Sunday 10 May 2009

DInner without Oliver

Last evening I enjoyed an evening with Nicky Judd and Kaj Haffenden, who run their own very successful web development business City of Cairns.

We dined at Olivers on Spence Street, set up 3 years ago by Oliver Schreiber who's been a Cairns local for 20 years, well-known for Wooroonooran Safaris.

Now I'm no restaurant reviewer, go to KitchenSlut for that, but the cuisine there is spectacular, and really worth a visit, if you haven't treated yourself before.
This weekend they're having a pumpkin fest, and the special set three-course menu had roasted tiger prawns with pumpkin marsh-mallows (the chef is infamous for his marsh-mallows, don't knock it till you've tried it, I say). The dessert even managed to mix sweet pumpkin with a macadamia nut pie. Next weekend's theme is Vanilla.
I had Kaj's recommendation of the Baramundi, steam wrapped in paperbark. We topped it all off with a Skybury coffee liqueur.
It's so nice to spend time with such talented net entrepreneurs like these folk, who employ a raft of specialists in the Mulgrave Road studio. They embrace and ride the wave of change and believe old rules need to either be discarded or totally reinvented. Soon, they will re-brand their business to reflect that they work for clients across the country and even internationally.
We talked at length about the emergence of new forms of media and how we collect our news and information so different than our parents did, yet traditional media has hardly changed.
"Newspapers are going through a slow painful death," Kaj says.
"I recently wrote a letter to the Cairns Post about supporting local business," Nicky told me. "However, it was never published."
"Maybe if you included a few typos, you would have had more chance," Kaj chimed in, known for his wit. Never fear, I look forward to bringing you some of their writing over the next few weeks.
We talked about our local tourism body, TTNQ, that have had a history of getting their web strategy and development produced out of Cairns.
The power geek couple are both long-term members of Toastmasters and belong to the Mt Sheridan club, and it shows. Them beam with a positive attitude and love the region we all call home.
It was a geek-inspired evening, yet there was not a pair of thick glasses or pens crammed in the top pocket in sight.

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