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Six years ago industry legend Matteo Pignatelli (Matteo’s, Melbourne) was diagnosed with cancer and the chance of survival was in the balance. Keen to ensure his family were looked after, and all business dealings were in the black he developed a disaster plan in the event that he died. In remission, the pandemic landed and he found himself in the …
 
Great cheese takes time, takes patience and takes a lot of care. For Nicole Gilliver (Grandvewe) it all starts with a great life for the sheep. Everything Nicole and her family do is founded on respect for their sheep, respect for the environment and a love of exceptional cheese. https://grandvewe.com.au Follow Deep In The Weeds on Instagram https:…
 
After cutting his teeth in some of the Uk’s best restaurants, The Fat Duck and The Ledbury, Brendan Pratt (Vasse Felix, WA) returned home to Western Australia eager to make his mark on the culinary landscape. But in the whirlwind of trying to impress he got caught up in the old world of hospitality, where hard love in the kitchen was considered the…
 
After decades as a horticulturist, Andrew Hearne (Near River Produce) had a yearning to get out to the country and grow nutrient rich, organic vegetables and help replenish the soil and land. It wasn’t long before he became enamoured by the teachings of organic pioneer, Joel Salatin who inspired him to introduce pigs to his farm. With the firm beli…
 
There are Captains who lead and Leaders who are also Captains. Stuart Richey is a leader who has been at the forefront of innovation in the Tasmanian seafood industry. From catching and handling to delivering practical sustainability, his Fish Tale is one of constant pioneering and improvement……… https://richeyfishing.com.au Follow Fishtales, a Sea…
 
Last time we caught up with Zoe Birch (Greasy Zoe’s) she’d reduced her restaurant to a 6-seat experience and made real connections with local producers. The very next day Victoria went into another lockdown, and its been back and forth ever since. As she prepares to open a lot has changed, she has a new family member, a clearer vision on her cookin…
 
In 2006 Nick Hildebrandt and chef Brent Savage opened Bentley Restaurant + Bar in a former pub in Surry Hills and began the new wave of dining in Sydney. One where the shackles of fine dining were removed, but the food and wine lured you out of your comfort and into new, magical experience. It laid the foundation for what would become one of the mo…
 
The last time we caught up with David Mackintosh (IDES, Pope Joan, Lee Ho Fook, SPQR) he was in the throes of one of Melbourne’s lockdowns and looking to technology to help shape the new world of hospitality beyond covid, but a lot has changed since then and as he prepares to re-open he’s shares his thoughts about the new era of hospitality to emer…
 
After growing up in a family with a rich history in the hospitality sector fourth generation chef and restaurateur Mario Percuoco felt it would be a dishonour to his family to not carry on the name and influence. Even though he felt he was in the shadow of his father Armando Percuoco he rose the ranks to win many accolades in Sydney before moving b…
 
After completing her apprenticeship at a modern European restaurant in Hobart Bianca Johnston (Igni, Geelong) scored a gig at renowned gastro pub Tom McHugos which quickly began to shape how she cooked and her approach to food. Under the guidance of Tom Westcott, she gained skills in whole animal butchery, charcuterie, fermentation and cheesemaking…
 
Ben Blackmore is a sixth generation farmer and the custodian of Blackmore Wagyu, launched by his father David more than 30 years ago. Their wagyu is one of the most respected and adored meat products in the world, a testament to genetics, breeding, feed, animal care and an unending commitment to quality. But what's it like to run a family farm in a…
 
Last time we caught up with Shanteh Wale (Quay), she was leading the huge team of sommeliers out of a lockdown and back to normal operations, then the Sydney lockdown forced Quay to close yet again. As she and her team prepare to swing the doors, she joins us to talk about what has changed. https://www.instagram.com/shantehwale/?hl=en Follow Deep I…
 
