This month Melbourne Food & Wine Festival, served to you by Bank of Melbourne, comes to your door with a brand-new Online Edition from Monday 25 to Saturday 30 May. Whether you like to cook or just eat and drink, we’re bringing the festival into your lounge room, to your phone or to your desktop, giving you a taste of the Melbourne Food & Wine Festival magic wherever you are with a week of talks, tours, demonstrations, theatre and trivia. Better still, if you’re lucky enough to live in Melbourne, it’s not just online: you can try it for real with special dishes, deals and menus from the city’s top chefs direct to your door to brighten up your lockdown.
While the MFWF program that was set to run in March is postponed, The Online Edition brings together a blockbuster showcase of international and Victorian talent for the week. René Redzepi provides an insight into what’s been happening at the world’s most famous restaurant, Massimo Bottura helps fine-tune your lasagne, Australia’s go-to dish during the pandemic, and Ben Shewry digs into what he’s learned in lockdown.
Get an exclusive tour of the kitchen gardens at Brae from chef Dan Hunter himself, walk behind the scenes at Lune Croissanterie with founder Kate Reid and fire up the oven with Black Axe Mangal’s Lee Tiernan in London. Step into the kitchen with Julia Busuttil Nishimura, and join a conversation with Ottolenghi dessert genius Helen Goh.
A ragtag DIY adventure born of the spirit of adaptability that has characterised the response to the pandemic from Victoria’s restaurants, cafés and bars, the virtual program is here to help you raise a fork, raise a glass and raise your spirits. It’s interactive all the way, with Mike Russell from Baker Bleu on hand to troubleshoot your bread dramas, dessert queen Philippa Sibley bringing the tough love your pastry needs and Shannon Martinez nailing the vegan-at-home hacks.
Test your mettle and expand your knowledge as veteran food broadcaster Cam Smith brings The Builders Arms’ food trivia online for the week, and bust out the LOLs as festival favourites Max Allen and Richard Cornish debut their new show, The True Story of Oysters and Champagne show live.
And if you’re the sort of festivalgoer who wants to get your taste for real, you’re in for a treat. Quite a few treats, in fact, whether it’s pastry rarities from the Lune archives or an Italian menu to pair with the 1969 Michael Caine car-chase classic The Italian Job designed and delivered by Joe Vargetto and the Mister Bianco team in (what else?) Mini Coopers. Tom Sarafian will be doing the greatest hits of Greg Malouf at Bar Saracen, and Nick Stanton is whipping up Black Axe Mangal’s foie gras ice-cream at Leonardo’s.
Participating talent includes:
– Max Allen, wine writer
– Massimo Bottura, Osteria Francescana (Modena)
– Julia Busuttil Nishimura, author, Ostro
– Richard Cornish, journalist and author
– Shane Delia, Maha
– Helen Goh, Ottolenghi (London)
– Dan Hunter, Brae
– Victor Liong, Lee Ho Fook
– Andrew McConnell, Trader House restaurants
– Michael Madrusan, The Everleigh
– Shannon Martinez, Smith & Daughters
– Neil Perry, Rockpool Dining Group
– René Redzepi, Noma (Copenhagen)
– Kate Reid, Lune Croissanterie
– Mike Russell, Baker Bleu
– Tom Sarafian, Bar Saracen
– Ben Shewry, Attica
– Philippa Sibley, The European
– Cameron Smith, 3RRR
– Nick Stanton, Leonardo’s Pizza Palace
– Tony Tan, The Tony Tan Cooking School
– Lee Tiernan, Black Axe Mangal (London)
– Joseph Vargetto, Mister Bianco
– Andrew Wong, A Wong (London)
– Chris Ying, food writer (San Francisco)
Melbourne Food & Wine Festival: The Online Edition, served to you by Principal Partner Bank of Melbourne, takes place from 25 to 30 May 2020. For the full program, visit melbournefoodandwine.com.au