Hunter Food Fight
By Tim White
Something I love about working in the wine industry is the support given to junior winemakers. It’s common for up-and-comers to receive advice from senior winemaker, as well as everyone else in the region.
The Hunter Valley goes one step further. There are formal groups for young winemakers and places for young winemakers to develop skills at wine judging. In short, there are professional groups aimed at making Hunter winemakers the best they can be.
The Hunter Chefs & Co 4th Annual Food Fight is the restaurant industry equivalent. Hunter Chefs & Co is a group whose aim is to both promote awareness of Hunter Valley fine dining and invest time in growing the skills of apprentices and junior Chefs.
The Food Fight is an event which this year saw three regional masters battle against three young guns. With side by side dishes over three courses, the large crowd voted on preferred dishes. All proceeds for the day go to the Brett Graham Scholarship allowing an apprentice to work in London.
Chefs from Muse, Bistro Molines, Margan, Esca and Bacchus all took part, along with several apprentices and students as aids. The venue was fabulous – the Olive Tree restaurant at Wyndham Estate. The courses were served with matched with wines from Bimbadgen, First Creek, Scarborough, Brokenwood, Tempus Two and Margan.
In the end the ‘Young Guns’ won the day, but what is clear is that the quality of dining here in the Hunter Valley continues to improve and groups like Hunter Chefs & Co should be applauded. That so many people and companies gave their time & support is testament to the region’s dedication to greatness.
June is Hunter Valley Wine and Food month – the perfect month to experience the passion that the locals feel for food and wine.