he Melbourne Food and Wine Festival’s Roast Collection celebrates the tradition of the roast from around the world, with more than 80 events held in restaurants, pubs and wineries across the state. With a focus on Victoria’s plentiful produce, the Roast Collection will showcase crispy crackling, slow-roasted roo, succulent duck and much more, with all the trimmings and wines to match. And it’s not just for the tastebuds. Masterclasses will demonstrate how to butcher a beast, create crunchy crackling and make a stuffing to be remembered. Here are some of the highlights.
South Carolina style whole hog at the Newmarket
Southern food comes to St Kilda every Saturday and Sunday for lunch in June with a South Carolina whole hog barbecue. Rare breed Gippsland Berkshire suckling pigs are pit barbecued over cider vinegar-soaked hickory chips. Served with apple slaw, maple roasted sweet potatoes and collard greens, punters will be all hogged out. Remember to save some space for the South Carolina banana pudding.
Cost: $55 for two courses, $30 for kids under 12
When: Every Saturday and Sunday in June, noon–3pm
Get Roasted at Cutler & Co.
Each Friday, Cutler & Co.’s market menu will showcase delicious roasted dishes that feature seasonal, local ingredients. The set three-courses will vary from week to week depending on what’s available.
Cost: $60 for three courses
When: Every Friday in June, noon–2.30pm
O’Connor’s great local beef at San Telmo
Victorian beef producers O’Connor’s are celebrated at San Telmo on 18 June. A four-course menu will feature quality, pasture-fed, marbled O’Connor beef from Gippsland, which will be char-grilled Argentinian style. The restaurant will also pit Victorian wine against Argentinian wine in a South vs South stand-off.
When: 18 June, 7pm-10.30pm
Cheeky Sunday cider roast at Brunswick Street Cider House
Cider is celebrated on Sunday afternoons in June at the Brunswick Street Cider House. In conjunction with Rebello Wines, the Cider House chefs have created roasts that showcase Rebello’s Cheeky Rascal Ciders. Try the confit pork belly poached in pear cider, the slow-roasted kangaroo with a raspberry and apple cider jus or a roasted duck breast with a summer-berry cider jus. All roasts come with a schooner of cider, as well as all the trimmings.
When: Every Sunday in June, noon–9pm
Old school roasts at Huxtable
The team at Huxtable is going traditional, with an old school roast menu. Each week will feature different local produce, including Wurrock Mutton, Gippsland Quail, Western Plains Pork and Moondarra Wagyu, which will be served with lashings of gravy and a glass of Victorian wine.
Cost: $55 per person
When: Every Wednesday night from June 6 to 27
Roast Collection events run from June 1 to 30.