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The Chicken? Or the…

by John Curnow, Global Editor, 1 Mar 2021 22:00 UTC
Fried, Scrambled, Boiled, Poached, Cakes, Dressings - anything! And they taste superb © The Smoked Egg Company

Yep. That would be eggs. Except what you're looking at here are smoked eggs, and I was just recently talking with Julie, the innovator who created them, somewhat by mistake, which makes it very much like Stainless Steel, Sticky Notes, and some other very cool products in that regard, and look where we'd be without them!

Now we don't talk that much about food here in these missives, possibly assuming that everyone knows that shared plates are the go, as Andrea and Ian Treleaven pointed out so well in their books. Catching fish is fantastic, especially if you have cold Sake to go with it, and so many talk with me about powdered yoghurt.

So imagine then when I heard about these Chilled Smoked Eggs having a shelf life of up to 30 weeks. There's reduced waste to talk about, bacteria free shells, the protein stays true, and the whites will peak like the great Alps, and the flavour has chefs and customers alike all waxing on lyrically, with one self-confessed addict saying he will never eat a normal egg again!

One chef, Dwayne, was delighted to be quoted, "I find them to be one of the best and most versatile ingredients available. We constantly get amazing feedback from our customers in regard to the dishes that we use the smoked eggs in."

"In fact we get many return customers for these dishes in particular. We also only use the smoked eggs to make all our mayonnaises and aiolies, as the flavour is far superior, more interesting and has a better shelf life."

Right oh. These are only available in Australia at present, and I wonder if anyone from the cruising community has already used them? Would you like to? You can find an Australian location here. Of course, if you want to make contact with me to learn more then please do so via email.

The Cat - Boat

Back in November last year, our editorial When I was young, I did everything to excess... was essentially the report card for the first 12 months of Beneteau's new cat brand, Excess. Since then, the first Excess 12 in Australia has been sold by Flagstaff Marine, and will call the Port Douglas home. She's lying in the glorious Port Stephens for now, before making her way to the Gold Coast soon, where she'll have a sleepover that the Sanctuary Cove show. The second Excess 12 in Australia presently lies at Rushcutters Bay in Sydney where you can test it, and equally, buy it!!!!

Bruno Belmont and Thibaut de Montvalon of Excess put me in touch with a very avid French multihull sailor (aren't they all?), by the name of Francois Dugast. "I sailed single handed, respectively a Lagoon 380 and a 400 from France to Australia through Brazil, the North Atlantic, and loops in the Mediterranean... About 60K nautical miles in all, and also true, my new Excess 11 is my favourite of the three so far. Just went through a harsh crossed waves gale of Force 9 by Cape Finisterre and the XS behaved very smoothly." Francois sold the 400 through Flagstaff Marine, and they're keen to do so with his new Excess when it gets here.

Francois also commented, "My two trips to Australia left me with a delicious souvenir of the moments passed in your country. You can tell your readers that French sailors love to be down under..."

Now the main reason for speaking with Francois was to get his take on the Excess-ness of the Excess brand. "It's certainly the easiest cat I ever sailed: self-tacking is of course a big advantage, mainly because it doesn't have any detrimental effect on the performance. Of course, I have the 'pulse line' version, but other friends with the normal set up say their performance is satisfactory."

"The behaviour in crossed waves is very good; no banging (as for the Lagoon 400) and the autopilot manages the course without excessive effort. I must admit I don't use the Portside helm, and have set all lines on starboard, but everyone has their own way to navigate."

"The lightness of the boat is it's best asset, along with the weight/sail area ratio. A heavy cat is always slow, and thus uncomfortable."

"I originally thought room for storage would be a bit 'short', but after fitting all my gears and stuff, there is still some room left. So my first impression was not accurate. I even have a foldable bike under the Portside front bed... As for any other boat the storage under the cabin seats is always a gym, having to move away the cushions - There is room for improvement for all boats, I guess."

"In terms of finishes, the industry has tried for the past 20 years to reduce the weight, and this brings us to bare necessity; no extravagance in terms of wood panels for example. Still I'm living everyday on board for almost five months now and had a lot of guests coming for parties and they all liked the décor. It's lean and clean; of course the Ikea kind of manufacturing common to all recent boats could be reproached, but the overall perception is quite nice."

"It's a new series, and it has a couple of little snags here and there, but the Excess team led by Thibaut is extremely responsive when it comes to addressing the issues. They are clearly willing to improve the quality to reach a point close to perfection and don't let anything behind or use 'cut corners' solutions."

The Monolith - Boat

The new, very spacious, and distinctly stylish Jeanneau Yachts 60 was going to be a star at Boot Düsseldorf, and obviously, the 2021 show did not happen. However, the light is very much on this large and impressive boat from the pen of Philippe Briand.

