Epic Farmer, Brewer and Publican Lunch at The Lincoln for Pep Events
Epic is an apt description for this Pep Alliance Event hosted by Hilary McNevin at The Lincoln Hotel with publican Iain Ling and Tasmanian farmer and brewer Ashley Huntington. Ashley Huntington is a talented and passionate Tasmanian farmer who looks somewhat like Jon English but has the punk attitude of the Sex Pistols. He stands up for farmers and the industry, encouraging us all to support local farmers - and rightly so!
The World Loves Melbourne enjoyed an all-inclusive food and beer feast with one of the best craft brewers in Australia - Ashley Huntington from Two Metre Tall - but incredibly also experienced his food from the farm! Commissioned by Noma to make the aperitif for their pop-up in Australia, this man knows what he's doing. And because I was at Noma for the pop up and remember the magical moment I was introduced to his beer (as the sun set over Barangaroo), I felt connected to Ashley Huntington and recognised him as an artisan of beer.
Here is the picture of me enjoying the magical Snakebite beer from Two Metre Tall at the Noma pop up, as the sun sets. Magical.
The World Loves Melbourne had the chance to taste the fruits of his (and Jane, his wife's) labour not just in the brewery but also from their farm in the beautiful Derwent Valley, Tasmania. And that was pretty special.
Braised Beef Croquettes were a welcome introduction to Ashley's Tasmanian beef.
Hilary McNevin hosts some choice events in Melbourne where she pairs talented chefs/brewers/publicans etc to achieve a magical result. Each event also includes a Q&A with the talent so you can get an insight into their philosophy and genius. The World Loves Melbourne sees there events as some of the best you can enjoy here in Melbourne. They are unique and of the highest excellence!
Hilary McNevin from Pep Events was the MC and led a lively Q&A session throughout the lunch with Ashley and Iain Ling, owner of The Lincoln. Ashley should have his own TV show, as one of the most enigmatic and compelling food identities in Australia.
Milk poached loin of pork, pickled cabbage, mint, apple, currants was a compelling dish with creamy texture and intense flavour of the pork loin and crunch of the salad elements.
We imbibed Ashley's ethically raised and spent brewers grain-fed pork and beef on our feasting menu and it was a privilege to be sitting next to Ashley at the luncheon.
A highlight was Ashley's Slow Roast Pork, sweet onions, English mustard. And expertly cooked by The Lincoln chef and his team, To get the crackling perfect they initially cooked it on high heat then also cooked it overnight at a lower temperature so it was perfect crackling. The quality of this pork was absolute premium - and it relates to Ashley's farming practices.
Hilary McNevin engaging with foodies who attended the event, with Ashley Huntington in the background (top left).
Hilary chatting with Melbourne food identity and radio legend Cam Smith.
Hanger steak, beetroot, barley, almond, aged merlot vinegar. What a pleasure to sit next to Ashley and enjoy the premium steak from his farm! Truly the quality of meat is as good as anything I've tasted in Australia - and I've tasted the best. You can actually taste the difference from superior farming practices.
And the beer! The World Loves Melbourne couldn't believe we were treated to no less than 9 beers from Two Metre Tall at this event! And these craft beers are revolutionary - spawning the sour craze of craft beers in Australia.
Unique interaction between farmer, publican and chef, with Hilary bringing it all together!
House marinated Toolunka Creek olives, and Seasoned pickled vegetables. Perfect with Cleansing Ale.
Captivating, entertaining but also made loads of sense speaking about the industry and farming practices. And insights into how Ashley makes his amazing farmhouse ales and ciders.
Iain Ling (top right) did a cracking job at The Lincoln - and we hear great reports of this venue as a foodie haven (previously written up on our site).
Beer marinated slow roast chuck steak, glazed parsnips, horseradish was yet another magnificent dish highlighting the quality produce.
Not only did Ashley provide the pork and beef and beer, but also the vegetables. It was a "best on ground" performance. Beef fat roasted potatoes and Brussels sprouts, sage, sherry vinegar were a highlight.
The Seven Years at Sea beer was infused with oysters and had been fermenting in a shed on the farm for seven years! What a rich and extraordinary beer!
Kudos to the standout Chef Howard Stamp (ex MoVida and Le Bon Ton amongst others) and his team.
An appreciative crowd celebrates Howard Stamp and his team.
Present at the event were 3AW legends (and of late TV show A Moveable Feast) Mark Davidson and Kate Stevenson, enjoying Salty Sea Stout.
And just when you started to reflect on the amount of quality dishes and matching beers, along comes this top notch Steamed marmalade suet pudding, creme anglaise.
Sour Cherry Ale.
Tasmanian Cheddar, oatcakes. This was hailed as a six course feast but I'm sure I counted 7 courses (and 9 beers and ciders). One of the best events of the year (which is what I said after the last Pep Alliance event!). Book for the next one.