The opening paragraphs of a slim volume entitled “Celebrating Fifty Years” printed for our Club’s 50th anniversary are of interest. They read, ” The story of the Beefsteak and Burgundy Club is more than a record ‘of going about one’s business’. It is about forging a place in the fabric of society through the enjoyment of good food and fine wine.
From humble beginnings, enthusiasm has carried a simple idea beyond Adelaide and South Australia, traversing the boundaries of all states and beyond, across oceans and other continents.” This gives a sense of what an honour it is to be a member of such an august body.
This august body held its Annual General Meeting in 1974 at Claridges Restaurant on Glen Osmond Road. Can you remember that, sadly long gone? After sherries at 6.30 the members met and then sat down to their $10.00 dinner. Interesting to note that due to increases in corkage and luncheon charges the luncheon fee was to be increased from $5.50 to $6.50. This 20% increase is enough to make one pause for breath. Also at this AGM the notion of Life Members was inaugurated. The Twentieth Anniversary of the Club’s foundation was celebrated at the convention held on the Gold Coast in 1974.
The 1978 Convention was celebrated in Melbourne. Times had changed and prices had increased. Long ties were to be 4 inches wide and cost $6.00, while bow ties were $3.00 and 2 inches wide in the ‘Classic Style’.
In 1979 the there were Silver Jubilee celebrations [Adelaide?]. A Commemorative Port from the 1979 vintage was produced to be released in August 1980. The cost of this was $49.00 per dozen. I would like a couple of cases of 1979 Port at this price if it is still available. Furthermore it is of interest to note the Hong Kong Branch was welcoming guests who were visiting Hong Kong.
The 1980 AGM was held at Gramp’s Orlando Cellars in Carrington Street. Sherries again at 6.30. One wonders how contentious was the introduction at this meeting of a wine levy. It was mooted that in order to purchase wines for Club stocks members be charged $10.00. Ah the good old days. It seems from investigation that lunches were the monthly occurrence, but the AGM was an evening event.
In 1980 the Convention was in Broken Hill and it was decided that affiliation costs be raised from $25.00 to $35.00 Fines were instituted for dilatory payments. If fees were left unpaid by September 30th then it would increase by $10.00 to $45.00 and thereafter a further $5.00 per month. Also a pin badge was made available. Is this still the case? Let it not be said the Club does not move with the times, albeit not in inches, but half inches as ties were now 3.5 inches wide to “follow fashion’.
Where were you in the late 1970s?
Written by Bob Bowes, Adelaide Club Committee Member