REMINISCING IN PARADISE

Imagine two veterans of the surfboard world, namely me and Bill Mclean our glasser..... adrift in Bali, making a few boards at the Deus Temple of Enthusiasm in Canggu. Feeling good after a late night of Bintangs in the Puri Angsa pool, we'd surfed a few at Old Mans and worked up a sizeable appetite - thoughts turned to lunch. Where??

How about strolling into an open welcoming cafe and spotting the ceiling lined with classic old boards? Hawaiian and Aussie historical classics. Before we can check out the collection, we are presented with a cool menu and a chilled coconut from the fridge. It was the perfect welcome to Canteen, right near the beach at Canggu.

I can't resist the breakfast burrito, Billy orders the more down-home farm boy food of eggs and the works with sourdough. Bill still runs cattle on his farm out behind Byron, as well as glassing perfect cut-laps daily.

I'm quietly stunned by the menu, well, more by the availability of cool fresh ingredients in Bali now. Fresh tortillas. Sourdough. Goats cheese. Avocados. Jamon. Vine tomatoes. Jack cheese. Habaneros. Blows me out. What a change from the early days when suspect street food was all you could get. So after ordering we start to study the history hanging in the roof.

A Gerry Lopez Lightning Bolt pin, a Scotty Dillon sixties log rescued from council clean-up day in Noosa, three of mine from various eras, a Terry Fitzgerald Hot Buttered, a McCoy, and a 60's Bennett are highlights. An ageing collection pulled together by Canteen Cafe owner, Steve "Monty" Montell and his great long suffering wife Janine. After perfect coffee, Monty takes us through his collection of old skateboards and rare surf books, all just lying there available for the chilled-out customers to pour over if they're so inclined. Almost too valuable to touch without gloves!!

Classic Monty! Canteen rools!

Bob McTavish