Maggie Beer

Tasting Australia at Coffin Bay

April 18, 2019

I am so proud of my friend Simon Bryant and what he has achieved with Tasting Australia. Not only does the city come alive but there are so many regions of South Australia having wonderful events. Mine was to be part of Peter Clark of Vintner's lunch at Coffin Bay; a request I jumped at truly loving the area with the richness of its seafood and its fishermen.    What I didn't allow for though was the weather the night before the lunch.  The wind was so strong there was no visibility from dust storms all the way to the airport; checking 'willyweather' there were gale force winds expected at Port Lincoln and the flight is serviced by what I consider a small plane. For the first time in my life I was too scared to fly and instead leaned on my friend Peter Clark telling him that I was turning around and would fly in the morning and to the big question to him 'could he manage' he calmly said - not to worry Maggie we will make it work...and he and his team did exactly that;  as Simon said 'Peter would always have your back'....Luckily I had already poached the baby octopus I was going to serve as the precursor to finishing on charcoal on the day (as you see from the photo - the leftovers after service...)  I had the octopus and verjuice and vino cotto packed with me but as I had Brendon from Prestige Oysters there opening 25 dozen oysters between just 50 people; I had sashimi of ocean jacket and Hiramasa kingfish organised to be cut a la minute to be served with umeboshi (Japanese salty sour plum) evoo, vino cotto and spring onion. So it was a pretty easy thing for me really but Peter made it even easier by carving my sashimi so that when I arrived on the coach as it happened with the 50 guests I sprang into action whilst they sipped on some very special Bollinger as Guy de Rivoire of Bollinger was hosting with us. I pulled a few things together and tossed the baby octopus from Port Lincoln onto the charcoal and savoured this beautiful spot with not a whisper of the terrible weather the day before. I should say that the ocean jacket caught at Port Lincoln by the Braby family was my first ever taste of this and every morsel was fantastic from the sashimi to the fish on the barbecue to the amazing flavour of the liver Peter put into his sauce....


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