Alain Fabregues 2003
Since Alain Fabregues opened Loose Box Restaurant in 1980 - at Mundaring in the hills outside Perth - he has continued to win awards. He holds the Meilleurs Ouvriers de France: Cuisine Restauration, a title bestowed by the President of France and awarded to only 91 chefs since the 1920s; and he has been twice awarded the French equivalent of a knighthood - Chevalier dans L’Ordre du MériteAgricole and Chevalier dans L’Ordre National du Mérite. Australian awards are numerous and keep coming: “If it’s Gold and pertinent to the restaurant industry, chances are that the Loose Box has won it.” (Eoin Cameron). Fabregues runs the Loose Box with his wife Elizabeth, in an authentic Federation house. Most of the vegetables used by Fabregues are grown in the garden. He cooks on an enormous state of the art stove imported from France as a present to himself for making it in Australia.
Ian and Diane Farquhar 1999
Ian and Diane Farquhar from Winnaleah in North-east Tasmania are among an increasing number of Australian farmers moving away from ‘traditional’ Australian farming crops. Over the past six years the Farquhars have been farming wasabi, an essential ingredient in Japanese cuisine which, until recently has only been available in Australia in ready-prepared pastes. They also grow parsley to produce parsley oil, a product they developed in partnership with the University of Tasmania . Many Tasmanian food producers are venturing into new territories, with a range of specialty field crops being commercialised. A number of these new expanding industries are being investigated and developed with Tasmanian tertiary institutions. Apart from wasabi and parsley oil, other products now being grown include truffles, saffron, wakame seaweed, buckwheat for soba noodles and daikon.
Andrew and Debra Ferguson 2004
The Ferguson Australia company is renowned for harvesting popular delicacies Southern Rock Lobster and King Crab off Kangaroo Island in South Australia . General Manager, Andrew Ferguson, first started fishing as a deckhand at the age of 16. Over 30 years, with the support of his family, Ferguson has established Ferguson Australia which supplies whole live lobster and a gourmet range nationally and overseas. His wife, Debra, has been involved in the fishing industry for many years and is Managing Director. The Ferguson family enjoys the reputation of being amongst the industry leaders in marine research and innovative fishing practices. Winning international acclaim at the elite Seafood Prix d’Elite prize in Belgium in 2004, Fergusons remains a proud family company with a third generation now helping to continue the tradition.
Donlevy Fitzpatrick (b. 1946) pioneered the casual ‘European style’ of dining and drinking that are such familiar sights in our cities. In the late ‘70s Fitzpatrick, returning from a trip to Europe , bravely set up The Dog’s Bar in then unfashionable St Kilda, Melbourne . It was a huge success with patrons ranging from the paint-splatter artists to business people, but what he wanted was a roof top garden restaurant with grape vines and pizza ovens. Sinking $8million into a new site, Fitzpatrick redeveloped the once magnificent George building in Fitzroy Street and opened The George with casual eating and drinking throughout the day. It was a triumph to his passion to reform Victoria ’s licensing laws. Diagnosed with cancer in 2003, he and wife Uschi now live quieter lives in North Sydney .
The new face of Nimbin: Andrew Ford 2004
The 2004 World Barista Champion may have been Norwegian but the coffee he used was Andrew Ford’s Mountain Top Coffee. The new face of Nimbin, Andrew Ford, established Mountain Top Coffee five years ago in northern NSW. "We set out to grow the Grange Hermitage of the world's coffee industry". Australia's coffee consumption has grown over the past 20 years from about 800 grams per person each year to 2.4 kilograms. However, almost all the 50,000 tonnes of coffee Australians drink is imported. Sydney barista, Paul Bassett, won the World Barista Championship title in 2003.
Pino Tomini Foresti 2004
Pino Tomini Foresti is a seventh generation smallgoods artisan whoseshop, Pino’s Meats, in Kogarah is something of an icon. The Italian-born Tomini Foresti, who migrated to Australia at the age of sixteen, learnt his trade from his uncles. He has been supplying restaurants with smallgoods like salami, prosciutto, coppa and pancetta for over twenty-seven years. In addition he has 78 sausages in his repertoire. He is passionate about his craft and attributes his success to a commitment to following tradition and using only the best ingredients. Tomini Foresti has not only helped define smallgoods in Australia but also reshaped the Australian palate. Earlier this year he was included in the ( sydney ) magazine’s Food Hall of Fame for his contribution to the food industry.
Born 1948, Meera Freeman is the owner/operator of the Meera Freeman Cooking School and gives regular courses in Italian, North African, Middle Eastern, Thai and Vietnamese cuisines. Freeman is a regular presenter at the annual Melbourne Food and Wine Festival and has been a frequent guest on Australian radio and television programs as well as a contributor to Australian food and wine magazines and a reviewer for The Age Good Food Guide and the Lonely Planet – Out to Eat -Melbourne. In addition to her tours of Morocco , Freeman leads gastronomic tours of the Vietnamese precinct in Melbourne . She is author of A Season in Morocco 2004, The Flavours of Vietnam 2002 and Cooking Class 2000. Freeman is fluent in English, French, Italian, Hebrew, Thai, and working on her Moroccan Arabic.
Margaret Fulton 1980
by Lewis Morley (b. 1925)
Collection: National Portrait Gallery
Margaret Fulton OBE (b.1924) is Australia ’s best-known cookery writer. Fulton, who has taught generations of Australians to cook, began her career in the 1950s writing for women’s magazines. Her first cookbook, with recipes that extended from boiling an egg to creating a four-course dinner, was published in 1968 and has since sold over 1.5 million copies, becoming a kitchen staple. A revised version of the Margaret Fulton Cookbook was released in 2004. One of the world’s best selling cookery writers, Fulton was until recently the food editor of New Idea. It was not only the recipes but also an ability to communicate with her readers that made Fulton a trusted and authoritative kitchen companion. She says, “What I do comes from the heart”.
Widely regarded as the “Prince of Flesh” and “Butcher to the Stars”,Calabrian-born Vince Garreffa owns and operates Mondo Di Carne in the central suburb of Inglewood in Perth , Western Australia . Garreffa trained as a butcher in the European style butcher shops before opening Mondo Di Carne in 1979 with his wife Anne. Mondo di Carne’s wholesale division not only supplies Perth ’s restaurants with high quality cuts, smallgoods, and game but also freights products to the East coast of Australia , Singapore , and Japan. Vince is also the sole supplier of White Rocks veal which has developed as the leading quality veal in Australia , sought after by many top chefs.
