Getting the news first. Being granted audiences with inspiring people. Eating and drinking very delicious things. These are just some of the perks of having the title “Editor, Broadsheet Perth” embossed on your business card.
Traditionally, December is prime time for year-that-was wraps from media types. “It’s been a big 12 months” is a common refrain, but – more than most – 2017 felt like a real watershed.
The biggest news, I think it’s safe to say, was Australia voting yes to same-sex marriage in November and parliament passing the same-sex marriage act in December. In this era of Trump, narrow-mindedness and barely concealed hate, this story was a rousing reminder of the power of the human spirit. It was a privilege to be able to publish an op-ed from journalist and long-time LGBTIQ activist Paul Van Lieshout and photographer Danika Zuks’s shots from the same-sex-survey results announcement at the Northbridge piazza. I was moved by both, and I can only imagine what the news meant for the city’s LGBTIQ community.
I was similarly moved by the city of Fremantle’s gutsy decision to replace its traditional Australia Day celebrations with the inaugural One Day in Fremantle, a “culturally inclusive” alternative to January 26. Being able to run an op-ed from Indigenous-rights campaigner Richard Walley OAM was another highlight of my working year. Like Walley, I believe future generations will look back at the city of Freo’s courageous move as another landmark moment. It’s a joy to be able to get behind such an important cause.
Food and drink remains the cornerstone of Broadsheet’s Perth coverage. News of Restaurant Amuse’s closure was one of the site’s biggest stories. While the restaurant continues to be missed, its legacy lives on via alum that include David Pynt of Singaporean modern barbeque restaurant Burnt Ends – currently ranked at number 53 on the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list – and Paul Iskov of native-food pop-up Fervor.
We were similarly saddened to announce that North Perth’s beloved Italian deli Di Chiera Brothers was calling time on its 64-year career. Greenhouse’s closure was another of the year’s lowlights. Although founders Joost Bakker, Matt Stone and Paul Aron were no longer involved with the project at the time of the announcement, the news was an opportunity for the trio to reflect on the project’s groundbreaking sustainability efforts. Also from the department of green thinking and cooking: encouraging news that chef Melissa Palinkas is taking steps to ban plastic from the Young George kitchen.
While hardly new, Italian cuisine was the year’s big mover in food circles, as evinced by openings such as Gazette, Canteen Pizza and Rossonero. Post at State Buildings switching its focus to cucina Italiano was another tick for the red, green and white. And the city’s collective thirst for hands-off, “natural wine” continues to grow.
Perth’s arts scene continues to surprise and challenge. The programming at AGWA is diverse and delightful, while the Perth Festival – nee the Perth International Arts Festival and Australia’s longest-running art festival – elegantly rebukes the notion Perth is a cultural wasteland.
Like I was saying, 2017 has been a big 12 months. It’s been a privilege sharing them with you and we’re looking forward to doing more of the same in the new year. Thanks for your support and being part of the Broadsheet Perth story. Have a great – and safe – break and we’ll pick up where we left off in 2018.