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Tasting Australia kicks off this week

Adelaide and its surrounding regions are about to begin an eight-day celebration of local produce. Find out which Tasting Australia events you absolutely shouldn’t miss. 


By Dan F Stapleton
Published: 28 Australia, 2017

If you know Australia, you know that locally sourced food and wine is a national obsession. Each Australian state has signature ingredients inspired by its local climate and customs, and nowhere is the spread as diverse as in South Australia. This April and May, the state’s capital, Adelaide, and surrounding regions, are celebrating their extraordinary bounty with an action-packed festival, Tasting Australia. Whether you’re partial to artisan gin, curious to sample braised emu or feel like dining in a sheep-shearing shed, there’s an event to satisfy your appetite. This year’s festival takes place between 30 April and 7 May.

DINE WITH TWO TOP CHEFS

Victor Liong, Eel Bites Emu, Tasting Australia, Adelaide, South Australia

When: 6 May

Australia’s rich Asian culture and some of Adelaide’s most unusual produce come together for Eel Bites Emu, an evening that’s part banquet, part cooking class and all fun. Helming the four-course dinner are Victor Liong (the brains behind Melbourne’s buzzy Chinese restaurant Lee Ho Fook) and Malaysian chef Cheong Liew, an Adelaide culinary icon. The pair will serve up smoked eel, braised emu and fine wines from the nearby Barossa, interspersed with conversation and cooking demonstrations.


TEST YOUR KNOWLEDGE WITH CHEF QUIZ

Chef Quiz, Tasting Australia, Adelaide, South Australia

When: 5 May

True gourmands do more than just cook and eat – they also know where their food comes from. At least, that’s the idea behind Chef Quiz, which gives professionals and amateurs the chance to test their foodie knowledge while sampling South Australia’s finest wines. The organisers have gathered Australian kitchen experts including Paul Carmichael from Momofuku Seiobo and Mitch Orr from ACME for a series of challenges, some of which involve audience participation. Which chef can mix a dry martini blindfolded? Who can whip egg whites the fastest? All will be revealed in this engaging, light-hearted competition.


LEARN HOW TO MAKE A DIRTY MARTINI

Applewood Gin, Filthiest Martini, Tasting Australia, Adelaide, South Australia

When: 6 May

South Australia is home to some of Australia’s finest gin producers, so it’s not surprising that the martini – that most sophisticated of drinks – features prominently at Tasting Australia. The Filthiest Martini event, part of the South Australia Producer Sessions series (showcasing local growers and makers), brings together the brains behind Applewood Gin and the owners of Coriole Olives for a masterclass in making a dirty martini (a martini plus olive juice). You’ll pick up expert knowledge, sample a drink or two and go home with a mini martini-making kit (including a shaker) so you can continue to hone your craft.


TASTE FROM THE LAND

When: 30 April

Feel like getting out of town? Tasting Australia has you covered. This year it’s hosting a unique lunch in association with Yorkes Uncorked, a small events company that organises food-related experiences on the fertile Yorke Peninsula, west of Adelaide. The Taste from the Land lunch is being held in a working wool-shearing shed and features Q&A sessions with local producers, butchers and chefs. It’s an opportunity to learn more about the journey your food takes from paddock to plate, while meeting like-minded food lovers.

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