Duncan Garvey (with Tim Pak Poy) 2000
The unearthing of a French black truffle in northern Tasmania on 18 June 1999 was the culmination of eight years work by Duncan Garvey and Peter Cooper. Their company, Perigord Truffles of Tasmania is the first to develop a homegrown truffle industry in Australia . Garvey is passionate about truffles and, as well as establishing Australia’s first truffle company, he has critically reviewed the literature on truffles, made several trips to France to research truffle production and conducted market research in Europe, Japan and the United Kingdom. Garvey is pictured here with famous Australian chef Tim Pak Poy, former owner of Claude’s Restaurant in Sydney who is widely regarded as an expert on French truffles.
Gabriel Gaté 2002
Gabriel Gaté was born in France in the Loire Valley , where his father grew the family’s fruit and vegetables and made their own wine. A love of cooking inspired by his grandmother prompted Gabriel to undertake a chef’s apprenticeship. Once qualified, he worked in Paris at Prunier, and in London at the Berkely Hotel. Gabriel married a Melbourne girl and came to Australia with her in 1977. The archetypal celebrity chef, Gabriel is also author, cookery teacher, television presenter and guest speaker. His 19 books so far have sold more than one million copies. National television and radio appearances regularly bring Gabriel into Australian households. He has given live cookery demonstrations throughout Australia and internationally. In 2000 Gabriel Gaté was made Chevalier dans L’Ordre du Mérite Agricole for his contribution to promoting French gastronomy.
Jonathan Gianfreda 1997
Jonathan Gianfreda, was a pillar of Melbourne's food community and the name behind the Jonathan's brand. Gianfreda developed his passion for food and cookery into a flourishing specialist wholesale and retail business. He produced French and Italian charcuterie for the restaurant industry and other food retailers. Since opening in 1984 Jonathan’s of Collingwood has become a well-known name nationally and in Asia. The shop in Smith Street has become a mecca for Melbourne’s foodies. Just before his death in 2004 Stephanie Alexander wrote, “The stereotypical butcher is round and jolly, with many nudge-nudge asides to his female customers. But that’s just the opposite of Jonathan – always immaculately dressed in up-to-the- minute Italian gear, tanned, fit, bright-eyed, always a flashing smile, always courteous and busting with positive energy. My kitchen always felt a happier place after a visit from Jonathan.”
Bobo Gigliotti (John Boxer) is the chain-saw wielding chef from the cult SBS television show Pizza. This irreverent satire revolves around the sex-obsessed Bobo, the failed Fat Pizza Pizzeria and his three hapless delivery ‘boys’. Since the influx of Italian migrants pizza has become a staple of the take-away market in Australia , with pizzerias dotting urban and suburban centres. In 2004, two Australians, Theo Kalogeracos and Andy Parisi stunned their American and Italian rivals by winning t he world pizza competition in New York . Regarded as the America 's Cup of pizza, the America 's Plate Competition has been held for over a century by either the USA or Italy , but in 2004 opened to other nations with Australia taking the honours.
Bill Granger 2004
Originally from Melbourne , Bill Granger was an art student in Sydney in the late 1980s when given the opportunity to prepare and serve dinner three nights a week at a Paddington restaurant. At the time, the restaurant lacked a license to cook food on the premises and Bill did all the cooking in his mother’s kitchen and then assembled the dishes on the spot. The kitchen table has always been the heart of his household, and a big communal table featured in his first restaurant, bills ( Liverpool Street ), which opened in 1993. Three years later he opened bills2 (Crown Street) — and for a short time he was the ‘Billy’ of Billy Kwong (Crown Street) with Kylie Kwong. Bill Granger reveals a passion for his adopted city in the first of his three best-selling books, Sydney Food 2000, which explores Sydney ’s markets, cafes and beachside eating. Bill’s Food 2002 and Bill’s Open Kitchen 2003 followed.
Vlado Gregurek insists that he is a red meat specialist, not a chef. Vlado's charcoal grill started in Smith Street Collingwood, then moved to Bridge Road , Richmond . His steak house has a national, indeed an international, reputation being the first Australian restaurant to win an international food writer's award. Here the steak is cooked to your specifications, and served with minimal garnish. Gregurek insists that he will only do what the customer wants. It is up to them, how they want the meat and what seasoning. He sees his role as the guardian of the meat and the instrument of the customer’s wishes.
Joseph Grilli 2004
Joseph Grilli was introduced to winemaking at an early age, tending vines in his father’s vineyard, Primo Estate. After completing his oenology course at Roseworthy Agricultural College , he produced his first vintage at age 20. In 1989, spurred on by travels in France and Italy , Grilli introduced olive oil production to the estate’s repertoire. Nearly two decades later Primo Estate can claim to have pioneered the current boom in olive production around Australia , an industry that appears set to continue its current exponential growth. Grilli’s extra virgin olive oil, sold under the brand JOSEPH, has a broad Australian market and has become Australia 's biggest export success story to date with customers in the USA , UK , Belgium and Switzerland . JOSEPH olive oil is used by Qantas to serve their first class passengers.
Guy Grossi 2003
Grossi Florentino, Bourke Street Melbourne , arguably the premier Italian restaurant in Australia , was acquired by the Grossi family in 1999. The scion of the family, Guy Grossi is head chef/proprietor. Grossi was taught to cook by his father Pietro, who came out from Milan in the 1950s to be a chef at the legendary Mario’s in Exhibition Street . At 15 Grossi was working in a Malvern seafood restaurant; he progressed to Tolarno’s (where his father led the kitchen), to Two Faces to his own restaurant, Quadri in Armadale, where his father joined him. Then, with his Australian wife Melissa, he opened Caffe Grossi in South Yarra . Grossi was awarded the prestigious Insegna Del Ristorante Italia in 1996 for his dedication to presenting and promoting authentic Italian cuisine. In 2003 he published 80 of his classic recipes in Grossi Florentino: Secrets and Recipes.
