O’Donoghue surfs a new wave of eco-friendly eater­ies

The Weekend Australian - Travel - - Indulgence -

SURF­IN­Gth­eMenu star Ben O’Donoghue, who moved back to Aus­tralia in May af­ter sev­eral years in Lon­don, has big plans for his newly adopted home of Bris­bane.

The tele­vi­sion chef — who has just launched a new book Out­door , a kind of griller’s guide to world cui­sine — tells FoodDe­tec­tive he wants to open a fully sus­tain­able, eco-friendly restau­rant based on the prin­ci­ples adopted by Lon­don’s ac­claimed Acorn House restau­rant and its new sis­ter prop­erty, Wa­ter House.

The Bris­bane ven­ture, which O’Donoghue hopes will be open in a city-cen­tre lo­ca­tion by the end of next year, will be ‘‘ quite a sig­nif­i­cant change to how restau­rants are run over here’’, he says. ‘‘( Acorn House gen­eral man­ager) Jamie Grainger-Smith and (ex­ec­u­tive head chef) Arthur Potts Daw­son are friends of mine, and I’m re­ally im­pressed with what they’ve done. I ba­si­cally want to tap into what they’re do­ing and ap­ply it to the Aus­tralian en­vi­ron­ment be­cause we have dif­fer­ent needs here. Wa­ter House uses heat trans­fer from wa­ter, and that may be ap­pli­ca­ble, but I’m also looking at how we use wa­ter here in Aus­tralia, be­cause that’s ob­vi­ously a huge en­vi­ron­men­tal con­cern.’’

Like the Lon­don restau­rants, O’Donoghue says if he gets the project off the ground he in­tends to make use of all grey wa­ter, re­cy­cle most of the waste and ban chem­i­cals from the kitchen, along with a raft of other green ini­tia­tives. ‘‘ Space is go­ing to be very much a de­ter­min­ing fac­tor in how many of my ideas I can im­ple­ment,’’ he says. He hopes to en­cour­age other res­tau­ra­teurs to adopt a more sus­tain­able ap­proach to their op­er­a­tions. ‘‘ I like the idea of cre­at­ing a world­wide move­ment, a bit like slow food, but from an en­vi­ron­men­tal (per­spec­tive),’’ he tells De­tec­tive . ‘‘ There are oth­ers do­ing it and I’d like to link up with them and look at get­ting a con­sen­sus on how we can change things for the fu­ture.’’

Keep your eyes peeled for more on Wa­ter House, in Lon­don’s Shored­itch, in In­dul­gence soon. Out­door:Gril­lYourWay ’ Roundthe­World by Ben O’Donoghue (Hardie Grant, $49.95). www.acorn­house­r­estau­rant.co.uk; www.wa­ter­house­r­estau­rant.co.uk.

WHERE do old an­ar­chists go when they’ve lost the will to badger the es­tab­lish­ment? In the case of for­mer Sex Pis­tol John Ly­don, they sign up to star in a $12.6 mil­lion ad­ver­tis­ing cam­paign for but­ter. A tweed-clad Ly­don ex­tols the virtues of Coun­try Life But­ter in a se­ries of ads that has just be­gun screen­ing on Bri­tish TV. What with ap­pear­ances on I’maCelebrity and a Sex Pis­tols tour this year, plus this lat­est rein­car­na­tion as a but­ter baron, De­tec­tive hopes Mr Rot­ten is not, ahem, spread­ing him­self too thin. www.en­joy­coun­trylife.co.uk.

THE eco­nomic down­turn seems to be hav­ing lit­tle ef­fect on Syd­ney bar and restau­rant open­ings. New Ital­ian-style wine bar Bacco, with cock­tails de­vised by star Syd­ney bar­tender Marco Faraone, a wine list by som­me­lier and wine writer Ben Moechtar, and an Ital­ian chef presently work­ing at the In­tercon­ti­nen­tal Ho­tel de la Ville Roma on his way to Aus­tralia to over­see the menu if visa is­sues are sorted, is to open its doors on the ground floor of city-cen­tre Chi­fley Plaza in late Novem­ber.

The 80-seater, de­signed by Michael McCann (also re­spon­si­ble for the fitout of Syd­ney’s Pony, Steel and Fly­ing Fish restau­rants), will trade on week­days from 7am to mid­night. ‘‘ It will be a split venue with cof­fees and a pas­try kitchen at the front and a work­ing kitchen and char­cu­terie room at the back,’’ Moechtar says. Mean­while, a stone’s throw away at the In­terCon­ti­nen­tal Syd­ney, chef Justin North opens Etch, a spin-off of his ac­claimed Clarence Street restau­rant Be­casse, later this month. And in in­nercity Glebe, pop­u­lar lo­cal iden­tity Tim Smith, who runs The Lit­tle Bot­tle Shop of Glebe, has an­nounced plans to set up a small wine bar in three garages at the back of his premises.

