A RECIPE FOR SUC­CESS

Have you ever won­dered where Ross O’Meara makes his per­fect pork prod­ucts? Then head over to Bruny Is­land, where he has just put his small farm on the mar­ket.

Mercury (Hobart) - Property - - FRONT PAGE - JARRAD BE­VAN

Have you ever won­dered where Gourmet Farmer’s Ross O’Meara makes his per­fect pork prod­ucts? Then head to Bruny Is­land, where he and his part­ner Emma Har­ley have just put their small farm on the mar­ket.

EA­GLE-EYED view­ers of a cer­tain TV cook­ing show may have seen this clas­sic Fed­er­a­tion farm home­stead.

Sit­ting on nearly 10ha of pro­duc­tive land, this unique prop­erty is the home of the ar­ti­san brand Bruny Is­land Food and the work­ing pig farm of Ross O’Meara from the SBS se­ries The Gourmet Farmer.

A va­ri­ety of things at­tract in­ter­state peo­ple to Tas­ma­nia. Fr Ross and his part­ner Emma Har­ley, it was our pro­duce.

As a chef work­ing in Aus­tralia and over­seas, Ross was well aware of Bruny Is­land Cheese Co. It was part of the rea­son the fam­ily headed south af­ter leav­ing Perth, West­ern Aus­tralia, and trav­el­ling around Aus­tralia for 18 months.

Fast-for­ward a few years and Ross has learned the art of cheese-mak­ing with Nick Had­dow from the cheese com­pany, made a hugely pop­u­lar TV show with his mates Had­dow and Matthew Evans, and he has also penned a book.

These days most of his time is ded­i­cated to the pig farm at Lu­nawanna, a small town­ship on the west side of Bruny Is­land.

Ross and Emma first vis­ited what would be­come their home with Evans when he was prop­erty hunt­ing.

When they moved in, the 1920s home­stead was al­ready com­fort­able, so the fam­ily set about pour­ing their heart and soul into their free-range, rare-breed pork busi­ness.

The three-bed­room home­stead was built by one of Lu­nawanna’s pi­o­neer­ing fam­i­lies, the Con­ley clan, who cut tim­ber and planted or­chards on the area’s fer­tile slopes.

It has an ex­pan­sive coun­try kitchen with a slow com­bus­tion range on which Ross once cooked wal­laby for Rick Stein dur­ing film­ing of the BBC se­ries A Cook Abroad.

There is a large liv­ing area warmed by a wood heater, and the ad­ja­cent din­ing room looks out to a pic­ture-per­fect cherry tree.

Po­si­tioned off a wide hall­way with tim­ber dado, the mas­ter bed­room has views into the gar­den.

Also off the hall­way there are two bed­rooms, one with dou­ble bunks and the other with twin beds.

For Ross, Emma and their chil­dren — Felix, Fine­gan and Molly — sell­ing the farm will be a sad day, but it will also be filled with the ex­cite­ment of start­ing a new ad­ven­ture.

Emma and Ross said they will dearly miss the com­mu­nity, their friends, and the won­der­ful is­land life­style.

Emma said Bruny Is­land was not just a pretty place to live, but was also “good for your psy­che”.

“It’s so beau­ti­ful here, you can drive along the Neck and just sigh to your­self,’’ she said. “That sort of ‘mo­ment’ is around ev­ery cor­ner of the is­land. “It is a wild, beau­ti­ful place to live. “And for the chil­dren, it has been fan­tas­tic. It is so easy to pop into the bush or the beach to have fun and ex­plore.”

For Ross, one of the tough things about sell­ing the prop­erty will be miss­ing the day-to-day run­ning of the farm, which he is proud of and clearly en­joys.

“Even though the farm is a seven-daysa-week job, there has also been space for a won­der­ful fam­ily life here, too,” he said.

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