Guiseppe (Joe) Guigni
Joe Guigni arrived in Australia from Italy in 1950. At twelve years of age, without speaking any English, Joe began working part-time at a fruit shop in Darlinghurst, Sydney. At just nineteen he scraped together the money to buy his first fruit stall; a little shop in Strathfield Station. After ten years of running this business, Joe decided to sell up and move to Canberra . He took over the running of Mildura fruit grower Kevin Wiffen’s shop in the Fyshwick Markets, a retail market that had been set up in Canberra in the late 1960s to lower the prices of fruit and vegetables in the Capital. For nearly forty years Joe has supplied fresh fruit and vegetables to the people of Canberra and has become a local identity. He is also an active ambassador for the Australian fruit and vegetable industry as well as a generous supporter of local charities.
Chuck Hahn 1989
Dr Charles (Chuck) Hahn is the founder, director and brew master of the Malt Shovel Brewery, a boutique brewery with the primary focus of producing handcrafted quality beers. Hahn’s dream was to operate a boutique brewery producing beers finely crafted to suit the palate of the beer connoisseur. Aiming to give Australians some real choice, Hahn, an expatriate American, opened his Hahn Brewing Company in Australia in 1988 and started brewing Hahn Premium Lager, a beer that attempted to match the quality of great European beers but with local ingredients. In his campaign for quality over quantity, Hahn personally embarks upon various initiatives designed to teach consumers about how to mix fine beers with fine foods, and to change the way people look at beer.
The Haigh family
Haighs is the oldest family owned chocolate manufacturer in Australia and has been synonymous with chocolate for nearly 90 years. Alfred Haigh founded Haigh’s Chocolates in 1915. Today, the company is run by fourth generation Haighs, Alister and Simon, with their father John as chairman of the board. Adelaide based, Haigh’s premium chocolates have been winning awards since their inception, the most recent being the Championship at the 2004 Royal Adelaide show.
“…words are the daughters of the earth” (Marion Halligan) 2002
Marion Halligan is an award-winning Canberra novelist, essayist and short story writer for whom food, whether preparing or consuming it, is central to her life and her writing. It has been said that Halligan’s characters always eat well and with discernment. She first celebrated eating, cooking, words and travelling in the bestseller Eat My Words (1990). The book, which won the Gastronomy Prize, was based on a weekly Canberra Times column in which she urged readers to treat food as an art form. Halligan continued writing about food, travel and life in Cockles of the Heart 1996 and in her latest book, the autobiographical The Taste of Memory 2004. Recent novels include The Fog Garden 2002, and The Point 2003, which revolves around a fictitious restaurant on the shores of Lake Burley Griffin.
Fourth generation vigneron Thomas Hardy 1968
Thomas Hardy bought the 700 acre McLaren Vale Tintara Winery in 1873 from the original Tintara Vineyard Company which had gone into liquidation. He quickly converted the flour mill into a winery and set about producing good quality wine and building the company’s brand and profile. He died in 1912 acknowledged for his ‘boundless energy’ and as a pioneer of South Australian wines. T M Hardy was succeeded by his son Thomas, (pictured) as managing director. In 2003, fifth generation family member, winemaker and oenologist Bill Hardy announced the acquisition of a 136-year-old bottle of South Australian wine believed to be the oldest bottle of Australian wine in existence to coincide with the 150 th anniversary of the Hardy business .
Donna Hay 2004
At only 34 years of age, Donna Hay is one of the best-known names in cookbook and magazine publishing. In the past seven years, she has published eight titles which have won international awards and recognition. Worldwide her books have sold more than 2 million copies and are renowned for their fresh style, easy-to-follow recipes and inspirational photography. Donna Hay began her career working as food editor and author for marieclaire magazines. In 2001 the donna hay magazine was launched and the beautifully presented publications in portable magazine format became an instant hit in Australia and internationally. Hay’s motto, “turn simple into special” has continued to inform her subsequent releases, including the modern classics collection and, most recently, the instant cook 2004. Hay also writes a weekly column for News Limited Sunday edition newspapers.
Babette Hayes, London early 1960s
Babette Hayes, a pioneer in the art of the Australian cookbook, was bornin Syria to French parents. After design school in England she worked for Queen magazine and was the Sunday Telegraph’ s cooking editor. She moved to Australia in 1964 and as well as her contributions to Australian interior design, Babette was to exert a bracing influence on our food culture. During the 1970s she wrote many recipe books, starting with The Captain Cook Book: 200 years of Australian Cooking 1970, which traced the history of such classic local offerings as the carpetbag steak. Family Fare (1971), Australian Country-Style Cooking (1978) and Babette Hayes Talks about Food 1979 followed. At Belle magazine she worked with friend Lewis Morley, whose 1971 move to Australia she had encouraged. She still lives in Sydney , where she runs a private interior design company.
Christopher Hazell 2004
Christopher Hazell is the owner of the Chef’s Warehouse in Surry Hills in Sydney and has been supplying kitchenware, cutlery and crockery to restaurants for the past twenty-four years. It is to Hazell that chefs and restaurateurs turn for advice about new equipment and styles. While Hazell has been instrumental in shaping the look of many of Sydney ’s leading restaurants, he indirectly influences the contents of Australian kitchen cupboards - diners follow the trends set by restaurants with his kitchen and tableware. A keen cook, Hazell credits his late wife Alice and business partner David Furley for the success of the business, which he says is due to one simple ingredient: passion.
Cyril Henschke in his tasting room at Keyneton 1968
Johann Christian Henschke (1803-1873) was a wheelwright and left Prussia in 1840 settling in South Australia ’s Barossa. Twenty years later his son Paul Goddhardt put in the first vines. Cyril Henschke (1924-1979), grandson of Paul, was responsible for pioneering varietal table wines in Australia . He was the first person to make a dry white frontignac, and produced dry semillon and riesling as distinct wines when 'varietals' didn't exist. By the mid 1950s he was acknowledged as a pioneer in the Australian wine industry. He was one of the first to produce single vineyard wines, as with now legendary wines such as Hill of Grace and Mount Edelstone .
Ian ‘Herbie’ Hemphill 2003
Ian ‘Herbie’ Hemphill (b. 1949) grew up in an Australian family that pioneered the use of culinary herbs. In addition to growing and selling herb plants and dried herbs, his mother Rosemary Hemphill wrote Australia ’s first book on herbs Fragrance and Flavour, 1959. Today, Ian Hemphill and his wife Elizabeth, own Herbie's Spices in Sydney . Herbie's boasts the largest selection of spices in the southern hemisphere, with over 350 dried herbs, spices and blends. Hemphill sources Australian grown herbs and imports spices from numerous countries, grinding many of them himself. Hemphill has authored Spice Notes, viewed as the definitive guide to culinary herbs and spices. He has also written Spice Travels: A Spice Merchant's Voyage of Discovery, and has co-authored with Elizabeth, Herbaceous:A Cook's Guide to Culinary Herbs, and Spicery: A Cook's Guide to Culinary Spices.
