With his first restaurant under way, Andy Allen hits the road with an appetite to discover what’s on Australia’s menu. With his mate Ben Milbourne in tow, and a cast of local characters, Andy’s journey up the East Coast from Tasmania to Tropical North QLD is documented in a real and unique fashion, for foodies and travellers alike. Eat Australia is a new frontier in food documentary series. Premieres Wednesday 15 February, 9:30pm, on Food Network.
Episode 1: Cape Grim
Andy leaves the Three Blue Ducks (aka his baby) in safe hands and heads to Devonport to catch up with his old buddy Benny at his home and start this huge road trip. Abalone diving is on their minds as it’s one thing they’ve always talked about doing but never got around to. But with wet weather upon them they visit Cape Grim instead & the boys learn about some of the best beef in the world. Perched atop a farm hill, Andy cooks a mouth watering rib-eye over hot coals with chimmichurri dressing. The boys then visit Produce for the People in Burnie to learn about a remarkably simple food produce innovation that helps those most disadvantaged in our society.
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Episode 2: Abalone time
When the rain clears, it’s time to go diving and the boys, together with Ben’s Dad, cook the Milbourne’s family special: lightly battered and fried abalone dish from the boat! Before departing for Hobart, they make a quick stop at the site of Ben’s new restaurant so Andy can check it out and give some sage advice... Then it’s time for a Hobart food crawl where they visit two of Ben’s favourite restaurants, Small Fry and Franklin, the latter to learn about (and eat) the dishes from one of Australia’s best chefs, David Moyle.
Episode 3: The Island & The Wallaby
The boys hop on a ferry to head over to the renowned Bruny Island. They meet with a few of the locals who take them foraging for native ingredients, and Wallaby & Possum skinning! After a long day, they discover a paradise hidden in the bush – GLAMPING. The boys show off their digs and then it’s time for Andy to cook with the Wallaby meat they picked up earlier over an open fire. Then, that night, the boys have an experience that every chef or meat eater should: they go hunting to see exactly how the Wallaby goes from paddock to plate. The next morning they’re up early for the drive back to Benny’s in Devonport to relax by the fire and cook a gigantic tomahawk steak as they reflect on the Tassie adventure, and where Andy is off to next... SOUTH AUSTRALIA.
Cook the recipe in this episode:
Roasted wallaby with horseradish creme fraiche, potato and broad bean salad
Episode 4: Africola + Adelaide to the Barossa
Andy arrives into Adelaide and he makes a bee-line to visit Africola restaurant, to cook with chef/owner (rockstar) Duncan Welgemoed. Following the creation of an epic feed, Andy heads towards the Barossa via a quick stop at Udder Delights cheese shop. He arrives to Jacob’s Creek winery and takes a tour, blends his own wine and prepares the ultimate grazing board to pair with the wine.
Episode 5: Clare & The Lamb
It’s a freezing morning in The Clare Valley and Andy heads to Terroir Auburn to meet local chef and wild food forager, Dan Moss. Amidst pouring rain, flash flooding and road closures, Dan & Andy head off to meet some local food producers doing interesting things in the region - they visit Little Bunyip Mushroom farm and Pangkarra wholewheat farm. To finish his tour of the valley, Andy visits Wunderbar Lamb farm, to weigh livestock, collect some meat and cook an epic afternoon lamb ribs dish, with wine to match of course.
Episode 6: Everyone needs a little bit of Yorke Synopsis
To finish the SA chapter, Andy heads down into the Yorke Peninsula where, after a sleepy start, he gets his hands straight into some fresh oyster leases and then, while unsuccessfully goes raking for blue swimmer crabs, is helped out by the locals and eventually makes a Blue Swimmer Crab pasta to die for. Following this, he connects with local Indigenous figure and touring leader, Quenten Agius, to forage for the quandong, a native Australian fruit, and hear some dreaming stories before being presented with a butterfish from the local elder and of course, scouting for an ideal place to cook it!
Episode 7: Melbourne: the CBD Experience
Andy arrives back in Melbourne to be greeted by Ben, and they are straight into the action! First stop, the boys take in the afternoon at CODA restaurant, where they dine with owner/head chef Adam D’Sylva. The following day the boys have a bit of fun - they decide to walk around Melbourne on their very own ‘Food Crawl’, sampling more of the hidden snack-size gems the city has to offer. After that, it’s a night on the town to discover Melbourne’s unique cocktail scene, as they visit 3 prominent cocktail bars to gulp customised concoctions.
Episode 8: Pancakes, Coffee & Fermenting stuff
Waking up in their airbnb, Ben cooks Andy his specialty blueberry pancakes for breakfast. With energy to burn, the boys head to Port Melbourne to visit HQ of the St Ali coffee group, and with owner Salvatore Malatesta, the boys learn about Australia’s coffee making ethos through the eyes of one of its biggest visionaries. After a quick stop to pick up some snacks from boutique Mexican eatery La Tortilleria, the boys head out to Daylesford meet the Delicious Food award winning Sharon Flynn, and hang out at her wild Fermentery, to delve deeper into this emerging practice. In the garden of his accommodation, Andy cooks a variation of his own wood fired vegetable bowl from the menu at the Three Blue Ducks, while using beetroot kraut from his new mate Sharon at the Fermentery.
