The travel brochures advertising Manly and its delights will always show beautifully clear days with rolling surf, smiling happy people and a general vibe of perfection. Fair enough – quite often Manly is just like that. I haven’t seen any promotional materials for the Manly Food & Wine Festival or the Manly Jazz Festival – events that are held annually – but both would be misleading if they contained a hint of sunshine. We’ve previously commented on the shocking meteorological luck of the Manly Jazz Festival. A similar fate befell the Manly Food & Wine Festival on the weekend.
I thought I may have been a little harsh with my recollection, but infrequent contributor – l0der – confirmed my view that the Manly Food and Wine Festival is as unlucky as the Manly Jazz Festival. Perhaps the Manly Jazz Festival suffers more extreme weather – but it’s almost always overcast. Fortunately Manly is opening more and more places on the beachfront, so there’s plenty of options to get out of the rain. Murray’s at Manly is quite kid friendly during the day so after a soggy quick perusal of what the stalls had to offer it is a perfect place to seek shelter. The beauty of Murray’s is that you can watch the people parade along North Steyne and check out the surf.
My tipple of choice was a Murray’s offering that has been around for a while – Punk Monk. This is a beer not to be underestimated. Punk Monk weighs in a hefty 7.5%, but doesn’t taste as such. There’s plenty of powerful flavours and there’s the earthiness of his Libertine along with the yeastiness of a Belgian Ale. Nice and bubbly off the tap and maybe it was my pouring, but it produces a souffle-like head that lasts and lasts. Quite easy to polish off a couple of these – maybe that’s why Murray’s doesn’t serve stuff over 6%(?) in a pint glass.
By the way, there is a severe weather warning for Sydney for the next couple of days – mountainous seas and high winds. Unfortunately this correspondent will be in Melbourne, but if there’s a BotF salty seadog up for the journey – it’d be great to hear about it all.