The days are getting cooler and it’s heading towards that time of year again… the Truffle Kerfuffle!
The festival in Manjimup is held on Saturday 24th and Sunday 25th of June. You can feast on truffle inspired dishes, drink local wine and meet those beautiful truffle dogs – all in the stunning setting around Fonty’s Pool.In the Truffle Tent there’s cooking demos and panel discussions.
The Marketplace has a bounty of truffles, gourmet food, premium wine, cider and much more local produce on offer. There’s wine sessions in the Shed with wine experts and local winemakers too.
A warm welcome awaits this winter for Truffle Kerfuffle special guests Chef and TV personality Paul West (from River Cottage Australia) and Jack Stein (of the Stein Group, UK).
Also confirmed is a stellar line-up of West Aussie culinary talent, including Chefs Aaron Carr (Vasse Felix), Ben Day (Aravina Estate) Amy Hamilton (Liberte, Albany), Jesse Blake (Petition Kitchen), Russell Blaikie (Must Winebar) David Coomer (Fuyu), Sophie Zalokar (Foragers), and Paul Iskov (Fervor). Even more chefs, producers, food and wine experts will be announced soon.
Speaking from his home in Central Tilba in New South Wales, Paul West is looking forward to working with Industry veterans like Russell Blaikie, David Coomer and Aaron Carr. He commented:
“I’m excited to be a part of Truffle Kerfuffle this year. It really gets to the heart of the things I love. As a chef, I love working with fresh black truffle; they hold such mystique even for veteran chefs. Being at the heart of Australian truffle country at the peak of the season is going to be special. Seasonality issuch an important aspect of the festival and that’s such an important aspect of my life and what I do.”
“Spending much of my time with farmers around Australia, the opportunity to be on the ground in the Southern Forests, meeting growers with generational farming histories, as well as first generation farmers, is I’m sure going to be a highlight. The truffle story there is amazing, the way it’s put this community on the culinary map, but so is the diversity of produce, from heritage pumpkins, and marron aquaculture, the orchardists and a huge amount of other produce. I can’t wait.”
“I’ll be getting around the region while I’m in the Southern Forests, and I’m looking forward to getting to cook with great produce in the Chef’s Cabin sessions I’m doing. Fresh truffle and great seasonal produce are always hard to resist, and doing this with intimate groups of passionate home cooks is always great. It’s the opportunity to impart a bit of my skill, share my journey and sometimes I learn a few things back. It’s what great events are all about.”
Festival Director and Food Writer extraordinaire Max Brearley comments:
“Over 7 years the festival has brought chefs to the region and it’s resulted in great relationships between them and producers. This year we celebrate that with a dining lining up that’s all about those links. Our main dining events are an all WA line up, with the likes of Aaron Carr and Ben Day; Russell Blaikie, Amy Hamilton and Jesse Blake. The thing that’s exciting for me as Festival Director is the passion for this event from the chefs. Aaron has pretty much been here every year in some guise or another, as has David Coomer. Russell is returning after a couple of years, and his enthusiasm for the event is great. Then there’s the likes of Jesse. It’s amazing the things he’s looking at doing; engaging with producers 3 months out to have things grown and produced and all manner of things. That’s one dinner I wouldn’t miss. Amy, well she’s brilliant in whatever she does and Ben as a newcomer has hit the ground running. He’s so engaged with producers he’s already scoping out what he and Aaron can do. My advice is book fast, but then I would say that.”
“In Paul West and Jack Stein, we have two chefs that are passionate about food and farming. Paul, as a chef turned farmer knows the culinary landscape inside out these days; while Jack grew up in the family business. As Executive chef across a lot of restaurants, he continues the ethos of supporting producers that his dad Rick started off with over 40 years ago. He’s spent a good deal of time in WA over the last few years and the opportunity to come back in winter and see a different side of things really appealed.”
The Programme Events
o Feast and Fire Opening Night with Aaron Carr and Ben Day Fri 23rd June, Ticketed. Feast and Fire is the ultimate kick off to a weekend long celebration of the truffle season. Enjoy live music, local wines, and watch acclaimed chefs Aaron Carr (Vasse Felix, Margaret River) and Ben Day (Aravina Estate, Yallingup) cook a feast over flames and coals. Take in the firelight atmosphere and enjoy a taste of Genuinely Southern Forests produce and truffles.
o Hunter’s Breakfast with Paul West and Russell Blaikie Sat 24th June, Ticketed. Ask any truffle hunter about their favourite truffle dish and they’ll invite you for breakfast; truffles and eggs are a match made in truffle heaven. Hunter’s Breakfast returns with Russell Blaikie (Must, Perth) at the helm and Paul West on the mic; a lavish way to start your weekend and a chance to chat to some of our local truffle hunters. A showcase of freshly harvested truffles alongside local Genuinely Southern Forests produce and a glass or two of bubbles.
o Truffle Hunts Sat 24th and Sun 25th June, Ticketed. Meet the truffle dogs, the festival scene stealers. See them at work on the famed orchards of Manjimup. A rare chance to have a go at unearthing a truffle yourself and glimpse the mystery that surrounds this prized ingredient.
o Southern Forest Barbeque with Amy Hamilton Sat 24th June, Ticketed. A sumptuous feast of truffles and Genuinely Southern Forests produce headed up by rising star, Amy Hamilton (Liberte, Albany). Amy takes her cues from her passion for local food and good old-fashioned hospitality.
o A Winter’s Night with Jesse Blake Sat 24th June, Ticketed. Kick off your heels and put on your boots for this most down to earth of dining experiences. A generous feast of freshly harvested truffles, local wines and Genuinely Southern Forests produce. Jesse Blake (Petition, Perth) is one of Perth’s brightest and best chefs. Feast on specially grown and produced ingredients, a menu in the making for months and savour Southern Forests wine matches.
o Chef’s Cabin with Paul West, Jack Stein, Aaron Carr, Ben Day, Jesse Blake and Sue Lewis Sat 24th and Sun 25th June, Ticketed. An intimate cooking experience by the warmth of the fire. Learn from the experts as you watch, touch and taste your way to new culinary skills. An informal learning environment, that includes tastings of food, truffles and wine and an opportunity to chat to our local and national guest chefs. Places are strictly limited.