Tasting Australia, an atmospheric art exhibition that takes the viewer on a journey from sunrise to sunset, and a bunch of new boozers – here’s what Broadsheet Adelaide editor Daniela Frangos will be checking out this month.
Festival season might be over but Adelaide’s events calendar certainly isn't slowing. Both Adelaide Cabaret Festival and Illuminate Adelaide have just announced their winter programs, but next on the agenda is Tasting Australia. After postponing and then cancelling its 2020 season, the best culinary festival in the country returns on April 30 with 140 events across 11 regions. And – contrary to popular belief – it’s not all out of your price range. Need some tips? We’ve rounded up the most wallet-friendly events, including an event dedicated to sausage in bread, and a steak night with interstate chefs Morgan McGlone (Belles Hot Chicken) and Alanna Sapwell (Esmay). If you’re willing to splurge, I recommend a daytrip to KI or a fabulous dinner with an all-star line-up at the Town Square Kitchen. The latter involves visiting chefs such as Analiese Gregory, Paul Carmichael and Christine Manfield flexing their muscle on a series of collaborative feasts.
Become a pasta master
I daresay all pasta is good. But what makes it truly great? Whether you’re buying packet pasta or rolling your own, we asked some of Australia’s most acclaimed Italian chefs for their essential pasta-cooking tips, including experts from Melbourne’s Tipo 00 and Osteria Ilaria and Adelaide’s Nido and soon-to-open Fugazzi Bar & Dining Room. From which sized pan to use, to a secret ingredient that’ll make things silky, and a clever way to enhance the starch levels – here’s how to become a pro.
State of the art
There’s still time to see ACE Open’s powerful exhibition The Image is not Nothing, the result of extensive field research by curators Lisa Radford and Yhonnie Scarce. Pre-pandemic, the pair explored some of the world’s most famous sites of devastation, including Chernobyl, Auschwitz, Hiroshima, Fukushima, New York, Maralinga, Wounded Knee Creek and former Yugoslavia. The show features works by more than 20 emerging and established artists from Australia and abroad, all grappling with these histories – from Japanese artists on Hiroshima and Fukushima to New York artists on Ground Zero. There’s also art responding to atrocities that have occurred on home soil, including the nuclear weapons development testing carried out on Indigenous ancestral lands from 1952 to 1963.
Over at the Art Gallery of South Australia is a retrospective of celebrated modernist Australian artist Clarice Beckett. Featuring almost 130 works, The present moment is the largest exhibition of Beckett’s works to date. Her ethereal, atmospheric paintings have been arranged to take visitors on a journey from day to night, beginning with works set during sunrise through to bright morning scenes, quiet afternoons, dreamy sunsets and moody evenings. The exhibition features works from national public collections and the private collections of people such as artist Ben Quilty and Russell Crowe. This month, AGSA is also hosting weekly mindfulness workshops exploring Beckett’s art in a new light.
Plan a bar crawl
After a very quiet year for Adelaide’s bar scene, the first few months of 2021 have gifted us a bunch of exciting new boozers. Three have opened on Gilbert Place alone: a watering hole that’s part-honkytonk, part-truck stop and all Americana; a moody underground cocktail bar; and a Mediterranean and Middle Eastern-inspired bar from the owner of Real Falafel. Further east there’s a quaint new wine bar with old-world charm, a cafe-bar hybrid in a restored octagonal kiosk, and a vibrant new florist and cafe (with custom cocktails).
Crab Carnival and Chilli Fest
Sean’s Kitchen is hosting a month-long celebration of crustacean with the return of its annual Crab Carnival. Get your hands around chef Sean Connolly’s soft-shell-crab rolls, blue swimmer crab linguine, and king crab mac’n’cheese. There’s also dedicated nights for Louisiana-style Crab Broil and a monster-sized chilli mud crab. Right next door at Madame Hanoi is the annual Chilli Fest. For the rest of the month you can try 13 chilli-infused dishes, including duck with fermented chilli paste, chilli beer tofu and Saigon chilli lollipops. To drink there are spicy cocktails, as well as a Cucumber Cooler with gin, lime and aloe vera to soothe the burn.
If you were the only one in your friendship circle to miss the sourdough train last year, it’s not too late to get on board. But obtaining and maintaining a starter – the naturally occurring culture used in place of store-bought yeast in sourdough – can feel a little out of reach for some. So an Adelaide engineer and former hospitality worker is selling complete starter kits to help you kickstart your new favourite pastime. They come with a sachet of dried starter flakes, bread flour from Flinders Ranges Premium Grain, plus baking equipment and a QR code to access online instructions. If I can do it so can you. But fair warning: you’re about to become very attached to (and protective of) your jar of bubbling starter.