I love a good food tour. I also love a good brewery tour. Combine the two and you have the Hinterland Farm to Fork Experience by Sunshine Coast Craft Beer Tours, and you really do have the best of both worlds. Happy days!
While I won’t give too much away about the actual tour – you really need to do it, and I don’t want to kill the buzz that comes with a new adventure – what I will give away is that it a fabulous discovery treat that ends with food and beer… great food and beer.
Joshua Donohoe, from Creative Tours & Events / Sunshine Coast Craft Beer Tours has teamed up with Brouhaha Brewery to give visitors (and locals) to the coast a snapshot of the collaborations between the brewery, the restaurant and the producers of the Sunshine Coast.
It follows the journey of head chef, James Ostridge, and his passion to champion the producers of the ingredients that he uses to create the dishes on the brewery’s restaurant menu.
James’ ethos is very much about supporting local. But it goes beyond that; James is on a mission to reduce waste and increase productivity and possibilities, so he has put a lot of thought into the whole food supply and waste cycle and come up with some innovative concepts that the brewery and restaurant has embraced as a whole, as well as made their own contributions to.
While James is passionate about using local produce, he is also using it creatively, while staying true to the brewery. The food needs to complement the beer, but it also needs to be flexible due to the seasonality of all that is local – which is not always that easy!
Drawing inspiration from traditional dishes of his hometown, Berkshire, UK, where James learnt his trade, he has created some delicious staples that work perfectly with beer.
So while this tour is about getting to meet the producers, it is also as much about understanding what makes the brewery tick, and the purpose that every item has, on what is ultimately, a very well thought-out menu.
Back to the tour; pick up is at The Wharf, Mooloolaba, nice and early and we are on our way.
Our first stop was the Sunshine Coast Coffee Roastery, with a great insight into the whole coffee roasting process – while you enjoy a blend of your choice – which, for me, is always welcome first thing!
Stop two was The Falls Farm, grower of many of the vegetables the restaurant utilises. The Falls Farm specialises in growing heirloom varieties, as well as some more unusual vegetables and herbs. The gardens are gorgeous (bit of big time garden envy going on here). James sources directly from the farm, so vegetables are at a premium in both nutrition and flavour.