It seems that the young ones of our society have computer programming, game coding and robotics as part of their education, while the grown ups are missing out. The team at Scienceworks in Spotswood, is giving adults a chance to catch up with their children as they host a series of education classes called Beginners Robotics for Adults. In this 90-minute class, you can learn how robots sense their environment and move within it, and how to programme a robot using an iPad. Next class is June 16 from 10.15-11.45am and costs $30. Scienceworks has just opened a new boundary-pushing permanent exhibition aimed at teenagers studying STEM subjects. It's a hands-on, in-the-dark experience where you "play" with light and gravity waves and see how black holes affect time and space.
Scienceworks, 2 Booker St; Daily 10am-4pm; Adults $15, children free; museumsvictoria.com.au/scienceworks
Back in 2011 two brewers, Jayne Lewis and Danielle Allen, started brewing beer. A golden ale. They called themselves Two Birds Brewing and now have 15 staff, a gleaming craft brewery and a taproom operating in an art deco brick factory once home to Goetz and Sons manufacturing. The taproom is called The Nest. Come here to try some of the 30 or so seasonal beers. This week they released their winter stout, made with malted oats, wonderfully creamy with a bitter mid-palate and a rich malty finish. Two Birds beers are made to be enjoyed with food and you can order a four beer-tasting paddle for $15 and a cheese platter or even a fried chicken sandwich.
136 Hall St; Thu 4pm-10pm, Fri-Sat 12pm-11pm, Sun 12pm-9pm; (03) 9762 0000; twobirdsbrewing.com.au
The Porky Duchess
It's one of the porkiest little breakfast dishes in town that could easily sit on a restaurant dinner menu at double the price is The Duchess of Pork, served at The Duchess of Spotswood. Take a long, fat slice of pork jowl terrine and fry it until crisp. Lay it on a bed of pureed cauliflower and serve it with roasted cauliflower, a smoked pork and Gruyere croquette with a runny egg and toast and you have a mighty meal. The Duchess is popular for its spacious courtyard and well-equipped cubby house.
87 Hudsons Rd; Mon-Fri 7am-3pm, Sat-Sun 8am-3pm; (03) 9391 6016
Take a Punt
The Westgate Punt arrives in Spotswood on a landing on the Yarra River almost directly opposite the pump houses at Scienceworks. These contain great steel elliptical pumps that for 70 years pumped up Melbourne's sewage to a height where it could flow downhill to the treatment plant at Werribee. The punt is run by Public Transport Victoria and is designed to carry passengers and their bicycles between Spotswood (Douglas Parade, near the corner of Craig Street ) and Port Melbourne (Lorimer Street, near the corner of Sardine Street). The punt connects to bike trails at either end, runs during peak times during week and on demand from 9am-5pm on weekends. The fare is $2.70 one way on weekdays and $5 on weekends. ptv.vic.gov.au
Under the Bridge
"They call it Royal Spotswood Golf Club," jokes a local as he tees off. He'll have to go under the Westgate Bridge to finish the other eight holes of this very small, tight but rather challenging golf course wedged between the footy ovals and the train line. It's a grass-roots golf course run by locals where the green fees are just $19 to play all day and beers just $5 – even the fancy ones.
Westgate Golf Club, Creek Street; (03) 9391 5261; westgategolfclub.com.au
An egret silently stalks its next meal in the mangroves on Stony Creek, a little waterway that opens up into a lagoon protected from the Yarra shipping channel by a narrow strip of land. Silver petrochemical pipes loop their way around the footbridge while the hull of an old pontoon rusts in the shallow water. This wetland site, now home to swans, herons, lapwings and other water birds, was once the Victoria Meat Preserving Company. Here cattle were slaughtered and preserved and the tins of meat sent down river to Williamstown from where they were shipped to ports around the world. Now it's a peaceful spot to watch the ships come and go.
Next Week: Rushworth
Twitter and Insta @Foodcornish
Morning & Afternoon Newsletter