|The (mostly cheese) stash we brought home
from the Good Food and Wine Show
Two weeks ago my husband gave me the best surprise! He’d bought tickets to the Melbourne Good Food and
Wine Show. We hadn’t been to the Good Food and Wine Show since 2013 so I was pretty excited when he only told me we were going minutes before we actually walked through the doors.
The Good Food and Wine Show is held each year at the Melbourne Exhibition Centre (and its also held in Perth, Sydney and Brisbane – more info on this at the end of the post) and it showcases all types of products that relate to food as well as the foods themselves. For instance, you can get fry pans, mandolins (vegetable slicers), cookbooks and even vacuum cleaners at the show (and more!). Best of all, most of the food stalls offer free tastings so you can spend the entire time trying out new foods and flavour combinations and getting advice from the store keepers. And we made the most of this! We did so much taste testing that we didn’t have dinner that night at all. But we did come home with some really amazing products and we were very pleased with our purchases (see the picture to the right).
Many of the stores sell their food right there for you to take home, and you get great deals, like multibuys that mean you can save a few bucks because they offer show deals. Some stalls are cooking or baking meals for you while you’re there, like the Gozleme store and the Lankan Tucker shops we visited (and ate from – like the roti roll at Lankan Tucker that was soooooo goood!). Other stalls are selling food for you to take home, like the jams, lollies, olives, biscuits, flours, yoghurts and anything else you might want to eat, use or buy for the kitchen. There was even a spice store this year and plenty of options for gluten free as well. There is also a whole section in the middle dedicated to wines, wine production and wine tasting, but as I’m not much of a drinker I kept to the food sections.
|The lady in her traditional clothing at the Sovereign Hill Lolly Store stopped to pose for me.|
The other part to the show is the Good Food Theatre, or the cooking arena where you get to see some of Australia’s celebrity chef’s cooking up a storm while explaining it all to you (or forgetting about it as they talk, depending on the chef). This was the part I loved the most because I am always after new ideas and with each session you attend you usually come away with a recipe and lots of great ideas. These are free sessions but you can also pay the deluxe price to actually be able to eat the foods the chef’s make. They have about 50 places per session for this and its paired with matching wines, but you have to book it at the time of your ticket I believe.
I got to see Silvia Colloca, the lady from the SBS TV Series Made in Italy with Silvia Colloca. Silvia used to be an actress and has now become a foodie and written two cookbooks and worked on the SBS show (and is married to Richard Roxburgh). I have seen her TV show a few times and she cooks real Italian foods from her home town and surrounding district. She has some very nice recipes that are so much better than spaghetti bolognaise and meatlovers pizza! Here she is making a Sausage and Kale pizza and she also made a beautiful no bake fudge dessert (which we were given the recipe to) and a ceviche entree.
|Here’s Silvia Colloca on the big screen.|
I also got to see Miguel Maestro, most famous for his role in Channel Ten’s The Living Room. Miguel is nicknamed the Spanish Bull and its the most suitable nickname for him. He was so full of energy and he was throwing things around in the kitchen, throwing free stuff to the audience and throwing himself into everything he did. He even had to stop and ask the support staff for paper towel to wipe away the sweat. Below is a picture of Miguel making paella. After that he also got a few novice cooks on stage to show them how to make mayonnaise while he did it blindfolded. See what I mean about a lot of fun?
|Miguel showing everyone how to add the rice to a paella.|
|Here’s Miguel talking to the audience.|
Apart from seeing some great chef’s we also got to try these tasty little pies from a company called Boscastle. For $8 you got four pies; a Moroccan lamb pie, a beef and cheese pie, a chicken and leek with mushroom pie and a butter chicken pie. I ate the chicken pies while my husband had the beef and lamb and we were both so impressed that we were very tempted to go back and get more – especially as in the last half hour of the day they were selling them for $5 instead of $8. The butter chicken was my favourite, especially as I’ve become a huge fan of Indian foods in the last few years.
|All the yummy Boscastle Pies|
Our favourite find of the day has been the Procal 2wirl yoghurts. They are gelatine free and full of probiotics and I can say they taste absolutely amazing! We have gone and bought plenty more of these since the Good Food and Wine Show. They are tasty on their own, or you can eat them with some fresh fruit. I love the Passionfruit and Raspberry and my hubby loves the Wildberry and Mango. Yum, yum, yum!
|The Procal 2wist yoghurts we tried on the day. Yum!|
One of the main reasons my husband decided we had to go back was for the aptly named Cheese Alley.
Cheese Alley is, as you might imagine, the area where all the different producers of cheese gather together. It is the busiest area of the entire place, and people push and shove each other to try to get the tiny cubes of cheese on a toothpick. It is a lot of fun and you can find a lot of really interesting cheeses that have been made locally in Victoria, or even Australia. In 2013 we found the Yarra Valley Dairy for the first time, and then went to the Yarra Valley Dairy to get more of their cheese later in the year. This time we’ve discovered Warnambool Cheeses, so there might be a trip to Warnambool on the cards, but there might not as we also can get their cheeses from our local IGA (yay!).
As I went to the Melbourne Good Food and Wine Show I got to see plenty of Victorian produce, but if you go to Perth, Sydney or Brisbane I’m sure you’ll see the local produce of your own state. Perth’s Good Food and Wine Show is on from 10-12 July, Sydney is 7-9 August and Brisbane is 30 October to 1 November. Unfortunately if you’re in Melbourne you’re going to have to wait till next year, but put it in your calendar now cause it is definitely worth the day out.