My Haul at the 2012 Melbourne Good Food and Wine Show

Tis' the season to be jowly, um I mean jolly, foodie la la la, la la ha ha!

Yes, every time a foodie event rolls around, it feels like Christmas. A legitimate pigout food indulgent excuse. This time, I've got reason enough for cheer. Although I've sampled and certainly have in my fridge and pantry most of the produce from the Show, there were many more left to explore. Of course I BYO-ed my own trolley knowing the amount of harvesting I will be doing. The greater good of the crowd did purchase the bright orange, purple, blue and red wheelie bags savvy organisers were hawking. 

Pictures weren't great, as I was too busy chatting to the exhibitors and catching up with a few friends who were either attending or exhibiting their wares at the Show. I did snap some of my haul and there were a few highlights. In fact, I'll be featuring what I've cooked up from my Show purchases in my next post.

Maggie Beer! But more about that later...
Spot a red trolley
What's a Show without a redhead carrot top costume
One of the real treats of attending this Show was catching the ever-affable Maggie Beer. She looked exactly the same in real life as she does on TV. Even her personality is delightfully happy and smiling in person. There is certainly no I'm-a-celebrity-chef-bow-down-to-me attitude here. But yet again, she has always let it be known she's a passionate cook and no chef, much like her TV show. Put it this way, no one ever gets sick of eating looking at Maggie's deceptively simple homecooked verjuice country meals. In terms of branding, she's the best ambassador for her own line of products. 

This year, Oxford Landing Estate Wines have teamed up with Maggie for an instant canteen restaurant concept. Purchase a main meal and get a glass of wine paired up with it. Our friends had an entree of smoked ocean trout with diced avocado in verjuice jelly $18 and a main of overpriced petite Angus beef pie $24. S and I shared a lovely Barossa Chook Thigh with dried apricot jus $24 and the creamiest mash potato polenta. All of us capped off with a dessert of brownie dried pear pudding with chocolate salted caramel ice cream $10. The pudding is disturbingly similar to Domino's lava cake version in texture, taste and sweetness.


 Now, who does not love a simple microwavable meal that tastes like a gourmet restaurant meal? Ok, back to reality. Luv-a-Duck has been around for years. After the collapse closure of their South Melbourne retail location, I've seen them in Coles and butchers here and there. 

I must admit to being a bit of a duck nazi snob. I LOVE my duck and quack away if you must, but nothing beats an Asian roast, Peking Simon style, old style l'orange, drizzled with red wine jus or sliced up in congee, you name it, I love it. So forgive me for avoiding the Luv-a-Duck franchise of ready-made microwavable duck. But keeping an open mind and wallet, I gravitated towards their stand and purchased a value-for-money $50 show bag of Confit Duck Legs, Peking Duck Breast, Honey Roast Duck Legs, Asian Roast and a Peking Pancake Kit. All packed in a gaudy red freezer zippered bag. 

Tried the Peking Pancake Kit that came complete with duck, hoisin sauce and pancakes when we came home for dinner. We added our own cucumber and spring onion. I was surprised it didn't turn out as bad as I expected. It was actually alright for a convenient quick meal. 

I probably wouldn't have looked twice at this stand had my friend not stopped at it to purchase 2 30g packs of meringue. Looking at the name "Unforgettable Products", I would have just passed it unmemorably chalking it down as a scented candle, old ladyish soap stall.

This was until I tasted one of their little meringues. Good lordy! Before you know it, I was on to their lemon curd and purchasing a $25 pack of those with tiny pastry casings and 3 packs of 30g eye drop meringues worth a further $20.

Free Yoghurt originating from the US
2 for a mere $5. Butter with sea salt. Unfortunately they remain hard as rocks.
$10 for a Riedel red wine glass. Bargain!
2 Good Taste Show Bags for $15. My girlfriend and I split it and the husbands lugged it.
Yummy ciders
Chiang chiang chiang! Unauthentic Chinese Noodle Crisps and salad dressing
4 for $30. Careme pastry, they are the best, Maggie said so!
Slurping on one as we speak. 5 for $10
Ok, obviously not mine, but weirdly it's a pale ale, no mango in it.
If you love the taste of wood and pasta, this is for you. JK, it's actually yummers.
3 for $25. Cornflakes, cranberries, macadamia with a white choc base. Repeat purchase for years.
My fave sweeeet tomatoes for only $3 a punnet.
Versus Coles at $5!
Korean Tourism giving out free samples of Kim Chi sponsored by Korean Kim Chi
Can't say no to Habanero and Jalapeno dips! 

 Seriously, look at the above pic. My HG of salted caramel is complete in those jars $9 each. Fans of La Belle Miette Macarons, you will know what I'm talking about. They are the exact same taste as the filling for their salted caramel macarons. I have visions of creating my very own copycat version of LBM macarons now. That's if I don't finish the jar first manage to master the macarons first.

So gratifying to know I grabbed the last 2 jars available. Rich, creamy, undertones of salt with a smokey flavour.

Um, finishing off with a healthy nutty pic


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