Food represents the essence of a place. It is of the earth in that place. I’ve always been fascinated by this connection, but in our globalised, digital world it’s fast becoming tenuous. Food culture is the shared appreciation of place through how we eat and drink from it and represents a fundamental aspect of community. We’re fortunate in North East Victoria to have such a strong food culture – something worth celebrating!
Bountifully common yet richly diverse, the apple is a lens through which I’m exploring our modern food system: its origins, people, culture, science, trade, risk and opportunity. Threaded through this are stories of Stanley, a small horticultural community in Victoria’s North East, home to the famed ‘King Cole’ apple. As my research continues, you’ll be able to read, hear and view some snapshots here on unpeeled. There are also some diversions into the wider food world where I live – talks with North East food producers, makers, chefs, cooks and eaters about what local food culture could be.
Listen to my latest podcast: a chat with Louise Ritchie of Silver Creek Sourdough bakery in Beechworth. Explore the main menu for more podcasts in the series.
Culture baked in Beechworth: Silver Creek Sourdough
Bread is the most fundamental of foods. Fast, cheap bread is so easily available but sourdough – real sourdough – takes time and skill to turn out year-round. Beechworth’s Silver Creek Sourdough bakery is owned and run by local Louise Ritchie.
Growing gold in Beechworth
Food retail is an important link in the chain between growers and eaters. Independent grocers have a valuable role to play that can add tremendous variety and value to local food.
Connection to country: terroir
Beechworth’s youngest winemaker is Phoebe Grant who’s from a pedigree wine-making family. Here she tells us about how and why she produces wine.
Sizing up to stay on top
Keith Nightingale is a remarkable man. He’s been growing apples for nearly 70 years, originally in Doncaster in Melbourne and now in gorgeous Wandiligong in Victoria’s pristine North East.