De­tec­tive, who has long be­moaned that Glebe is awash with poker ma­chine-filled pubs but lacks some­where lo­cals can sit and have a quiet glass of de­cent wine, is keep­ing her fin­gers crossed that Smith ne­go­ti­ates the tricky new liquor li­cens­ing laws without any hic­cups.

DE­TEC­TIVE is all for a bit of veg­e­tar­ian fare, es­pe­cially when it’s ac­com­pa­nied by a nice big steak. But she’s slightly con­cerned that the en­try for La Panella Bak­ery on page 50 of the newly re­leased The Mel­bourne Veg Food Guide may send the wrong mes­sage to oth­ers strug­gling to con­vert to meat-free

FrenchFoo­datHome: Cana­dian host Laura Calder whips up some French treats in her home kitchen. This week choux pas­try is the fo­cus, as the base for cof­fee eclairs, chocolate-cov­ered, ice cream-stuffed prof­iteroles and a tow­er­ing cro­quem­bouche. One to rewind and watch over and over again. Tues­day, 3.30pm, Life­Style Food.

Every­dayI­tal­ian: Rome-born Gi­ada De Lau­ren­tiis gives sand­wiches the gourmet touch with her twist on the ba­sic BLT, a tuna and ar­ti­choke panini and stick­ysweet toasted cia­batta. You’ll never look at a sim­ple white-sliced Vegemite sarnie the same way. Mon­day, 4.30pm, Life­Style Food. liv­ing. The Pre­ston es­tab­lish­ment’s tex­tured veg­etable pro­tein and gravy mush­room pie, the guide in­forms read­ers, ‘‘ never fails to dis­ap­point’’. De­tec­tive is cer­tain it’s just an un­for­tu­nate typo in an oth­er­wise in­for­ma­tive lit­tle guide to the best veg­e­tar­ian din­ing in Vic­to­ria. The Mel­bourne Veg Food Guide ($14.95; www.aduki.net.au).

FIND of the week: As world fi­nan­cial mar­kets re­main in melt­down, De­tec­tive is heart­ened to stum­ble across a culi­nary bar­gain, es­pe­cially when it of­fers as­pir­ing young chefs the chance to strut their stuff. Ho­bart’s Kuz­ina restau­rant, which opened ear­lier this year, is a train­ing ground for ap­pren­tice chefs and hos­pi­tal­ity staff by day and a restau­rant by night. No course costs more than $27.50 and a nightly ‘‘ ap­pren­tice spe­cial’’ ($22.50) gives young chefs the chance to de­vise and pre­pare their own dish be­fore pre­sent­ing it to din­ers. De­tec­tive is con­fi­dent Kuz­ina’s four-course spe­cial of seafood chow­der, chicken laksa, fish of the day and ap­ple crum­ble for $28.50— surely one of the na­tion’s best deals — will have be­lea­guered mar­ket traders scram­bling for the next flight to Tassie. www.kuz­ina.com.au.

DE­TEC­TIVE loves: The Char­ity Wineshop, a new web-based op­er­a­tion that do­nates at least $20 for ev­ery case of wine sold to char­ity. Se­lect on­line from some top Aussie tip­ples and choose the char­ity — Down Syn­drome NSW and the McGrath Foun­da­tion, among oth­ers — to which you wish to do­nate. Site founders Damian and Terri Percy set up the ini­tia­tive af­ter their sec­ond son, Cal­lum, was born with Down syn­drome and they saw the ‘‘ im­mense dif­fi­cul­ties en­coun­tered by char­ity and not-for-profit or­gan­i­sa­tions to raise enough funds to sim­ply stay afloat’’. www.char­i­ty­wineshop.com.au.

De­tec­tive loathes: Hav­ing forced din­ers to ac­cept the an­noy­ing ‘‘ no book­ings’’ pol­icy, an in­creas­ing num­ber of restau­rants are re­fus­ing to seat cus­tomers un­til all mem­bers of their party are present. How can one win? Get there early and have mem­bers of your party stand around like spare parts un­til that last strag­gler ar­rives, or get there late, party com­plete, and stand no chance of se­cur­ing a ta­ble? Har­rumph!

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.