I’ve never been to a degustation entirely devoted to Aussie bush tucker ingredients nor have it paired with rum cocktails. Granted I’ve eaten a few skippies on the barbie and have once tried a croc at Hippo’s Creek (wasn’t the best), along with downing my fair share of white rum mojitos and hurricanes! But I’ve never attended a 5-course Aussie Icon matched with rum from Beenleigh, Ord River Rum and Bundaberg. So I was really excited when Justin asked me to guest blog and attend Angel’s Cut by The Trustee Aussie Icon Rum Degustation night and it was so nice of the guys from the Trustee for inviting me and my bf. I couldn’t wait to taste Australian bush tucker produce and I was excited to see how they would pair it with Aussie rums in cocktail forms.
Despite it being smack bang in the middle of the school week, but who can say no to Angel’s Cut by Trustee – a bar dedicated to all things rum? And a kitchen that knows their food?
For those that don’t know Angel’s Cut by The Trustee is the area that faces St. George’s Tce and was launched in early June 2014, revamped to make it into a savvy, cosy, cheeky rum bar. It boasts over 100 rums and cahaca’s and has amazing cocktails. The space has quirky décor (hello massive angel hanging above the bar), and beautiful leather and wood furnishings.
The dinner was held in a little hidden corner, just off the main bar, decorated with mirrors and paintings, vintage-styled and a little posh but done cheekily. It sits about 30 to 50 people, but on the night it was set out like a long table, which was great because it allowed us to mingle with other people.
The 5 course Aussie Rum Degustation were priced at $135 per person and for a degustation it was nicely paced and priced (running from 7pm to 9:30pm). The rums on show for the evening were:
The Beenleigh – the oldest, registered heritage-listed distillery in Australia, established by John Davvy and Frank Gooding in 1884. It was founded on the banks of the Albert River in Queensland (and it still resides there).
Ord River Rum – owner, developer and farmer Spike Dessert fell in love with the Kimberley when he saw it in 1972 and in 1995, with sugar cane being grown in the Ord River Valley, farmer Spike created the Hoochery; the oldest, continuously operating distillery in Western Australia. The Ord River Rum is made from local sugar cane, wet season rainwater and yeast that is all vat fermented, pot distilled, charcoal filtered and aged in oak barrels.
Small Batch Bundaberg Rum reserves – matured in sweet Cognac and Brandy Barrels. The result is a complex rum with exceptional fruit flavours with perfect balance of fruits, honey and spice flavours.
Course 1: Native angasi oyster (a native flat oyster) al natural with just a splash of desert lime. Paired with, Acca daiquiri, which consisted of Beenleigh white rum, honey water, orange blossom and lime.
I am usually a lover of oyster, but I just found this to be a little on the “chewy” side and less of that creaminess that I like in an oyster. This of course was paired with a rather citrus based daiquiri. The daiquiri was refreshing and tart, a good palate cleansing to start the evening.
Course 2: Kangaroo carpaccio with seeded mustard, beetroot, parmesan, bush peppers and native bush citrus. Paired with “The Bush Punch” – a sweeter cocktail made from Bundaberg small batch, with grapefruit and passionfruit nectars, native bush peppers and botanicals.
The kangaroo was a favourite amongst the guest. I’ve never had kangaroo in carpaccio form, but I loved it. It lost that gamey taste that usually accompanies eating skippy. Thinly sliced kangaroo was topped with seeded mustard which gave it that nice “spice”, tart kick, which was sweetened by the yellow beetroot and the salty parmesan rounding out the flavours nicely. This was paired with sweeter cocktail made from Bundaberg small batch.The cocktail was a balance of sweet and sour with hints of passionfruit and a generous cut of grapefruit in the drink.
Course 3: Grilled emu crispy jamon, roast mushroom, truffle mash. Paired with “Aussie Dark n Stormy” – tea spiced Bundaberg small batch, grapefruit, brush lime, bitters and ginger beer.
The third dish of the night was something I was looking forward to, partly because I’ve never eaten it before. The emu was grilled and wrapped in crispy jamon, topped with grilled roast mushroom and came with a side of truffle mash, peas and beetroot sauce. The marinade on the emu was to-die-for. It was slightly sticky and sweet but the saltiness of the jamon provided that balance. As to the taste of the emu? It was a cross between venison and beef. And I love both meats so this was the best of both worlds. The truffle mash.. it’s always so good.. I wish they gave us more. This was paired with my one of my favourite cocktail concoction of the night, Aussie dark and stormy – it was sweet, it was sour, it was pretty delicious. I could easily drink a few.. mm.. ginger beer and rum…
Course 4: Pan-fried crocodile fillet, kohlrabi remoulade, capers, carrot crisps and lemon oil. Paired with “Rum Rebellion Old Fashioned” made from Hoochery Ord River rum, macadamia syrup, fig and cinnamon, clove and bitters.
