Sunday, 22 July 2012
The Point and the Problem!
After going for a few walks and getting to know our new area we found our little local gem. Neither of us had tried the Point at Albert Park before but we liked the idea of the view overlooking the city and the lake while we dined. Since my grandparents were coming up for dinner thought it would be a good excuse to try it out! I must admit I hadnt heard of it beforehand and I was expecting something a little less formal but as we noted the intimate dining area and had our coats taken by the attentive, well dressed waiters we realised we were in for a bit of a treat!
Without menus in front of us we were asked what we would like to drink, (Chris and I weren't drinking so it made it a little more simple) but once my grandparents each requested their preferred beverage it became apparent that the waiter knew the whole wine list off by heart and talked us through the appropriate wines, including flavour notes, year and background. I was impressed. It became apparent that I hadn't researched the place very well once the menus came, as it was very much a meat dominated menu, with only one vegetarian option available. I'm not proud of it but I did sulk a little as I ordered and suffered the teasing of the others. When some complimentary canapés came for us they appeared to be all vegetarian but I was dubious so Chris got mine, however to the credit of the wait staff they don't miss a trick and our waiter was quick to enquire and ensured me there was no meat- even offered to make me a new one! I felt suitable chastised for my silliness and had a giggle at myself for acting like a brat.
Whilst ordering again it was Apparent that these guys really knew their stuff, they had an extensive knowledge on the different foods, they knew where the oysters were from and even told me that the shiitake mushrooms in my dish were grown on eucalyptus trees in the Macedon ranges! We truly felt like we were in good hands. The meals we delicious and the end highlight was the desserts. They had all the usual fancy desserts you would expect but I was sold when I saw the banana cake with bubblegum ice cream at the top of the list, as it was the suggestion of our waiter I had high expectations. I wasnt diasppointed! I don't want to give away too much but Chris did describe it as a 'fairground on a plate' I'd definitely recommend The Point, especially if you love steak and meat! Any vegetarians be warned that there is very little choice and vegans might just have to starve, or fill up on wine :)Well worth checking out but expect to pay over $100 per head for meal and drinks. Great for a special occasion.
We are now over halfway through Dry July and I am being completely honest when I say that I haven't touched a drop of alcohol all this time! Although I have been very, very tempted on several occasions. Especially on completing the Half Marathon and moving into our house (both events very deserving of a glass of champagne!) Now we get to the problem!!
It's something we have noticed and to be honest it's really quite sad. It's the reactions and expectations of other people. We even had one friend who admitted to not inviting us out on 2 occasions because they figured we wouldn't go unless we could drink. I was very surprised at this mentality as I quite often will elect to drive and not drink much when I am out anyway. When I mentioned to a girl friend that I was going to an event she assumed that I'd given up my Dry July pledge because there was going to be free cocktails. On reflection it's really unfortunate that the assumption is that to have a social life or go out for a fun night that you have to drink! Its surprising just how much of our social lives revolves around drinking. People actually find it weird if you don't. Even at dinner at the Point I felt so bad for not having some wine, almost as though we were being rude by not participating, even though nobody said anything. For a catchup we always grab a bottle of wine or go for cocktails, on a hot day guys like a cold beer, with any meal after 12pm people order drinks, we celebrate everything with it, our nights out are at clubs to drink, I never realized it was such a big part of our lives! Some people even try to make you feel bad or 'weak' for not having a drink and I can't understand how not drinking is seen as socially unacceptable- I would have thought what is unacceptable is the behaviour of someone who drinks too much!
I like to drink as much as the next person and have had more than my fair share of hangovers but I never thought I was cooler than somebody else because of it! When you look at all the negatives of alcohol it's amazing that there is still this perception. It's not as if by not drinking you suddenly turn into a boring little mouse, I hate the excuse people use, I only have fun when I drink or I'm not drunk enough to dance. It's confidence in ourselves that lets us have a good time and even without alcohol I'll have a dance and a laugh with my friends!!
Its been such an interesting little experiment, I thought I'd be more surprised at my health than what other people think! Overall so far I'm proud for sticking to my guns and must admit I am looking forward to August 1st but it has really changed my perception of how we spend our time socially and I think I'm going to start actively choosing to have a week or two without it in the future. At least my body and my bank balance will thank me for it!