• Conclusion

    So, that was Perth to Melbourne.


    Its not actually 4283km. We did take a long route to check out Port Lincoln and the 12 Apostles and they were worth it. So, who won the battle of food, coffee, wine, beer. Italy or outback Australia? Coffee-milk based coffee to Australia. Espresso styles to Italy. Beer-Australia. Wine-Italy (I give this to Italy not on absolute quality of wine, but simply because of the range of wines constantly available. Theres wine in butcher shops, minimarts, convenience stores. Its everywhere!) Food- Australia. Tough call, but bizarrely I got over cooked pasta in Bologna, under cooked pasta in Venice. A quality steak in Kalgoorlie, brilliant seafood in Port Lincoln and in Adelaide. But, what tipped it to Australia was the sheer diversity of food available. You can travel the world in a food sense by driving around Australia. It just has so much to offer from a $5 Vietnamese Pork Roll through to the hatted restaurants.

    Anyhow, we are coming in to land at Newcastle Airport. Robbo is waiting to whisk me back to the Hunter Valley where preparations for the 2019 vintage are underway.

    See you soon. Cheers, Steve
  • A Day with Tony Ford, Then Off to Adelaide.

    Our plan today is to drive over to Coffin Bay, Boston Bay and Port lincoln. Our host is the great Tony Ford who runs Boston Bay Winery. Tony went out squiding yesterday and grabbed 7 of the tasty little devils. Cant wait to see him, catch up, try his wines and some local seafood.

    A lovely little brekky wrap. Bacon, spinach, egg, mayo and a well crafted coffee. Great cafe with an indoor garden area with antique furniture at Streaky Bay.
    And driving again. Once you get to Ceduna the landscape changes. Wheat and sheep become common sites.
    The road to Coffin Bay hugs the coastline and occasionally touches it. Theres a real mix of scenery on display
    Cummins Monument. A lobster catcher named Leo Cummins drowned here. Its a spectacular site.
    We turn off the main drag and end up at Coffin Bay. My all time favourite place for oysters. A little cafe there makes great coffee and has a focus on the local seafood and an outlook over the bay itself. Brilliant!

    This is Tony Ford. Tony is a bit of a legend in the wine industry for many reasons. He is also an abalone lease holder, brilliant chef, a bit of an entrepanuer and a frustrated stand up commedienne.
    Tony quickly knocks up some king prawns and a thai pork salad and opens a bottle of his Riesling. Fabulous!
    We go for a drive around Port Lincoln. Tuna boats are moored in town
    Theres another winery in town, so we go in for a bottle of wine and a bowl of tuna marinated in soy and topped with toasted nori. Lovely!

    At this point in the trip, things started to go wrong and fray at the edges. We had a room booked for tonight 3 hours down the road. Tony was referring to us as the 4 Amigos and saying emotionally we couldnt be seperated after all we’d been through (he’d met Anson and Crash 2 hours ago for the first time). Our problem was we had to have Crash in Adelaide by noon tomorrow to catch a flight to the Gold Coast, so we had to go. No problem, says Tony, opening another bottle of wine as he books a 45 min flight for Crash tomorrow morning from Port Lincoln to Adelaide. Guess we are staying!!!!
    Tony took us to a really cool 2 story bar made out of shipping containers. Great cocktails and shish kebabs were just being freely distributed
    At this point my phone went dead, so theres no photographic evidence of our night in Port Lincoln. It was a great night. We went from the bar (where we’d been introduced as whale hunters) to the brewery in town for a quick glass of Cage Diver Pale Ale then off to a private house for a bonfire party.

    The owner of the house was a Tuna fisherman and various friends from the seafood industry had bought then cooked what they farmed or caught all while three ladies made rissotto in the kitchen. Steamed mussels in a garlic sauce. Raw tuna soaked in beetroot. Tuna with kiwi fruit and strawberry. A long table was covered in wines for all to share. I sneaked a glass of 2002 Rockford Shiraz which was delightful. It was such a lovely evening of food, wine and conversation

    Amazingly, we did get Crash onto his 10am flight the next morning. Then started the drive north to Port Augusta then South down to Adelaide. Its about a 7 hour trip. Its quite frustrating because Adelaide isnt really that far away. The country has had wheat snd sheep since Ceduna, but now it gets a bit more intensive.

    As we drive theres often water pipes on the roadside providing water to towns. The one we followed to Kalgoorlie on the first leg of the trip was about 500km long and took 5 years to build about 120 years ago. The Hunter Valley has no water supply and its a massive tourism industry. They seem to solve these problems in SA and WA.
    Back on the road
    We finally make Adelaide and catch up with Andrew Press. Andrew is the guy who finds piggs peake grapes in SA. We go Japanese and launch into a carafe of Sake’, blue swimmer crab and some salmon.
    Then pork dumplings, kim chi dumplings and some deep fried mullet.


    Then flat beans and lamb belly cooked over fire. A bottle of Riesling by KT and some Japanese whisky completed the night.
  • Ceduna

    The first 70m of the fairway is carpark in appearance, but parking is discouraged

    Even out here theres still a focus on food and drink
    The Nullarbor Nymph was a fabricated story that made headlines. It involved a statuesque blonde who lived naked with the local kangaroos.
    Lush fairways are littered with the remains of clay pigeons. Provides plenty of extra run
    The club house has been fitted out with catering facilities for 100 and climate controlled dining areas
    Eucla is right down near the ocean. Its a bright sunny day but the breezes are straight off the south pole
    Back in the day this was the telegraph station
    I do love a good snake warning
    Little margin for error. Its like threading a needle
    The Border Roo. Hes in SA, so goodbye WA

    Just over the border we dip down to the edge off the bluff
    Im going to have to go back to my reference source (a childrens picture book on trucks my son used to get me to read him) and check road train lengths. According to the road signs around here about 50m seems to be the limit. Hmmmmm

    Ceduna is a lovely little town on the ocean with a long jetty. The pub and bistro look out over the jetty. Just gorgeous
    We stay the night at Streaky Bay and eat prawns, tender squid and King George Whiting at the bar. Hoges is our host (nah, not that Hoges) and he has a horse running on the weekend called Beauty (nah, not that Beauty) that we now intend to have a flutter on.