Iain Hewitson came to Melbourne from New Zealand in 1972. At the Lemon Tree, Carlton the one-time pub was transformed into a thriving French bistro. A number of restaurants followed, each different in style and character- Clichy, Fleurie, Champagne Charlie’s in Toorak, The Last Aussie Fishcaf, Memories of the Mediterranean at the Regency, and for the past 14 years, the Tolarno Bar and Bistro, St Kilda. His five books include Huey’s Greatest Hits - ‘Best Book by a Television Chef’, Gourmand World Cookbook Awards 2002. In his television shows, Iain’s aim is to encourage enthusiasm for new, yet simple food ideas. He sees his TV role as similar to his engagement with customers. “It will always be exciting to be part of any process, no matter how minor the part you are permitted to play, which helps a nation’s food horizons to expand.”
Les Hiddins c. 1998
Les Hiddins, otherwise known as the Bush Tucker Man, built his expertise in bush survival during a long career with the Australian Army, which included service in Vietnam between 1966 and 1969. In 1975, while leading an expedition to locate the Cape York burial site of explorer Edmund Kennedy, Hiddins became interested in bush cuisine. In 1980 he received a Defence Fellowship to research survival in northern Australia , and began cataloguing Australia ’s viable bush foods and medicines. He made an instructional film on ‘bush tucker’ for the Defence Forces in the mid-80s, and in 1987 he was awarded the Order of Australia Medal. Between 1988 and 1998 he was ABC TV’s Bush Tucker Man . He has published many books, including a series for children. Hiddins still serves in the Army Reserve and continues to work with Indigenous communities and Vietnam veteran groups.
Michael Hill Smith 1998
In 1988, when Michael Hill Smith became the first Australian to pass the rigorous Master of Wine examination in London , he entered an exclusive club – there are fewer than 300 accredited Masters of Wine worldwide. The Hill Smith family has been involved in Australia ’s food and wine business for six generations – Michael is a descendant of Samuel Smith, who founded the Barossa Valley ’s Yalumba winery in 1849. In 1992 Hill Smith opened Adelaide ’s Universal Wine Bar. The Universal offered simple food combined with a staggering wine list, and rapidly became a Mecca for Australian wine lovers. After a decade at the Universal, Hill Smith left to focus on his own wine label – Shaw and Smith, established with his cousin Martin Shaw in 1989. He also works as an international wine judge, writes for a variety of publications and is a wine consultant to Singapore Airlines.
Sue Hines 2004
Sue Hines is a book editor by training and inclination, although her business card has for many years described her as a publisher. Trained by Hilary McPhee and Diana Gribble in both fiction and non-fiction she was the managing editor for the innovative Australian publishing house McPhee Gribble Publishers before moving to Reed books. There she strayed into illustrated books and discovered the joy of publishing cookbooks in 1993, with Jill Dupleix's first book, I Hate To Cook. New Food followed and the best-selling cookbook and CD combinations, Hot Food Cool Jazz, and Allegro Al Dente , both written by Jill Dupleix and Terry Durack. Sue Hines' publishing credits also include many other of Australia 's most famous cookery writers and chefs, including Charmaine Solomon, Joan Campbell, Max Allen, Neil Perry, Gabriel Gate and Iain Hewitson. She now works for Allen & Unwin as their senior publisher.
Robbie Howard 2004
Robbie Howard’s grandmother was found on her parents’ wedding day, in full formal regalia, busily attending to the next batch of apricot jam. With such dedication in the family it is little wonder Robbie Howard has continued the tradition of quality homemade jam production. With the encouragement of friend and fellow ‘foodie’, Anders Ousback, Howard began to sell her jams through friends. Lynwood Preserves are now renowned as a ‘sun-ripened’, preservative-free alternative to the mass-produced jams on the market. Although Howard is also famous for establishing the Lynwood Café at Collector, she finds herself returning to the preserves which feature throughout the menu. “I don’t speak for everyone, but I would much rather indulge in a picnic with a team of family and friends after picking a stand of wild plum trees than sitting down at a restaurant to a meal”.
Ash and Amanda Huish
Ash and Amanda Huish went into the Australian reality television program My Restaurant Rules in 2004 as the undisputed underdogs. With no experience in the restaurant industry they received harsh criticism of their efforts to establish and run a restaurant from scratch throughout filming the series. Despite this, the young couple succeeded. With a groundswell of Western Australian support, they won the series and the privilege to keep and continue to operate their restaurant, Room Nineteen, in Perth . Business is still booming and they pride themselves on the fact that Room Nineteen promotes primarily Western Australian produce. The couple had just three weeks after their big win to plan their wedding which was held at Santa Maria College in Perth on June 19, 2004 .
Neal Jackson 2003
Neal Jackson was born in Nottingham , England . He served his apprenticeship at London ’s Savoy Hotel, then worked at the Caprice in Mayfair before arriving in Western Australia in 1971. He purchased the lease on The Anchor and Hope Inn , Donnybrook, which he ran until the mid 1980s when he became executive chef at The Lord Forrest Hotel, Bunbury. Jackson also cooked in Tokyo , Hong Kong and Jakarta during this period. He gathered a following in Bunbury and purchased the lease on Louisa’s Restaurant, which he operated during the 1990s. In 1998 he opened Jackson ’s in Beaufort Street, North Perth , with partner Linda Scadden. Jackson has won several prestigious awards for Jackson ’s and, in the words of Australian Gourmet Traveller Restaurant Guide, he has “created a storm in Perth .”
