Cook-off contestant meets Zumbo
THE Whitsundays' very own amateur chef finalist Venus Randell was among the locals, guests and celebrities who attended a champagne high tea with highly acclaimed patissier Adriano Zumbo on Hamilton Island last week.
Ms Randell, who came joint third in last month's charity Amatuer Chef 'one-pot-wonder' competition in the Whitsundays, described herself as a keen cook with "an avid appreciation of food and in general sweets".
"I followed Adriano Zumbo when I was in Sydney. I used to go to his patisserie in Rozelle and I've always wanted to go to a master class with him," she said.
When Ms Randell heard about the event on Hamilton Island she was determined to attend but Friday's date did not fit well with her work roster and she almost missed out. A last minute change afforded the opportunity to go, but by this stage transport was an issue so Ms Randell and fellow Whitsunday resident Bunitj Miles chartered a helicopter to take them direct to qualia where the function was held.
After all this, Ms Randell said the high tea was well worth the effort to attend. "How often does a master like this come to our area to show his skills? It's a showcase that usually only people from the cities can enjoy, so it's really nice that he can bring it here," she said.
The MC at the event was Catriona Rowntree and attended by the likes of Sarah Snook and her partner Angus Mcdonald along with Alex Dimitriades and Anji Lake.
Ms Randall said Adriano Zumbo created five deserts ranging from his signature macaroons to pralines, before participating in a short question and answer session.
"I asked him why it was so difficult to buy his range outside of Sydney and particularly here," she said.
"He said it had a lot to do with our climate and also the freight - his deserts are so delicate. But he said he would consider thinking about options."