A gondola glides past our table overlooking the river. It’s a slightly surreal moment, given that we’re not in Venice (or Vegas), but at Surfer’s Paradise on Australia’s Gold Coast.
But just as I’m thinking this, I’m distracted by the arrival of our cocktails. We’re a trio of Brisbane bloggers, heading for a weekend at the ProBlogger Training Event – but before we start the next day, we’re at Helm Bar & Bistro Surfers which we’ve been invited to check out over a relaxed dinner and write about.
Now, call me old-fashioned – and my companions did not hesitate to do so – but I like my cocktail in a beautiful glass. I’m delighted with my margarita, but stunned to see my friend Kerry has been served up a mojito in a jam jar (with a straw). Recycling is good, but I really don’t want to drink out of something so chunky, so I’m pleased I didn’t order one of those. Apparently the jam jar is trendy. Go figure.
I soon forget about the offending beaker as our food arrives. As we’re near the sea, we’ve gone for the fresh seafood that Queensland does so well and chosen to share. I’m a bit torn by this decision because I really fancy the sound of the parmesan-crusted snapper fillet with braised potatoes and peas, with a lemon butter sauce. So we order that anyway, along with the more regular “sharing” dishes – a Peking Duck pizza and a small bowl of beer-battered chips with aioli.
In Helm’s bar, on the other side of the bistro wall, a former contestant from The Voice is amplified so loudly we ask for the door to be shut. But any worries about the noise are soon forgotten with the arrive of the night’s piece de resistance, a three-tiered stand bearing an array of seafood – oysters, prawns, mussels, soft-shelled crab, Moreton Bay bugs, and dipping sauces.
Sadly, we don’t do it justice. We’ve over-ordered and some of the pizza is left uneaten. But we’ve done our best to polish off the seafood and linger over it until we realise we’re the last diners in the place – and the staff are probably wanting to go home. Off into the night we roll…noting happily that we’ll all be back in town in a month’s time and might just have to come back again!
A Glass Half Full was a guest of Helm Bar & Bistro.