Charlie Carrington’s travel journal is different to most: his snapshots of overseas trips come in the form dishes served at his South Yarra restaurant Atlas Dining, where every four months his menu changes to reflect the cuisine of a single country.

Carrington’s Colours by Atlas is a few doors down the road. It’s far more casual and covers a little more ground at a time, serving five dishes (in bowls) each inspired by a different country.

For example, Mexico is represented through a combination of pork belly, tomatoes, guacamole and black beans, topped with slivers of corn tortilla. An Israeli bowl includes carrot, tomato, cucumber, hummus and pickles, with the option to add charoset (a sweet paste made of fruit and nuts) lamb or eggplant. Vietnam comes in the form of steamed chicken, cabbage, Vietnamese mint and a pickled green chilli dressing; a Greek salad contains potato and pickled-onion feta, with the option to add yoghurt or a vegan-friendly watermelon and honey tzatziki. A salmon ceviche served with quinoa, egg and sweet potato represents Peru.

Diners are encouraged to “stick to the menu” as the dishes at Colours by Atlas are designed to be a whole, and rotate regularly.

Most ingredients come from local Victorian producers, including Glenora Heritage Produce in Goornong and Mossy Willow Farm in Main Ridge. Carrington is working with suppliers to ensure produce and other ingredients are delivered in reusable tubs, rather than single-use plastics. It’s a standard he applies to Colours’s own packaging.

Eventually Carrington wants Colours and Atlas to produce less that 120 litres of landfill waste between both venues per week, with a menu that uses 80 per cent organic produce.

Updated: September 9th, 2019

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