Adelaide’s Tasting Australia festival is exciting, but can be pricey. Tasting the Mt Pleasant Farmers Market is a delicious, authentic and affordable option.
Any foodie worth their salt will be aware that one of Australia’s longest running and most prestigious annual food and wine events, Tasting Australia, launched here in Adelaide last Friday.
A landmark event in the culinary calendar, this extraordinary festival opens the minds and mouths of visitors in a way that no other food event quite manages to do. Victoria Square is transformed into a town square that bustles with deliciousness and is the beating heart of the 10 day festival. It’s also the home of the Glasshouse Kitchen, the setting for some seriously memorable dining experiences.
However, there’s no denying it – much of the program is prohibitively expensive. The percentage of the local population who can afford to spill over $300 a head for a feed is minimal.
But, fortunately, there are some options for those who value the opportunity to celebrate local food and it’s hardworking producers.
For the fourth year running, the dedicated folk at Mt Pleasant Farmers Market have pulled together to produce a long-table lunch that showcases the premium fresh, local produce that is available at this rural farmer’s market.
With tickets at a bargain $75.50 each, and set up and run by volunteers, the four course lunch features dishes constructed using a range of produce sourced from dozens of the stall holders. The tables are set up under the same roof as the market, precisely on the space that was once the old railway siding where local food and goods were loaded up and sent off to Adelaide, and adjacent to the stalls selling the ingredients on your plate.
After a tour of the market, guests sat down to an enormous feast, with each course accompanied by locally produced beverages such as Croftwood Grove’s delicious kombucha (one of my favourites), Springton Hills Wines, Australian Cider Company Cider, Fleurieu Milk and coffee from The coffee Pot.
The selection of dishes was extensive – and all of it absolutely delicious. My favourites were the seeded sourdough toast from Lobethal Bakery topped with hummus, tomatoes from Dogan Farm and free-range eggs from The Natural Egg Co, the Dutch meatballs featuring Pebbly Range Limosin Beef and Dunn’s of Woodside/TDM Free Range Pork, the tempura battered Bonney Flat Pasture Raised Poultry chicken skewers and the very delicious pear salad. (All the recipes will be available to subscribers of the Mt Pleasant Farmers Market newsletter.)
Although having said that, the desserts from Thistle and Whey and Baylies Epicurean Delights and the hugely generous cheese board from Udder Delights and Barossa Valley Cheese were impossible to pass up, too!
As a showcase of what can be done with excellent, fresh produce, this meal totally nailed it – these people are proud of what they do, and it shows. As far as I’m concerned, this is what authentic food put together by committed producers is all about.
If you are looking for a genuine food experience that won’t break the bank, bookmark this post and when next year’s Tasting Australia rolls around head for the Mt Pleasant Farmers Market.
Lambs’ Ears and Honey was a guest of Mt Pleasant Farmers Market.
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I had the pleasure of shopping at the Mt. Pleasant Farmers Market last year when we were camping there in the showgrounds. The fresh produce and surroundings were very impressive. Can’t wait to go back. The pear salad certainly looks delicious. Thanks for sharing, Pauline
Fran @ G'day Souffle'
I’ll have to try this event for next year. I really miss the cooking classes that Tasting Australia used to offer- everything seems to be so expensive now!