After moving to Australia in the 1970s, Peter Kuruvita (Alba, Noosa) ended up accidentally enrolling in ‘Home Science’ at school and soon discovered he was a natural. Not enjoying school, at 15 Peter begged his father to leave in Year 10 and start working, so his dad drove him to his local suburban restaurant and told him “you like cooking, go in t…
 
Arriving in Australia at the age of 16 Ashik Ahmed (Deputy) was the first in his family to land a job down under, at Hungry Jacks. He completed university before developing technology that changed the operations within the aviation sector, and with lessons learnt and the invaluable first-hand experience of the challenges for shift workers and manag…
 
After learning the craft of soft charcuterie such as terrines, rillettes and pates in kitchens in England and Australia Robbie Bell (City Larder) hung up his cheffing apron and began a career as a charcutier. Together with his wife, he’s created one of Australia’s most successful brands by utilising chefs in the production kitchen and creating conn…
 
Last time we caught up with Kent Nhan (XO, Ily), he’d consolidated on the changes made during lockdown and created a sharper, more profitable dining experience, then after 1 year without a single case, lockdown Canberra went into a two-month lockdown, but everything is about to open again, and he's wondering if things will return to normal again. h…
 
Risk comes in lots of different forms. In Skin in the Game, Taleb's last, underrated book. He breaks risk down into ensemble probabilities and time probabilities. On top of that he demonstrates that risk operates differently at different scales. And that if we want to avoid large scale ruin—ruin at the level of nations or all of humanity—that we sh…
 
How a chef thinks about seafood on the plate is as important as how a fisherman thinks about a fish on a hook. The insights from an intimate knowledge of the “last 9 feet” gives some fishmongers a unique advantage in helping curate seafood use and enjoyment. Martin Bosley is one such chef turned fishmonger, who’s influence on the seafood eating hab…
 
Last time we caught up with Ross Lusted, he’d opened his dream restaurant Woodcut, and was revelling in the hum of a busy restaurant. But then a four-month lockdown changed everything, as he prepares to open up again, he joins us and shares his concerns for staff and the future of the industry. https://www.crownsydney.com.au/indulge/woodcut Follow …
 
While carving out a career in fine dining restaurants Jackie Middleton (Earl) and her partner Simon O’Regan, they dreamed of creating their own venue, a place where the quality food and service was paramount, but accessible to all. A place people could go to daily, perhaps even three times a day, and experience a new sense of elevated every day eat…
 
Last time we caught up with Jane Strode (Dean and Nancy on 22) she was about to open a new restaurant. Well she did that, and just 5 weeks later Sydney went into a four-month lockdown in Sydney. Now, she’s assembled her team and getting ready to open again with renewed energy. https://www.instagram.com/favouritenumbersix/?hl=en Follow Deep In The W…
 
With a finer dining restaurant in regional NSW Renee Wallace (Birch Restaurant, Moss Vale) took the bull by the horns when lockdown landed and diversified the offering to open a retail store, bespoke food in a box and started planning collaborative events around the regions. The move proved incredibly successful and now on the precipice of reopenin…
 
Last time we caught up with Neil Perry (Margaret) he was about to open his first solo restaurant, Margaret, but the Sydney lockdown landed the day he was meant to open. Some four months later, and he’s finally about to open the doors for the first time and welcome guests in. https://www.margaretdoublebay.com Follow Deep In The Weeds on Instagram ht…
 
Adam Bray (Westside Mushies) never dreamed of being a farmer, he never even had an interest in mushrooms, but late one night while scanning the internet he stumbled on a video that changed his life, and that of many South Australian chefs too. https://www.instagram.com/westsidemushies/?hl=en Follow The Producers on Instagram https://www.instagram.c…
 
Last time we caught up with Julian Nikiel (Slowhand), he was the head chef of one of Sydney’s largest pubs, but has since left to open a small, local café. After four months of lockdown, he’s about to welcome guests back in and he can’t wait to get this rolling again. https://www.instagram.com/slowhand_mascot/?hl=en Follow Deep In The Weeds on Inst…
 