Episode 9: Farmers Market Challenge & the taste of Gin
It’s another day in country Victoria - Andy & Ben visit local egg producer Real Eggs, to quad bike across the farm and gather some eggs with owner Paul Righetti as they hear about the ‘open range’ philosophy. Ben departs from Andy to head back to Tassie, and so Andy continues into Warragul, where he decides to setup his own breakfast stall at the local Farmers Market and use eggs & tortillas he’s gathered along the journey. With less than 24hrs prep, Andy’s market stall is a success and his colourful, Mexican inspired ‘brekky tacos’, sell out. To round out the episode, Andy drops in to visit his friends at Four Pillars Gin distillery in Healesville, and assists the boys in their daily emptying of the stills.
Episode 10: Ocean Dips, City Farms and Grilling stuff at the Three Blue Ducks
Taking a brief break at the halfway point of his trip, Andy’s back in his neighbourhood of Bondi Beach, Sydney. After a dip at Tamarama beach and a quick catch up with his housemate, Andy heads to Pocket City Farm in Camperdown with business partner, Three Blue Ducks co-owner & chef Mark LaBrooy. Afterwards, Andy spends the afternoon in his restaurant cooking a roasted cauliflower salad and a BBQ Jerk Chicken dish, using his two most coveted pieces of hardware - the wood fire oven, and the Argentinian grill.
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Episode 11: Parramatta to Port Stephens, with Knafeh & Dumplings along the way
Andy and his mate & business partner Mark LaBrooy hit the road again. This time they are in Parramatta to visit the famous Knafeh Bearded Bakers. Following some baking & ‘dancing’, Andy heads off to Rylstone to learn how to make classic Chinese dumplings at 29-nine-99 Yum Cha House. Andy then continues his drive over to Port Stephens to visit his family home, do some fishing with his Dad and cook the family famous Beer Battered Flathead fish & chips on his coal BBQ from the beach on Broughton Island.
Episode 12: A visit to New South Wales’ great food bowl, through the eyes of some inspiring locals.
Andy is back on the road, this time he’s doing a quick BBQ prawn rolls dish for the crew on the beach in Coffs Harbour. He arrives to the Byron Hinterland, and heads straight to Milk & Honey Pizzeria in Mullumbimby to check out chef/owner Tim Brebner’s wood fire oven. The next day Andy is at Three Blue Ducks on the Farm in Byron Bay to cook a couple of dishes using their local ingredients; Charcoal BBQ carrots and Beer & Maple glazed Pork Belly. After a quick stop cooking Sicilian omelettes at the New Brighton Markets with Rob Costanzo of the Nomadic Kitchen and a visit to the Salumi Brothers in Billinudgel, he’s off over the border into QLD as the journey continues…!
Episiode 13: Honey making, Brisbane city prestige and two farms we all wish we lived at.
Andy arrives in Brisbane and visits CBD beekeeper Jack Stone from Bee One Third to help him harvest honey from a CBD rooftop. After visiting progressive restaurant Urbane and meeting owner/chef Alejandro Cancino, he enjoys a sunset cocktail atop one of Brisbane’s best rooftop bars, Eleven. The next day Andy finds himself in the Scenic Rim, where he visits the Australian Lime Caviar Company in Rathdowney and grabs some finger limes while spending the afternoon with owners (and local characters) Ian & Margaret Douglas. The next day he heads north to the Sunny Coast and drops into the Falls Farm, a new, emerging sustainable farm in Mapleton QLD, where he cooks a Honey Glazed Pork Neck with roasted beetroot salad and buttered apples for sunset dinner in their outdoor wood fired oven.
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Episode 14: Fishing, Farming, Flying, and Fraser Island
Waking up at the Falls Farm, Andy has an explore of its small but incredible produce. After a dip, Andy continues his way to meet Ben in Tropical North QLD - but on the way he makes a stop on Fraser Island. Why not? So we join Andy as he takes a (very) small plane from the Sunshine Coast onto the largest sand island in the world. While on the island he prepares a sunset Goldband Snapper & finger lime sashimi dish, try his hand at all forms of fishing (to no avail), do a bit of sandboarding and cook a whole 6kg Red Emperor across the firepit of ‘Eliza Lodge’, the desireable eco-mansion he and the crew are crashing in for the night.
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Episode 15: Tropical North Queensland
Andy & Ben are re-united for the final episode! The boys meet up at the airport in sunny Cairns, and head straight to Crystal Cascades for a spring waterfall swim. Refreshed, they partake in a local foraging expedition on the mudflats of Cooya Beach, spearing crabs with their Indigenous guide. An impromptu chilli crab cook-up ensues on the beach before a QLD summer storm hits. The following day, they are in Palm Cove at Nu Nu restaurant to hang out and cook with inspiring chef/owner Nick Holloway. The boys end their trip with a surprise helicopter adventure to the remote sand bank Vlasoff Cay, and a visual montage of the road trip is served up as Andy remembers all the experiences and people along the way.
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