Old School Reds in Melbourne

4.39pm, Tuesday 25th May, Russell Street, Melbourne CBD, Victoria, Australia
Now this is what happens when you do one night in one place several nights in a row – you drop off the air! So here’s where we catch up before we really get amongst it ‘down south’ here in Victoria.

Monday, 24th May: Melbourne, VIC
Did a dinner for some of the city trade at one of our longtime watering holes – O’Connell’s Centenary Hotel on Coventry Street in South Melbourne. If you haven’t been there, this corner pub in the sleepy part of the Port is the definition of ‘cosy’. Lots of dining rooms and bar corners, stacks of interesting trinkets on the shelves and walls, a great wine cellar, and one of the first pubs to care about doing really good food – shipping in a top chef  16 years ago – and never looking back.

O'Connell's pie: mmm, flaky

I ate early so I could talk the wines up across the dinner, and I was treated to O’Connell’s Beef & Guinness pie. They took this off the list for a while, and there was nearly a riot! It’s a bit of a shame you can’t reach into the photo and see how flaky and melt in your mouth the pastry is – let alone how good the filling was – whole button mushrooms and all! An absolute twin set with The Scribbler.

Most of our guests chose the Gippsland grain fed porterhouse with the ‘little brother, big brother quad set’ of reds that we featured – the 2008 Patchwork & 2005 Octavius shirazes, and the 2008 Scribbler & 2005 Signature Cab Shirazes – and it was a top exercise, because folks don’t usually get to see those comparisons – especially with food.  What was a good result was the discussion about ‘old school’  style Australian dry reds, and where Signature fits into it all. A good night in a great pub – O’Connells’ – check out the old lit up globe for Canadian Airlines up on top of the bar – a classic!

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