With plans to find a base in Italy and start a winery, James Hird (Icebergs Dining Room & Bar) had to re-think his future when the pandemic landed. But time to reflect has made him realise that more than ever he wants to remain connected to the rich tapestry of cuisine and friends in the Sydney hospitality industry, even when he manages to live the…
 
Doug Brooke is owner and brewer at East Bendigo Brewing Company, an independent beer manufacturer in central Victoria. Some producers look for broad distribution networks and national - even international - acclaim and success. Doug prefers to think local: if you live here, or if you visit, he wants you to encounter and enjoy a beer that expresses …
 
Growing up in the regional Victoria town of Warrnambool, Jake Nicolson (Ghanem Group) had no idea of the level of skill, comradery and influence the world of cheffing could possibly have. But after beginning his apprenticeship with one of Australia’s most influential operators, Alla Wolftasker, he began a journey that has led him to run some of Bri…
 
Way out in the Southern Pacific Ocean, 800km from civilization could definitely be claimed as THE EDGE OF THE EARTH – it is also “the office” for fishmonger Delwyn Tuanui – hear his remarkable fish tale ….. https://chathamislandfood.com Follow Fishtales, a Seafood Podcast on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/fishtalesseafoodpodcast/ Follow John S…
 
The Rise and Triumph of the Modern Self: Cultural Amnesia, Expressive Individualism, and the Road to Sexual Revolution by: Carl R. Trueman Under a White Sky: The Nature of the Future by: Elizabeth Kolbert Scout Mindset: Why Some People See Things Clearly and Others Don’t by: Julia Galef Hero of Two Worlds: The Marquis de Lafayette in the Age of Rev…
 
Inspired by his mother’s dedication, support and love through food to help him overcome childhood cancer, Josh Niland (St Peter, The Fish Butchery, and Charcoal Fish) realised the positive power of real food and the fleetingness of life at a young age. A determination to break boundaries and walk through walls began to emerge and he soon discovered…
 
After spending time in Norway working on implementing zero waste in a 3 Michelin star Maaemo, the pandemic landed and left Emily Jones (Republic of Fremantle) stranded and stuck in lockdown in a studio apartment. After a few weeks she managed to secure a flight home to Perth, and has landed on her feet using the finest local produce on offer reflec…
 
For farmer Angela Argyle (Argyle Australian Saffron), location was vital for the success of their foray into saffron. The regional New South Wales town Orange is perfect for Saffron, which demands four distinct seasons to thrive. In just five years Angela and Brendan are not only producing some of the best saffron in the world, but are living proof…
 
The youngest of a big family of boys, Joel Best (Besuto, Sydney) found safety and solace in the kitchen by his mothers side and it led him to seek a career in the professional kitchen. But from the outset he was thrown into a world of drug taking and excess alcohol consumption. He’d even trained himself to work under the influence without anyone kn…
 
A yearning to have a deeper connection to food can open the most unexpected doors and lead you down a path you hadn’t even considered. As Marcus Papadopoulo (Whole Beast Butchery) completed a university degree he felt something wasn’t quite right, and when looking to do something more fulfilling he landed a job with Vic’s Meats and the skills and k…
 
As human beings we have a unique ability to recognize patterns, even when confronted events that are completely random. In fact sometimes it's easier to see patterns in random noise. We pull narratives out of the randomness and use them to predict the future. Unfortunately the future is unpredictable and even when we have detected a pattern the out…
 
Lance Forman is to smoked salmon what Remi Krug is to Champagne – from a long dynasty of fish smokers in London’s East End, Lance continues the artisan tradition at the world’s most famous salmon smokehouse, H. Forman & Sons. https://www.formans.co.uk/home https://www.formanandfield.com Follow Fishtales, a Seafood Podcast on Instagram https://www.i…
 
