The terror attacks in Christchurch have been devastating for people the world over. And now one of New Zealand’s most famous exports, Attica chef Ben Shewry, is doing his bit to support the victims of the attacks.
Together with some of Melbourne’s best chefs, Shewry will host Bake for Christchurch – a bake sale raising funds for the victims’ families and people affected by the Christchurch attacks.
“As I talked to friends in New Zealand yesterday about coming together as a country, about solidarity, I just wanted to create something here in the community to say to our Kiwi friends and our Muslim friends that we’re standing with you, we support you and you’re welcome here,” Shewry tells Broadsheet.
“It’s a community event. The prices aren’t high. Everyone can afford to come and buy something,” says Shewry of the sale. All of the proceeds will go towards the Victim Support New Zealand Give a Little fund that has so far raised almost $8 million to support people affected by the Christchurch terror attacks.
Shewry’s Ripponlea fine diner is considered by many to be the best restaurant in Australia – it placed 20th at last year’s World’s 50 Best Restaurants awards – and the chef has gathered together an impressive list of his high-profile chef friends.
“I initially thought we’ll just do a simple little bake sale and we’ll do the Vegemite scroll that we do here on the menu, and we’ll do a large version. People always say, ‘If you made that in a bakery we’d queue for hours for that thing’. So we thought we’d do a few hundred of those and sell them. But then I thought, ‘That’s not enough’. I know a lot of my Kiwi friends … are all feeling the same way. We are reeling and don’t know how to help.”
It’s the first time you’ll be able to try Attica’s famed Vegemite scroll outside the restaurant, and you’ll also be able to pick up cheesecakes from Andrew McConnell (Cutler & Co, Cumulus Inc, Supernormal), strawberry mascarpone from Neil Perry (Rockpool Bar & Grill), and a chicken breakfast sandwich from Morgan McGlone (Belles Hot Chicken), as well as contributions from Jo Barrett and Matt Stone (Oakridge Estate), Phil Wood (Pt Leo Estate), Kate and Cam Reid (Lune Croissanterie), Shannon Martinez (Smith & Daughters), Daniel Wilson (Huxtaburger), Peter Gunn (Ides), Ash and Gary McBean (Gary’s Meats), and Mia and Mike Russell (Baker Bleu).
Beer is being supplied by New Zealand brewery Garage Project and coffee by Market Lane. Mongolian-born Melbourne artist Heesco will also contribute work.
To kick off the funding drive Shewry will be selling hugs – yes, you read that correctly – on Saturday at Melbourne Food & and Wine Festival’s River Graze event.
“You can buy a hug from me from $20. I’m not sure how many takers there will be.”
We get the feeling he might be underestimating the demand for a Shewry embrace.
Bake for Christchurch is on Saturday March 30 from 9am to 12pm (or until sold out) at Attica, 74 Glen Eira Road, Ripponlea. Cakes and pastries will be sold by the piece, cash only.
If you can’t make it to Bake for Christchurch you can also find ways to help people affected by the Christchurch terror attacks here.