Flemington Grazing Trail & Cellar Door

For serious horse racing fans Super Saturday at Flemington next weekend is one of the biggest days of the year.  But now it’s also a day to mark on the calendar for the food and wine obsessed.  I was invited to attend the launch of Flemington’s Grazing Trail & Cellar Door yesterday, which is part of this year’s Melbourne Food and Wine Festival.

Stunning table setting at the Flemington Stables

Stunning table setting at the Flemington Stables

The launch was held at Flemington’s stables, a great opportunity to get a peek at an area of the racecourse which is off bounds usually. Mauro Callegari, chef at the newly opened Independent in Gembrook was behind the (temporary) stoves and he served up an Argentinian influenced menu.  

Place settings for the lunch

Place settings for the lunch including the custom made plates used at The Independent

Lunch was sharing plates of tender chicken, crumbed and fried until it was crispy.  It was served with sweet corn, capsicum, wedges of palm heart and a liberal sprinkling of chillis for heat.    

Chicken with sweet corn

Chicken with sweet corn

There were hunks of beef short rib so huge they were almost prehistoric in proportions.  The short rib was served with spatulas rather than knives as the slow cooked beef just fell off the bone.  Naturally there was chimichurri on the side.

Horses on show, beef rib and an amazing bottle of Wolf Blass Black Label Cabernet Shiraz Merlot

Horses on show, beef rib and an amazing bottle of Wolf Blass Black Label Cabernet Shiraz Merlot

 Corn and beef ragout is an unlikely partner for a sweet meringue but that’s what Callegari used to top his ragout.  The kooky combination was actually quite tasty although I’m not sure the meringue added much.  

Ragout topped with meringue

Ragout topped with meringue

Callegari is keen to show that  Argentinian food isn’t just about meat and the sharing sides he served up certainly proved that.  There was a light and zesty freekeh salad and the starring dish of roasted carrots drenched in smoked syrup which gave them a honeyed taste.  The carrots were topped with sprinkles of coriander, chilli and  chopped peanuts for crunch.  Who needs meat when vegetables are this delicious and moreish?

Carrots with smoked syrup and peanuts

Carrots with smoked syrup and peanuts

The sweet end of the meal kept up the same high standards with dessert of slow roasted peach all sticky with caramel topped with meringue.   The fruit was served on a bed of chocolate with the bitterness of the chocolate providing a great contrast. 

Slow roasted peach, caramel and meringue

Slow roasted peach, caramel and meringue

Callegari will be on stage cooking at the Flemington Grazing Trail & Cellar Door at Super Saturday and this preview lunch showed he’s certainly one to watch.  I’m just thrilled that three of my favourite things: racing, food and wine are coming together in one big day.

One of our stable mates for the lunch

One of our stable mates for the lunch

Gourmet Chick was a guest of the Victorian Racing Club.  

Essentials
Details:  Flemington Grazing Trail & Cellar Door, Flemington Racecourse, Flemington.  The event is part of Super Saturday on Saturday 14 March 2015. 
Damage: Entry is free with a Super Saturday raceday ticket which is $25.  
9/10

Posted by: on March 6th, 2015     No Comments »

Category: Gourmet Event Tags: , ,
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Melbourne Food and Wine Festival 2015 kicks off: Artisan bakery, Bite n’ crawl and Maha

It’s back! The best time of the year has started again with Melbourne Food and Wine Festival launching on the weekend.  If you love food and booze there are so many events to check out.  I’m going to be working my way through as many as possible.

It's on! The pop up artisan bakery and bar at Queensbridge square

It’s on! The pop up artisan bakery and bar at Queensbridge square

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted by: on March 3rd, 2015     No Comments »

Category: Gourmet Event Tags:
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

New places to get your gelati fix: Pidapipo and Il Melograno

It seems like we are getting a late summer in Melbourne so it’s perfect timing for a post on a few of the best new gelati stores which have opened recently.  The thing I love about both Pidapipo in Carlton and Il Melograno in Northcote is they both serve their gelati up from covered stainless steel containers known as pozzetti: exactly as they do in the best places in Italy.  This is a significant sacrifice by both stores as they don’t get to entice potential customers with a beautiful visual display but it’s a clear indication of a focus on substance over style.  Keeping the gelati out of the light ensures that it is served in premium condition for the ultimate lickability.  Here’s my take on the two: 

Gelati at Pidapipo

Gelati at Pidapipo

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted by: on February 20th, 2015     2 Comments »

Category: Carlton, Kid friendly Tags: , , , ,
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

It’s Chinese New Year: bow to the bao

During Chinese New Year it seems only right to pay homage to the bao. These steamed buns originated in China, perhaps as early as the third century.  Char siu bao – steamed buns stuffed with dark, sweet roast pork – are ubiquitious in China but bao can be found all over Asia.  In Japan, bao known as nikuman are the equivalent of the country’s late-night kebab and you can find bao all over Asia from Tokyo to Taipei.

5bc31285-a2db-4d58-bc6a-bf92eda596ed-1020x612-1

Click on over to The Guardian to read the rest of my homage to the bao.  

Posted by: on February 18th, 2015     1 Comment »

Category: City
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Learning how to drink whiskey with The Humble Tumbler

My Irish grandfather was a whiskey drinker* and Bushmills was his tipple of choice. When he died they put a white hanky over the Bushmills at his local pub in Tipperary. But despite whiskey being such a part of my heritage I’ve always thought it was a bit too grown up a drink for me. Realising that it’s probably about time I did grow up the perfect opportunity to rediscover whiskey came along in the form of an invitation from Clare Burder at The Humble Tumbler for a “taster” of her three week whiskey course.

Whiskeys and cheese ready for tasting

Whiskeys and cheese ready for tasting

Read the rest of this entry »

Posted by: on February 16th, 2015     No Comments »

Category: Bar, Drinks, Gourmet Events Tags:
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Subscribe to Gourmet Chick's free weekly email

×