Monday we had another full day in Adelaide. We started with the Botanic Garden, which was a great way to kick off the first sunshine in four days. There is a waterlily pavilion which is a greenhouse with tons of Victoria amazonica waterlilies in the center of the park. It explains the biology of the waterlilies but beware if you bring your kids along – the description of pollination says it is a night club for the bees and gives a play-by-play in night club terms of how the mating and pollination work.
A local Adelaidean (James Metz) told us about Vego and Lovin It – a fantastic vegetarian restaurant tucked away on Rundle Street. There is only a small mosaic sign above an unmarked doorway telling the world this place exists. As we ventured up the narrow staircase we came to a small door and inside was packed. It was an apartment with 200 sq ft holding 25 people with real retro (not manufactured to look retro) posters and clippings covering every surface. Walking in, we knew the food had to be good. All they really serve is veggie burgers and they are by far the best burgers we have ever eaten. And that includes any of the Aussie beef burgers I’ve been eating lately (which are kind of gross but in a good way with ham, egg, cheese, lettuce, tomato, onion, beetroot and sweet chili sauce).
After that we checked out the South Australian Museum for a little culture. A very cool exhibit on Aboriginal culture that included a few honest discussions about the past, which was refreshing to see.
Then we caught a train to Glenelg (that is a palindrome for my grammar savvy friends) to check out a brew pub we had read about called Holdfast Hotel. But the place was out of its own beer – yup, I said a brewery out of its own beer. It would be like going to Rock Bottom and they had none of their beer so they served Summit instead. After that we quickly headed back to the city to meet James and his friends to see where the locals hang out. And they definitely did not lead us astray. We hit up the Colonist for a few beers and a little Chinese restaurant that we knew had to be good because they greeted Marty, one of our new friends, by name. Always go where the locals go and you won’t be disappointed!