Devonport grocer transformed for fine dining experience (The Advocate)

Melbourne chef Ian Curley says he flew to Tasmania with only one ingredient for Friday’s four-course produce showcase in Devonport – squid ink crackers.

Devonport’s Hill Street Grocer partnered with Devonport City Council to host a VIP Ambassador Dinner for the Devonport Food and Wine Festival.

European Group executive chef Ian Curley and head chef Tony Collis worked with TasTAFE Drysdale students to deliver a fine dining experience within the supermarket.

Mr Curley said the team used produce including Tasmanian ocean trout, Cape Grim beef and Turners Beach strawberries.

“The more you work with food, the more you realising it’s about adapting to what’s available,” Mr Curley said.

“There’s so much that’s accessible and it’s all in the one place at Hill Street but, you know, I had a great chat with a strawberry grower that isn’t very far away.”

Mr Curley said Tasmanian beef was among the best in the world, however, he expected the number of people on plant-based diets would increase by about 200 percent in the next five years.

“In Melbourne most of the food has been sprayed, but just from the smell of a Tasmanian eggplant you can tell it’s as natural and fresh as it can be,” Mr Curley said.

“Plant-based diets are the way of the future and there’s plenty of good stuff to eat here in Tasmania.”

Friday’s event included the auction of a whole salmon and a giant block of Anvers chocolate.

Funds raised will go towards Gran’s van and the Devonport Chaplaincy school breakfast program.

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