Having built a house with some recycled materials, I’m always intrigued by stories of people creating homes using unusual
building components, so when pictures of Natasha Morgan and Michael Howard’s home came in with a glimpse of a shipping container in the backyard, I was immediately interested. Many months later, when our team finally visited, the sad hulk of the original pictures had become a lovely new space, cleverly converted into a studio that Natasha uses for dinner parties and the regular workshops she holds at her property at Spargo Creek, near Daylesford in Victoria. I’m impressed at how quickly the transformation seems to have happened since she first saw the farm: “We came on the weekend, stood under the trees in the paddocks, looked at each other and said, ‘How are we going to make this happen?’... Things keep evolving. It’s a place to grow, harvest and get unbelievable satisfaction. I’m happy here. I just knew it was going to come together.” See for yourself just how well it has worked out on page 36. Our Food and Wine Issue is one we always look forward to working on — the hardest thing is deciding what to leave out, as there are so many inspiring stories. This year, we decided to ask some of Australia’s leading chefs for their favourite regional food spots — and we were surprised by just how many of them have a country connection! They also quickly proved to us just how passionate they are about what they do, as even on holidays food is top of mind. Turn to page 76 for their recommendations. Enjoy the issue.