Ken Gargett

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Everything posted by Ken Gargett

  1. for Bruce fans, this is a brilliant concert from the 78 Darkness tour. i remember how excited i was when that album came out. yes, that old. plus the very best from born to run and some great older stuff. heaven. and for those who have not seen the light, if this concert doesn't do it for you, check your pulse. you may be dead.
  2. love this and really well done for a change. had a gutful of some bloke sticking a go-pro to his cap and thinking he is speilberg. my only suggestion - if you target a big cobia which was following a 12 foot tiger, don't stand in the water to show it off. https://midcurrent.com/videos/ningaloo-reef-the-great-barrier-reef-australia-fly-fishing-by-todd-moen/?goal=0_8efbf3b958-7c7bab3c26-42796029&mc_cid=7c7bab3c26&mc_eid=06595355ea
  3. richard wheatley, known for specialty fly boxes, has released the new Jubilee box. basically a box with a bit of foam inside. yours for 55 pounds. only 75 made. i assume they didn't think they'd find more than 75 morons. 55 quid for a small box with foam. stick some foam in an old cigar box and we have something just as good. one born... Limited Edition Queen's Platinum Jubilee 2022 Regular price£55.00Sale price Tax included. Shipping calculated at checkout. FoamFlat FoamEasy GripBase Ripple / Lid FlatEasy Slot Flat Foam - £55.00 GBP Easy Grip - £55.00 GBP Base Ripple / Lid Flat - £55.00 GBP Easy Slot - £55.00 GBP Add to Cart Buy it now On 6th February 2022 Her Majesty The Queen became the first British Monarch to celebrate a Platinum Jubilee, marking 70 years of service to the people of the United Kingdom, the Realms and the Commonwealth. To celebrate this unprecedented anniversary we have a Limited Edition Fly Box, limited to 75 pieces. The Limited Edition Fly Box is available with a selection of foams - Flat Foam (in base and lid), Easy Grip Foam (in base and lid), Ripple Foam in the base and Flat Foam in the lid, or Easy Slot Foam (in the base and the lid). With only 75 of these available, it is your chance to own a little bit of history.
  4. remember a lunch at francoise in melb - terrific place (we had a massive lunch there a few years back before a brilliant bruce concert which made for a magnificent day). byo which is great. a friend brought a port. very good port and they managed to drop the bottle and smash it. the ports they had on their list (they offered a replacement) were mostly well below the standard he brought except for a quinta national which was at a price about five times the value of the one dropped. my mate immediately opted for it. you could see the poor waiter calculating how many weeks he'd be working to pay that off. not sure we'd have got away with it if my mate wasn't a wine supplier to the place.
  5. in general, i never go near them. one trip to can roca in girona, we decided to give it a go. amazing. one of the great meals. around twenty small dishes from memory. it is even rarer that i would let them do the wines but we did this night. seriously good wines but what staggered me was that every table doing the combination had a new bottle of that wine opened for them. given that there were around 8 wines being matched and some were very good wines, i could not see how it was economical. this was in the days when can roca was amazing value. asked the brother who ran the cellar. he said they used them for staff training etc. hell of a lot of staff training going on. we'd booked for dinner but also lunch the next day. i figured it was a long way to go and who knew when we'd get back. so we fronted up for lunch. we did our own wine choices this time (a good vintage of bolly and a de vogue musigny 02 for far less than the wholesale price in oz at the time). i said to the waiter that i had so loved the tasting menu that i wanted to do it again (plus the havana dreams dessert they do - always have that). waiter said not possible to do it again because i did it the night before. said they would not allow that. we went back and forth. he said, but sir, what we would like to do is to present you with an entirely new tasting menu (no doubt past dishes etc). equally brilliant. how many places would do that? we finished with a 77 taylors port. for peanuts. i'd asked the somm the night before if they had any ports as they had three huge lists and not a single port in any of them. of course we do but we don't bother to include them because so few people ask for them. so he went and hand wrote their list of about 20 ports. we ordered the taylors. they had some poor kitchen hand come in at 6am next morning to decant it. and that was had with their amazing walk-in humidor. i remember a superb SLR DC. doesn't get much better.
