Born in Newcastle NSW ( Gods country). Love of food and wine probably started whilst working in the vineyard restaurants and cellar doors in the Hunter Valley. Travel bug bit in the 90’s and so moved to London and began what was to become 4 years within Sir Terence Conran’s iconic restaurant group, including Butlers Wharf Chophouse, Le Pont de la Tour and the Bluebird Gastrodome on Kings Road, Chelsea. Exposure to some of the finest produce available was truly eye opening not to mention working in some of the best designed restaurants in the world.
France and Italy and everything about them are my true passion. Love exploring the small places off the beaten track and discovering their secrets. Returning to Australia, made home in Sydney and worked across restaurant and event management at venues such as Flying Fish, the historic GPO development and Wildfire. Next came the return home to Newcastle where, with my husband, established our small Italian-inspired “Enoteca”.
The restaurants and laneways of Melbourne then beckoned, and so it is here we now live. I have enjoyed working in this most European-esque of cities at such places as Moon Under Water, Pei Modern and most recently at Vue de monde. Again surrounded by creative talents and the best of food and wine.
Travel beckons often -so weekends regularly see local journeys to the Mornington and Bellarine Peninsulas; the countryside of Daylesford and the rugged beauty of the Great Ocean Road.
It was the love of travel, food and wine that lead me to partner with Truffle Melbourne to create Truffle Hunt Club, a bespoke culinary tourism venture for those with similar passions as mine.
A life-long Melbourne lad, I’ve spent most of my working life in Australian and international universities, opening offshore campuses for Monash, RMIT and others in Jakarta, Guangzhou, Singapore, Colombo and elsewhere across the region. All the while developing a growing interest in truffles as a keen self-taught home cook.
A partner investment in one of Australia’s first large truffle farms in Tasmania in the 1990s led to developing my own boutique truffle farm in Gippsland Victoria. As Secretary of the Australian Truffle Growers Association my passion for introducing Australians to the truffle developed, encouraged by truffle research visits in Europe. These convinced me that if small villages in France or Spain could stage amazing truffle festivals, foodie Melbourne was the place to celebrate Australia becoming the 4th largest truffle producer in the world by establishing Truffle Melbourne – already the largest truffle festival outside Europe.
Working together with creative chefs, artisan food & drink producers and truffle growers across the globe has convinced me that bringing to light the stories behind these passionate people is intriguing to those who appreciate fine produce – so I’m keen to share this knowledge with Truffle Hunt Club guests –and our first venture will be an exceptional weekend!