The 2017 Melbourne Food & Wine Festival is being held in conjunction with the Worlds 50 Best Restaurant Awards from 31 March to 9 April 2017.
That means some of the World’s finest chefs who will be in Melbourne for the awards, will line up with Melbourne’s finest chefs to showcase their talents as part of the Melbourne Food & Wine Festival.
One of those chefs is Gastón Acurio – Peru’s answer to Jamie Oliver and Anthony Bourdain.
Acurio, who opened his first restaurant, Astrid y Gastón in Lima more than 20 years ago, has made it onto the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list each year since 2006. With more than 40 restaurants in 12 countries, he promotes Peruvian cuisines at its finest as well as showcasing simple everyday Peruvian dishes such as ceviche (marinated raw fish), anticuchos (grilled cow hearts) and cuy (guinea pig) for all the world to appreciate and enjoy.
As well as being recognised as Peru’s national hero Acurio is credited with igniting the Peruvian gastrotrend sweeping the globe, Acurio draws inspiration from both the ancient and the contemporary, with food that highlights the rich cultural diversity of his country as well as the immense respect the Peruvians have for mother nature (pachumama). A mentor and inspiration to many chefs, including Virgilio Martinez, Acurio also runs a cooking school for impoverished Peruvian youth, hosts his own TV show, and has written many opinion pieces and several books including the English-language Peru: The Cookbook.
Food critics and restaurant owners say it was Mr. Acurio who took everyday Peruvian ingredients and elevated them to a thing of pride for a nation in need of a confidence boost about the value of all that Peru has to offer. “Without a doubt, food was at that moment a major flag bearer for the recovery in our national pride,” says Acurio. Today, local chefs in Peru are inspired and proud of the indigenous Quechua, Spanish, African and Asian influences the have created a unique food fusion over the past 500 years.
Visitors to the 2017 Melbourne Food & Wine Festival sponsored by the Bank of Melbourne will have a rare opportunity to sit in on Acurio’s masterclass to be held on Sunday 4 April at 4 pm at Deakin Edge in Federation Square.