Stuffing One’s Face in Brisbane

November 25, 2021 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | AUSTRALIANIA, FOOD, LIFE, Restaurants, TRAVEL |

November 2021 The Varnished Culture spent a (very) warm week in Brisbane sampling, inter alia, some of the very nice eateries. From restaurant to cafe, Brisbane serves good food in elegant settings and a relaxed mode. Here’s a sample. Otto (Shop 1, River Quay, Sidon St, Brisbane, Qld) Very posh. A short walk through the steamy riverbank gardens and then seats in the bar with delicious cocktails (a “Sicilian Sunset” – Vodka, Limoncello, Lemon sorbet, Vanilla and soda; and an “Arancia Sour” – Johnnie Walker Black, Lemon, a Chinotto reduction and whites).  Then in to lunch. There we encountered some…

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Queensland Art Gallery – The Ugly

November 23, 2021 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | ART, TRAVEL, Ulalume |

November 2021 In liquid heat TVC hit the street and made their way to the Art Array. We are pleased to report there is much good to be found here (of which more in a forthcoming post) but there is also a selection of work that can be kindly called comic (except by Queensland taxpayers).  A sample below: The above work, signed by Ian Di-Jirus, c/- ‘The Lucky Country’, invites the Chairman of the People’s Republic of China to enter into a Treaty. But before treaties, first we have to have a war… One recalls Peter Garrett‘s comment: “[much] contemporary…

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Thorngrove Manor

January 21, 2021 | Posted by Lesley Jakobsen | AUSTRALIANIA, TRAVEL |

(January, 2021) Sometimes in this crazy epoch, you feel like heading for the hills.  Fortunately, if you live in or come to Adelaide, the hills are 10 minutes away. And you don’t have to sequester yourself in some hut like Ted Kaczynski’s cabin: instead, take the M1 Freeway from town to Thorngrove, between Stirling/Aldgate and Mt. Lofty and the townlet of Crafers. The Manor is a Gothic Revival dream – a kind of Strawberry Hill – but with its own bespoke design features that make guests feel they are King and Queen of the castle. The angels are in the…

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Fine Wine and Dine @ Tanunda

September 20, 2020 | Posted by Lesley Jakobsen | AUSTRALIANIA, TRAVEL |

Tanunda, Barossa Valley, September 2020 Motoring into Tanunda for some R ‘n’ R these days is a breeze: if you get onto South Road, and head north, it leads onto the M2 and you get there in an hour. The main drag is Murray Street, and there is a large sign over the way, letting you know you’re there. There are lots of things to do to get fit: you can walk or bicycle along the Barossa track to Angaston (also a nice town worth visiting although it seems its high quality second-hand bookshop has bitten the dust – at…

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Vale Hong Kong

July 22, 2020 | Posted by Peter Jakobsen | POLITICS, TRAVEL, Ulalume |

In 1970 Hunter J. Thompson wrote a piece about the great French downhill skier, Jean-Claude Killy.  Trying to make a connection with the rather aloof and private champion, he asked where was the best place he knew. Killy nominated Hong Kong, and when asked why, replied: “Because a friend of mine is head of the police there…and when I go to Hong Kong I can do anything I want.” That is TVC‘s Hong Kong. Having been there at the handover to China in 1997 and visiting again in the early ‘noughties,’ we regret to say we’ve doubts now about ever…

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