Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Taste of Tasmania 2009/2010

I love the Taste of Tasmania festival, and go there as much as I can during the week or so that it's on. I love the opportunity to sample local produce and new foods, and it's a great opportunity to run into and catch up with friends after Christmas too.

Below are the dishes I sampled this year.

Thorpe Farm produce platter, $30
Starting with the cup, going clockwise: a salsify and oyster fricassee, with bread. Tofu and coriander/garlic pesto on bread. Lamb kofta and venison sausages (one has already been eaten!). Lamb on roast potatoes. Venison on mashed potatoes.
One of my favourite dishes this year!

Thorpe Farm platter

Island Berries summer pudding, approx $7
I get this every year - I love their summer pudding so very much!

Summery berry pudding

Huon Aquaculture taste plate, $10
Clockwise from top: Potato salad with cooked fish, salmon blini, smoked salmon around rice, a salmon dip on cos on bread, breadsticks,
The raw salmon on the blini was definitely the highlight of this plate. It had a beautiful, buttery fish flavour.
Unfortunately the rice in the salmon rolls was a bit dried out.

Huon Aquaculture taste plate

Two Metre Tall cider, $7 for a cup. After going off beer in the last couple of years, I've turned into a cider lover! This cider was lovely and dry. Cups were served from a keg - the bottles will be available from bottleshops in late January.

2 Meter Tall cider

Bruny Island Cheese Co's ploughman's platter, $20.
I forgot to take a photo of this until after we started eating it. It was wonderful, of course. The platter included 3 cheeses - O.D.O., 1792 and Tom - I think, as well as spiced cherries, two slices of sourdough bread, pickled beetroot, boiled (and pickled?) egg and pork rilette (which I am guessing was from Matthew Evan's Rare Food produce company?).

Black forest cake cup from Strawberry Ave, $8
I didn't really enjoy this, I should have followed my instincts and looked for a plate of fresh berries! It had a square of unappealing chocolate cake in the bottom, covered with icecream, cream, cherries and chocolate flakes. I picked out the cherries and left most of everything else.

Strawberry Avenue black forest dessert

Taste catering paella, $15 for medium and Venison and wallaby pie with crème fraiche pastry, $5
The paella was enjoyable and filling (shared between my partner and I), but we weren't too enthusiastic about it. The spicy chorizo livened the dish up. I was a bit worried to see the staff splitting open with a knife the unopened, cooked mussels then serving them!
The pie, however, was fantastic with rich herb flavours, and the pastry was divine.

Taste paella and venison/wallaby pastry

Cullen's Bakery & Deli mussel chowder and bread, $8
A lovely, creamy soup with salmon and potato as well as mussels. Not too rich as chowders can sometimes be, it was just right.

Mussel chowder

Waji's Cajun calamari
This was chewy with the focus seemingly being on the batter more than the calamari - but I loved it. Nicely spicy with a fresh dressing.

Waji cajun calamari

Finally, a shot of the herb and vegetable gardens they had in drums between the shed and the back marquee. I wish my herbs were growing this well - I wonder what their secret is!


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