banished, I consoled myself with a visit to The Rocks for the Markets by Moonlight. Any Friday night between now and the 26th March 2010, you too can wind your way through picturesque cobblestone lane-ways, munching on freshly filled cannoli; steaming helpings of paella; and Angus steak sandwiches. Forget the finances and indulge in some retail therapy to the quirky sound of ukulele minstrels. I combined my trip with a wine tasting at Wine Odyssey where a taste starts at just two dollars. I crossed the road for an excellent plate of wood fire grilled pork and fennel chipolatas at Pony Lounge & Dining; before trotting down to Baroque for a macaron. Très cosmopolitan!
If you like buying Australian grown, the folk at Perfection Fresh have brought to market Australia’s first variety of commercially grown pomegranates, the Royal Pom. As well as looking and tasting fabulous, they have a number of nutritional benefits; high antioxidant levels (these slow the aging process) and you’ll also find they’re chock full of potassium, iron, folic acid and vitamins C and B. Expect to see these fresher, local beauties hit shelves in April at green grocers like Fratelli Fresh.
King Cross Bonanza
Fresh Wasabi ($140/kg) had me squealing in excitement over the weekend at the newly opened Harris Farm Market in Kings Cross. Bargains abound in the nicely laid-out store, and you’ll find it open until 10pm seven days a week. I wasn’t the only one smiling as I filled my basket with heirloom tomatoes, edamame soybeans, chestnut mushrooms, and Squisito Orecchiette. Owner David Harris says, the Kings Cross district has been crying out for “quality, fresh food without the price tag”. He believes his new store offers residents “the fresh food they need, at a price they’ll be happy with.” My happiness was bought for the princely sum of seven dollars, and I nursed my wasabi root all the way back to Lilyfield.
New Zealand Wine
Wine shows are a great way to get to know the latest crop of wines – you can taste and decide on favourites without investing in a whole bottle. I was lucky enough to taste my way across New Zealand with excellent results last week at New Zealand in a Glass. In the Rieslings, I enjoyed the soft 2009 Amisfield Dry Riesling and the sweeter low-alcohol 2008 Konrad Bunch Selection Riesling before the 2008 Pegasus Bay Riesling knocked out all competitors. They make a kicking pinot noir too; as does Tarras Vineyards; but the 2007 Wooing Tree Sandstorm Reserve Pinot Noir was my favourite. I was quite taken with the piña colada flavours in the 2008 Auntsfield Cob Cottage Chardonnay; infatuated by the delicate, quaffable 2008 Huia Gewürztraminer; but my wine of the day was the 2006 Vinoptima Gewürztraminer. It’s made in on a single variety ten hectare vineyard, and tastes of musk! The best vertical tasting of the day came from Seresin in the Wairau Valley – their whole range was stunning, but if I had to pick favourites it’d be the 2007 Seresin Reserve Chardonnay or their 2008 Gewürztraminer. Keep your eyes peeled in bottle shops and on wine lists, or buy direct from the vineyards!