Good Food & Wine Show ’12 – Private Dining with Manu Fieldel

I’ve been fortunate enough to be able to score a ticket from Ash’s Mum, Eliane, to experience first-hand a marvellous three-course lunch catered by none other than Manu Fieldel of My Kitchen Rules and L’etoile. Her generosity is overwhelming not only with allowing me this opportunity but she’s the Mum I never had and has made me feel like one of their family. Thank you so so so much and I know it’s been over a shameful two months until this post has seen the light of day, please forgive my tendencies to lapse into a state of   unproductiveness, please enjoy this post like I have the experience.

Drinks while waiting

Pretty centrepiece

The dining space is brightly light and has a warm vibe and the table is laid out beautifully  it’s like we’re not even in a room where the walls are partitions.


The menu signed by Manu that I forgot to take with me oh dear…

The sommelier from Dan Murphy's

Speaking in between meals is a sommelier from Dan Murphy’s, I wish I remembered his name, let’s call him Dan?  Dan was responsible for wine matching, and explained the process of accompanying wines with Manu’s dishes. I’m seated at the furthest end of the table so had a bit of difficulty hearing what he said not only that but music from George Coulombaris’ show was blaring at 1000 decibels, it was managed by Dan moving around to different points in the room so we could at least hear what he said some of the time.

Manu does not stay still for one second

Making his first appearance of many, Manu speaks to each of his guests and encourages everyone to feel comfortable. Throughout the dining, Manu proves popular with the younger ladies as numerous times they make cheeky remarks about him, but not any from me! However many times the women tried hitting on him, Manu still carried on professional, he brings out the plates himself and makes the women in the dining room feel special by serving them all first.

Chilled pea soup with crab salad and black olive oil

Manu explains the process of making this entree, how the peas and stock can be blended up put into the fridge the night before and assembled at the last minute, that includes the salty black olive oil which is simply black olives processed very finely and then combined with good olive oil until it forms a drizzle-able texture. The recipes to our three course meal are available in Manu’s latest book, Manu’s French Kitchen . 

Roast duck and vegetables

The roast duck was far too fatty for me so I cut off some of it off, it was lovely and aromatic in rosemary and the roasted baby carrots and turnips have been roasted in some of the spiced honey glaze,  Manu explains that as well as keeping the duck dry during the roasting process, the glaze serves as a sauce as well. Dan paired this dish with the burgundy red a $115/bottle o_O Pierre Naigeon Gevrey Chambertin 1er Cru Les Cherbaudes to cut through the fattiness of the duck.

Richest chocolate mousse

It doesn’t look like much but this was a huge portion to have after the fatty duck, some diners struggled to finish theirs but despite being so full, I loved it so much and couldn’t bear leaving any of it behind so all of mine disappeared.

Manu and me

Afterwards Manu went around signing books and having photographs, he even signed the menu which being the dill that I am, I forgot to take with me.

A massive thank you to Eliane for purchasing this ticket I’m going to cherish this experience forever!

All the matching wines

  • Champagne Duperrey Premier Cru Brut – $39.99 *
  • Pierre Naigeon Gevrey Chambertin 1er Cru Les Cherbaudes – $114.99 *
  • Domaine Des Grosses Pierres Sancerre – $21.99 *
  • Cockburns 10 Year Old Tawny Port – $34.99 *

*According to Dan Murphy’s website


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