Food News

GT Food News: Your news wrap for all things food

All the new openings, food-fuelled events and tasty things happening around the country.

By The Gourmet Traveller team
Chef Ben Shewry. Photo: Hayden Dib
Ben Shewry and Khanh Nguyen announced as culinary ambassadors of Museums Victoria
Museums Victoria – which oversees some of Victoria's biggest cultural institutions – has announced two new culinary ambassadors, in conjunction with The Fresh Collective. Khanh Nguyen of Sydney newcomer King Clarence will be back in Melbourne to oversee menus for events at the Melbourne Museum. Attica's Ben Shewry (pictured above) is serving as Fresh Collective's ambassador for Victoria, crafting menus for venues including Museums Victoria's Royal Exhibition Building, Melbourne Museum, and Immigration Museum.
Kittawa Lodge announces ex-Rockpool chef Corey Costelloe for its 2024 culinary residence
On the rugged coastline of Tasmania's King Island, surrounded by the Bass Strait, two chic one-bedroom lodges sit separately but together in quiet, perspective-shifting luxury. Kittawa Lodge is an off-grid, eco-friendly luxury accommodation surrounded by rugged coastline, pristine beaches, lush grassy landscapes and adorable wildlife.
Now, the exclusive accommodation spot has announced an upcoming culinary residence with Sydney chef Corey Costelloe for the week of 20-26 May 2024. Costelloe is set to cook private dinners for guests in an intimate setting where you'll be able to interact and learn from the awarded chef and former culinary director of Rockpool Bar and Grill, which was recently recognised as one of the best steak restaurants in the world.
Last year, Kittawa Lodge saw celebrated chef Christine Manfield take over the kitchen. Now, with Costelloe joining for 2024, it asserts Kittawa Lodge's culinary residency program as one of the most alluring in the country.
Two three-night packages are available (20-23 May and 23-26 May), priced at $11,250 per couple. Each package includes three nights of accommodation for up to four adults; locally sourced breakfast provisions alongside a daily baked treat from Costelloe; daily lunch, with one curated by Costelloe; dinner cooked each night by Costelloe with paired wines; Tasmanian drinks for the duration of your stay; and car hire throughout your stay on King Island.
For more information and to book, visit the Kittawa Lodge website.
Uber Eats announces $13 million towards a more sustainable future of food delivery
Uber Eats has partnered with environmental organisation Planet Ark to deliver more sustainable packaging options and environmental education for consumers in a two-pronged approach that tackles the move towards a circular economy. The partnership comes with Uber Eats funding up to $13 million over the next three years, which will help subsidise sustainable packaging to make it more affordable to vendors. The partnership also aims to deliver clarity to restaurants on sustainable packaging; provide educational programs on how best to dispose of packaging; and offer creative incentives for businesses to help them move towards more sustainable packaging.
"We believe the most significant impact Uber Eats can have in the immediate term is to educate and support small to medium-sized businesses working in the restaurant and catering industry. This is a multi-year journey, and by starting with Planet Ark's educational resources, we'll endeavour to help restaurants make the shift to more sustainable packaging," said Uber Eats ANZ general manager Bec Nyst in a statement.
S.Pellegrino's Young Chef Academy is back for 2024
S.Pellegrino's Young Chef Academy (SPYCA) is back this year, bringing a fresh opportunity for budding chefs to meet their culinary heroes and hone their skills in the global competition. Applications are now open to Australian chefs under the age of 30 – they must have worked as a sous chef, chef de cuisine, chef de partie or commis chef full-time for one year before applying. To enter, budding culinary stars are invited to share
a signature dish. From here, a shortlist of chefs will be selected to take part in regional finals this year, before the grand finale takes place in Milan with the best young chefs from across the globe in late 2025. The Academy will host open days in Melbourne and Sydney in April this year, so green chefs can meet and mingle with previous judges and SPYCA alumni, to hear more about the experience and opportunities that
the competition brings.
Last year, 10 chefs from Australia and New Zealand competed in the Pacific Regional Finals, preparing their signature dish for local judges Jacqui Challinor (Nomad), Josh Niland (Saint Peter) and Peter Gilmore (Quay Restaurant). South Australia's Robin Wagner went on to represent the Pacific region with pride in Milan joined by mentor Peter Gilmore. Young chefs keen to enter should keep an eye on the SPYCA website for more details.
