Tomato marshmallows. Space dust sandwiches. Cheese comets. Truffle popcorn with mushroom burst. Uranus truffles spiked with Vegemite. Flying saucers, aka duck doughnuts.
Intrigued? For three nights in early August, Penfolds is hosting Venture Beyond, a series of culinary events with food by nel chef Nelly Robinson. The esteemed Sydney chef will join the luxury wine label for an immersive, space-themed experience at Carriageworks. It’s one for all tastes: oenophiles, snack lovers and space enthusiasts alike. On the food side of things (we’ll get to wine and entertainment in a bit), Robinson describes it pretty simply – “Fun.”
Unlike the degustation menu at his restaurant in Surry Hills, Robinson has catered for stand-up snacking and groups of up to 400. It’s a line-up of small to substantial bites, plus eight knock-out desserts to finish. You’ll find space snacks such as tomato air (tomato marshmallows with parmesan); moon rocks with salmon (we’ll leave that one up to your imagination – words won’t do it justice); mini hotdogs with apple and spicy mayo, covered in onion rings to resemble Saturn; plus doughnuts filled with confit duck leg.
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After that it’s space dust sandwiches, a smashable snack involving 30-hour brisket; spanner crab with roasted macadamia and sea herbs, presented under a bubble; and cheese comets.
As for sweet treats, there’s one for each of the eight planets (sorry Pluto). The Mercury truffle has a hint of chilli “because it’s closer to the sun”, explains Robinson; Mars is, well, akin to its namesake, and we’ll let you guess the rest – or get there and find out for yourself.
It’s all designed to be complemented by wines from the new release Penfolds Collection 2022, including Australian, Californian and inaugural French releases. “We’ve worked with Penfolds so closely the last few months, so we know the wines inside out” says Robinson. The menu isn’t designed to match “perfectly” but, in the same way the sun shines and the Earth spins, everything works. It doesn’t matter what wine you taste with what delectable morsel – it will be a good combo.
As well as tastings, there’ll be masterclasses so you can go home and school your household; goodtime vibes from Client Liaison; and a multi-sensory, playful setting of several distinct spaces – the keyword being “space”.
It’s on for three nights only, from Thursday August 4 to Saturday August 6. Tickets start at $119 for general admission or $149 for admission and masterclass access. You can even go into our draw for a free ticket.
This article is produced by Broadsheet in partnership with Penfolds.