Archive for June, 2011

June 26, 2011

If you like your museums dainty…

and not some gigantic cavern like, say, the powerhouse, then I’ve got exactly the place to while away some time. The museum in Windsor is only two years old and, (I’m ashamed to say), that we hadn’t actually visited it until I realized that it would be a good place to feature on the blog. It’s built directly behind a clutch of some of Windsor’s oldest buildings and is a fusion of clean lines and modern architecture with convict remnants and locally important artifacts. Free to enter, the Hawkesbury museum is open from 10am until 4pm every day except Tuesday, and handily available in the foyer is a plethora of pamphlets on local historical sites to see as well as guided heritage walks.

I have to apologise in advance for the quality of the photos…the exhibits were mostly in glass cases and because of their age I couldn’t use the flash…

This metal surveyor’s chain dates from the 1880’s and was found in Wilberforce, they were used to measure roads and property boundaries, each chain was constructed of 100 links…

I kinda thought the whole ball-and-chain thing was a Hollywood invention, but they really were used…apparently male convicts who re-offended were made to build roads while chained together, each man’s leg irons weighed up to 6 kilograms…

This boat building tool box dates from 1890 and belonged to John Whatmore and his descendents John Thomas Books and Ebenezer Matthew Books, (thanks to the museum, by the way, for allowing me to photograph their exhibits and steal all their info)! The picture on the lid is hand painted and in beautiful condition considering its age…

You probably can’t read the text in this beautifully written advice-to-young-ladies book, it talks about contraception being a menace to both body and soul, as well as an insult to every right thinking man and woman. It also advises against first cousins marrying – and she’s not that crash hot on second cousins either!

These items were owned by Andrew Loder (1826 – 1900), whose initials are engraved in elaborate scroll text on the end of the handles…Loder was the grandson of John Howe, an early Hawkesbury explorer and chief constable who arrived on the Coromandel in 1802.

June 15, 2011

A sweet combination: sailing boats and German food

Tucked away quite out of sight to the casual observer, in the green paddocks of a suburb called Luddenham lies the yummiest German/Austrian restaurant I’ve yet to encounter in Sydney. It goes by the impressive sounding name of  The Hubertus Country Club and even though it’s a little bit of a drive from…well… anywhere really, the food and ambience is definitely worth it! You’ll have to hold onto your taste buds for a little bit, however, because before we get to the delicious bit I’ve some cool shots of the model sail boats that were merrily tacking and leewaying on the lake in the front of the clubs grounds.

This one was hand built from scratch by it’s owner…he said it had taken him 2 and a half years…partly because he kept getting called out of the shed by his wife…

We visited on a rather chilly winter Sunday…perfect for the warm heartiness of german food…

The restaurant itself is actually a part of the club, so although it is licensed you’ll have to sweet talk hubby into going next door to the bar to buy drinks – but that means pub prices, and they have a german pilsner on tap!!

As an entree we shared the amazing dish called langosh, $7.50. For the uninitiated it’s an airy soft bread that has been fried and is served with a topping of fresh crushed garlic and with a pot of sour cream to dip in – the texture is something akin to an un-sweet krispy kreme donut!

I chose the main course size of the stuffed cabbage rolls, ($24.50, or entree size $14.50), a dense filling of mince and rice encased in cabbage and served in a light tomato broth…those baked potatoes were the best I have ever had, (sorry mum), they were crisp outside, soft and fluffy inside and tasted like no ordinary potato has a right to taste…

MD being MD went for the most meat intensive offering he could find…the gypsy platter, ($32.50). This tower o meat was held together by a wooden skewer and consisted of: baked potatoes on the bottom, then a chicken schnitzel, a pork schnitzel, (both melt-in-the-mouth tender), a kransky sausage, two huge crumbed mushrooms and a lemon wedge!! Artfully heaped onto the plate around the sides was a delicious lemony potato salad, some token pieces of lettuce, and a cubed beetroot salad…

For dessert, (and yes, I know what you’re thinking – how on earth can she fit in dessert after all that food, well, at the Hubertus whatever you can’t eat can be packed into a little container and taken home), so it just had to be the strudel…it was served warm, with big chunks of firm apple pieces and a decadent handful of double cream…and at $8.50 was a steal! 

The Hubertus club has a rather unusual variety of entertainment options: it is also a pistol and rifle club…

the aforementioned model boat club and on the first Sunday of the month offers Fruehschoppen, (home-made German delicacies for sale), as well as old-time dancing in the beautifully decorated auditorium, complete with a live band!