Head down the road on Saturday 30 March to see the Gippsland town of Jindivick become a thriving culinary destination for one day only, as part of the 2019 Melbourne Food and Wine Festival presented by Bank of Melbourne.
Melbourne restaurants, cafés and bars are collaborating with local Gippsland culinary stars, producers and winemakers to bring all the trappings of a heritage country Victorian streetscape to life – from the butcher’s shop and green grocer to milk bar and Chinese restaurant. Carousel rides, face painting, barn dancing and many more activities will keep the kids entertained, while live music will keep toes tapping into the night.
Following recent bushfires that have affected the local community, Melbourne Food & Wine Festival is supporting an appeal to raise funds for Gippsland Emergency Relief Fund.
The appeal will be launched by chef Alejandro Saravia (Farmer’s Daughters and Pastuso) on the opening night of River Grazew, the popular event which sees the south bank of the Yarra River transformed into a food and wine lover’s playground from 22-24 March.
On Friday 22 March, Saravia will bring a taste of Gippsland and its producers to the city as he hosts a Victorian campfire-style barbecue in collaboration with Gippsland Natural at River Graze. Ten per cent of all new ticket sales to The Village Feast will also be donated to the Fund, with additional fundraising opportunities at The Village Feast itself.
Getting back to his country roots, superstar chef matt Moran is partnering with the only restaurant in town, the Jindi Caf.
At The Café, he will be cooking alongside Sue Goodwin, one of his biggest fans and the cafe owner, to serve up a menu of simple yet delicious country fare:
Taking up the role of The Butcher at The Village Feast is one of Melbourne’s finest butchers, Troy Wheeler (Meatsmith Specialty butcher & Wine Merchant).
Working with legendary local farmers O’Connor Beef and renowned pork from Katy Brown’s Glen Eyrie Farm (who used to own the butcher shop in Jindivick!), Troy will spin a contemporary riff on country classics like Steak Diane, pork schnitzel and the ultimate mixed grill.
As The Green Grocer, Shannon Martinez (Smith & Daughters and Smith & Deli) is offering a vegan menu of crowd-pleasing sandwiches and salads.
Lee Ho Fook chef Victor Liong is recreating The Chinese Restaurant of Australia’s past for The Village Feast. Dive into sweet and sour pork, prawn toast, beef short rib and black bean, roast duck and satay chicken, all made using Gippsland meats.
Born and bred Gippsland chef Trevor Perkins (Hogget Kitchen) is setting up shop at The Deli and Smokehouse where he’ll proudly serve a 100 per cent Gippsland menu.
Carlton watering hole The Lincoln will give Jindivick the pub it never had. Appropriately, they’ll be pouring Sailors Grave beers, brewed in East Gippsland in the abandoned Orbost Butter and Produce Factory. Have your beer with a serve of the pub’s fish and chips, made with fish from Gippsland’s Corner Inlet.
Tiny Korumburra bakery Tamsin’s Table Cakeshop is bringing its treats to the main street of Jindivick for the day at The Bakery. Choose from a buckwheat sponge with strawberries, lemon, rosemary and polenta slice, or classic chocolate cupcakes – or perhaps just a glass of Butterfly Factory milk with a biscuit. For those more savoury-minded, Udder & Hoe will be serving up their sausage rolls and pies.
At the Town Fair, kids will be kept entertained by fairground fun and competitions while stalls will offer retro treats like snow-cones, homemade cakes and fairy floss. Carousel rides, face painting, barn dancing and a petting zoo will be available to children free of charge, with other activities including cupcake decorating available for a small fee. There’s plenty for big kids too, with a CWA cake and preserves competition as well as barn dancing and home brewing competitions.
At the Produce Market, peruse the wares of stallholders from across Gippsland, with local produce, breads, honey, jams and preserves on offer. Also at The Village Feast is spice shop String & Salt and Allambee Flowers. Get a haircut or a free beard trim at the Barber by Movember. The EJ Whitten Foundation’s “It’s Time to Test” men’s health awareness team will be on site at The Village Feast, offering free blood pressure checks, giving away prizes and running a kids v dads handball competition.
The party will keep going into the night with an exciting lineup of acts on the main stage, including one of Melbourne’s best-loved country and honky tonk bands, James Ellis and the Jealous Guys. Last year they released their debut record, It Ain’t Texas (But It Ain’t Bad), which won Best Country Album at The Age Music Victoria Awards. In the same year, they played their first US shows with an appearance at AmericanaFest and other famous Nashville honky tonk venues.
Melbourne Food & Wine Festival has engaged local landscape designer, Prue Metcalfe of Prue Metcalfe Gardens and Designs to design a kitchen garden for Jindivick Primary School. The local community will help bring the project to life, with a working bee taking place the weekend before The Village Feast. The Jindivick Primary School kitchen garden will be officially opened during The Village Feast.
Entry to The Village Feast is $25 for adults and free for children 12 and under, with food and drinks available for purchase. Following the recent bushfires in Gippsland, ten per cent of all new ticket sales for The Village Feast will be donated to Gippsland Emergency Relief Fund.
– Saturday 30 March
12 noon until 9pm