We enjoyed a few things last year but were a little late in booking things and generally understanding all that goes on during this three week festival. This year proved different.
We visited the Greenhouse by Joost. The Greenhouse utilises sustainable ideas in all aspects of the building - from food sourcing and production through to architecture, building materials and furniture design. The roof top bar has a kitchen which is built in a container, bees that are producing honey homed on the roof of the container, herbs growing in oil drums and drinks served in recycled glass jars.
We warmed our damp souls with spit roast suckling pig and spicy gumbo from the various food stalls dotted around and after we felt wet enough we went home to sleep off the food and dry out!
Anyway what's a little mud? We soon gave up on staying clean and focused on working our way round the 58 wine producers and the additional breweries. Highlights for us included wines from Stonier on the Mornington Peninsula, Two Birds golden ale brewed by two ladies in Geelong, practicing French and enjoying M. Chapoutier wines (a French winemaker making headway in Australia) and a cheeky Chardonnay made by a very friendly chap. Steve recognised the design of the label from our Cumulus trips and the winemaker said he had connections as he waited there on a casual basis so they helped him out by stocking his wine. Only afterwards did we find out that he was actually one of the owners!
Did I say it was muddy? Wearing flip flops meant I was always in danger of losing one in the soft mud and was victim of splash back every time the flip flop flipped leaving mud up the backs of my legs!
By the end of the wine tasting I was drunk!
During the week it was my turn to bake for our team meeting so Steve and I spent the Wednesday making cookies and lemon drizzle cake.
Here you can see cookies sandwiched with Nutella (the small ones) and Jammie Dodgers. They were well received so I can only conclude it was a successful baking session.
I met up with Charlotte and Lucy and we tried out Papa Goose. During the festival lots of good restaurants do a two courses for $35 express lunch with a glass of wine and tea or coffee so we enjoyed a girly catch up over a tasty lunch. And I donated my glass of wine to them.
- Prawn terrine, dashi gel, shiso, cucumber, avocado, umboshi by Michael Ryan from Provenance Restaurant
- Jellied and smoked eel and freshwater trout, mustard creme fraiche, pancetta crumble, horseradish beetroot remoulade by Alla Wolf-Tasker from Lake House
- Roasted blue eye fillet with mango and yuzu dressing by Thierry Marx
- My mother's veal feuilleton with seasonal mushrooms and sage jus, potato puree with cepes bu Serge Vieira and Jacques Marcon
- A taste of chocolate, raspberry and rose by Stephane Bour
We continued the good food theme with a yum cha session on Sunday at Spice Temple and today (it's a public holiday) has been spent on household chores as we work off all the over indulgence! Steve had the hefty chore of cleaning our windows and not being a professional, the boy has done quite well. I have to excuse him of the odd streak or so!
So we've enjoyed indulging during this festival and I know this will continue as we welcome Lorraine and Tim to Melbourne for the Grand Prix weekend towards the end of this week and then my parents and sister come out the week after. It's going to be busy, busy, busy all the way to Easter!