8.14pm Jasper Avenue, Edmonton, Alberta, Canada
Well folks, I don’t think I’ll even try to catch up everything that we did in Las Vegas – and trust me, when they say “what happens in Vegas stays in Vegas “, I wish I had actually done something that qualified! Whatever I got up to I can talk about.
Actually, there is one thing I need to share. The first evening I was in town, seeing as I was staying in the Excalibur, I went up to the mezzanine restaurant level for tea, and what’s right there is “The Thunder Showroom” home to the Thunder Down Under show – the incredibly chiselled blokes from home who do the dance routines in not terribly much clothing at all. Well, they have a souveneir shop which is run by a couple of gals from Australia, and we had a top time catching up, and they gave me a ticket to go along to the show. They said it would be a surefire way to get over the fact that I was a bit homesick. So I went along after work on Wednesday night – just to do the patriotic thing and wave the Australian flag. And girls … they can dance! There’s a six pack, then there’s a Thunder Down Under six pack. Made my day. Australia’s hottest export … apart from us, that is!
Now there is something else I want to tell you about. Not all the serious action in Vegas is on the strip. There’s the new M Resort out at Henderson which houses the Hostile Grape Wine Bar in “the cellar” below the main floor. This place is razor sharp. They have 6 oenomatic machines, each with 12 different wines to taste – and the roof of the wine bar is sculptured from individual barrel staves. With any luck we might get to see a couple of our Cabernet Shiraz blends make the list – be a magic address to be at.
Speaking of magic, the other thing I was able to do was spend time touring Tao - including the rooftop “beach”. This is the most exotic restaurant I think that we’re at – walking into Tao under the archway, you pass by the tubs of water full of heady blossoms and floating candles. Then there’s the wall of terra cotta monks that goes up and onto the roof – each monk holding an aromatic candle. And that’s not even into the main dining space yet. I don’t want to continue – it would ruin the impact for anyone going there – but make sure you book in for at least one meal. The wine list and cuisine certainly match the extraordinary ambience that they have been able to create. And by the way, we’re thrilled to bits to have the Hand Picked Shiraz Viognier on that list.
So here we are in Canada. I have the computer access in the room sorted, so shouldn’t have the trouble staying on the air that I had in Vegas. Oh yes – second homesick moment. I went down to Tim Horton’s this morning for breakfast, and they’ve got a new doughnut – the Strawberry Blossom. It looks just like the raspberry yeast chelsea bun at The Apex Bakery (hello to the Fechner family) in Tanunda – wood fired oven and best baked goods for miles around – at home in the Barossa. So I just had to give it a try – not bad at all – but doesn’t knock Apex off its pedestal with me!
So there you have it. Should be a good couple of weeks up here with Kath, our gal in charge of Canada. I’ll keep in touch.