The week that was (11 February 2016)

Let's talk lock out. It's all we've talked about (on social) for the past week. You'll have read much along the way, so I am limiting this to links, click to read more.

It started with an 8,000 word diatribe on Linkedin. It was exacerbated by police, who picked on the wrong wine bar (10 William), Gio took to instagram, the chef fraternity responded, the newspapers picked up on it, the cops were forced to release a statement, a lawyer dining at the time refuted their version of events, and then the Premier added his 2 cents on Facebook. What a debacle. 

To my mind places like 10 William St are actually the answer to the problem, which is why this is so poignant. If we want a better drinking culture and less violence (although the culture of violence in this country probably needs to be looked at separately too) we need to encourage more drinking and eating together.

Like France. And Italy. And Spain. And many other delightful cultures that celebrate conviviality at the table first and foremost. Bringing back the six o'clock swill is not a solution. It is a step back. It's a leap back. It's embarrassing. 

I wrote an article for the Oz five years ago comparing the drinking culture in France and Australia. "It’s accepted wisdom in Australia that the relationship between alcohol and violence is linear – i.e., the more we drink, the more violent we become. Consequently, health lobbies and government bodies obsess about trying to reduce the volume of alcohol consumed and making access to alcohol more difficult. It’s a simple concept, and one that is totally contradicted by the example of France." While it's a little odd to quote myself, I think the point is important. It's also odd my opinion hasn't changed in five years, but it hasn't. At all. You can read the article here.

Isn't it astounding that on the one hand our government will spend millions to bring a chef to Sydney with a view to show the world what we are made of (in a culinary sense), while the other hand is making sure we have nothing to show when they get here. Wake up.