Native food to star in ‘Best Regional Event in Australia’

THE MAGICAL Kimberley setting will star alongside native Kimberley food at the Argyle Diamonds Ord Valley Muster in May 2016.

Fervor Chef Paul Iskov joins the star-studded line up along with food critic and trained chef Rob Broadfield.

Iskov will prepare the delicious. Breakfast By Fervor on Friday 20 May, and thedelicious. Degustation Dinner by Fervor on Sunday 22 May – both at a secret location set amongst the spectacular East Kimberley landscape.

The 33-year-old chef has a CV that reads like the who’s-who of the culinary world. He has worked under renowned WA chef Hadleigh Troy at Restaurant Amuse in East Perth and has done stints at Tetsuya’s, Quay, Becasse and Marque.

Further afield, Iskov has spent time in revered overseas kitchens at Coi in San Francisco, Eleven Madison Park in New York, Test Kitchen in Cape town, Pujol in Mexico City, with Alex Atala at D.O.M in San Paulo and under René Redzepi at Noma in Copenhagen, the latter ranked the Best Restaurant in the World in 2010, 2011, 2012 and 2014.

Iskov, a pioneer in the native food movement, is no stranger to the Kimberley having worked on the True North, but has only been to Kununurra once. He said he was eager to discover nature’s food bowl in Western Australia’s North West.

“I am looking forward to connecting with local Aboriginals to learn about native food and ingredients in the Kimberley and go on a wild harvest with them,” Iskov said.

“It’s so exciting that people are becoming more interested in native food – it makes perfect sense for our diet to consist of food that grows around us.

“The other thing that not many people know about is how healthy native ingredients are – wild rosella, which is a native hibiscus, is really good for your heart and blood pressure. It has an amazing flavour, an intense tangy, quite acidic taste.”

Iskov said that dinner guests could expect green tree ants, boab fruit, and wild rosella to appear on the plate.

“I’m not going to say if we’ll have witchetty grubs or not – you’ll just have to wait and see,” the chef said.

Fervor is a roaming restaurant that visits small rural towns holding unique dinners in the bush, beach, salt lakes and other beautiful locations.

Iskov and Broadfield join a list of talent at the Argyle Diamonds Ord Valley Muster including award-winning chef George Calombaris, musicians Bernard Fanning, San Cisco and Troy Cassar-Daley, and comedians from the Melbourne International Comedy Festival Roadshow.

Broadfield is a well-known Western Australian food identity and the event’s ambassador. He will host the Kimberly Kitchen presented by the Kununurra Country Club Resort and the Durack Homestead Dinner, both featuring George Calombaris.

Tickets for key events of the award-winning Argyle Diamonds Ord Valley Muster, held 13 to 22 May 2016 are on sale now.

MasterChef Australia judge and decorated chef and restaurateur George Calombaris will be leading the event’s culinary creations at the Kimberley Kitchen (presented by the Kununurra Country Club Resort) and Durack Homestead Dinner, two events that are expected to sell out quickly.

Another event set to sell out quickly is the festival highlight, the Kimberley Moon Experience on Saturday 21 May.

The extraordinary Kimberley Moon Experience concert will be staged under the stars on a full moon along the banks of the majestic Ord River at the Jim Hughes Amphitheatre featuring former Powderfinger frontman Bernard Fanning, six-time ARIA nominated Fremantle band San Cisco and country music singer-songwriter Troy Cassar-Daley. It’s the Muster’s biggest event and a huge party.

Picnic on the grounds and dance the night away with friends in General Admission or celebrate in style in the Kimberley Fine Diamonds Corporate Circle, which treats tickets holders to a black tie concert and dining experience.

Set against the magnificent backdrop of the Ord Valley, Lake Kununurra, spectacular fresh water gorges, national parks and stunning reserves, the Muster rewards visitors with magical and distinctive experiences.

Travel packages including return flights ex Perth, three nights accommodation and tickets start from $1040*pp (*conditions apply. Please see for more info).

The host town Kununurra is situated some 800 kilometres from Darwin and more than 3000 kilometres from Perth.