Apart from her capacious interior, that sports 19 different alternative layouts, and an options list that makes each and everyone to leave the yard a semi-custom craft, I could help but notice that her polars showed she is capable of over 14 knots at about 145, and something like 11 on a beam reach. Now that's a passage maker. A 250m2 bag, and 110m2 Zero, along with the fully battened main and 110% genoa could well be the go for those looking to reach far lying places. And a 2.55m draft means you won't be anchoring back out in the ocean when you get there!

Yes I think it is fair to say I was impressed with the information, and then again when I noted that two-time Moth World Champion, Rohan Veal of 38 South Boat Sales, had signed up one for Australia. It will be on display at the 2022 Sanctuary Cove International Boat Show. Base price for Australia is AUD1.3m, so I expect it won't be the only one living in the Land of Oz.

The People - Legend

Jon Sanders is now 81 years of age, and he recently sailed into Fremantle, Western Australia to complete his 11th solo circumnavigation. His list of records, for the bulk of his achievements are just that, are as long as his years are advanced, but don't tell that to the sprightly octogenarian.

Team Manager Dr Stephen Davis talked about how the Nebo App had helped them look after Jon both during storms and for his research work collecting water samples as part of his No Plastic Waste voyage. Where to from here, huh?

The People - Persistent

Ryan Finn departed from New York on Thursday, January 21, 2021 on his way to San Francisco via Cape Horn. He will be attempting the word record for the fastest single-handed route to San Francisco. The current record for this trip is 81 days, and Ryan plans on making it in just 70 days! And remember this is on a 36-foot Proa.

It was not to be, however, and a collision with a UFO just a couple of days later meant instead he headed for the North Carolina/Virginia coast. Unperturbed, Finn is already hatching a new plan. He and Jzerro's architect, Russel Brown have moved the boat back to Finn's parent's house, and plan to effect proper repairs, with a new departure date for the adventure of late fall 2021.

Finn intends to install both a water maker, along with a hydro generator, so that the overall load of the boat is lighter. "At first I felt a little disappointed, like I had entered a split reality. However, the positive to all of this is that I now found a weakness I did not know about, and I have a repair plan with the maker of the boat", said Finn.

The People - Generous

Elana Connor is an American (West Coast), 'caught' in New Zealand by COVID-19. Diana Dobson provided me with some more information about this inspirational solo sailor.

Elana started learning to sail in 2014. She bought Windfola, a Sabre 34 that was built in 1985 and designed by Roger Hewson, in 2016. The following year did her first solo with her pup Zia that is a 4kg, nine-year-old spaniel mix rescue dog who goes everywhere with her. This was a bluewater voyage to Hawaii.

Elana has solo sailed more than 10,000 nautical miles in the Pacific over the past three-and-a-half years on Windfola, and has completed three major solo ocean passages. She has done most of the servicing and care of Windfola since its purchase, learning everything from diesel engine repair to rigging, fibreglassing, and wiring.

Connor was in state care at 15 after running away from a violent home and stayed in care until she 'aged out' at 18, with no permanent home to go to. She worked full time as a nanny while putting herself through tertiary studies, eventually graduating with honours for her BA in International Relations. She left California in May 2019 on a solo circumnavigation of the globe to raise awareness for youth in care.

She is now doing a figure eight solo circumnavigation of New Zealand, raising money to enable NZ youth in care to go on the Spirit of New Zealand's 10-day personal development voyages. Each voyage costs $2500, with the first scholarship recipient completing her voyage in January. Already there is more than NZD26,000 in the bank, all money has been donated via the Give a Little page.

Connor stated, "The skills learned from participating in team sports, as well as healing through outdoor education experiences made such a big difference to my long-term success. I know that foster youth in this country would experience better outcomes if they had access to an experience as life-changing as a Spirit of New Zealand voyage."

"Foster youth need access to experiences that will grow their self-confidence, teamwork skills, resilience, and personal aspirations. The Spirit of New Zealand's 10-day voyages provide care-experienced youth with an opportunity to expand their horizons of possibility, and reach greater potential. It is truly life-changing." And Connor would definitely know about that...

So you see, there are stories, lessons, inspirations and history to regale yourself with. Please use the search window at the top of the home page if you are after something specific, as only the latest news appears on the site as you scroll down. We enjoy bringing you the best stories from all over the globe.

If you want to see what is happening in the other Hemisphere, go to the top of the Sail-WorldCruising home page and the drag down menu on the right, select the other half of the globe and, voila, it's all there for you.

Finally, stay safe, and ready for all that 2021 will offer.

John Curnow
Global Editor,

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