Current Issue #488

Riverbank Palais to host Long Lunches with Iconic Australian Chefs

Riverbank Palais to host Long Lunches with Iconic Australian Chefs

A stellar collection of Australian chefs will put together six long-table lunches on the Adelaide Festival’s floating hub, the Riverbank Palais by Elder Park.

Curated by Gill Minervini (of Dark MOFO fame) and Duncan Welgemoed, these lunches are expected to be a highlight in the Riverbank Palais program. They will pay homage to the 1980s, a decade in which Adelaide’s dining scene came to international prominence, influential venues like Neddy’s and Petaluma were born, and experimentation was rife.

“The Riverbank Palais Long Lunches are more than just amazing meals in a beautiful setting, they are true culinary experiences that tell the story of how our little city punched way above its weight and shaped a nation’s tastes,” Minervini said in a release.

riverbank-palais-long-lunches-mark-best-adelaide-reviewMark Best will bring the “bounty of the Coorong” to his event

The lunches will begin with Cath Kerry and continue through a set of culinary juggernauts with Mark Best, Christine Manfield, Michael Ryan, Cheong Liew and Karl Firla rounding out the field.

Kerry, who was head chef at Petaluma in the late 80s and has come out of retirement specially for the event, says of the 1980s in Adelaide that “we felt we were inverting the world order”. She will return to the era in her lunch with a tribute to 80s Adelaide cuisine and chefs including Philip Searle, Michael Symons and Jennifer Hillier.

Each subsequent chef will pay tribute to the decadent decade in their own signature manner.

Mark Best, who has been busy winning awards across the country for his restaurants, will haul up the “Bounty of the Coorong” to celebrate the region he grew up in.

riverbank-palais-long-lunches-christine-manfield-adelaide-reviewChristine Manfield cheffed under Cath Kerry at Petaluma

“A Brave New World” will be brought to the table by Christine Manfield, who has gone on to open restaurants and dining experiences all across the planet, in tribute to her mentor Philip Searle.

Michael Ryan’s mentor, the late Brigita Turniski, will also be honoured in  a lunch with strong Meditteranean influences and “food designed to share, perfect for this event”.

So recently lauded by Tasting Australia, Cheong Liew will return to dazzle diners with his own signature style of fusing world traditions into a grand homage to Neddy’s own long table.

riverbank-palais-long-lunches-cheong-liew-adelaide-reviewCheong Liew has long been renowned for his influence on Adelaide dining

And last but not least, Karl Firla, who picked up his apprenticeship at Cibo Ristorante in North Adelaide and now owns Oscilate Wildly  in Sydney, will focus on experimental flavours and unexpected combinations of ingredients. “Having the freedom to experiment
with flavour profiles that may have seemed (and still sometimes seem) unusual and challenging is something that I have taken from those times,” Firla said.

Full lineup

Saturday, March 4 – Cath Kerry
Saturday, March 11 – Mark Best
Sunday, March 12 – Christine Manfield
Monday, March 13 – Michael Ryan
Saturday, March 18 – Cheong Liew
Sunday, March 19 – Karl Firla

The Riverbank Palais Long Lunch Series
11:45am – 3pm on each day
The Riverbank Palais, Elder Park
Tickets available via BASS or


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