Fine Food Western Australia
After breakfast at Jean Pierre Sancho, Juji and I went to Fine Food Western Australia, a trade show with over 200 exhibitors for the food and hospitality industries at Perth Convention and Exhibition Centre. We attended as part of Eat Drink Perth. There were free tastings, displays and demonstrations, with fresh produce, food and beverage products, kitchen gadgets, and hospitality equipment and supplies.
To my delight, there was a lot of meaty produce on display and to taste at the show. We shamelessly stalked the Linley Valley pork booth, breathing in the delicious aroma and gazing at the meat as it cooked, waiting for it to be ready to taste.
We soon got to try freshly cooked Linley Valley pork, simply seasoned with salt and pepper and sliced into tender juicy bite-sized pieces.
The Linley Valley display included an array of pre-packaged pork. Imagine the crackling on those roasts. Linley Valley is WA’s largest supplier of fresh pork servicing the retail, food service and export markets. I’ve been on the lookout for Linley Valley pork on restaurant menus since the show. I know quite a few restaurants around Perth serve it.
Elsewhere, more meat: continental cold meats and sausages, with more samples on offer.
At Meat and Livestock Australia‘s stand, still more meat, including some rather delicious looking French trimmed lamb cutlets. When I was a child, I never understood how my mum could look at raw meat and say “Yum”. As I get older I realise I am becoming more and more like her…
We watched Meat and Livestock Australia’s butchery and meat cookery demonstrations with interest. In the photo below, a butcher demonstrates punching beef fillet to tenderise it. After this, he showed us how to roll it up and shape it to get equal sized steak portions from what was originally an asymmetrical piece of meat. We also got to taste tender cooked steak dripping with meaty juices fresh out of the pan.
There was a lot of quiet butchering going on in the background, fascinating to watch.
Other tastings on offer: relishes and pickles from Sticky Fingers, a Western Australian company that specialises in gourmet condiments.
I imagine if you filled the wafer cup with ice cream, it would end up quite soggy. A wafer cup would have a lot more surface area to get soggy than a cone has. Has anyone tried the wafer cups?
These ice creams looked great! I especially liked the look of the ones like chocolate bars on sticks, but chocolate and nut encrusted wafer ice creams looked great too. Just imagine the chocolate coating cracking as you bite into it.
We tried fresh, soft creamy mashed avocado as well as a delicious guacamole, from Simpson Farms.
I enjoyed Cheesebuddy cheese buns at last year’s Good Food and Wine Show Perth. This time, we got to try their new chilli ones, which were very tasty. If you’ve never eaten them before, be warned – they are extremely moreish.
We had a chat with the people from Whoopies Downunder. Americans are probably more familiar with whoopie pies than Australians – Whoopies Downunder are trying to break into the Australian market. A whoopie pie is a soft, dense cakey cookie with a sweet, fluffy creamy filling.
Left to right: maple, classic chocolate, red velvet, extreme chocolate and lemon.
Juji tried the red velvet (red velvet cake with strawberry filling, coated in white chocolate) and I tried the maple (golden cake with maple cream filling, coated in white chocolate and drizzled with caramel). It was very sweet, but I enjoyed it. I do, after all like original glazed Krispy Kremes doughnuts, which are super sweet. But the sample size was enough; I couldn’t eat a whole whoopie.
Among the tastiest morsels we tried at the show were garlic chicken balls from Specialised Chicken Services.
They’re highly processed chicken mince balls, battered and crumbed on the outside, with garlic butter in the centre. They were delicious, but would be much easier to eat as finger food if they were just a little smaller. Because they take more than one or two bites to eat, the potential for injury or mess is high: you run the risk of dribbling molten garlic butter on yourself or the half-eaten ball falling off the toothpick. If you like lunch bar crumbed sausages, you’ll love these crispy chicken balls.
They made pizza!
There was some very pretty bakery packaging at the Confeta booth.
At the stand of Raw Materials, Food Merchants – pillowy bags of Bomba paella rice dwarfed by the enormous paella pan they were sitting in. I grabbed a flyer with a recipe for chicken and chorizo paella. We are definitely going to have to buy a paella pan soon, though probably not one quite so large!
Also on display at Raw Materials were bottles of Hansi French lemonade in different flavours including red orange, pink and traditional lemonade.
We were surprised to find a wedding cake competition/display at the show.
I thought the cake below was the most interesting of the lot, albeit a bit too pink for me. :)
And this, for those who prefer something um… grand?
The show was interesting, educational and lots of fun and we were glad we went. One thing that intrigued me, and always does at expos and trade shows, was the lack of interaction from some people running booths. They simply sat there – literally, just sat there, sometimes looking quite morose, apparently making no effort to make eye-contact or interact with passers-by. Others were smiled and said hello, and invited passers-by to come and look at their product and/or try a sample – they weren’t necessarily pushy, but just being friendly made a such difference. I reckon the booth-holders who simply sat there would have had a terribly dull day. And it wasn’t that they weren’t interested in talking to Juji and me specifically; we observed their lack of interaction with anybody. It certainly didn’t reflect positively on their product(s) or brand.
But now we had something more important to think about: lunch.
Fine Food Western Australia was on 20 – 22 March and was part of the City of Perth’s Eat Drink Perth food and wine month.
My Eat Drink Perth posts
- Eat Drink Perth 2011
- Twilight Hawker Market
- Amusé Project
- The final Twilight Hawker Market… or was it?
- Claisebrook Carnivale, East Perth