Celebrity chef Luke Mangan reinvents himself as an old sea Salt
Falways keen on a knees-up, was pleased to receive an invitation to the launch of celebrity chef Luke Mangan’s exciting new venture’’ scheduled for later this month. Mangan, who has restaurants in Sydney, Tokyo and San Francisco, and a Melbourne gastro pub set to open soon, would seem to have his hands full but it appears he’s a chap who just can’t say no. So what exactly is the mysterious new venture?
is reliably informed that the Sydney-based chef plans to launch himself on the high seas, opening an outpost of his successful Salt franchise on board P& O’s Pacific Jewel, which enters service in Sydney on December 12 this year. If all proceeds to plan, four more Mangan restaurants will be rolled out across the P& Ofleet.
As well as putting his name to the fine-diners, Mangan will conduct cooking classes and food demos onboard. P& O’s signing of Mangan is further evidence of the cruise company’s commitment to ramping up its culinary offering. Earlier this month, P& O’s Pacific Dawn kicked off the first of a series of three-night taster cruises aimed at highlighting Australian food and wine.
The NSW Hunter Valley region was the focus of the first gourmet mini-cruise (see next week) and will be featured on two more weekend outings next year, from Sydney on January 29 and from Brisbane on May 12. A fourth food cruise, from the West Australian port of Fremantle, is scheduled for December next year.
Mangan joins the likes of Gary Rhodes ( February 21-22), Nobu Matsuhisa, Marco Pierre White and Todd English, who have already taken their cuisine afloat. French culinary wiz Jacques Pepin, meanwhile, also has waded into the world of so-called cruisine. Pepin has just announced he will open Jacques, his first restaurant at sea, onboard the Oceania Cruises vessel Marina, which is due to go into commission next year. www.lukemangan.com; www.pocruises.com.au.
WHAT on earth could have prompted Don Burke to let rip at Donna Hay on his radio show over her parsnip recipes in News Limited’s magazine? The verbal thrashing last week, in which Burke declared that serving parsnips is an affront to human dignity’’ and labelled Hay wretched for doing so, prompted a backlash from vegetable-growing associations and Hay herself but left slightly perplexed. Why on earth would a one-time television gardener get on his soapbox about the work of a cookery mag publisher?
Perhaps it’s because Burke also fancies himself as something of a culinary authority. A slim volume called
(New Holland, $6.95), recently landed on desk, promising to translate non-English menu items into words we all can understand and speak — plain English!’’. It contains helpful translations for everything from a la carte (‘‘to order from a menu’’, the guide on economic issues as they relate to gastronomy and the food industry, including sustainability, frugality, kitchen economies and food habits in hard times. We have a really good selection of papers promised . . . some on economical cooking and eating, some with more inventive interpretations of economy,’’ organiser Barbara Santich says.
It’s 25 years since we had the first symposium in Adelaide in 1984, so it’s a bit of a celebration.’’
Registration for the event, to be held at the Noel Lothian Hall at Adelaide’s Botanic Gardens, is $500 or $375 for full-time students (including meals; excluding accommodation). www.hss.adelaide.edu.au/ centrefooddrink/events/.
has heard of slow payers, but this is ridiculous. Britain’s newspaper reports that a restaurateur was finally paid for a £10 ($20) curry he served a customer . . . 13 years earlier. The tardy diner, obviously suffering a case of late-onset guilt, sent an anonymous letter to police, enclosing a tenner for the curry plus £50 compensation. He couldn’t remember the name of the restaurant but gave police a description of its location. Samsul Bari, owner of the now closed Indian restaurant in Swansea, South Wales, was tracked down via media appeal and the money returned. wonders what took the tardy diner so long. Perhaps he’d slipped into a korma?
FIND of the week: Queensland Sunshine Coast farmer Richard Mohan’s pimientos de Padron, also known as Russian roulette chillies, have proved a hit with Australian restaurateurs seeking obscure Spanish crops grown locally ( January 24-25). Happily, Mohan has just harvested his first batch of another Spanish favourite, calcots, a mild and sweet cross between a spring onion and a leek best eaten simply barbecued on an open flame. has done a taste test and can report that Mohan has produced another winner. He was not so lucky, however, with his crop of rafs, dubbed by the Spanish as the world’s tastiest tomato. Absolutely buggered,’’ he tells of the experimental batch he planted this year. They were going great, lovely-tasting fruit, until three weeks ago when we had the frost from hell. Will have to rethink growing rafs in winter outdoors.’’ www.midyimeco.com.au.
loves: Breakfast. But evidently not as much as Chad Haylock, who pleaded guilty in Brisbane Magistrates Court recently to stealing 360 eggs and 5kg of freshly ground coffee from the city’s The Point Hotel.
reckons Haylock may want a cholesterol check once he’s back on the straight and narrow.
loathes: thought she’d seen it all when it came to inconsiderate behaviour in restaurants. But her experience in Sydney’s Haberfield last week surely takes the biscuit. As diners enjoyed their meals around her, one woman decided there was no more appropriate place to change her baby’s nappy than at the dinner table, even though the restrooms were just a few metres from her table. nearly choked on her braised rabbit at such a disgraceful display.