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For one day only, Thursday 17 September, a Mornington Peninsula rum distillery is delivering its rum rescue remedies to Melburnians, writes Belinda Jackson. For locked-down Melburnians hiding under the doona, here’s a happy reminder that it’s currently Negroni Week, an international celebration of the cocktail invented in Italy 101 years ago. The most widely recounted Negroni creation story goes that Count Camillo Negroni couldn’t get enough of the good stuff in his glass, and asked…

Holly Kilntworth is one of Australia’s finest distillers, yet her original plans concerning the drinks trade were motivated by her good nose for business, rather than to create products. Armed with a Master of Business Administration from RMIT, she landed a job as Global Brand Assistant at Treasury Wines Estate, but much later discovered the joys of product development visiting Cognac distillers in France. In 2016, she was invited to take over from her father…

One of the most exciting world exhibits of indigenous art is coming to The National Gallery of Victoria later this year as it will launch TIWI – on show from November 13 to March 8, 2021 at The Ian Potter Centre: NGV Australia. The Tiwi, the original inhabitants of Melville and Bathurst Islands, are known for their extraordinary art and cultural practices, distinct from those of mainland Aboriginal people. Located 80 km north of Darwin,…

Once the hidden gem of Steels Creek, near Yarra Glen, Yarra Valley boutique winery Yileena Park has become one of the region’s must-visit cellar doors. These days, the winery hosts couples and small groups of eager wine aficionados vying for the best pre-booked limited seats in the luxurious Tasmania oak-lined parlour-style tasting room for Yileena’s detailed complimentary wine education and tasting presentations. Entertaining, educating and sharing wines is all in a day’s play for Bob…

Unlike other ski resorts, Victoria’s Dinner Plain has a year-round community with a life of its own, and it’s quintessentially Australian. There are no fences and the houses are designed with the old cattlemen’s huts in mind. When people walk around the village, they regain their sense of freedom. Entering the village by crossing the cattle grid signals one’s arrival – it’s time to shed some stress and unwind in style true opulent Bond villain…

Looking for the ultimate cure to your lockdown isolation blues? Step inside High Country Victoria’s just opened contemporary, architect design accommodation properties: Art House Townhouses, Bright. 
Situated in the heart of Bright’s food, wine and distillery district, these five luxury appointed townhouses offer a new standard in designer comforts married with individual collections of fine Australian art prints produced by celebrated contemporary artists Margie Sheppard and Dean Bowen, plus key works by  John Olsen. Exteriors…

Take a seaside stroll on a wild shore, feel the pulse of an ancient forest, find views that have inspired some of Australia’s great painters and iconic novelists. Who’d have thought it possible a month ago? As the loosening of lockdown continues across the world, Victorians can now stretch their legs and travel within the state. Nature has been the big winner of the COVID era, and our cleaner, greener, open spaces are beckoning. Sorrento-Portsea…

Australia’s dining scene may be in COVID-induced hibernation, but our fascination with food will be (virtually) well-fed this weekend in a one-off livestream feast starring the country’s best produce. Live from Aus is a round-up of the country’s best travel adventures by Tourism Australia: in between koala love-ins and taking a virtual dip in the waters of Moore Reef off the coast from Cairns, our most famous faces dish up a range of culinary explorations…

Join chefs Jo Barrett and Matt Stone this Saturday for a crafternoon making Neufchâtel cheese, LIVE from Oakridge Winery in Victoria’s Yarra Valley. Jo will teach you how to make this delicious soft cow’s cheese at home using just four ingredients. Jo and Matt will reveal their favourite ways to enjoy Neufchatel cheese with recommended wine pairings while sharing their wealth of knowledge on the best things to do in the Yarra Valley for a weekend away,…

There’s a bloody huge elephant in the dining room and I’m not talking about the savage job losses and economic chaos playing out within the Australian restaurant industry. I’m talking about the prospective loss of art – a loss of the very fabric that makes up our cultural food identity: our great chefs, our historic eateries, the celebrated dishes and the joy of discovery in exploring our rich and thriving food scene. Melbourne’s Longrain and Longsong…

Flowerdale Farm is an innovative Australian-owned family business based in Flowerdale, Victoria, around an hour North East of Melbourne. They’re growers and suppliers of an astonishing range of edible flowers and micro-greens. While many of us may have seen plates within Melbourne restaurants garnished with their products, there’s now a growing list of grocery stores and vegetable provedores that stock their products. Adding colour and life to a range of dishes, here’s our guide to…

So the saying goes, the best chefs enjoy nurturing people – offering care and sustenance to make the body strong and the heart warm. In response to the COVID-19 crisis, many Melbourne restaurants are this week offering non-contact home delivery services, supplying pasta sauces, take-home lasagne, slow cooked ribs, Humpty Doo barramundi, discounted wine and more. in case you may have forgotten, the world still is indeed your oyster – and we can buy electronically!…

If you’re a passionate vegetable or fruit grower living in Australia, you might be aware that this summer’s erratic climate has played havoc with vine maturation of gourmet tomato varieties. With a mix of hot and dry days, plus variants of cold and warm days, with higher than average humidity in the southern states, ripening of this versatile fruit has come late for many. In Victoria’s Yarra Valley, Mark Ebbels, head chef of Yarra Valley’s…