Awarded Australia’s Best Regional Event at the 2015 Australian Event Awards as well as taking top honours in the 2015 WA Tourism Awards in the Regional Events category and entered into the Awards Hall of Fame, the Argyle Diamonds Ord Valley Muster encompasses 30 varied and brilliant events over a festival of ten days.

The State Government is a proud supporter of the event through Tourism WA’s Regional Events Program, made possible by Royalties for Regions,

Tickets to the delicious. Breakfast by Fervor and delicious. Degustation Dinner by Fervor go on sale 9am, Monday 22 February through Ticketmaster. For more information visit

For more information and tickets, visit

Related Images:

How’s your New Year’s resolution tracking?

ALMOST half of the Australian population (48%) make a New Year’s resolution. Sadly, only around 6% of people stick to their resolutions and successfully achieve them. Four weeks in, it’s time to ask the tough question: Are you on track to accomplish your New Year’s resolution?

We often revert back to old habits, our busy everyday lives gets in the way or it simply seems too difficult to stick to our New Year’s resolutions (especially when on holidays). So take a stand this year and focus on achieving your goals. Trust us, you deserve it!

Whether you want to take some time out, learn something new or need to know the healthiest cafes to help you stick to your goals – we’ve got you covered. We’ve put together the ultimate guide that will help you jump start your New Year’s resolutions on the Gold Coast.

1. Practise Mindfulness in the Gold Coast Hinterland



Feeling stressed, disconnected with everything except your iPhone and not in control of your own feelings? Relax, revive and reset with a retreat to the Gold Coast Hinterland. In a world of busy, it is important to take some time out and reset. From January 2016, Gwinganna Lifestyle Retreat offers three premium Meditation Suites, designed specifically to help you focus on mindfulness. Together with the incredible wellness programs available at the retreat, a stay at Gwinganna Lifestyle Retreat will most certainly reduce stress, allow you to feel present and encourage you to live a healthier life this year.

2. Back to Basics – Camping on South Stradbroke Island

Are you longing to escape the fast pace of everyday life, get out and about and experience the stuff that your favourite childhood holiday memories are made of?  Then it’s time to get back to basics. Pack your camping gear, hop on a water taxi (you can also hire, charter or take your own boat) and head over to South Stradbroke Island for the ultimate weekend away.

Feel like Tom Hanks as you’re surrounded by native bushland, hike up white sand dunes and face the endless blue of the ocean. Choose from three camping grounds (Tipplers at the northern end of the island, North Currigee and Currigee at the southern end) and watch thousands of stars light up the night skies. Enjoy 22km of unspoilt beach (keep an eye out for humpback whales from June – October) and swim, bushwalk, drop in a line or simply relax as you create new memories with family or friends.

3. Eat Healthy

Are you (yet again) planning to eat healthy? Then don’t let a holiday get in your way! Here are our top three picks on where to go for a guilt-free, healthy bite on the Gold Coast:

  • BSKT Café, Nobby Beach – These guys are nutrition experts and serious about making both you and the planet a healthier place to live.
  • Cardamom Pod, Broadbeach- Inspired by the art of creative tasty cuisine with the principle ‘Nourish by Nature’, you’ll find all sorts of delicious vegetarian bites here.
  • Greenhouse Factory, Kirra – Providing a 100% plant based al a carte menu with organic produce and a fully licensed bar, this is a clear favourite with health conscious diners.

4. Learn Something New

If your New Year’s resolution for 2016 is to learn something new, we’ve got your covered. With 300 days of sunshine, guaranteed waves and a myriad of surf schools, the Gold Coast’s 57km stretch of golden sandy beaches are the perfect place to learn to surf. Check out Get Wet Surf School, Go Ride A Wave or Brad Holmes Surf Coaching.

Feeling less sporty? Invigorate your senses and experiment with flavours during a culinary class. Set in the Lost World Valley and overlooking the beautiful mountains of Lamington National Park, Wild Lime Cooking School offer classes that combine prime Scenic Rim produce and native Australian ingredients with flavours from around the world. Or you can learn the ropes from French trained chef, Terri Taylor, during a cooking class at Tamborine Cooking School.  Our pick is ‘Best of Tamborine Mountain’ which uses local cheese, quails eggs, locally grown organic vegetables and lots more.