Lamb Shanks (Geoff Jansz) 2001
body art by Emma Hack, photography by Darren Centofanti, styling by Amelia Hill
Courtesy of Emma Hack
Born in Sri Lanka , Geoff Jansz came to Australia with his family at the age of three. He found his passion for cooking while a student at Sydney University – “it was cook or starve,” he would later recall. In 1987, after three years as a pharmacist, he bought his first restaurant, in Picton, NSW. In 1988 he opened his second, Aviemore, in nearby Wilton , planting his own garden - one that would expand to include berries, herbs, chickens and guinea fowl. By 1992 he was writing for Gourmet Traveller and House and Garden, and had successfully screen-tested for the ABC lifestyle show Everybody. In 1993 he became host of the Nine Network’s What’s Cooking – at the time Australia ’s only national cooking show. It ran for 1,500 episodes over 7 years. Until recently he was resident chef on Burke’s Backyard. Since 2001 he has run the Geoff Jansz Food Store in Bowral, NSW.
by James Gilmore
encaustic on canvas
Courtesy of Simon Johnson
Simon Johnson admits to being a ‘food snob’ from childhood. His father’s career with Japan Airlines enabled the family to travel widely and sample exotic flavour and taste sensations from far-flung destinations. Born in New Zealand , Johnson moved to Sydney in 1987 where he started a specialty food venture supplying half a dozen cheese products to the food industry. Business took off and now the company, Simon Johnson Purveyor of Quality Foods, includes five retail outlets and a major wholesale distribution network that turns over more than $12 million annually. Johnson is renowned for a range of specialist knowledge in the fields of olive propagation and the olive oil industry, cheese making, artisanal food production, the restaurant and wine industries and the exclusive export and import of quality food.
Philip Johnson 1998
Philip Johnson is the man behind e’cco, the Brisbane bistro that has been called ‘the heartbeat of Brisbane dining.’ Born in New Zealand , he apprenticed in Christchurch and worked in London before settling in Brisbane , where he opened the French-style Le Bronx with his wife Shirley in 1989. The restaurant was a success, but imposed a gruelling workload on its owners. They sold up in 1993, and after a stint in London , Johnson returned to Brisbane determined to open a high-quality but minimalist bistro that would “allow me to have some sort of life outside the restaurant.” e’cco, occupying the ground floor of a refurbished tea warehouse, opened in 1995. Two years later Australian Gourmet Traveller named it Restaurant of the Year – the first time that award had gone to a Queensland restaurant. Johnson has written three cookbooks – e’cco, e’cco 2 and Bistro – and still finds time to run cooking classes and make guest chef appearances around the world.
Graham Kerr 1965
Charismatic culinary consultant, television personality, and award-winning author, Kerr was born in 1934 in London . Best known to Australians as television personality the Galloping Gourmet, he hosted 155 30-minute editions of Entertaining with Kerr between 1959 and 1968. Kerr has since aired over 1,700 programs internationally. Now resident in Vermont , Washington , Kerr runs Kerr Corporation which manages his television programs, books, personal appearances, radio, Internet, corporate events and fundraisers. An award-winning author, Kerr has written 23 books selling over 14 million copies, including his latest, The Gathering Place, Volume II. Since 1980 he and producer/wife Treena have devoted themselves to 'Outdulgence' or 'converting habits that harm into resources that heal', receiving numerous awards and citations for their work.
Jennice and Raymond Kersh 2002
Edna’s Table is known for its native Australian dégustation menu, Australian wines and authentic bush ingredients. Its comfortable modern décor and Aboriginal artworks contribute to Edna's unique style. Siblings Jennice and Raymond Kersh are the owners, specialising in Indigenous wild foods and spices, such as Bunya nuts, ribberies, rosella flower, Warrigul greens and lemon myrtle. Edna’s Table is named after mother, Edna, who ran a tiny sandwich bar in Pyrmont where Jennice and Raymond were raised. Jennice’s life changed in her mid-20s when visiting the Gogadja people on an outback mission station, giving her a fascination with Aboriginal culture and their foods. In 2000 Edna's Table was transplanted to the Homebush Olympic Centre for six weeks serving 14,000 foreign journalists that unique blend of French technique and Australian native ingredients.
Bernard King (1934-2002), the man who would become Australia ’s firstcelebrity chef, was born into a farming family on Queensland ’s Sunshine Coast . In early life he worked as a primary school teacher while performing in amateur theatricals and on ABC radio. He broke into TV after hosting a lunch for the touring actress Vivien Leigh – Maureen Kissell, the host of ABC TV’s A Woman’s World, was also at the lunch, and invited King to show off his cooking skills on her show. He went on to host a daily cooking spot on Good Morning Australia before getting his own show, King’s Kitchen. During the 1970s he was a famously cruel judge on the talent shows New Faces and Pot of Gold. Just before his sudden death in 2002 King filmed a pilot for a comeback TV show on which he would pass judgement – presumably harshly – on recipes cooked by viewers.
Rudy Komon 1965
Rudy Komon (1908-1982), art dealer and wine judge, came to Australia from his native Czechoslovakia in 1952. Between 1959 and his death in 1982 he ran the Rudy Komon Gallery in Woollahra, Sydney, representing such prominent Australian artists as Russell Drysdale, Arthur Boyd, John Olsen and Fred Williams. He also had one of the best wine palates in Australia – between 1956 and 1976 he served as Cellarmaster of Sydney’s Food and Wine Society, imparting his great wine knowledge to the society’s members and to the community in general. His work as a wine judge took him to Royal Agricultural wine shows in Brisbane , Adelaide , Perth and Canberra . In salute to his influence on wine appreciation in Australia , the Rudy Komon Memorial Trophy is presented annually at Sydney ’s Royal Wine Show to the best medium-bodied red table wine in show.
Born in England in 1952 Kurma dasa moved to Australia with his parents in 1964. In the early 1970s he became a member of the Hare Krishna movement and travelled India many times learning regional cuisines by assisting cooks in temples, restaurants and private homes. By 1980 Kurma dasa was head chef at Gopal’s Vegetarian Restaurant in Swanston Street , Melbourne , specialising in Vedic (traditional Indian) cooking. Producing 1,800 meals a week made Gopal’s one of Australia ’s best known vegetarian eating places. Since the mid 1980s Kurma dasa has been teaching widely. His 1987 television series Cooking with Kurma enjoyed great popularity, spawning the much re-issued Great Vegetarian Dishes. Kurma dasa has since hosted two television series screened in 46 countries . He currently lives in Melbourne with his family, writes and presents gourmet vegetarian master classes.
