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A sound & light show with bite
Meteorological conditions conspired to drop the word 'Bush' from this Melbourne Food and Wine Festival regional event, but no amount of rain and thunder could dampen the spirits of the revellers who gathered at the Lorne Country Club for the Twilight (Bush) Picnic.
While Qdos Arts would have been a charming backdrop, the uninterrupted view of the stormy seas from the dining room of the Country Club (not to mention the upholstered comfort of the seating arrangements) more than made up for the absence of birdsong and picnic rugs. And who needs birds when you have the sounds of Latin/classical guitarist Sergio Ercole to aid your digestion?
Not that there was anything hard to digest on a menu that combined the best of local produce with the culinary expertise of Cater and Co: Zeally Bay Sourdough mini baguette Otway Lamb roasted on Argentinian asador served cold cut with Gentle Annie relish
Marinated Babenorak Track olives in orange thyme and chilli Local wild rocket Roasted Organic joe's vegetables Aioli with Jen's Free Range Eggs L'Artisan Extravagant Triple crème and Raclette cheeses created by French cheesemaker Matthieu Megard, served with Quince Paste and Lavosh Torta de Santiago – a light almond meal cake served with fresh berries
Two long tables were set with picnic hampers in ecologically sound paper and cardboard containers. Unwrapping the hamper and seeing what was inside was like Christmas Day all over again, minus the dud prezzies. Bread was broken by friends and strangers alike the length of the communal tables – a bonus as far as this reviewer is concerned and one of the highlights of any Melbourne Food and Wine Festival event. If a romantic dinner à deux is what you're after, you won't find it at the Lorne Twilight Picnic. But what you will find is top notch tucker and bonhomie to spare. Followed by a guided tour of the Lorne Sculpture Biennale – by torchlight! Who said there was no romance to be had at a communal dinner? The Lorne Twilight Bush Picnic was the whole package – wrapped in biodegradable cardboard and a whole lotta love.