This year's event, like last year, was held at the Sofitel Hotel on Collins Street. There was approximately 800 guests, who enjoyed themselves grazing on the delectable food and drinks spread over three different areas. The main Grand Ballroom had the stage for the auction of donated items, the upstairs room had a cosier intimate feel with a live band, and the hall area had a more relaxed open vibe to it. All three ares were lined with culinary stars and their restaurant stalls, along with fabulous beer and wine producers.
I wandered my way through all three areas sampling fine food from such restaurants as The Press Club, No35, Coda, Maha Bar & Grill, PM24, The Point, Verge, Taxi and pastry shops like Le Petit Gateau and Burch & Purchese. The food was all sensational, but for me two items stood out. Firstly, I couldn't go past (actually I went past three times to have repeated servings) the Mushroom Forest dessert from Nic Poleart at Embrasse. Visually stunning and with flavours to match. The constrast of the mousse, meringue, chocolate dirt, chocolate curl and granita was worth every calorie of my one-day-of-processed-sugar-a-week diet. Nic also made the most divine violet macarons, which I adored. You know about my obsession with violet flavours, especially in macarons.
My favourite savoury dish of the night was from one of my favourite restaurants, The Point. The Wagyu Cigars were crispy, tender and flavoursome and just so mooreish. Sous chef Ben was there frying them up and doing a great job.
I tasted a host of other amazing dishes, some of which I remembered to photograph below. I also sampled a variety of drinks, from the always excellent Moet and Chandon Brut to the slightly strange Blueberry Beer and Acai Vodka.
And what's a food event without some chef stalking, ummmm, spotting. I managed to get a snap with my bro Pierrick Boyer from Le Petit Gateau, Ian Burch from Burch & Purchese and my mate Scott Pickett from The Point.
It's was a super fun night and all for an amazing cause. The event was run very smoothly, the food and drinks were sensational, the atmosphere was relaxed and enjoyable and the cause, a great one. I would highly recommend you go along next year and enjoy the event yourself. It's like the World's best buffet, where a ticket to the event gives you access to unlimited dishes from some of Melbourne's best restaurants.
Thanks to AMPR Public Relations for providing me with a media pass.