After earning his stripes in some of the world’s best restaurants such as The Fat Duck, Per Se and Marque, Joachim Borenius (Mjolner), got the chance of a life time to lead a team in a restaurant that encapsulated his Swedish heritage to the core. Inspired by Thor mythology and the idea of Viking feasts he embarked on a journey to explore the fruit…
 
While growing up in the regional NSW town of Cooma, Maddison Howes (Saga) took a part time job in a local café. Although destined for university and a career in another field the connections and camaraderie in hospitality. After she moved to Sydney and completing her degree, she realised the energy of the industry was calling her, and after managin…
 
The US-backed regime in Afghanistan lasted 9 days from the taking of the first provincial capital to the taking of Kabul. After the withdrawal of the Soviets in 1989. That government lasted over three years. What was the difference? Why after spending two trillion dollars and twice as long in the country did we do so much worse? Francis Fukuyama ha…
 
For Kim Kiss and her husband Bryan, Grassland Poultry is more than just producing chicken meat. For over 30 years they’ve practised regenerative farming, and in recent years they’ve added their prized Australian Heritage Breed Sommerlad Chickens to the mix – ethically grown, and free to roam – just as nature intended. https://grasslandpoultry.com.a…
 
Although carving out an incredible career in the hospitality sector, Joel Bennetts (The Fish Shop) has fallen to drug and alcohol addiction at a young age and he’d even learnt how to work under the influence. Realising he barely knew who he was anymore and with his life was spinning out of control, he reached out to friends and began the brave, dif…
 
Since 1999, Ann-Marie Monda and Carla Meurs have been nurturing, creating and crafting at Sutton Grange Farm on Dja Dja Wurrung Country near Castlemaine in Victoria. The goats they milk to make their revered farmhouse cheese are central to the rhythm of their days. https://www.holygoatcheese.com.au Follow The Producers on Instagram https://www.inst…
 
Some chefs recognise that the link to great produce and quality butchering enables them to create the very best eating experiences. For Scott Pickett (Scott Pickett Group) the chance to create his own butchery to supply his restaurants was too much to resist was too much to resist as his restaurant group grew. https://www.scottpickettgroup.com.au F…
 
For Luke Buchholz, turning his passion into a profession didn’t come with generations of experience in commercial fishing but from a desire to bring the best quality fish to the best kitchens including Josh Niland….. https://www.instagram.com/nauticalwholesaleseafood/?hl=en Follow Fishtales, a Seafood Podcast on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/…
 
After more than a decade running the kitchens of Gordon Ramsay restaurants from London to New York and Melbourne, Josh Emett (Onslow, the Oyster Inn) returned home to New Zealand to co-host New Zealand’s Masterchef and cement himself as one of the most influential chefs and restaurateurs. Although the pandemic continues to be challenging with lockd…
 
With a job in the events industry Litsa Ward (Lunch Bar, Woy Woy) lost her job when the pandemic landed. With insight into the food industry early on in her career and a life-long yearning to open her own café paying heritage to her Greek heritage, she had nothing to lose and found a site on the NSW Central Coast. Although she’s only known trade th…
 
If one thing defines Jonas Widjaja (Fair Game Wild Venison), it's a passionate dislike for waste. After discovering he was unable to donate excess meat after a hunting trip, he realized he could make a difference. With wild deer being culled and left in the field to go to waste in Northern New South Wales, he embarked on a journey to bring wild ven…
 
Although his restaurants have been impacted by lockdown after lockdown in Melbourne, Joseph Vargetto (Mister Bianco and Massi, Melbourne) believes the greater sense of community and life-long connections has kept him optimistic about a new dawn for hospitality when Melbourne’s dining scene begins to open again. https://misterbianco.com.au Follow De…
 
Fishermen are opportunistic hunters by nature, aware and respectful of their surrounds and their prey. Ryan Nienaber operates in one of the most unique places in the world. https://greenfish.co.za Follow Fishtales, a Seafood Podcast on Instagram https://www.instagram.com/fishtalesseafoodpodcast/ Follow John Susman https://www.instagram.com/fisheads…
 
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