Taste of Melbourne 2013, preview at Longrain

Time has just gone by so fast this year and it’s already time for the 2013 Taste of Melbourne! In fact, it runs from 14 – 17 November 2013 (which starts tomorrow!).

Like last year, this year’s ToM will be held at Albert Park.

A few weeks ago, I had the privilege to attend a preview event to sample a bit of what Longrain has to offer at the Taste of Melbourne and the event involved a cocktail making class – Sensology – as well as a lot of delicious food from the Longrain menu which will be making an appearance at this year’s ToM.

This year’s event features the following 17 hip and hot restaurants:

– Taxi Dining Room
– Albert Street Food & Wine
– Burch & Purchese Sweet Studio
– The Smith
– Movida
– Huxtable
– Huxtaburger
– Tonka
– Saint Crispin
– The Botanical
– Mamasita
– B’Stilla
– Chin Chin
– Uncle
– Sarti
– And of course Longrain

Our preview event started off with a Bacardi cocktail making class led by mixologist Alan from Eau De Vie. I was late to the event along with Yuye as we were held up at our other whole day event (also alcohol related – our annual LMG members conference for the shop) so missed the start of the session. However, as we both had a head start (with some alcohol flowing in our bloodstreams) we were fast to catch up with the others.

What we made first was a simple mojito with muddled lime, sugar & bruised mint which was then combined with Bacardi Gold Rum, shaken over ice and topped with soda water. Mine was somehow very watery but that was largely because I was too slow at opening up my shaker….yes I’m a bit unco sometimes. Either way it was very refreshing and tasty.

My second attempt at a cocktail was a lot better – it was the kiwi coconut cooler from the Longrain menu. It consisted of mushed up fresh kiwi fruit, shaken with young coconut water, 42 Below Kiwi Vodka and Bacardi Superior Rum. It was then served in a tall glass with a dash of apple juice and shards of fresh coconuts on top. It was a sweet and well balanced drink which reminded me of summer. I so wish summer was here already…

You can enjoy these Sensology cocktail making classes at this year’s ToM.

After the cocktails, it was time for some food!

As you probably already know, Longrain makes some great Thai dishes with a good chilli kick. The following dishes are a sample of what Longrain will be offering at the ToM.

Our first dish was the Betel leaf with blue swimmer crab, curry powder, ginger and chilli. It was just big enough for one mouthful and my it was tasty. The betel leaf was refreshing and easy to eat. It was a great starter to the meal.

Another accompanying entree was the caramelised pork, prawn, peanuts on sour pineapple. What an amazing dish. It was a burst of flavours in my mouth as I took in the sweet succulent pork and prawn while the pineapple cut through the oiliness and balanced out the flavours with some zing. What do you mean it was one per person?!

Next up was the hot and sour pork consisting of Murray Valley pork, rice balls, mint, coriander & peanuts. This was probably my favourite dish but was a little too chilli for Yuye. It was just so full of flavour and textures it was hard to fault it. I love chilli so this dish was perfect for me. The rice balls in my opinion really accentuated the overall textures and enhanced the experience of the dish.

The next dish was equally stunning – steamed whole snapper with turmeric & wild ginger broth. It was a big and beautiful dish topped with great colours and flavours. The fish was steamed perfectly. The flesh was still so juicy and soft which can be a big downside to steamed fish when not done well. It was a tiny bit overloaded with ginger if you ask me, but ginger fans, you will not be disappointed with this dish.

The fish in this dish will be replaced with chicken during the ToM as it’s easier to prepare but I’m sure it will be equally tasty.

Next up was the Chinese broccoli, asparagus, oyster sauce and fried garlic. It looked so green and well cooked but unfortunately Yuye and I were late heading back to our members conference that I only had time to take some photos! What a shame.

I also can’t believe I missed the dessert! I should really have stayed for dessert. Now I can only gawk at the photos posted up at Ms Ihua and Iron Chef Shellie‘s sites.

To find our more about this year’s Taste of Melbourne, please visit http://www.tasteofmelbourne.com.au.

This year’s ToM looks to be as much fun as past years so hopefully you will get a chance to go!

Disclaimer: Ichigo Shortcake dined as guest of Longrain with thanks to Hot House Media and Longrain.

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4 comments… add one
  • Choc Chip Uru November 14, 2013, 10:35 am

    Your photos are spectacular, what an incredible event!
    All the food is so perfect, I don’t even know what to say!


  • Iron Chef Shellie November 17, 2013, 8:12 pm

    Wow girl, amazing photos! you make mine look like crap!
    What a great night 😀

    • Jenny @ Ichigo Shortcake November 20, 2013, 5:42 pm

      That’s totally not true and you know it 😉 But thanks anyway haha…yes it was a great (although rushed) night for me. 🙂

  • Greg January 2, 2014, 4:35 pm

    Just wanted to let you know that we have opened a new cafe in Prahran (a
    sister cafe to the long running Port Melbourne venue). We would love you
    to come in and try our coffee and food.
    We have a number of interesting food options including Russian Specials
    and some American BBQ inspired offerings (the owners are Russian so snuck
    a few dishes onto the menu).
    Our chef is a protégé of Iron Chef Sakai. He ran 2 of Chef Sakai’s
    restaurants in Japan.

    Happy to offer you and a friend breakfast or lunch on the house. Just let
    me know which day you would like to come in.

    Thanks for your consideration.

    Best regards,




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