  6. Must have missed this post. Which four pillars were they? Have you tried the olive leaf release, seems like it could be interesting for a negroni? olive leaf was one. more for a martini for me. barrel aged (chardonnay) another. the third was either the Rare or the Christmas (and whichever it wasn't, i got that separately).
  7. one of my mates did suggest that it would be okay if the chef was nigella lawson.
  8. This is a piece as to the death or not of the tasting menu (I'm okay with a good tasting menu – can Roca is still as good an experience for lunch or dinner as I have ever had - and there are plenty of others), but that is not the reason for sharing. Rather, if a chef brought out a plaster cast of his head and I was supposed to lick dinner from his plaster lips, I would have a few short words and walk out. What sort of imbecile comes up with this crap? The death of the tasting menu Have things finally gone too far when it comes to multicourse tasting menus? George Reynolds thinks so… WORDS BY GEORGE REYNOLDS 9 MAY 2022 THE COLLECTION It was the serving suggestion that repulsed the world. In December last year, midway through a meal at Lecce’s Michelin-starred restaurant Bros’, American author Geraldine DeRuiter – who blogs about food and travel as The Everywhereist – was presented with a citrus foam. So far, so 2010. But it didn’t arrive in a cup or fancy canapé spoon; instead, in an episode that DeRuiter was pretty sure was ‘stolen from an Eastern European horror film’, it came in a plaster cast of head chef Floriano Pellegrino’s mouth. And in the absence of any further utensils, DeRuiter and co were instructed to lick the foam directly from it. DeRuiter’s post went viral, and then more viral still as Pellegrino penned a gloriously self-satisfied response that read exactly like the sort of thing someone who makes plaster casts of their mouth would write. (‘What is a chef? What is a client? What is good taste?’) As such online flare-ups often are, it was a source of rich amusement and various takes and counter-takes for a week or so, and then – as such online flare-ups often do – it faded from view. But buried in the back-and-forth of the fracas was another, less evanescent debate. As DeRuiter detailed this four-and-ahalf- hour endurance test of a dinner, in which 27 courses came and went with ‘nothing even close to an actual meal served’ (a dining experience experienced as ‘a persistent and sustained sort of agony, like slowly peeling off a Band-Aid,’ wrote DeRuiter), a question emerged. Are we finally, finally done with tasting menus? The plaster-cast encased citrus foam canapé at Bros' restaurant in Lece – 'stolen from an Eastern European horror film’ For almost as long as there have been tasting menus, there have been tasting-menu naysayers. When Paul Bocuse and the rest of the nouvelle cuisine wave were popularising the menu dégustation in the 1970s – borrowing from Japanese kaiseki tradition as they did so – none other than Julia Child was on hand to decry ‘a certain sameness of menu in the new-cuisine offerings, and that is probably inevitable, since not every chef is a creator, and those who cannot create will copy those who can.’ For Child in 1977, read Josh Ozersky in 2010, lamenting exactly the same tendency among lesser chefs to mimic the techniques of those at the vanguard of world gastronomy – which at this point in history, came via an obsession with microscopically detailed presentation across a succession of tiny courses that could only be achieved with laboratory-grade equipment. Chef Floriano Pellegrino, the creator of the infamous citrus foam But the backlash really reached its height midway through the last decade, as the number of courses served ballooned. El Bulli, the Catalan chef Ferran Adrià’s temple to modernist cuisine (and tweezer food), signed off in 2011 with a 49-course last supper. Throughout the 2010s, a series of Adrià acolytes, from Noma’s René Redzepi to Alinea’s Grant Achatz, would present diners with their own version of multi-multicourse degustation menus. As early as 2012, The New York Times’s Pete Wells was raising a warning flag, in a piece aptly titled ‘Nibbled to Death’. As longer menus started to proliferate, Wells cautioned that experiences like this can make a diner feel like a ‘cog in an invisible machine’, ‘as much like a victim as a guest’; he noted, too, how dining rooms were beginning to shift, as a new breed of diner took over, equal parts big-game hunter and earnest foodie. A chef presenting a