Australia and America have a long history of friendship and camaraderie -- it started when we realized we both spoke (and kind of disliked the) English, improved during Crocodile Dundee 2, and has just grown stronger since. But if you ask an American who didn't go abroad to Uni at Sydney to start telling you what they know about Australian food and drink culture, they become quiet and insecure, and start quoting Foster's commercials. That's why, in preparation for Australia Day this weekend, we've taken it upon ourselves to inform you, dear reader, about the ins, outs, downs, and unders of Aussie cuisine.
Let's start out with the continent of Australia. Here it is! The world's sixth largest country is also its smallest continent, but that doesn't mean it isn't filled with a super-diverse array of beautiful flora and fauna -- most of whom are secretly trying to kill you. But don't let that stop you. In Australia, it's eat or be eaten. And eat, they do.
CREDIT: Flickr/Sinead Friel
The kangaroo question:
Ever since the movie Kangaroo Jack won all those Oscars, people have been wanting to put sunglasses and hoodies on kangaroos. They've also wanted to ask: Do people in Australia really eat a lot of kangaroo?
Well, yes and no. While they're not gorging themselves on the regular with kangaroo health drinks and Lunchables, they do eat it a lot more than we do here, mostly in pubs, and in the form of steaks or "kanga bangers", which are sausages made of 'roo meat. And if the Australian naming methodology seems inherently bizarre now, just wait until later in this story.
CREDIT: Simon Laird
On beer and the Foster's fallacy:
Australia's favorite beer, rather than Foster's (which apparently isn't Australian for "beer" at all -- they just call it "beer"!), is either VB (Victoria Bitters) or XXXX Gold. And while the Australian beer scene hasn't yet exploded in the same way as the States, there is a large developing craft movement, with notables like Burleigh Brewing in the Gold Coast, Coopers in Adelaide, and the bad ass Feral Brewing Company outside of Perth.