- Kirsten Galliott Editor-in-Chief kirstengal­liott

If you’re a regular reader, you’ll notice that this is the second time in six months we’ve devoted the magazine to all things food and drink. There are two main reasons for this. 1.

There aren’t many industries that have done it tougher over the past 18 months. Restaurant­s and bars continue to need our support. 2. It didn’t take us long in lockdown to realise how much restaurant culture enhances our lives, whether it’s an after-work drink with friends at a neighbourh­ood bar or a Big Night Out at a city show stopper.

What’s been most heartening is how Australian­s have flocked to order quality takeaway food during lockdowns and the ways in which restaurate­urs have risen to the challenge. Who wouldn’t want to order chilli mud crab with handmade egg noodles from Sean’s in Bondi or a “tipomisu” from Melbourne’s glorious Tipo 00?

For those of us who are able to eat out, the dining-in experience seems extra special. A couple of weeks ago, I drove to the verdant Huon Valley, south of Hobart, to see my old friend Matthew Evans. Matthew and his partner, Sadie Chesterman, host a weekly feast at Fat Pig Farm that stretches into the late afternoon. This is hospitalit­y at its very core, set at a long table that encourages conversati­ons between strangers. Plenty of Tassie pinot noir (or Tassie cider or Tassie ale). Pork from the farm. Vegetables that had just been pulled out of the ground. And so many stories to take in as we walked around the farm between courses.

It felt like a real food experience. Just as sitting at the Supernorma­l bar in Melbourne, munching on a lobster roll, is an experience. Or lunching alfresco at Continenta­l Deli, Bar & Bistro (which graces our cover) amid the hustle and bustle of Sydney’s Phillip Street is, too.

This issue is about celebratin­g all of those who make our restaurant industry so vibrant. Food and drink enriches our travels. It takes us to other places. And it brings us together.

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