is a culmination of all that I’ve enjoyed, tasted, tried and learned so far.
Foodwiththought is about changing some habits, tackling new and old questions and knowing what to do with the answers.
Foodwiththought brings us back to the foundations of what is good about nourishment, flavour and cooking while also trying to maintain a busy modern life.
Foodwiththought is designed to remind us of the elemental and beautiful
relationship we have with the food we eat.
I started writing about food and wine on a gay & lesbian lifestyle website back in 2000 while I was living in Sydney. Once I returned to Melbourne I applied to RMIT for entrance into their brilliant Prof Writing and Editing course - I got in. My daughter Iris was 6 months old when I started the course in 2003, I finished studying at the end of 2007 and took a year off in between to have Giacomo. During my time at RMIT I started writing for Epicure, The Age which lead to reviewing for and then subediting the Good Food Guides 2008 & 2009.
I also developed the idea for the Guide to Fish while at RMIT and had the amazing support of my teachers and classmates around me to workshop it and pull it apart.
Before starting my study at RMIT I worked front-of-house in restaurants for 15 years. I worked in my home state of Queensland, in Brisbane and Port Douglas, and then trekked to London and spent almost 3 years there working in places like Nicole’s in Mayfair, then Harvey Nichol’s Fifth Floor Restaurant in Knightsbridge before a summer stint with Rick Stein at The Seafood Restaurant in Padstow, Cornwall.
Coming back to Australia took me to Melbourne, then to Sydney where I started some writing and worked at Otto as a waiter. I spent a few months in New York after Sydney, as a private caterer in The Hamptons, it was a magical experience and confronting (I was in Manhattan on September 11th 2001).
I love restaurants – the pressure, the product, the language, the comrarderie, the love, the laughter and the drink at the end of service…they are things I miss…
Food takes on so many levels – apart from it being a necessity, it is social, spiritual, traditional, ceremonial, comforting, invigorating and joyous. I often feel we (myself included) don’t stop and think about what we’re eating. About how food can affect our mood, about how our spending and consumption drives how the commercial world operates. If we just had a moment to stop and think about the purchase we were making in the long-term (sustainability), not just in the short-term (appetite). Or if we had the knowledge to make informed decisions on the spot then, perhaps this would help us have the time.
I cook everyday – cakes for my children, dinner each night. Eating at the table and together is very important to me. I have never been an exceptionally intricate cook (I always left that to the professionals) but I love the act of cooking, the act of generosity it is naturally and the gamut of flavours you can play with. For me it’s fun and a very natural, joyous part of life.
I wrote a book about this subject and it’s becoming more and more prevalent on everyone’s lips. Sustainability is about making things last – simple – but it’s also about living a good life too. Enjoying what we have and leaving the state of play healthy, happy and thriving for the next generation and those after them.
We are here for only short time, so I figure we should do our best to look after what we’ve got and to have a gorgeous, fun and delicious time while we’re doing it!
This is the essence of sustainability and ultimately a better life now and in the future. Conversations mean questions, statements, arguments, discussions, debates. Beautiful delicious words wrapped up with passion, intention and directness to allow us the freedom to make our own choices as consumers of good food.