Gourmet Traveller's Melbourne Food and Wine Festival event at Etta with Pamela Yung
Gourmet Traveller is delighted to bring together two powerhouse chefs for a special fire-fuelled evening at EttaGT's Victoria Restaurant of the Year – as part of Melbourne Food and Wine Festival's Global Dining Series. Rosheen Kaul will team up with Pamela Yung, formerly of Flor in London's Borough Market and head of culinary innovation at Bali's Potato Head Beach Group, to present a shared four-course tasting menu with optional wine pairings hand selected by Etta's Ashley Boburka. The event will take place on Tuesday 19 March, with two sittings available at 6pm and 8.30pm.
Tickets cost $175 per person, and go on sale Thursday 1 February but GT readers can access an exclusive early-bird sale by signing up to our newsletter. (If you're already signed up, just sit back and wait for it to hit your inbox on 31 January).
Dark Mofo returns (sort of) with condensed program for 2024
While Tasmania's subversive winter arts festival takes a hiatus this year, Dark Mofo is forging ahead with a condensed program of its more popular events. Winter Feast will return for eight nights of food stalls, bar pop-ups, firepits and long table feasting at Princes Wharf 1. The Nude Solstice Swim at Long Beach will also return, taking place on the winter solstice on Friday 21 June, and with an even larger capacity than last year. The debaucherous after-dark party Night Shift is set to run across two nights (Friday 21 and Saturday 22 June). Over at MONA, brand- new exhibition Namedropping will open with an extravagant gala at the gallery on 14 June, and will run until April next year.
Free to Feed's cooking classes led by refugees
Social enterprise Free to Feed – a Melbourne not-for-profit that empowers refugees through food and cooking – is shimmying into 2024 with a freshly refurbished space. The Northcote HQ houses both private and public cooking classes led by refugees, and the vibrant new look was led by Iranian-Australian artist and textile designer, Nina Sepahpour. Using colours and design references that reflect the diverse people and cultures that walk through the Free to Feed doors, the space is hosting a vibrant summer events program to celebrate the fresh digs. Feasts and creative nights kick-start in late January, with live music and long table meals. Each event explores the different regions that the Free to Feed program participants have come from, including Persia and Afghanistan, Syria, Palestine, Lebanon, Israel and Jordan.
Le Yeahllow is Melbourne's new quirky cake shop
Le Yeahllow is the latest pastry shop in Melbourne, garnering a legion of fans for its whimsical cakes and slices. Starting as an online cake retailer, the shop came to prominence thanks to each cake's quirky qualities. Now on Little Collins, detailed treats range from a melted-looking mandarin, filled with silky dark chocolate mousse, flourless mandarin sponge, ginger purée and slow-cooked marmalade; to a mellow yellow mango chiffon cheesecake with yoghurt mousse. Pastries are joined by coffee from Sydney-based specialty roasters Toby's Estate and treats from French chocolatiers Valrhona.
Butcher Crowd is the new meat delivery service to try
Butcher Crowd is a new meat delivery service cutting out the middle man to offer high quality Australian meat and seafood to home chefs. Grass-fed and grass-finished beef and lamb, pasture-raised chicken and pork and wild-caught seafood are sourced from farmers, with customisable boxes delivered monthly.
The Kakadu Kitchen partners with OzHarvest for a new conscious drink
The Kakadu Kitchen x OzHarvest Conscious Drink is a beverage that delivers all the good, socially conscious, zero-alcohol feels. NoLo champions Ben Tyler and Tim Triggs drove the project, which uses rescued or foraged Australian fruits and botanicals. The blueberries are sourced from Northern NSW's Oz Group Co-Op which diverts the little beauties away from landfill while supporting First Nations in the Australian bush food industry. The label was produced by Kakadu's emerging Bininj artist Trentin Rasmussen and proceeds from each bottle enables OzHarvest to deliver two meals to those in need.
Josh Niland's new restaurant Fysh Singapore is now open
Josh Niland's Fysh, has opened in Singapore's brand-new Edition hotel and marks Niland's official debut as an international restaurateur. Pitched as a pescatarian steakhouse, Fysh not only marks the inventive chef's first fixed overseas venture, but his most scaled-up operation. From a fern-lined walkway off the hotel's minimalistic lobby, tall timber-lined doorways reveal the vast, bright ground floor dining room beset with candle-dotted booths and more ferns. A giant vintage Singaporean woodcut peers from above the bar at one end of the room, but otherwise this is the kind of grand, commanding room that could be home to any renowned chef anywhere in the world.
  • undefined: The Gourmet Traveller team