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STELLA ARTOIS TAPPING THE PULSE 11-04-00

High living and low life in the hospitality capital, brought to you by Stella Artois, "serving rogues and knaves since 1366".

Some would say that people like us who go to restaurants and bars just to make fun of the illiterates who put together the menus and signs are cheap and nasty. We say, no, we're comfortably nasty, and if you don't know the difference between a brasserie and a brassiere, you're in trouble. With this in mind, our Hospo Typo of the Week this week goes to a relatively new business in - according to their promotional business card - Warring Taylor Street in Wellington. Funny, whenever we go there the street always seems quite peaceful. Offender identified at the end of this email.

Huge weekend just passed for Wellington, with two great games from the different rugby codes in the one weekend, and a significant financial boost to the Wellington hospo community. One has to wonder, though, at the commercial acumen of the operators of the Burger King in Lambton Quay, turning down thousands of dollars' worth of post-game trade by closing early.

On the subject of real food, Brava is undergoing a bit of a revitalisation, all documented in their excellent Brava Bulletin. In the spirit of Telethon, we'd like to see other restaurants get more info flowing to their customers with these sorts of publications. Award-winner Len Baldwin has moved across the road from New City to become Brava's new head chef. Will Kinney and Brava partner returns to the corner of Courtney and Cambridge as Manager, with fellow Brava partner John McGrath back on the floor for half the week before he heads off to the Cannes Film Festival. Belinda Radcliffe (ex-Felix, and we miss her) is day manager.

Brava recently hosted the Wellington launch of the Laugh! Festival, with many acts appearing upstairs at Downstage. Current show up there is Ken Duncum's Waterloo Sunset, which we heartily recommend, even for those with only a passing knowledge of what would seem to be a central theme: punk (it's actually more about displacement and need to belong). Top stuff on a great set (a Wellington boatshed circa 1980) with a terrific cast spouting great dialogue, with lots of violence, swearing and smoking.

Opening this weekend is the major Telecom Prospect 2001 exhibition of NZ art at City gallery, alongside the wonderful Denis O'Connor show in the Michael Hirschfeld Gallery.

As always, way too much to do in the Hospitality Capital.

Right, that's all for this week. And, if you were wondering, the Hospo Typo of the Week goes to... Crank Café, on the corner of Waring Taylor Street and Jervois Quay. We love their modern stone-based décor, and the range of juices and health-oriented food. But people, change those cards now....

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TAPPING THE PULSE appears every WEDNESDAY through LOOP and SCOOP.

Take a look at StellaCam at http://www.onlinevenue.com/onlinestore/stellacam/stellacam_index.asp, on the excellent international site for beer, http://beer.com

"I would rather die of thirst than drink from the cup of mediocrity"

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