Foodies gone wild!

foodies-gone-wildOctober is a month of foodie mania in Sydney. Night noodle markets, International Chef showcases and Shoot the Chef at the NSW Art Gallery … it’s hard to know where to begin!

One of the best ways to immerse yourself in deliciousness is to join a food tour. When VictorsFood asked me if I wanted to go on a regional food tour with my darling friend NotQuiteNigella, how could I possibly resist?

A bus full of friendly faces greets you when you rock up at Dank St, Waterloo, bright and early on a Saturday morning. Coffees in hand, the group is chatty and primarily female.

The first stop is a fig and prickly pear farm in the Picton region run by an old Greek man who wears a sweat band around his┬áhead like a much older version of Ben Stiller’s character in Royal Tenenbaums.

Next stop: button mushroom farm. Here’s the thing; they really are kept in the dark and fed chickensh*t. Each palette of straw, sterilised chook poo and spores looks like a beanbag has exploded all over it… tiny little white balls poke up through the mulch in their hundreds.

Third stop: Bringelly Pork. I am always a little bit freaked out by paddock-to-plate situations where I meet animals and then wind up seeing them behind a deli counter. Fortunately at Bringelly Pork, the only animals I can see are a few cows and they look pretty damn alive and happy. Inside the shed, there are rooms devoted to salami, proscuitto, smoked sausages and ham. There is also a room where the butchers are doing butcher things. I stay outside because I am an ex-vegetarian wuss.

Fourth stop: Hapi’s herb garden. Hapi is a ‘fro-headed Tongan giant who grows all sorts of weird and wonderful vegetables, herbs and chillies. When we arrive, we are treated to tasting plates of pickled vegetables, cheeses and homemade relishes and chutneys, as well as a wine tasting.

Then it’s off for a slightly wobbly wander around the property. We get to pat his goats, poke around his garden and admire his belligerent geese.

By this stage, we’re all getting a bit hungry so it’s with palpable excitement that we sit down for a traditional Tongan banquet featuring dishes cooked in a hangi (covered firepit). My favourite dish is corned beef cooked with sweet potato leaves.

With full bellies, overflowing market bags and empty wallets, we head back to Sydney on the bus in a delirious haze of indulgence, sunshine and wine.

Sound like your cup of tea? Well, the good news is that there are still a few places left in the upcoming VictorsFood tours – Southwest Market Day Tour (the one we did) and Hungry for the South Coast, a two day extravaganza of foodie glory. If you book for yourself and a friend, the boys will throw in a complimentary bottle of Krinklewood biodynamic Blanc de Blanc fizz for you to share.

For further information, please click here.

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