5. Get Fit & Be Active

This is probably the most popular New Year’s resolution of all. While the Gold Coast offers plenty of activities to keep you fit – from endless walking trails, surf beaches and bike trails to outdoor yoga classes, water sports and outdoor fitness classes, the City is renowned for its sporting events. Our pick: The Gold Coast Airport Marathon (2-3 July) – Australia’s premier race along the Gold Coast’s surf beaches and Broadwater. With the choice of a flat 5.7km, 10km, half marathon or marathon course, this is the ultimate commitment to getting fit and being active in 2016.

6. Spend More Time with Family and Friends

Whether you’re planning a reunion (just like our favourite TV cast) or your goal is to reconnect with your family – the Gold Coast is the perfect place to create memories that will last you a lifetime.  The possibilities are endless – there are the beaches, theme parks, waterways, markets, the hinterland, shopping malls, nightlife, cafes and so much more. Start your day with breakfast at Elk Espresso in Broadbeach, and then cruise south along the beaches with Gold Coast Bike Tours before you take a dip in the ocean to cool off. Have lunch at the iconic Rainbow Bay Surf Life Saving Club, then browse through the shops at The Strand in Coolangatta, before heading north to Miami Marketta for a night of street food, local brews and live music.

PHOTO: Gwinganna by Paul Broben, courtesy of Gold Coast Tourism.

Related Images:

Western Australia’s top dish from the Coral Coast

CULINARY tourism is one of the fastest growing sectors of the tourism industry. It came as little surprise that mother-of-two, Jerolina Rankin of Carnarvon on Australia’s Coral Coast, took out Western Australia’s Signature Dish competition with her grilled Shark Bay wild chilli Prawns and Mackerel mousse in a zucchini noodle seafood broth.

The annual competition, run by the Department of Agriculture and Food, aims to showcase the best of WA food by bringing together talented home cooks from the Gascoyne, Kimberley, Swan Valley & Surrounds and Peel regions with popular professional chefs from Perth as regional mentors. The Gascoyne produces 80% of Western Australia’s annual fruit and vegetable supplies and was represented in the competition by Carnarvon.

Peter Manifis of InContro was once again selected as regional judge for the Gascoyne entries and remarked that “[Jerolina] has been a finalist two years running; she’s just kept going at it, like the little engine that could. And today it’s all paid off”. Manifis selected Rankin’s dish as a finalist due to its significant regional provenance with over 10 ingredients from the Gascoyne including Shark Bay’s wild prawns, mackerel and blue-swimmer crab accompanied by vegetables, chillies and herbs from Carnarvon.

Western Australia has an excellent international reputation for sustainable fisheries management with both Shark Bay [Wild] and Exmouth Gulf recently receiving the international independent Marine Stewardship Council (MSC) certification for their prawns. “When it comes to food, our incredibly diverse region really has it all – the pristine world heritage areas of Exmouth and Shark Bay where the wild prawns are managed in an incredible sustainable fishery, to the Carnarvon River Delta, an oasis of tropical fruits, vegetables, herbs and everything in between.” according to Doriana Mangili, Executive Officer of the Gascoyne Food Council.

From a young age Rankin’s grandmother instilled in her a deep respect for food; this was exemplified by her winning seafood broth, which minimised wastage using crab and prawn shells with fish bones. Rankin notes, “I really became a foodie when I had children, sharing my passion to explore food and expressing that food for my family”. Between May and October you’ll find Rankin at the Saturday morning Growers Market in Carnarvon’s town square.

Four regional finalists faced off for the WA Signature Dish (state finals), held as part of the 2015 Margaret River Gourmet Escape. The festival is a key event for Tourism Western Australia’s Taste2020 food and wine tourism strategy.

PHOTO: 2015 Margaret River Gourmet festival, with thanks from Buy West Eat Best, courtesy Tourism Western Australia.

Related Images: