On Sunday Mat and I actually left the Insular Peninsular and ventured all the way down to Manly for Ruth’s belated birthday celebration.
She chose the 4 Pines in Manly for a relaxing Sunday afternoon lunch and sample of the beer; the 4 Pines is also a brewery and have a fine selection of their own beers. Mat and I had given Ruth, Henry and Cam a lift so they could drink and we met up with Wayland & Kirstie and Phil & Teri there. It worked out quite well as Manly is a good middle point for all of us and I had assumed this was the reason behind the choice in venue, though apparently it wasn’t; Ruth wasn’t as thoughtful as she appeared and had picked it simply because she had gone there the week before and liked it (I mean to say, how selfish 😛 lol)!
It was a beautifully sunny day but not quite warm enough to sit outside. The inside of the place was very nice though and they sold the beer in pints which made a refreshing change from the usual Aussie scooners. The beer wasn’t particularly cheap at around $9 a pint but the general consensus was that it was very good beer and worth the extra money for something a bit different and a pleasant atmosphere.
The food was exceedingly good and very reasonable averaging at $20 for a main course. There was a good selection ranging from the enormous mega burger, to fish & chips and Mushroom risotto. I chose the chicken pie and was not disappointed. In fact everyone reckoned mine was the best. There was heaps of chunky moist breast and pieces of bacon accompanying the vegetables topped with a lovely puff pastry lid. It was a good size and if I’d wondered whether I should have ordered chips to go with it I was very glad I hadn’t afterwards.
Henry surprised us all (apart from Ruth who has to cater for his bottomless pit on a daily basis) by ordering a mega burger and a main course dish of mussels and managing to eat them both but this was by no means a sign that the dishes were on the small size; they weren’t. Mat had the mussels as well and found them to be most satisfying, though I think he did pinch a few of Ruth’s chips!
After food we all went for a wander in the sun and I made myself incredibly sick by having an ice cream and large coffee. All in all it was a lovely day and great to catch up with everyone; Phil and Teri had just come back from two weeks home in the UK and we just don’t see Wayland and Kirstie as often as we would like because they live all the way out in the city (yes, we are very lazy – they don’t call Avalon the Insular Peninsular for nothing)!