Whether it be on the back of a horse, cuddling a camel, cycling through the wondrous landscape where it is all grown, or simply enjoying the journey itself, The Destination Series has magnificent locally produced food woven into the fabric of every sensational event as we continue to rejoice in dining differently and the wonders of nature that define the Sunshine Coast.
The Sunshine Coast is infused with history and innovation as far as food production goes. From the early farm communities that optimistically planted the first ginger crop to modern day innovators that are camel farming, we have found so many ways to celebrate our local food journey.
The Ginger Journey
Imagine those first brave farmers, who planted that initial ginger crop, some 70 years ago. A decision that shaped the foundation of a ginger industry, Buderim Ginger, and the now iconic Ginger Factory in Yandina. Ultimately, the Sunshine Coast’s subtropical climate and rich volcanic soil proved to be the perfect ecosystem for ginger, forging an industry that has seen Buderim Ginger become leaders in innovation, ginger processing, and the production of a realm of delicious ginger products, now renowned throughout the world. Very much the Sunshine Coast’s original ‘farm to plate’ story.
This August, in celebration, The Ginger Factory invites you to enjoy The Ginger Journey ‘From Farmer to your Plate’, a two course ginger-inspired lunch and delve into the history and sensational flavours of all things ginger.
Executive Chef Mischa Cleland takes you on a delicious ginger journey on the plate, as third-generation ginger grower, Shane Templeton, delivers a narrative on his own family’s journey as one of the founding families of the Buderim Ginger Co-operative, and producer of over 2,500 tonnes of the world’s finest ginger.
Enjoy the melt in your mouth caramelised ‘Piggy in the Middle’ pork belly, braised in ginger beer stock, or the locally fished, pan seared swordfish, both highlighting the hero of the dish – ginger.
Described as a ‘ginger explosion’, house-made ginger ice cream, gingerbread, strawberries, chocolate and macadamia praline unite in a decadent dessert showcasing the versatility of this sensational ingredient, with a behind the scenes glimpse of the Buderim Ginger’s inner workings.
The love of horses, great outdoors, sensational food and glorious views
Attention horse lovers! The Rainbow Beach Horse Rides’ Mount Goomboorian Riding and Dining Experience is a ride like no other!
Mount Goomboorian, is a glorious patch of countryside located northeast of Gympie, and the heart of host, Andrew McCarthy’s, beautiful property. With spanning views across Toolara State Forest to Rainbow Beach, Noosa, Fraser Island and the sprawling Gympie and Sunshine Coast Hinterland, they are pretty hard to beat… and so is the hospitality.
The ride begins at the farm home base, where you will be greeted by experienced riders, who will lead you on a journey through the farming region that has been a part of Andrew’s family history for generations. The scenery is breathtaking – there are many ‘wow’ moments on this ride, as the horizon continues to expand before you.
After an enjoyable morning of riding and breathing in the countryside you will reach Mount Goomborian’s peak where the magic all comes together with a luxurious camp-style lunch prepared by Rainbow Beach Weddings’ Chef Sean Seul.
Sean takes the finest produce of the region; Rainbow Beach Meats beef, Wolvi Tomatoes, Cooloola Berries, seafood fished from the very ocean you can see (complemented with a catch of his own), adds his Mediterranean flair, and prepares a banquet utilising the tools of the rustic camp site on top of this fabulous mountain. Prime grass fed rib on the bone char grilled over an open flame, prepared while you enjoy the extraordinary views and a glass of wine after a vigorous morning’s ride.
The horses are divine – and suit all experience levels, but even if you are not a rider yourself, and your dining companion is, you can still enjoy this amazing experience, by hitching a ride up the hill in the support vehicle to join them for lunch.
Food, wine and wheels. A total, active and exciting Curated Plate experience
If riding horses is not quite your style, but cycling is, The Curated Plate also has something for you.
The Sunshine Coast has long been renowned as a cyclist’s mecca; winding roads amongst lush, green countryside, roadside stops with vantage points of the incredible panoramic coastline and beyond – winter days don’t get much better than this.
With this in mind the Australian Cycling Academy and Lifecycles Travel is hosting a four-day gourmet weekend of cycling and fine dining activities. Guided by a support team of professional cyclists, you will cover some of the cycling terrain featured in Velothon Sunshine Coast, Noosa Classic and Noosa Triathlon.
The Food, Wine and Wheels program includes a special guided morning cycle through the Sunshine Coast’s majestic hinterland, to a private lunch at the highly awarded, The Long Apron, at the Spicers Clovelly Estate in Montville.
Celebrating the diversity of produce on the Sunshine Coast, Chef Chris Hagan artfully curates an extraordinary five-course culinary masterpiece with complementing wines. Delicately infused flavours enhance premium seasonal ingredients, seafood and delicacies, sourced locally to provide a gastronomic journey that is an absolute sensory delight. The nearby Falls Farm providing many of the heritage vegetables amongst their star line up of ingredients.
Again, non-cycling guests can join cyclists at the end destination for lunch, and so too maximise the dining experience and enjoy a relaxing afternoon (and wine). Return transfers are provided for both cycling and non-cycling guests. AND this is just one of the events of the four day weekend; a coffee cycle to Noosa, as well as a spectacularly filled program of The Curated Plate to choose from, there is no shortage of cycling and fine food entertainment.
Camel Cuddles, Hum Honey and Canapés
Finally, an event that you will absolutely enjoy is QCamel and Hum Honey’s ‘Camels and Canapés Farm Tour’.
Arriving at the camel dairy in the afternoon, the profile of these gorgeous creatures match the silhouette of the Glass House Mountains, the natural wonders that so often frame the hinterland horizon.
In collaboration with Hum Honey, QCamel’s founder, Lauren Brisbane, welcomes guests with a stunning spread of QCamel milk and Hum Honey inspired canapés, and a glass of sparkling wine while guests discover the inner workings of an organic camel dairy, AND get camel cuddles galore!
Renowned for its health benefits, camel milk is becoming the foundation for many innovative products, which has seen award-winning QCamel become an industry leader in sustainable and organic camel farming practices and camel milk products. Collaborations, such as Hum Honey, sees the farm complete a supply cycle – hives on the property produce the honey which is used in the Mango and Honey Yoghurt Smoothie. Another, with Little White Goat Cheese has produced the finest camel milk fetta.
But the most memorable part of the QCamel visit is of course the camels. These loving creatures will follow you, photo bomb, and give you endless cuddles. The affection they display is a testament to the kindness they themselves are show as members of the QCamel family and it will leave you with a great feeling of love and joy as you watch the day draw to a close, throwing those magical hues of remaining sunlight light over an ever-expansive landscape.
All of these wonderful events take place between 5 and 18 August as part of The Curated Plate – The Destination Series, and are an incredible showcase of the most amazing dining experiences the Sunshine Coast and surrounding regions have to offer.