Dan Hunter’s Feast

Dan Hunter - Great Barrier Feast Hamilton Island

Dan Hunter delivering a Masterclass at The Great Barrier Feast (Photo: Andrea Francolini)

Dan Hunter’s Great Barrier Feast was a fantastic way to start the festive season. The 3rd December showpiece dinner was a study in honest food, delicately served with unadulterated, pure flavours.

The first course, and my favourite, was Tomato on Toast. It sounds simple, but you try finding 10 heirloom tomatoes, (one for each seat at the table) perfectly ripe, each a different colour. Halve the tomato, seat on a beautifully crunchy, crumbled ‘toast’, then top with three types of basil and home-made sheep’s ricotta. Sublime.

The challenge of the night was the third course: a beautifully tender wedge of duck, with a cucumber puree, coastal plants such as samphire and the squid ink tinted calamari cream. More pure flavours and a challenging combination of paddock and beach.

Dan Hunter Great Barrier Feast

Third Course at Dan Hunter's Great Barrier Feast (Photo: Andrea Francolini)

The accompanying Stonier Pinot Noir 2010 sparked an interesting conversation around the table on whether you could smell a colour – in this case pink! All-in-all a gorgeous night with great company including the lovely Simon Woolley from Antipodes water and of course the delightful Simon Thomsen; it was also great to meet Matt Armendariz, a passionate foodie and blogger extraordinaire. It sounds like many others had a great night too (ending for some at 5 a.m. the next morning I hear!)