Given the changing season, cooler days and easing of summer crowds, now’s a good time take the drive to Victoria’s glamours Mornington Peninsula. While inland Red Hill winery restaurants in recent years have captured the crowds and won many of the accolades, seaside towns like Sorrento and Portsea have shared less of the limelight. But with this summer’s opening of Morgan’s Sorrento, positive change has arrived making a firm footing and marking a line in…

TFE Hotels and Hume Partners Property will launch Australia’s very first cross-laminated timber (CLT) hotel and the tallest timber adaptive-reuse project in the country, Adina Apartment Hotel Melbourne Southbank, later this year. Just six months out from opening, the 220-room Bates Smart-designed apartment hotel, at the intersection of Southbank Boulevard and City Road in Melbourne, is set to turn heads for its edgy and beautiful architectural smarts; and warm hearts for its forward thinking sustainable…

It’s been a long focus of Essentials to celebrate the many landmark icons of Melbourne, Australia – its sensational cafés, historic restaurants and art galleries; including its people: chefs, artists, designers and all the creative minds who have collectively shared in building the culturally rich tapestry that is the city we know and love today. British-born, Melbourne-based chef Ian Curley, like many before him, brings a wealth of knowledge and artisan colour to the region.…

Melbourne’s most exclusive Japanese restaurant is genuinely hard to find. It’s down a laneway off Bourke Street that seems to become invisible when you start looking for it – however Essentials has the secret instructional discovery details listed here. And for good reason, because on Monday, 23 September 2019, Ishizuka will present a special eight-course kaiseki dinner celebrating the world’s most sought after beef, showcasing both locally sourced David Blackmore 9+ score and imported Japanese…

View From from the Hill: The city skyline view is sharply lit in the ice-chilled early winter morning sun. Directly below, from the third floor Apartment 30, cars whizz along Melbourne’s original northern arterial Bell Street; and just across the way, lines of terracotta rooftops sit among a mix of tree canopies – eucalypt ghost gums, pencil pine conifers, other deciduous trees; also the occasional date palm. I admire a towering Norfolk Island Pine; its crest…

Situated among Southbank’s big city brands like Burberry, Louis Vuitton, Sake and Rockpool, a quiet achieving Argentinian-inspired eatery has popped up amongst the glam. It’s the new flavour of the month and we’re mighty pleased to be dining here. Uncomplicated, cleverly thought-out menus offer a great choice in tempting and deliciously flavoured, aromatic starters and sides. But the hero here at Asado Melbourne is unmistakably the meat… or so we’re told. The showpiece of the…

It’s been a long focus of Essentials to celebrate the many landmark icons of Melbourne, Australia – its sensational cafés, historic restaurants and art galleries; including its people: chefs, artists, designers and all the creative minds who have collectively shared in building the culturally rich tapestry that is the city we know and love today. British-born, Melbourne-based chef Ian Curley, like many before him, brings a wealth of knowledge and artisan colour to the region.…

The aroma of citrus fills the air in the small factory in Melbourne’s west. Boxes of thick-skinned lemons are piled up on the floor. Jon Caneva smiles as he carefully takes to the lemons with a small, sharp knife. ‘You have to remove the outside of the skin without taking any of the white pith, otherwise the limoncello will become bitter,’ says Jon. He’s a man who wears a happy demeanour like a well-fitting jacket.…

Va Tutto restaurant in Ivanhoe, a leafy North East suburb of Melbourne is an icon. Operated by husband and wife team, Paul and Myrto Recinella, Va Tutto is currently in its twelfth year; its fine food heritage going back a further 16 years, as the pair previously operated Zeo’s in East Melbounre. Achieving The Age Good Food Guide one hat status for 7 years in a row, Paul explains that continually working to meet this,…

A truly excellent new Japanese restaurant in Melbourne’s CBD is quite literally a hidden gem. Melbourne’s newest and most exclusive Japanese restaurant is genuinely hard to find. It’s down a laneway off Bourke Street that seems to become invisible when you start looking for it. Once you find it you punch a code into a buzzer in a nondescript apartment building, walk through a set of doors, then take a lift to the basement where…

Melbourne’s MoVida crew launches their latest venture in true Spanish style – welcome to Bar Tini. The greatest bars in Spain are very simple affairs. There’s a bar, someone behind it to pour the drinks and one person out back making very tasty morsels. Sometimes they don’t even have a cook – just the barman slicing off little morsels of jamón and aged cheese, perhaps opening a tin of exceptionally good mussels. That is the…

A collaboration of Tony Conigliaro of East London’s Drink Factory and Ashley Palmer-Watts, Chef Director of Dinner by Heston (Melbourne & London), has resulted in a cocktail list utterly unique and, in part, influenced by Australia’s maritime history. As head bartender Darren Leaney of Dinner by Heston Melbourne explains, research into the history of alcoholic beverages and cocktails in particular can be sketchy at best, but small nuggets of information can be plucked from the…