What’s hot – Artisan bread straight from the oven

Melbourne Food & Wine Festival attracts over 250,000 visitors with its diverse and robust program that includes the World’s Longest Lunch and avant-garde tasting dishes from global culinary superstars. Each year the Festival Hub is centred around a theme, inspiring creativity and conversation by chefs and foodies alike. In 2015 the Festival Hub was designated the Artisan Bakery & Bar. What’s hot – Artisan bread straight from the oven
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What’s hot – Artisan bread straight from the oven

When one of Australia’s premier food and wine festival themes their festival hub the Artisan Bakery & Bar, you know there is a trend brewing.


Melbourne Food & Wine Festival attracts over 250,000 visitors with its diverse and robust program that includes the World’s Longest Lunch and avant-garde tasting dishes from global culinary superstars. Each year the Festival Hub is centred around a theme, inspiring creativity and conversation by chefs and foodies alike. In 2015 the Festival Hub was designated the Artisan Bakery & Bar. 

On the rise

With the growing popularity of the produce to plate movement, the artisan bread trend has continued to rise in Australia.

Andrew Connole, director and CEO of Sonoma Baking Company says, “The Australian population are familiar with and have become accustomed to eating high quality, fresh produce and there is a growing emphasis on the importance of eating healthy and nutritional foods, so it’s not surprising that there is a demand for artisan bread here in Australia.”

Known as the “Godfather of sourdough” amongst the foodie industry for starting sourdough in Melbourne in the late 70’s, John Downes is one of the bakers at the 2015 Melbourne Food & Wine’s Festival Hub. Downes says “… it’s an ancient ‘trend’ which is simply being reborn and is here to stay and will continue to grow. The trend is now though towards healthy and sustainable products.”

Melbourne Food & Wine Festival,
Melbourne, VIC

Breaking it down

Bread is essentially made out of three simple ingredients – flour, salt and water. With very little to hide behind, the quality of these ingredients becomes pivotal to the flavour of the end product.

Downes says, “I have been working in the UK with a large organic flour mill, where we purchased wheat from all over the world. In my opinion, I have not come across the quality of flour that is available in Australia anywhere else.” He continues “the biodynamic flour in Australia is unsurpassed. Because biodynamic farmers regenerate their soil, biodynamic flour has the maximum flavour one can get from wheat/rye/barley/spelt....and the new/old grains such as Emmer wheat.”

Michael James from Tivoli Road Bakery in Melbourne has worked at international restaurants such as the two Michelin starred Pied à Terre and Sydney’s renowned Bourke Street Bakery before starting his own bakery.  James sees the importance of quality ingredients when it comes to baking bread and sources most of his from Victoria. “We use Australian local organic flour that we freshly mill ourselves because we want to give maximum nutrition and flavour to our customers as do all artisan bakers in Australia,” he says.

Melbourne Food & Wine Festival, Melbourne, VIC

Where to try

There is nothing like freshly baked bread straight from the oven. Try your own slice of heaven at the Melbourne Food & Wine Festival’s Artisan Bakery and Bar open until 15 March.

Alternatively head straight to the source and try…Tivoli Road Bakery in Melbourne, Sonoma Bakeries in Sydney, Manu Bread in Launceston, Organic Loafers in Perth and Crust & Co in Brisbane.

Discover other exciting events that are happening around Australia. Or find out more about Australia’s food and wine

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