Day 121 Friday 9/10/20 Griffith, breezy 19
Today is Elle’s 70th birthday.
This area being the producer of 25% of Australian wine Elle suggests we do a cellar door tour. We only make it to one winery. The tasting at De Bortoli is great fun and our hostess, a Griffith local, is most informative and she introduces us to wines we wouldn’t have found elsewhere. By 11:30 we stagger out the door wondering how we’ll fit 60 bottles in the car and where we’ll put them in the vans. I think Woody’s undies cupboard is already full of beer. The wine was such a bargain and so drinkable we just hope that it still tastes good when we get home and that we weren’t seduced by cellar ambience.
We zip back into town for Caesar wraps from Bertoldo’s to soak up the alcohol and gosh they’re good. Just think of the best Caesar salad you’ve had but all wrapped up in a parcel.
Woody washes the Jeep but it’s now so shiny that an Apostle bird has fallen for a good looking chick on the roof every time he gives ‘her’ the eye he slips down the windscreen in excitement.
We take a short drive along the road beyond our caravan park and find large modern homes set in perfectly manicured gardens abutting acres of orange groves.
El Prado pops a bottle of French champagne and we toast Elle’s birthday before the cab runs us into town for dinner. The cabbie by the way giving us his take on the unsolved murder of anti-drugs campaigner Donald McKay back in 1977, (don’t mention the Mafia).
La Scala is a traditional Italian restaurant with a welcoming and homely feel. There’s a huge bunch of hot pink roses on the table waiting for Elle. El Prado has been busy. Our Canadian waitress admits to working at Bertoldo’s during the day and in fact she made our Caesar wraps. We order a bottle of local wine a Durif from Calabria Family and as we discuss the lusciousness of our choice the bloke on the next table leans over and asks us what we think of it. We rave about how good it is and he replies “I’m glad you didn’t say it was shit, because it’s one of mine!” And thus, we meet Bill. Now amongst all this chit chat poor Elle, the birthday girl is fair hanging for a good Italian meal and none of us is disappointed. At the recommendation of our hostess at De Bortoli I can barely look at the menu as the Osso Buco special is far too tempting and delicious.
As we roll out of the cab, Elle clutching her roses, the scent of orange blossom hangs heavy on the air. What a day.
It’s highly unlikely that Melbourne will ease restrictions on Oct 19 as planned as the case average is still too high.
Travelling Kms: 0