Jean-Marc, aka Monsieur Saucisson, makes the best French charcuterie right here in Sydney. He also imports wine, and foie gras, cassoulet, cheese and all sorts of other French goodies. You can find him at the Orange Grove Markets in Rozelle every Saturday! You can also order online at: www.labastide.com.au
Farmer JO - The Auld Alliance and the best porridge!
Farmer Jo is a real Scott, whose shop is tucked away in Surry Hills where he prepares some exotic mueslis and porridges. I recently tried his Salted Coconutm 3 Grain Winter Porridge - Limited Edition. Quite delicious, crunchy, with the coconut infusing the milk with a subtle taste, a perfect blend of colonial produce and Scottish heritage! Farmer Jo drives a Citroen vintage lorry to deliver his creations all over town and beyond, including on Qantas flights! He runs the business with his lovely wife and a small team of dedicated employees, all passionate about what they do, and, trust me, you can taste it in the results! more here: http://farmerjo.com.au
Near River Produce - A must visit for all the locavores
I met Therese and Andrew a while ago at A Slice of Haven, a great food feast held in May each year in North Haven. I was keen to reconnect with them when I discovered they were now coming to the Orange Grove market every Saturday, quite a commitment, as their farm is near Port Macquarie, a good four hour drive from Sydney!
They made their name with edds and garlic, a nice competition to my friend Gilles...They also makes preserves, soups and condiments, all from their organic produce. They have also started farm gate events, and I have booked myself and our friends Mark and Nicky for "Breakfast in the Beds" on October 6th! And I will report back in due time...You can book yourself here: http://www.breakfastinthebeds.com.
If you need accomodation in the area, you could join us here: http://www.frangipaniflats.com
They have extended their endeavours to pork and chickens as well as a full range of vegetables, some of which you can order online here: http://farmgate.nearriverproduce.com
We are coming to an age where our children or their friends are getting engaged or married...and it just happened that these two have met in the Navy (now you get it: love on the high seas...) and threw an unexpectyed engagement party at us last Friday, because there was a small window of opportunity to get some leave!
It was a great night with a beautiful dinner of baked salmon and pilaf wild rice - it was so good that we tucked in without a photo!, but afterwards came an assortment of cakes and our friend opened a bottle of another Cotes-du-Rhone, one we had not had before (he has become a bit of an addioct himself...), hence the Liquid Treasure!
Les Vins de Vienne produce this little gem "Les Cranilles", particularly good in the 2010 vintage. At 14.5% of alcohol, you should definitely leave the driving to somebody else, or have some sort of "Plan B', as it does not feel like it so strong, in fact quite the contrary with a very round palate and spicy taste. Very good and quite different from what my reference has been, but very drinkable nevertheless...
By the way, my Vidal-Fleury reference is no longer imported in Australia, so if you are in the trade and looking for a perfectly balanced GSM, then you should approach them. I bought (and drank...) the last stock of Cotes du Ventoux from Jon at Ultimo Wine Centre/Vintages Cellars, and I have been looking for a replacement ever since...Maybe I found it, although I think I will do some more research! Stay tuned...
Bread from Pierre Labancz, saussison and wine from Jean-Marc from La Bastide, goat cheese from Willowbrae Cheese, vintage table cloth from my grandparents, cutlery and tableware from my parents and a perfect winter day in Sydney! And people still ask me why I moved here...
A simple steak cooked medium rare and crusty french fries and a glass (or two...) of Cotes-du-Rhone will provide the best late winter comfort food for a lazy Sunday. Add a green salad with a nice balsamic and olive oil dressing et voilà!
Finding a good steak in Sydney is not difficult, and even our local Harris Farm shop does a pretty good job at that, without spending an arm, a leg, petrol and Cross City Tunnel toll to shop at Victor Churchill!
The main difficulty resides in getting the right potatoes, the right oil and the right process!
I use organic Dutch Cream potatoes from Harris Farm, Australian Sunflower Oil - Olio Gina - and cut them in long strip, not too thick so they can cook through quite quickly. Heat enough oil in a large pan to cover the potatoes entirely, but not so much as to risk the oil overflowing the pan and put the house on fire!
To test the tewmperature of the oil, just drop one tip of a potato strip into the oil and see if it sizzles, If it does, then the oil if hot enough. Gently pour the potatoes into the oil - the oil will sizzle a lot and risk overflowing then, so be careful. Lreave them to cook for about 3 to 4 mms, then remoce with a metal slotted spoon and into a tray over kitchen paper to drain the oil. Wait a minute or two until the oil regains its temperature and drop the potatoes again into it and let it cook for another 2mns or until golden to your liking/ You would have grilled the steaks separately, which would have taken about the same time if you want them medium rare...
Who said men couldn't multitask ???
Born in France, well travelled, relocated to Sydney in 1997.
A link here for our non-metric readers: