The thing is - the food was actually great... Steak & Lobster ($28.95) turned to be a whopping slab of steak with a half lobster mornay and your choice of salad and chips or vegetables for a bargain price. The rest of the menu contained bistro menu stalwarts like BBQ Pork Ribs, Steak, Chicken Breasts, Oysters and the infamous Prawn Cocktail (with iceberg lettuce and seafood sauce).
On the long drive home from Taree, I took a produce detour into Newcastle to check out another entry in John Newton's book - The Foodies' Guide to Sydney 2007. (John is also the guy who took the Food Writing Course I completed a few months ago.) The store that piqued my interest was Darby Street Quality Meats in Cooks Hill (the pierced, tattooed and artier end of Newcastle).
Now I was attracted by the fact that they stock Bangalow Sweet Pork AND Certified Angus, which of course we picked up whilst there. However the best discovery was purchasing a half veal rump, and realising that if you cut along the muscle lines, you can take off a Picahna, roll and rotisserie, then use the remaining as rump - we made a rather lovely Beef Rendang. The rump cost $35.00, and made 2 meals for 2 people of the curry, and 2 meals for 2 people of the picahna (one meal was hot, one meal was sliced cold with oven roasted tomatoes, eggplant and cheese) -making it great value too!
Darby Street Quality Meats
160 Darby Street, Cooks Hill, 2300
Ph: (02) 4929-2973
Sailo's at Taree Aquatic Club
2 Macquarie Street, Taree NSW 2430
Ph: (02) 6552-1435