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Renascence Gippsland for MFWF with Alejandro Saravia

Pastuso Executive Chef Alejandro Saravia and Gippsland Natural beef producer Paul Crock teamed up to host an outdoor communal feast with matched wines from Bass Phillip. Renascence Gippsland was one of the highlight events of the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival and resonated with the spirit of the Festival in regional Victoria (some 2 hours from Melbourne). On a perfect autumn day The World Loves Melbourne (David and Mark) was invited to enjoy first class produce from the Gippsland, magical views, excellent company, and the extraordinary talent of Chef Alejandro Saravia.

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Drinks on arrival along the track to the event; local beer, cider as well as sparkling.

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David and Kirsten Jones from fab garlic producers Mirboo Farm, along with Mark La Borcetta financial guru and foodie.

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Alejandro looking fresh after cooking for hours; a Renaissance man at Gippsland Renascence.

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A delicate Ceviche started the culinary feast!

Alejandro Saravia is a top notch Melbourne chef who is a regular in the Gippsland and a loud fan of Gippsland produce. The Gippsland is a fabulous area of Victoria and Australia, and is on the rise. The range of produce here is incredible, along with new exciting places opening and spectacular scenery all around.

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How amazing is this? Meat hanging on racks after having been pit roasted! We loved the char and flavours and textures of the meat.

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Having been introduced to South Gippsland’s fantastic range of beautiful produce, Saravia cooked up a five course menu featuring locally sourced fish, pork, lamb and beef and paring these with premium local wines from Bass Phillip. We were told Alejandro started cooking at something like 3am in a pit filled with hot coals in the pit. Alejandro also had a team who hailed from Colombia, and we were told that the Gippsland setting reminded them of their home Colombia.

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The beautiful setting was an attraction it itself with guests seated at thick wooden communal tables that were available for purchase at a reasonable price. The World Loves Melbourne enjoyed a menu created using locally sourced produce cooked over an open fire, including sumptuous grilled meat from Gippsland Natural Beef.

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The Renascence Gippsland menu featured produce from other passionate local farmers including Amber Creek Farm, Pangrazzi Cheese and Aherns Fruit Market and Fine Foods, Lakes Entrance Fishermans Coop, and Gusto Ice-cream.

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Salvatore Malatesta food indentity and businessman extraordinaire was present with his partner Jo, along with his PA Alex. Sensory Lab Coffee was available at the event (great every time).

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The produce was matched with some of the finest wines Australia has on offer through the generous support of Phillip and Sairung Jones of Bass Phillip wines, and beers through Mirboo North brewery, an early pioneer in the craft beer industry.

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Pachamanca - pit roasted golden nugget pumpkin, Gordon Jones pink fir apple potatoes, Mirboo North garlic; what a combination!

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Honestly, we took a heap of photos of Alejandro and his team against the spectacular backdrop of the Gippsland.

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There was no lack of food at this event!

Saravia shared his expertise in Peruvian flavours, ingredients and cooking techniques while other chefs were invited to share their stories in flavour from the South Gippsland region. Thanks also to Fiona from Zilla and Brook. A truly inspiring event!