Kylie Kwong was born into a fourth generation Australian Chinese family in Sydney . She learnt the finer points of Cantonese cooking in her mother’s kitchen, but the young Kylie aspired to be a visual artist: she studied fine arts and furniture restoration, and worked in graphic design and advertising before rediscovering her passion for food at age 25, while working for a catering company. She then apprenticed with Neil Perry at Rockpool, and within two years was made head chef at Perry’s Asian-themed Wockpool. In 2000 Kylie opened her own restaurant, Billy Kwong, in Surry Hills. Her recipes are known for their exciting blend of traditional Chinese and contemporary Australian influences. Her first cookbook was Kylie Kwong: Recipes and Stories 2003. Also in 2003 came the ABC TV series Kylie Kwong: Heart and Soul, and a book based on the series.
Janni Kyritsis 2000
Janni Kyritsis came to professional cookery relatively late in life. He was born in northern Greece , where he trained and worked as an electrician. In 1970, at the age of 23, he came to Australia to work at the Melbourne Zoo. In his home kitchen he taught himself recipes from cookbooks, developing a passion for food that soon became an obsession. Around the age of 30 he successfully applied for a job at Stephanie’s, where he remained for five years. He then moved to Sydney and spent 14 years working with Gay Bilson, first at the Berowra Waters Inn, and later at Bennelong at the Opera House. In 1997, at the age of 50, he finally bought his first restaurant: the MG Garage in Sydney , which doubled as a showroom for MG cars. In 2002 Janni left the Garage to take time off; the restaurant continued to operate until August 2004, when it closed its doors. In recent times Janni has worked as a guest cook and contributed recipes to various magazines.
by Russell Brooks
Courtesy of Australian Gourmet
Max Lake ’s passion for a good glass of red wine led the eminent surgeon, in the face of the derision of his friends and the winemaking fraternity, to establish Australia ’s first boutique winery in 1963. The unlikelihood of the venture’s success gave the Hunter Valley winery its name - Lake ’s Folly. Today, Lake ’s Folly cabernet sauvignon and chardonnays receive worldwide acclaim. Many Australian winemakers have followed Max Lake ’s example of pioneering new regions and experimenting with one or two grape varieties rather than trying to please every palate. Lake has written on the subject, in particular Hunter Valley Winemakers and Classic Wines of Australia (1966), which are considered classics of the genre. Described as a ‘flavourologist’, Lake has made many important contributions to the food and wine industry in Australia as an international food and wine judge, provocative researcher and author of 14 books primarily on aromas and the sensory world.
Michael Lambie 2003
Melbourne chef and restaurateur Michael Lambie arrived in Australia from his native England in 1996. From the age of seven he had assisted the chefs in his parents’ restaurant, and when he was 17 he was offered an apprenticeship under the legendary Michel Roux at the Michelin three-starred Waterside Inn in London . He later worked with Marco Pierre White before coming to Melbourne to establish Circa, which quickly gained Three Hats from the Age’sGood Food Guide. In 2003 Melbourne magazine wrote that “it’s exactly because of people like Michael Lambie that Melbourne ’s food has gone from a world follower to a world leader. His food can be glorious … quintessential ‘modern Australian,’ even though there’s a French-trained sophistication to it.” Lambie has recently assumed responsibility for Taxi Dining Room at the Transport Hotel in Melbourne ’s Federation Square .
Gilbert Lau 1998
Melbourne Cantonese restaurateur Gilbert Lau is renowned as the consummate host of the Flower Drum - for remembering your last visit, who you were with and what you ate. He is also known for using Australian products but staying faithful to Cantonese cuisine. Melbourne born Lau started working in kitchens at 16, including work in Canada and North America in the 1960s. He opened The Empress of China with Ken Louey in 1971, and the lauded Flower Drum in 1975. Lau has recently stepped back from the business, working 60 hours a week from 90 or more. His wife, Alice reports that Lau was so bored on holidays at Dunk Island , "he arranged an elaborate supper for about 60 of the staff on the island. He went and air-freighted goods from Sydney and Melbourne, and there he was sweating in a strange kitchen on his ‘holiday’".
Mark Laucke 1999
Over one hundred years ago, Frederick Laucke began his first flour mill in South Australia . Lauke Flour Mills is now run by Frederick Laucke’s third and fourth generation descendents, and is Australia ’s last traditional and independent family milling business. The business today specialises in a broad spectrum of wheat, rye, triticale, barley, oats and maize products. It is a certified organic, bio-dynamic and halal processor and adheres to a strict avoidance of preservatives, animal fats, sugar or bleaches. The Laucke family believe that the business’s founding principles which have been ardently followed – integrity, quality and service – are the secret of their longevity and success. In 2000, under the management of the founding father’s grandson Mark Laucke, a ‘water wheel’ mill was acquired at Bridgewater on Lodden in Victoria . This is the only functioning water-driven mill in the southern hemisphere.
Le Tu Thai 2002
by Peter Budd
carbon digital print
Courtesy of Peter Budd Photography
Le Tu Thai is one of Australia 's most respected chefs. His 'contemporary Australian' cuisine is based on a fusion of his Chinese ancestry and his passion for classic French cooking. Le worked at L'epicurean under Jean Mahe and with Alan Weiss at Magic Flute before starting his own business, Nediz-Tu, where he won the prestigious national Gourmet Traveller Best Restaurant Award. Currently head chef at the Bridgewater Mill in Adelaide , his reputation continues to grow, and he has been nominated for the same award in 1998, 1999 and 2000. Working largely with local produce, Le specialises in definitive food and wine marriages. Delicacies offered by Le include such dishes as pigeon capaccio with beetroot confit, horseradish and walnuts and roast Kangaroo Island chicken breast with scampi, foie gras and Armagnac sauce - all perfectly matched with a range of wines by Petaluma 's Brian Croser .
Denis and Tricia Horgan, Leeuwin Estate
Leeuwin Estate is a family owned and operated winery in the Margaret River district, south of Perth . One of the icon wineries of Australia , it has earned an international reputation for making wines that rank alongside the world's finest. In 1974 proprietors Denis and Tricia Horgan established Leeuwin Estate, with Robert Mondavi acting as consultant/ mentor. They immediately positioned it alongside the great wineries of France by producing a world class chardonnay supported by world class art. Leeuwin’s art label series imitates the Rothschild tradition, and international artists continue to play at the winery’s annual concerts, (Sting appeared in February 2005). Leeuwin wines continue to receive international accolades. Leeuwin has on three occasions been named 'International Winery of the Year' by International Wine and Spirits Magazine and is one of two Australian wineries listed as a wine legend in the prestigious 100 Vins de Legende. Leeuwin now exports to over 30 countries.