diner with a ceramic replica of their own mouth and asking them to lick food from it might be in possession of something of an ego In retrospect, it almost seems quaint. Instagram was acquired by Facebook in 2012, the same year Wells wrote his cautionary screed; the 2010s’ tasting menu was to be consumed as much via social media as in the dining room. As Pellegrino’s now infamous mouthpiece illustrates, the only limit on presentation in the Instagram era is the chef’s own imagination; as DeRuiter’s response to it indicates, this may not be an entirely positive thing. But aside from the valid, knotty questions the Bros’ imbroglio raises about art and artistry – What is a chef? What is a client? What is good taste? – the most salient thing about it is the timing. Yes, we are once again litigating the future of the tasting menu. But now, we’re doing it in a cultural context that allows us to frame the discussion with a little more clarity – in light of the Covid pandemic and some of the issues it has laid bare. Dishes like this kombucha scoby feature on Noma's Instagram feed, which is just as much a vessel for consuming the tasting menu as eating it In a world where the concept of the ‘key worker’ has exposed urgent questions about labour relations at every level of society, a hospitality model predicated on moneyed guests benefiting from the toil of un(der)paid stagiaires starts to look questionable at best, if not downright exploitative, especially once the wincingly high sticker price of the finished product is taken into account. Similarly, a dining experience that relies on innumerable tableside interactions between front of house staff and customers – as many as 54, if each course of a 27-course menu Bite-size dishes such as those from Noma and Bros’ are increasingly passé must be brought to and cleared from the table; compared to just six for a three-course à la carte meal – feels, to put it lightly, not exactly Covid-safe. Even as the pandemic finally recedes, are people (whether staff or customers) really going to be comfortable getting so up in each other’s business, so frequently? 'Bite-size dishes such as those from Noma and Bros’ are increasingly passé' Then again, at its worst extremes, the tasting menu was never about the comfort of guests or staff. Shall we take a wild guess that a chef presenting a diner with a ceramic replica of their own mouth and asking them to lick food from it might be in possession of something of an ego? As the number of courses started to spiral in the tasting-menu arms race of the 2010s, it became clear that something else was at stake: a stereotypically male desire to have the longest one in the business. When Time magazine launched its infamous ‘Gods of Food’ issue in 2013, all three cover stars were male; as the decade went on, scrutiny slowly came to bear on how disproportionately fine dining (in which tasting menus were endemic) was dominated by men, most of them white. Pete Wells was right about the homogenising effect of tasting menus – although it took place not just in the dining room, but in the kitchen too. There is something profoundly surreal, if artistic, about the tasting menu: the elongation of an act that could take seconds into one that takes hours Wells began his piece with a minor but meaningful anecdote, detailing how at one restaurant he’d put down the menu and been asked, ‘What shall we cook for you this evening?’ It was in marked contrast to his introduction to dinner at another venue, where he confirmed he would be going all-in on the 12-course degustation menu only to be greeted with the grim pronouncement, ‘Okay, I’ll go get that started for you.’ No one wants to feel part of a process; no one wants to feel like they have lost their agency. In the wrong kind of hushed dining room, free will, spontaneity, fun are the first casualties. Ultimately, it is for this reason that the tasting menu feels in a more precarious state than at any other point in its history. If the thought of being confined to a specific location for an indeterminate period of time brings back memories of being locked down for large swathes of the past two years, it is unlikely to be a sensation people actively seek out as they return to restaurants; sitting in near-silence over a succession of tiny plates simply does not sound like a good time for a population that has been reminded how important joyful human connection actually is. During the 2010s, chefs like Noma's René Redzepi would present diners with complex multi-multicourse degustation menus, but the style has since fallen out of favour Those closest to the front line are noticing the change. Aiste Miseviciute travels the world of haute cuisine for her international culinary hub Luxeat, and she has gained tens of thousands of followers on Instagram in the process, all of them looking for a privileged glimpse of life at the top table of global gastronomy. She observes that the tasting menu is losing its importance. ‘With the pandemic, many diners have realised that often these tasting menus are too long – exhausting – and people want something real: good quality, good ingredients.’ There is, on reflection, something profoundly surreal about the tasting menu: the elongation of an act that could take seconds into one that takes hours; the fragmentation of few courses into many; the sheer manpower required to pull the thing off. There is something artistic about it, even if the artistry involved is more based in studious rehearsal than the sort of creative spontaneity, or genius, lionised in all of those chef profiles from the past few decades. If, as Miseviciute observes, the past two years have instilled in people a need to enjoy something tangible, down-to-earth, real, then perhaps what we will see is a further increase in the disconnect between haves and have-nots that existed before Covid-19. Tasting menu-only restaurants will continue to cater to the small but wealthy cadre of customers who enjoy the pomp, the ceremony, the theatrical absurdity of it all; everyone else can just get on with their lives. Yellow beets with söl, dried mussels and aromatic seeds from the 20-course tasting menu at three-Michelin-starred Geranium, in Copenhagen, which has since moved on from the format (Photo: Claes Bech-Poulsen) Increasingly, though, a third way is becoming more common. Some of the best meals I ate in London last year came in restaurants that had shifted for economic reasons from à la carte to a prix-fixe model: a certain number of courses – more than three, fewer than 27 – for a set price (usually around the £50 mark). For anyone looking for an experience a little more ‘special’ than the norm, it felt like the perfect win-win for both restaurant and diner: the restaurant gets to manage wastage and guarantees a certain spend per head, without having to employ a staff of hundreds; the diner gets the thrill of something a little more ornate and theatrical without the attendant price tag, waiting time and feeling of almost existential grossness that accompanies 20-plus courses of haute cuisine. All that, and not a ceramic mouthpiece in sight.
  9. Not sure they are my thing. And what fun to clean! Perhaps the weirdest thing is that they take 450 to 500 mls. So 2/3rds of a bottle at best. What is the point? And apparently they come in at around E850 each.
  10. Kenfessions: Cohiba Siglo 1 – Four Pillars Christmas Gin Okay, granted I have been a little slack in keeping up with the Kenfessions, but never fear, back in the saddle, so to speak. And after the ‘I’ve never had a Gurkha before’ snafu, it was onwards and upwards. Well, sort of. A small issue. Turns out that the rave reviews of a wonderful Juan Lopez No 2 had to be canned as I'd matched it with, and oh how I wish I was making this up, the Lustau 125th Anniversary ‘1996 Añada’ Vintage Sherry. Yes, the very same wine that I matched with the ‘first ever bar one’ Gurkha I’ve ever tried. Embarrassing. So into the bin with that piece as well. I'd insert a joke about early onset here, but it is feeling a smidge too close to the bone at the moment. Anyway, I figure that I have been so slack of late, you deserve a big effort here. So a bit longer than usual (which some might see as a punishment). Don’t get used to it. Back to the humidor. Floating around, a small Cohiba, all alone. That will do. So, out came a... continue to full article.
  11. always thought it was de niro that said that. mind you, could have been both of them. brilliant here, brilliant in deer hunter. great film. as for which is better, 1 or 2, tough. for me, that one had to break ground, so to speak, gives it the nod by the proverbial bee's appendage. same with star wars and empire. empire might have been a fraction the better but without star wars, ....
  12. very amusing. do you do childrens' parties? and a bit rich given you are an endangered species. didn't stay at the zoo. just went every day but on the fourth day, the oldies insisted i spend half a day with the family. as a kid, all i wanted to be was a zookeeper.