I found the crocodile to be a bit chewy and it wasn’t a fish texture nor was it chicken like. I wasn’t a fan of the croc meat, but it went so well with the other components of the dish – the capers, lemon oil and the remoulade. This was paired with an old fashioned rum rebellion. It was very aptly named. It was strong and it was a POW BAM WHOOP in your mouth. It was too much, but bf loved it. It was a man’s drink. I wasn’t a fan. He thought it was perfect winter’s drink…to be had when thunder storms brewed outside.
Course 5: The dessert course – Rubi Lime Panna Cotta. (and for my bf who had allergies to nuts – Lychee Sorbet with fruits) Paired with “Milk and Honey” from Beenleigh Honey rum, rice milk and cardamon.
The dessert course was a simple but punchy citrus bush lime panna cotta with pistachio nuts. It was not an overtly sweet dessert and I loved it for that. Bf on the other hand had a lychee sorbet with fruits instead of the panna cotta as he was allergic to the pistachio nuts. He thought his dessert was refreshing, light and sweet but was no panna cotta.. he had major dessert envy. The dessert was paired with a beautiful “milk and honey” cocktail – Beenleigh honey rum, whipped up rice milk and cardamom. It was delicious. The frothed rice milk was sweet and complimented the honey spiced rum.
The night came to an end around 9:30pm and we were all gifted with Bundaberg t-shirts. Our dining neighbours left to drink some more, while we walked 40minutes home IN HEELS… yes perhaps a little crazy, but definitely wayyyy too happy.
It was lovely night and the service was impeccable, although it was so hard to hear at times with the noise from the bar drifting into the room. I thoroughly enjoyed it, despite eating both our national animals (both of which tastes delicious), perhaps they chose right in putting them as our national emblem?
I’d definitely recommend you stop into Angels Cut by the Trustee to try a cocktail when you’re next in Perth city looking for a watering hole. Check out The Trustee website or connect with Angel’s Cut by the Trustee on Facebook here, where you can get the latest info on their next rum night and specials.
Disclaimer: Bf and I were invited on behalf on Justin by the team at Angel’s Cut by the Trustee Bar and Bistro. All opinions of the night were my own. This is also cross posted on Justin’s website.. The Skinny Perth
I love a new watering hole that is located in a building rich in history and one that boosts pretty sleek interiors.
Howling’s Bar does just that.
Located on the corner of Milligan and Hay street, it was once a pharmacy, and, you would probably know its recent history as Nine Mary’s restaurant. It has sleek, sophisticated interiors with beautiful pendent lights and a huge bar as its heart. But if you look hard enough you will find some cozy booths for your lunch or dinner at Howling’s.
The bar boosts about 8 beer taps, a few cider ones, has premium wines (the Shiraz that was served on their launch night – the beautiful Hesketh “Midday Somewhere” Shiraz is smooth, velvety, easy shiraz without that massive peppery hit.. if Shiraz isn’t your usual red, you should give this one a go) and of course, a bar isn’t complete without cocktails, and Howling’s Bar has a fine selection indeed. I especially love the “Gingernut Sour” which is a combination of Frangelico Hazelnut Liqueur, Domaine de Canton ginger liqueur, lemon, sugar and a little bit of egg white, garnished with fresh gingerbread.
There are many varieties of beers, wines and spirits, you would have to be one fussy snobby drinker to not find something you like.
Of course a good bar these days should also have a good food menu to go with it. They have a selection of entrees, mains, desserts and side snacks and some of them are pretty hard to pass up. I was lucky enough to sample an array of the rotating plates on their launch night and I must say their menu is diverse and exciting.
From their entree selection the Smoked Beef Carpaccio with Olive Tapenade, Grissini and Parmesan, was a classic example of beautiful beef with the perfect accompaniment of a well made olive tapenade (and I can say that because I’m not a huge fan of olives and this one I actually enjoyed).
Then to contrast the smokey flavours of the beef carpaccio, the watermelon and tequila Salmon Gravlax with Baby Capers, shaved fennel and lemon balm was light and refreshing, definitely a pick for summer.
BUT my favourite out of their entrees (that I’ve tried) will have to be.. the beautiful fresh, lightly citrus flavoured scallop ceviche with crisp Pork and herb salad. The crisp pork added that beautiful crunch to the dish.
From their side snacks, the crispy chat potatoes, their beer battered onion rings (because who doesn’t like onion rings?) and their housemade jerky are perfect sharing-while-waiting-for-friends-to-show-up-treats. And yes you read it right, they make their own jerky and it’s pretty darn good.
If you want something a little more substantial to snack on, try their chorizo arancini, because it’s decent sized, and it also has cheesy chorizo goodness inside. It also comes out hot so it kind of seems perfect for the up and coming cold weather.
