Rant Of The Day THIS RANT 16/02/98

Rant Of The Day is where I get to mouth off about whatever I feel like for however long I like. Theoretically, I'll update my whinge/opinion piece every weekday; in practice, maybe not so often.

Looking for Mr Goodpie

Working in the centre of Sydney, I am probably relatively spolit when it comes to choosing a place in which to lunch. From the sickening ambience of the Woolworths Town Hall Cafe to the wonky crockery at Gecko's, Sheraton On The Park; from the greasy convenience of McDonalds (with 14 CBD locations) to the unparalleled club sandwich from New York Sandwich, I'm living in a virtual gourmet paradise. And yet occasionally I still find myself saying "God, where am I going to go for lunch today?"

In my eager search for new places to get my daily carbo and cholesterol fill, I've recently been exploring Cornucopia, the food hall under Sydney Central Plaza aka that big new Grace Brothers city store. Apart from the fact that the trays include a guide to pronouncing the word 'cornucopia' for the terminally thick, it's quite a nice place. I'm partial to the occasional pita roll from Nandos, and the Indian takeaway is just the way I like it too, with all the chili removed prior to preparation.

One of the more bizarre offerings at Cornucopia is Mr Goodpie, which sells meat pies, sausage rolls and other assorted savoury products that no-one has thought to throw at Bill Gates yet. The first time I saw this place, I thought the name was just a bit too tacky even for me. But three weeks later, I was assailed with a pie-eating urge (MUST HAVE PIE) so I tried 'em out.

The verdict? Pretty good, overall. The pies have real steak, the sauce is apparently free, and the sausage rolls taste a lot better than the Woolworths alternative. When Spanky sampled a steak and mushroom pie, it collapsed into pieces rather too quickly, but this appears to have been an isolated event.

Equally appealing is the way that the pies are distinguished in their wrappers by little stickers of the kind reproduced above. This makes a nice change from the McDonalds approach of 'let's print a new wrapper for every burger'. If they'd just add a steak and tomato pie to the menu, I'd be quite content. At least for the next month or so, anyway.

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