Viewpoints from Aussie Cuisine

  • ‘We do a lot of research, as we use vegetables in season, which is my favourite part of the job actually. My favourite day is the market day,’ says Chef Webb. Webb has the privilege of working in a restaurant where chefs can go on market trips on a regular basis. It is important for chefs to get out of their everyday routine at restaurants to explore the fresh and seasonal produce at markets. Chefs are able to look for inspiration for new dishes and menus and can have face-to-face contact with their purveyors.

  • Webb highlights the impact of Australian produce used in his restaurant: ‘I have been all around Australia looking at produce and that’s really opened my eyes. I think Australian cuisine is finally focusing back on Australian producers.’ Australians chefs are moreover putting emphasis on their high-quality Australian produce, as they can speak for themselves.

Chef Dan Webb of Sydney’s Annata chats with Dane Richards at the Mise en Place Sydney 2017.

“We do a lot of research, as we use vegetables in season a lot, which is my favourite part of the job actually, my favourite day is the market day. It is such a buzz to see when the new season arrives, there are mushrooms coming in now, which is one of my favourite vegetables as well. I can’t really explain how much I enjoy it. We try using different produce from anyone else and stay away copying the others. That’s the fun of it, it keeps us on our toes, constantly seeing what everyone else is doing.”

Definition

DR: From a young chef’s perspective, what do you think Australian cuisine is?

Chef DW: Australian cuisine, since I have been here, has changed, I have only been here for four and half years, but I’ve seen it changing dramatically for the good. It has been a lot more Asian influence, a lot more respect to the Australian producers now. I have been to farms, I have been all around Australia looking at produce and that’s really opened my eyes. I think Australian cuisine is finally focusing back on Australian producers, which I think it’s brilliant.

Restaurant

DR: So if you have friends from overseas coming over, outside O Bar and Dining, which modern Australian cuisine type of restaurant would you recommend they go?

Chef DW: I went to Bentley [Bar + Restaurant] the other day, fantastic. I have been there four times now and it is just outstanding. I’ve actually been there last time by myself and it was amazing. They use constantly awesome products, [e.g.] they use Australian pork and they use things that other people don’t, which is awesome. Going to the market, seeing all the Australian vegetables, and then using them in the restaurant, I think this is fantastic.

Research

DR: Can you tell us more about what is happing at the O Bar and Dining in terms of researching produce?

Chef DW: We do a lot of research, as we use vegetables in season a lot, which is my favourite part of the job actually, my favourite day is the market day. It is such a buzz to see when the new season arrives, there are mushrooms coming in now, which is one of my favourite vegetables as well. I can’t really explain how much I enjoy it. We try using different produce from anyone else and stay away copying the others. That’s the fun of it, it keeps us on our toes, constantly seeing what everyone else is doing.

Image:

Dan webb (19 March 2017). Twitter. Retrieved from https://twitter.com/SpiderWebbChef/medi a