I didn’t get to try a lot of their mains but the ones I did try – the smoked BBQ pork ribs with potato chats and cabbage slaw … omg the marinate on that rib. It was messy to eat standing at the bar on the launch night, but the meat just fell off the bone. It was tender and coated in sticky secret recipe sauce of goodness. It gives their neighbour, Tony Roma’s something to cry about. No photos of this beauty because my hands were too sticky from picking up the ribs! BUT TRUST ME, it’d taste better than it looks.
There was also something that I tried at their launch night that I didn’t see on their menu, it was a beer battered fish. And like any other battered fish, there wasn’t anything I found different or unique from any other deep fried fish, maybe except that it was quality fish and it wasn’t just batter!
So from food aspects, it is almost like the perfect lunch meeting place in the heart of the CBD. A definite watering hole post-work while also having an option for delicious quality food using a wonderful selection of produce. It also helps that the staff there are so friendly and cheery.
During the day, the Howling’s Bar also has a little cafe for those busy bees appropriately named The Dispensary Cafe that serves “to-go” meals and coffee (it also offers gluten free and vegetarian meals at the cafe). Check out the cafe’s menu here.
Howling’s Bar is definitely worth checking out and I’ll definitely be visiting again with some work mates to try to fully appreciate their cocktail and wine list.
Disclaimer: I was a guest at the launch of Howling’s Bar where I was able to sample some of the menu on offer, the above listed is NOT the entire menu. Check out the full menu here. All opinions, however, are my own.
The start of the Fringe World Festival in Perth always means the height of summer for me.
The month of February/March is good that way, with little of bit of naughty sexy sultry fun that is Fringe and the ever dramatic creative inspiring Perth International Arts festival both running at the same time. It’s just ART-astic!
This year I had a chance to meet up with a local burlesque performer, Lola Cherry Cola. Her shows packs a crowd and was completely sold out last year and at this stage are selling out fast for this year. Her burlesque shows are a little naughty sexy and a whole lot of laughs. This year she’s teaming up with amazing cast of fellow burlesque artists locally and internationally .. and with a show that is called “Things that go Bump and Grind in the NIGHT” it’d definitely be one to book into to see at the Fringe Festival.
I met up with Lola Cherry Cola at the temporary rooftop bar (and one of the many Fringe World stages) Noodle Palace, located at Central Tafe in Northbridge (ps. she has shows there..) I got an insight into the world of burlesque and some trade secrets to boot..
SOS: What is Burlesque? Because I think many people associate burlesque with being just striptease.
Lola: Striptease is definitely a part of burlesque, but it doesn’t necessarily have to always be a strip. It’s more about the tease than the stripping part, the emphasis is always on the tease and how you are doing it. It’s about dragging the audience along for the ride and making them wait. That’s the crazy and funny thing about burlesque and it’s something that keeps me doing it – it’s the fact that you slowly take off a glove and the audience goes wild and it’s like “OMG YOU CAN SEE MY HAND” and I spend everyday with my hands exposed. But I get onto a stage with a glove on and slowly take it off it’s a HUGE amazing.. “OMG she has fingers, she has skin!” Burlesque is about having fun and in many cases it’s a parody.. we don’t take ourselves too seriously at all. It’s about making fun of the audience and of ourselves.
SOS: What got you into burlesque?
Lola: A few years ago I got given a gift voucher for a vintage makeover photography and I loved the style and getting glammed up. From there I took some classes and then I got into the performance side of things. From there I haven’t stopped since.
SOS: Can anyone be a burlesque dancer?
Lola: I think so. Burlesque is such a broad thing. If dance isn’t your strong point – you don’t have to dance. There are performers that sing, that talk, that do circus. A lot of people get hung up on the dance side of things and trust me I can’t do a high kick and take my skirt off at the same time. At the end of the day, burlesque is all about your personality and confidence and if you have that and want to give it a go, you can definitely do it. When I first started, burlesque in Perth was very much a female industry, but now, there are a lot of guys, manlesque has blossomed . Gender is not an issue. In fact anyone, any age, any size can do it. I also teach so when I do I tell my students that you can do anything and everything if you have the confidence and really it’s a matter of whether you want to do it.
SOS: What advice would you give to those that want to do burlesque?
Lola: Give it a go. Get into it with a very open mind. If one of the classes that you’ve been to makes you uncomfortable with the way it has been taught or things that are taught, those things are not the only way of doing it. The thing about burlesque is there are no rules, so just find your own rules and stick with that. Be confident in that.
SOS: In you own words, which 3 words would you use to describe your alter-ego, “Lola Cherry Cola”?
Lola: Lola has evolved over the years. Umm… My personality on stage is definitely very sassy, tongue-in-cheek, I’m laughing at you and with myself all at the same time, and definitely cheeky in more ways than one.
SOS: Tell us some burslesque trade secrets for performance?