Cheong Liew 1998
Cheong Liew – whom the US magazine Food and Wine recently named one of the ten “hottest chefs alive” – learnt the basics of cooking in his native Malaysia , in the Kuala Lumpur kitchen of his grandmother. He came to Australia in 1969, working in a string of Melbourne pubs and cafés before settling in Adelaide . At the steakhouse Moos, he turned heads with his use of Asian vegetables – then a novelty to Australian diners. He opened his own restaurant, Neddy’s, in 1975, and continued to revolutionise the Adelaide scene. From 1995 to the present he has been consultant chef at The Grange at Adelaide ’s Hilton Hotel. It was at The Grange that he created his signature dish – “Four Dancers of the Sea”, which features four varieties of seafood cooked in four distinct national styles. South Australia ’s best-known chef, Cheong Liew holds an Order of Australia Medal for ‘developing and influencing the style of contemporary Australian cuisine.’
Carolyn Lockhart 2004
Carolyn Lockhart is a magazine editor who revolutionised the look of gastronomy magazines. As editor of Vogue Entertaining Guide (later Vogue Entertaining and Travel) in the 1980s, she used fashion photographers to shoot food, and broke with convention by featuring shots of each dish rather than an entire meal on a table. This stylish transformation influenced food photography in magazines worldwide and broadened the appeal of these publications. Both at Vogue and later at the Australian Gourmet Traveller Lockhart also established a reputation for anticipating cooking trends. Earlier this year the ( sydney ) magazine inducted Lockhart into its Food Hall of Fame in recognition of her contribution to the food industry.
Born in Melbourne to Lebanese parents, Greg Malouf drew early inspiration from the cooking of his mother and grandmother. His long apprenticeship in the culinary arts took him through the kitchens of some of Melbourne’s finest restaurants – including Mietta’s in Fitzroy, Two Faces, Glo Glo’s and Fanny’s – interspersed with work in France, Italy, Austria and Hong Kong. In 1991, after time off due to serious health problems – he received a heart transplant in 1989 – Malouf set up O’Connell’s in the Melbourne hotel of the same name. There, he earned attention for his distinctive style of cooking, which combines Middle Eastern tradition with modern flair. Since 2001 he has run the highly successful Mo Mo’s in Melbourne ’s Collins Street . With his wife, Lucy, he has written two cookbooks, Moorish and Arabesque. In 2003, after further heart troubles, Greg became only the second person in Victoria to receive a second heart transplant.
Christine Manfield 1997
Christine Manfield – who has been hailed as Australia ’s Queen of Spice – trained as a primary school teacher. A self-taught chef, she ran a catering business before starting her first restaurant in 1986. In Sydney she was head chef at The Wharf and worked at Phillip Searle’s Oasis Seros before opening the Paragon Cafe in 1990at Circular Quay. In 1993 she opened the Paramount , which cemented her reputation as one of Australia ’s finest chefs. After the Paramount closed in 2000 she worked with a succession of chefs and hosted gastronomic tours to such far-flung locales as Morocco , India and Turkey . Recently she opened the award-winning East@West in London ’s Soho district, introducing Londoners to the Asian-influenced Australian cuisine. Her books include Spice 1999, Stir 2001 and Christine Manfield Desserts 2004.
Stefano Manfredi 1997
Stefano Manfredi is a chef, restaurateur and food writer who has set standards in Sydney dining. Migrating from Italy in 1960, Manfredi grew up in a family of gifted cooks and was shocked by the paucity of Australian cuisine. In 1983 with his mother, Franca , he opened The Restaurant Manfredi, which by 1993 had won three Chefs Hats. The elegant and much lauded bel mondo followed in 1996. Manfredi says his Italian heritage has provided a “framework in which to create and cook”. Since the sale of bel mondo he has concentrated on writing, but recently teamed up with restaurateur Tim Connell to make over Manta Ray in Woolloomooloo and Cockle Bay Wharf 's Coast.
Luke Mangan 2002
Luke Mangan was born and raised in Melbourne , where he apprenticed under Hermann Schneider at Two Faces restaurant. He opened his own Sydney restaurant, Salt, in 1999, at the age of just 28. The popular Darlinghurst restaurant went on to win the coveted Best New Restaurant award in The Sydney Morning Herald’s Good Food Guide. With business partner Lucy Allon, Luke presently owns three Sydney restaurants: Salt, Bistro Lulu, and Moorish. He is also one of Australia ’s foremost celebrity chefs: he has written cookbooks, runs cooking classes, and frequently appears on TV. He is resident chef on Channel 9’s Today show, and recently filled in for Martha Stewart on US TV. The busy Mangan is also a consultant to Virgin Airlines, and was recently hand-picked to cook at the Danish royal wedding. His ultimate ambition is to open his own restaurant in New York or London .
Michael Manners 2004
Michael Manners is chef-owner at Selkirks in Orange – the renowned country eatery that The Sydney Morning Herald has called “one of NSW’s premier restaurants, outshining the tyranny of distance.” Occupying a converted house built in the 1920s, Selkirks has consistently promoted local produce and wines, helping to place Orange firmly on the radar of roving Australian gourmets. Surrounded by orchards and vineyards, Orange has an exceptional climate for fruit and vegetables, and the region yields some of the best venison in Australia – venison has long been a Selkirks specialty. In 2002 and 2004 the Herald’sGood Food Guide named Selkirks the state’s Best Regional Restaurant.
Karen Martini 2002
Melbourne-born Karen Martini apprenticed at Pourquoi and worked for three-and-a-half years at Tansy’s, where she leant the basics of French and Mediterranean cookery, and started to evolve the modern Mediterranean style that has become her specialty. In the 1990s she worked for eight years as executive chef at the Melbourne Wine Room, becoming a partner in 1997. In 2002 she relocated to Sydney to work as head chef at Icebergs, in Bondi. In mid 2004, with life and business partner Michael Sapountsis, Martini opened her newest venture – the upmarket pizza and wine restaurant Mr Wolf, in St Kilda, Melbourne on premises previously occupied by the well-known Luxe restaurant. In August 2004 she became food editor of Sunday Life magazine, a supplement to the Sun-Herald and Sunday Age. She recently revealed that a Sydney version of Mr Wolf – called Mrs Wolf – is a distinct possibility for the future.
