Story and photo S Haslam
Chef Blake Seymour will have his work cut out for him in the next few days. After Ballina Food & Wine Festival’s gala dinner for around 200 people on Friday, the Ballina RSL executive chef has a Saturday function for 250 people. On Sunday the winner of ‘Best Plate’ at last year’s festival will be aiming to win again with his slow-cooked brisket burger and sliders, with pickles and slaw. ‘I don’t know if it’s going to win but it’s going to taste really good!’ said Blake.
‘I will also be doing a demonstration with Gavin Hughes cooking a Sri Lankan fish curry. This will be my fourth Festival, and I think it’s great for the local area. There are new restaurants and producers coming to the Ballina region, Ballina Farmers Market has been really well patronized in the last year or so, it’s on a smaller scale than Byron but it’s a good development for the area. I often go there on a Sunday morning with the kids.
‘At my Blake’s Table I often showcase the local suppliers, because not only is it fun to collaborate with them, but my guests find it really interesting to hear a bit of the story behind the food’, he said.
As if that’s not enough, on Tuesday Blake, sous-chef Brad Baldwin and apprentice Ben Campbell will be going to Sydney for the finals of the interclub competition called Chef’s Table, competing against 12 other NSW clubs at Ryde TAFE. Good luck, Blake!