Lola: Ooooo.. There are so many. So many tips and tricks. You start off wondering how you are going to get your hair that big, and how you going to get those lashes on.. I’ve definitely picked up a fair few along the way.. But.. umm.. Hairspray. It pretty much solves every single problem you will ever have as a performer. A problem can be solved with a spray of a hairspray. It can fix your hair and set your makeup. You can spray it on your body and stuff will stick to you or you can use it so stuff will NOT stick. It’s very good for sticking our pasties on, stockings, gives it a bit of shine, it stops your knickers from riding up your butt.. yeh.. hairspray… DO NOT LEAVE HOME WITHOUT IT. BUT at the same time DO NOT LEAVE IT IN YOUR CAR on a hot day. It explodes. A very bad idea. I’ve had a can of hairspray explode on me because I left it in the car. Except that isn’t nearly as bad as exploding red bull cans. KIDS DO NOT LEAVE ANY PRESSURISED CANS IN YOUR CAR — THEY EXPLODE.
SOS: What are your 3 best tunes for performing burlesque?
Lola: hmm.. ooo.. umm.. I have such a weird and crazy range… but yes.. 3… I’m going to go with.. First one.. Meatloaf.. I Will Do Anything for Love… I have an act that I do with that, it’s a lot of fun.. and there is twist to it at the end.. with what I wouldn’t do for love and it’s a bit unexpected, involving my nether regions and hair removal.. so.. um.. that’s a really fun one. Hmm.. I also rate ACDC highly, which is very weird for burlesque..um… I’m working on an act to It’s a long way to the top .. I’m sort of rewriting the song and doing an act to go along with it… It’s a long way to the top if you want to bump and grind. Even though it’s modern, bogan and rock, it does kind of still have that bump and grind, down and dirty essence, which is really fun. And then probably, on a more classic side, Muddy Waters, I just want to make love to you. It’s a really well known song and most people would probably know different versions of it, but I just love that particular one (by Muddy Waters), because it’s very bluesy, sultry and you can draw everything out.
SOS: What is your favourite prop and why?
Lola: Oooo.. favourite prop… umm.. Probably, well.. I have a giant coke bottle and I was going to say it’s Lola’s size, but it’s not, probably more like 5 foot high (SOS size!) .. it’s person’s sized.. it’s a lot of fun, but it hasn’t properly made to the stage yet. It’s my favourite thing, because it’s something people are still waiting to see, and it’s kind of like this long drawn out tease that is happening off-stage with everyone that follows me. It’s like “when will we see the coke bottle” and I’m like “when I’m ready.. wait a bit longer.. maybe next time.. umm.. probably not..”
SOS: Tell us a bit about Lola’s House of Tease?
Lola: It’s mostly a solo venture, I’m a bit of a woman’s army. But when it comes to putting on a show I get a lot of help. The idea of Lola’s House of Tease is that I am a freelance artist and I work with a lot of other freelance artists. So I pull in different independent performers as they suit my shows and yeh we have a lot of fun. It’s a nice collective that works together. For the Fringe shows I have locals working with me and I have interstate and international artists as well. It’s really really exciting. I got to handpick and curate the show, which is awesome. They have their own routines and I get to put it together, I kind of take each performer that comes to me or I go and seek out and then I get to work with the artist as to what they are going to perform then piece the show together, how it’s going to flow.. it’s like I’m a kid in a candy store picking out the lollies and like a jigsaw puzzle get to put it all together. It’s a lot of fun.
SOS: What do you see for yourself and Lola’s House of Tease? Is it going to be a Mansion?
Lola: hahah I like the idea of keeping it cosy like a house. Last year I focused the House of Tease along with the Perth’s School of Burlesque and my classes. But this year, it’s more on the House of Tease, I have an itch to produce more shows. And unfortunately, because it is a one (wo)man’s show, as much as I love teaching, classes are very time intensive and I put a lot of time into my students in and out of class that I didn’t have much time for performing last year so a lot of the production plans went sideways. I’m was doing a monthly show, the last Wednesday of every Month – The Burly Unplugged at the Lazy Susan’s Comedy Club, but there is a community of passionate people that have now taken over after 2 years, and in fact I got to watch and enjoy my first show. So this year, Fringe is kickstart of my focus for this year, which is all about writing and show production.
It was such a pleasure to have had a chat with Lola Cherry Cola and to get a glimpse into the glittery glammed world of Burlesque. I can’t wait to see what shows and production she has in store of this year. I think it would be fabulous, sexy, sassy and hilarious. To keep updated on things that go bump, grind and tease, check out her facebook page here.
But the MOST EXCITING BIT IS… To celebrate all things Fringe Festival like.. and thanks to Lola Cherry Cola, I am giving away 2 tickets to see the show.. “Things that go Bump and Grind in the Night” at Midlandia. See details on my facebook page.