Chris Matuhina 2002
Chris Matuhina became executive chef at Adelaide ’s Penfolds Magill Estate restaurant in 1999. In the years since, he has joined Cheong Liew as one of South Australia ’s great culinary assets. Located just 15 minutes from the centre of Adelaide , the Magill Estate restaurant serves only Penfolds wines, and is one of the few in Australia to offer Grange Hermitage by the glass. During this time, Matuhina made creative use of such local ingredients as Glenloth squab and Kangaroo Island crays. In 2004 the restaurant was named South Australia ’s Restaurant of the Year for the second year running. Matuhina welcomed the award as “proof that our philosophy of pairing fine South Australian produce with award-winning Penfolds wines is finding favour with gourmets throughout the state.” In October 2004, Matuhina announced that he was moving on after five successful years at the restaurant.
Barry McDonald 1997
Barry McDonald is a famous Australian providore who runs the online ventures greengrocer.com.au and homeshop.com.au, which supply thousands of restaurants and homes across Australia . McDonald is a well-known food writer who contributes regular articles on in-season produce for the ( sydney )magazine and has collaborated with Joan Campbell on the cookbook, From Market to Table 2002. With brother Jamie, McDonald established B&J Lizard , a fruit and vegetable wholesale business in 1989 at the Paddington fruit market. B&J Lizard raised Australian industry standards and customer expectations of specialist fruit and vegetables. In 2004, McDonald and former Fuel bistro chef Andy Bunn opened the produce warehouse and café, Fratelli Fresh in Waterloo , Sydney . The menu specializes in v egetarian dishes to highlight the fresh produce at the core of Fratelli Fresh 's business .
Stephen Mercer 2002
Stephen Mercer is a classically trained chef who now runs Mercer’s restaurant in Eltham in Melbourne . Established in 2000 by Mercer and his partner Ute Mercer, the restaurant rapidly gained a reputation for excellence. One review felt “that a restaurant as good as this is to be found in the outer fringes of our city is a reminder of how lucky we are.” Mercer produces precisely executed yet imaginative dishes, using top-quality ingredients, some of which are sourced locally, while the menu changes with the seasons. He earned a silver medal at the 1996 Culinary Olympics, while the restaurant has won two of the last three Victorian Food and Beverage Championships. Mercer is captaining a team in the Regional Culinary Competition, held as part of the 2005 Tasting Australia Festival in Adelaide .
The Mirka Café (now Bistrot Balzac) 1954
Originally established as the Mirka Café in 1954 by immigrant artists Georges and Mirka Mora, Bistrot Balzac can claim the honour, along with Pelligrini’s, of introducing European café culture to Melbourne . Just as the bohemian cafés that flourished in France had become synonymous with conversations and the dissemination of culture, Mirka Café became the favourite haunt of Australian artists and philosophers. Mirka Mora’s biography, My Life; Wicked but Virtuous, describes the happenings in this social and creative hub of the 1950s in vivid detail – the illicit romances, many dramas and great debates. It also incorporated the display of art in the café. Despite a relocation and a few name changes, the legacy of the Mirka Café lives on in the many coffee houses scattered across Melbourne today.
Marcus Moore 2002
Marcus Moore was, until recently, executive chef at Melbourne ’s Crown Casino and responsible for the luxury entertainment complex’s 14 restaurants. Moore was born in Hong Kong and as a child decided that he wanted to work in the world of luxury hotels, but a job in a kitchen convinced him that he had found his calling. He trained under the renowned Anton Mossimann at the legendary Dorchester Hotel in London and has worked around the world. He was executive chef at Hong Kong ’s Royal Garden Hotel before taking up the position at Crown. Inspired by the use of herbs and spices in Hong Kong , Moore says “I love using Asian ingredients and presentation with Western cooking methods”. Chef Andy North succeeded him at Crown.
Matt Moran 2003
Matt Moran, of Circular Quay’s acclaimed ARIA restaurant, met his business partner Peter Sullivan while the pair was working at Sydney ’s La Belle Helene. They went on to run the Paddington Inn Bistro and Moran’s before launching ARIA in 1999. Located in the infamous ‘toaster’ building beside the Opera House, ARIA achieved instant renown – in its first year of operation it was given Two Hats in The Sydney Morning Herald’s Good Food Guide. The restaurant currently runs the popular ‘arias at ARIA’ program in conjunction with Opera Australia, and offers intimate gourmet chef tours conducted by Moran himself.
Dan Murphy 1994
Dan Murphy (c. 1920 – 1991) was a wine journalist, vigneron, retailer and visionary. Murphy, instrumental in developing Australian wine, realised early in the industry’s development Australia ’s international potential. He commented in the late 1960s “let us forget about exporting cheap, fruity Burgundy to the boarding houses of England . Our future export trade is to ship choice vintages to the best homes in the world.” Murphy’s Australian wine guide, published in 1966, was the first detailed guide to Australian wines for the inexperienced consumer. This was followed by another important publication Classification of Australian Wines in 1974. The chain of bottle shops Murphy established Dan Murphy’s: Lowest Liquor Prices Guaranteed operate in most of the Australia ’s eastern states. These outlets boast the most comprehensive and largest range of Australian and international wines in Australia . The business is now owned by Woolworths.
Jim Murphy’s involvement with the Australian wine industry began in 1967 when he was appointed manager at the staff centre of the Australian National University . There he established the legendary Poets’ Lunches, with the likes of A.D. Hope, Judith Wright and Geoff Page reading their poetry, usually on the topic of wine. In 1985 Murphy launched his own business. The Murphy enterprise has grown to one employing 13 staff with a turnover in excess of $8 million, stocking more than 3,000 different products. Jim Murphy continues to support Australia ’s young winemakers, a practice begun at the staff centre. In 1998 he was appointed Honorary Ambassador for Canberra , reflecting his active involvement with the region’s business community. He has been an active member of local fundraising committees and great promoter of the benefits of living and working in Canberra .
Anthony Musarra 2002
When Anthony Musarra cooks for guests, he tries not to go overboard. "Simplicity is the key," he says. "I don't worry about food being piping hot, and allow guests to serve themselves. This makes things easy and informal, and naturally more fun for the host." The award-winning chef is currently working at the Radii Park Hyatt Restaurant in Melbourne , having relocated this year from the exclusive Harbourkitchen&bar restaurant in The Rocks, Sydney. Musarra is famous for his understated, relaxed menus with distinctively Mediterranean influences, inspired, but not dominated by his Italian roots .