Visiting Australia has always been on my bucket list. In my mind’s eye, I see myself spending at least a month there with John and the kids, just surfing, diving and relaxing. Well this past week I attended an event from Tourism Australia that has me wanting to fast-track that vacation to… right now! If you follow me on Instagram or Twitter you saw the awesome menu and foods from The Sunburnt Calf that we were treated to at the event, but those photos honestly do them no justice whatsoever.
Before heading to this event, I thought of Australia as an active vacation destination, I didn’t know it was a place for foodies! The food and wine culture in Australia is amazing. Very fresh, farm to table or “bush to bowl” as they say! And unlike here in America where this natural “movement” is just growing, for our Aussie friends it’s just the normal way of life to eat fresh as a general rule! We learned about the different regions of Australia and their unique culinary offerings and wines. Each area had a unique “flavor” and varied food experiences to offer.
I got the chance to speak for a bit with rep from Tazmania who told me of this awesome experience where you get outfitted in waist-high waders, and led into the water at an oyster farm, and pick your oysters fresh, while your waiter/chef fills your wine glass at your white-linen table in. the. water. How cool would that be? You’re all raggedy in your waders diggin up seafood and then plop down right where you are to have an amazing culinary treat.
Before I go on, let me tell you what an embarrassment I am: So I’m looking at the agenda, and I ask the guy accross from me: “So… what’s the deal here, is the food today from this Michael Moore character?” The guy responds: “Um…he’s right there.” I look to my right… and… oopsy. “Hi Michael Moore!” HAAAA!! #facepalm
So glad I”m brown skinned. Great to hide flaming red cheeks!
Anyway, Michael Moore told us about his approach to food and more about the Aussie way of eating: fresh, spice-focused, experience-based, and with a huge mix of cultural influences. (I’m excited to attempt to make some of the dishes in his cookbook: Blood Sugar The Family) He had a way about him that made you just want to hang out with him along with a bucket of beer (a glass of wine for me, please) and just listen to his food stories.
The meal we had, besides being wholly delicious, really FELT the way all the Tourism Australia folks (and that Michael Moore “character”) described it. I got the Asian, French and American influences in every bite, as well as the fresh, crisp brightness. And it was definitely an experience.
Can we say Tempura fried oysters atop a worchestershire, bacon butter? Best bite of food I’ve had since… October. Sadly, I didn’t try the wines (though it was happy hour somewhere), but everyone who did had glowing things to say about them. Unfortunately, I didn’t get to try the desserts either as I had to zip downtown for an appointment. But I got photos for you to drool over!
It was a great and informative event, and now I’m ready to hop a flight to Australia and eat til I explode!
Have you been to Australia? What parts? And how did you enjoy the food? If you haven’t been, did you know it was such a cool culinary destination?