  13. what were the fox's thinking? why not just tip it down the sink? oh the inhumanity. that is just cruel. love jersey. spent four days there many years ago (3 1/2 in the durrell zoo).
  14. terrific film. but normally i can watch a good film numerous times over the years. this one, for some reason, no. but some great performances. glad it got the oscar. especially ahead of 'there will be blood'. saw that referenced above. bored the crap out of me. and if ever there was an overhyped, overcooked performance, dd lewis in that film was it. typical example where some start raving and the reputation of a wildly overrated performance gains silly momentum (how else would kate blanchet have ever won anything?). i have no doubt that they shoehorned bardem into the supporting category as otherwise he would have wiped the floor with the award. his was the best performance that year by the proverbial country mile. that said, i should say that i am usually a huge fan of sir daniel. his performance in Lincoln was one of the all time greats. for me, he should never have even been nominated for 'blood' but was so good in Lincoln that he deserved two for that. so it evens out. i would also suggest that bardem in this pic was what made him a monty for playing a bond villain.
  15. less exciting when you get to spend 24 hours in the club because qantas stuffed up - dead plane and the parts have to come from singapore and there is nothing else around. and everyone, including me for once, is trying desperately to get a new connection from brisbane to sydney (there were almost no seats because all planes were already full). a mate and i simply rang HQ in sydney to do it. got our connection for the first plane next day. qantas in darwin was claiming it could not be done. sending everyone away. crowds were very upset. i went to the desk to tell the seriously pissed off staff that they did not need to worry about me (thought i was doing them a favour). big crowd all yelling and shoving. was about to tell them this when the delightfully rude employee simply turned on me, told me they they were working on it, to shut up and go away. before i could say a word. so i thought right, you want to act like this when i was trying to help you! in my very loud outdoor voice (also known as the voice to use when you want as many people as possible to hear what the sods at qantas don't want you to share), told them not to worry me. i had my seats on the connecting flight. told them very loudly how easy it was. i had simply rung sydney. the crowd started screaming at the qantas employees. and the woman looked at me with utter hatred. i just smiled. love darwin but the airport, not so much.
  16. why would you think that? it is fly fishing for arapaima. and if one knew the world was ending, pr probably more correctly, if one had the exact time of the ending, i would love to do this.
  17. https://midcurrent.com/videos/huge-arapaima-hooked-fly-fishing-in-the-amazon/?goal=0_8efbf3b958-9a4df7def2-42796029&mc_cid=9a4df7def2&mc_eid=06595355ea
  18. i know little about him but they are saying he has the best hands in the draft - apparently they measure these things, i assume by fewest % of drops. and also good speed. olave seems more highly regarded but it was olave or dotson and then two more players. given the hit/miss ratio in any draft, probably makes that a no-brainer. they got a 3rd and a 4th. they used the 3rd on the new RB. (i believe that had London still been there, they would have taken him with the original pick). but wait, there is more. they then traded the 4th to carolina for two 5ths (i think we also gave a low pick - 7th?) as well. with those two 5ths, we got sam howell and a new huge TE. we desperately needed a new and a big TE. who knows how good he'll be. but sam H was mocked to us in the 2nd regularly (even when we didn't have a 2nd). a year ago, he was in the debate for the top QB in the draft. so getting him might be the steal of the year. so in the end, it meant that instead of olave, we got dotson, robinson (the new RB), our new giant TE and sam H, a potential franchise QB. nothing guaranteed, but i know which option i'd have taken. i think the team will be happy with that. now, if only we could undraft snyder.
  19. at this stage, seems about right. but like Mr B says below, largely meaningless at this stage. if sam H turns out to be our starting QB and a good one, then this could be A+++. i he does not and no one else excels, D. won't know for a few years. saw something which covered our drafts for the last decade or so. i think the oldest drafted player we have is jonathan allen who was drafted in 2017. so if we are on course, in 4-5 years, none of these latest drafted players will even be with us at that stage.

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