Saturday 14 May 2011

The 100 mile dinner

It seems almost long enough ago to be a dream.... but in mid-April I was lucky enough to attend the 3rd annual 100 Mile Dinner as part of FOOD week.  The 100 mile diet was started by two Canadians who decided to spend a year eating food sourced within 100 miles of their home in Vancouver, BC, and then write a book about it. 

This concept has been taken on by the FOOD week folks, and turned it into a fabulous celebration of regional food. For the last three years on a chilly Monday night in April, a select bunch of lucky diners get bussed to Canowindra to take over the main street for a night of fine food, wine and festivity.

The street is blocked off and 12 tables set out

The night is a master feat of organisation. The 4 major towns in the Orange area are all represented and each supply an entree and main course. Tables go to each town in turn for their meal. At the start of the night you really wonder how this can work, by the end of the night you're really impressed at how well it works. 

Delicious plates of Leaning Oak Cheeses

Orange - Roast capsicum and chilli soup with Jannei goats curd gougere

Cowra - Caramelised pumpkin, broccoli and Trunkey Creek pancetta tart with a smudge of  La Barre plum vinegar

Bathurst- Mandagery Creek venison, jerusalem artichoke and pistachio terrine with quince jelly and mini toasts

Mudgee- Baked High Valley fetta and Oakfield Estate olives

The stylish set were out in force

Orange- Braised Dutton Park duck with kipfler potatoes, beetroot relish and jus (my favourite course- but no real surprises there)

Cowra- Fillet of beef with butter corn, nashi pear jam, confit tomato served with Mulyan Shiraz jus
Mudgee- Ormiston Free Range pork braised in verjuice with rosemary and crackling served with parsnip skordalia, tomato, lentils and cauliflower fried in Lakelands olive oil
I don't seem to have a picture of the Bathurst main which was a slow braised venison osso bucco with baby carrots, Tuscan kale and dutch cream potatoes served with gremolata. I can only imagine that I had had so much pinot by this stage, that somehow it was overlooked. Perhaps I was too busy chatting?

Canowindra- Organic Honey Pannacotta with organic poached figs and hazelnut bread
This was Sensational. The pannacotta was so rich and unctuous. A perfect end to a great night.

This post is linked to Weekend Cooking, a weekly meme at Beth Fish Reads.

I've just realised that this was my 100th post!


Beth F said...

OMG, what a fabulous event. Love the idea of it and the photos of the food ... oh gosh, I just woke up but now I want to eat. I hope you are able to go to this event every year and let us have a peek at the dishes served.

Louise said...

Hi Beth, it is a fantastic event. I love the whole 100 mile concept, even though Australians don't really have a concept of what a 100 miles actually is. I'd love to go every year!

Genie -- Paris and Beyond said...

I have read about the 100-mile concept and am simply amazed at the incredible offerings of this dinner. I am just glad that the Pinot did not impair your ability to hang in there until the dessert! I would have loved the duck as well and anything with beets.

Awareness of our regions and all the riches they have to offer and should offer us all a better appreciation of our local sources. Fabulous post, mon amie!


Susan (Reading World) said...

This is such a great idea and it makes me hungry just looking at your pictures.

Heather said...

Every one of those dishes sounded wonderful. Thanks for sharing.

Gnoe (@Graasland) said...

Absolutely A-M-A-Z-I-N-G! Such a good concept - I would have loved to join, except that I would have opted for a vegan version ;)

Louise said...

It is a great concept. Sadly though it was an eat what you were served event. There weren't any options, vegan or otherwise.