A few weeks ago I attended the Annual Australian Food Bloggers Conference: Eat Drink Blog 2012, with over 80 representatives from blogs from all over Australia. It was held in Adelaide this year which was lovely for me to head back to my home town and reminisce about all the wonderful foodie secrets in SA that I have left behind.

As you can imagine, it was a snap happy weekend with 80 bloggers continuously snapping and tweeting about the food and events that were on offer. For this reason it was often hard to get a good photo competing with so many others so I’ve done my best and snapped a few shots so you can get an idea of what went on.

On Saturday, while half the group headed down to Hentley Farm Winery at the Barossa, the other half of us spent the day at d’Arenberg Winery in McLaren Vale. We heard from Frances d’Arenberg Osborn, known as d’Arry, the third generation from the family to run the winery, and one of the head wine makers, Jack. Rather than your standard cellar door tasting, we took part in the d’Arenberg Blending Bench where we tasted three different wines from the regions surrounding the winery and then, after much discussion, blended our own bottle to take home.

Measuring out particular quantities of the three wines for our blend.

Dry ice was added to our wine to slow down the oxidation process.

My blending partner was Kyrstie from A Fresh Legacy and we went for 60% Blewert Springs Shiraz, 30% Beautiful View Shiraz and 10% McLaren Flat Shiraz. I think we made a fine drop… mine is currently being cellared and might be opening after Feb when the bub is born and I can enjoy it more!

With our take home wines in hand, we had canapes on the verandah outside The Stables Wine Immersion Centre. It was a wonderful way to spend the afternoon (Thanks d’Arenberg and Tourism SA!) and I left thinking what a wonderful venue for a wedding d’Arenberg would be… anyone know of anyone planning a wedding soon??

The conference dinner held Saturday evening was at The Hilton Adelaide and the awards for the writing, recipe and  photography competitions were announced. There were many really great entries in the photography competition, you can view the entries here.

Chargrilled Corn – Mexican themed dinner at The Hilton.

The second day of the conference was when the serious business began with a whirlwind of speakers and presenters. It was held in the kitchen/conference rooms above the central markets. Breakfast was put on by Red Door Bakery who laid out an assortment of different pastries, quiches and filled mini brioches.

After breakfast we got down to business with the presentations. One of the most useful for me was Peter from Souvlaki for the Soul‘s talk about home shoots and photography. He takes some beautiful photographs and I look forward to putting some of his techniques into practice.

Simon Bryant and Tammi from Tammi Tasting Terroir held a discussion about Ethics and Food which was really worthwhile and got a few heated discussions going. See this post by Tara from VegeTARAian who discusses one of the issues raised in this debate: If you were a vegetarian and served meat that someone had cooked for you at their house, would you eat it anyway to be polite?

For sunday lunch we headed downstairs to the Central Markets and enjoyed a feast of different flavours very generously put on by a handful of stall holders from the Market.

A beautiful Seafood Paella made by Nick Finn, the head chef from the Highway Hotel.

Food SA very generously provided us with the Paella Recipe:

Beautiful breads supplied by Lauke Flour and Skala Bakery… who I miss very much in Melbourne!

Lucia’s, known for their Italian food and for being one of the first to bring real espresso coffee to Adelaide, made a really tasty vego pizza and gnocchi.

A dessert of pancakes, a chocolate fountain and strawberries was put on by Providore. The Yoghurt Shop also served chocolate frozen yoghurt to go with the pancakes, which I have never had before but it was absolutely delicious!

A Food Styling workshop was held by renowned food stylist Fiona Roberts, here’s a pic of some of the bloggers having a go with a couple of her props.

Afternoon tea was put on by Natasha from The Cupcake Table.

I had the caramel popcorn cupcake which was super rich and sickly but delicious… the kind of cake that you can only have one!

Apart from all the food and wonderful presenters, probably the best part of the conference was actually meeting all the bloggers from all over Australia. Hopefully I will get the chance to go again next year, and I look forward to catching up with all my new blogging buddies.


5 Responses to Australian Food Bloggers Conference: Eat Drink Blog 2012 + Paella Recipe from Food SA

  1. vegeTARAian says:

    A lovely wrap up of the conference! Thanks for the mention 😉

  2. Christie says:

    Great write up Prue! I hope it makes you want to come back to enjoy all the fantastic food & wine SA has to offer!

    • Thanks Christie! Yes there are always reasons to come back to SA but I think we are committed to Melb for at least another year at the moment. For now, I will just have to enjoy it in a holidaying capacity!

  3. Pip Holmes says:

    I know someone have a wedding in the nearish future!

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