The Christmas issue

Our December issue is out now, featuring Paul Carmichael's recipes for a Caribbean Christmas, silly season cocktails and more.

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Chilled recipes for summer

When the mercury is rising, step away from the oven. These recipes are either raw, chilled or frozen and will cool you down in a snap.

Mango recipes

Nothing says summer like mangoes. Go beyond the criss-cross cuts - bake a mango-filled meringue loaf with lime mascarpone, start off the day with a sweet coconut quinoa pudding with sticky mango, or toss it through a spicy warm weather Thai salad.

Shark Bay Wild Scampi Caviar

Bright blue scampi roe is popping up on menus across Australia. Here's why it's so special.

Summer feta recipes

Whether in a fresh salad or seasonal seafood dish, feta's creamy tang can be used to add interest to a variety of summer dishes.

What the GT team is cooking on Christmas Day

We don't do things by halves in the Gourmet office. These are the recipes we'll be cooking on the big day.

Dark chocolate delice, salted-caramel ganache and chocolate sorbet

"The delice from Source Dining is a winner. May I have the recipe?" Rebecca Ward, Fitzroy, Vic REQUEST A RECIPE To request a recipe, email fareexchange@bauer-media.com.au or send us a message via Facebook. Please include the restaurant's name and address, as well as your name and address. Please note that because of the volume of requests we receive, we can only publish a selection in the magazine.

Paul Carmichael's great cake

"Great cake, also known in Barbados as black cake or rum cake, is a variation of British Christmas cake that's smashed with rum and falernum syrup," says Momofuku Seiobo chef Paul Carmichael. "This festive cake varies from household to household but they all have two things in common: tons of dried fruit and rum. It's a cake that should be started at least a month out so the fruit can marinate in the booze. Start this recipe up to five weeks ahead to macerate the fruit and baste the cake."

Sydney's best dishes 2016

For our 50th anniversary issue in 2016, we scoured Australia asking two questions: What dishes are making waves right now? What flavours will take us into the next half-century? Sydney provided 16 answers.

Sommelier of the Year 2009: James Erskine, Auge, Adelaide

In a wine-savvy town, Adelaide sommelier James Erskine stands tall for his dedicated yet humble approach to guiding restaurant diners’ wine choices. The 29-year-old sommelier at Auge restaurant has combined a winning mix of easy charm with infectious enthusiasm to recommend superb wines that suit Auge’s modern take on Italian food, based on knowledge gleaned from direct activity in winemaking, hospitality and international travel since his late teens.

Having previously worked in Berlin, Austria and South Africa, and as sommelier at Penfolds’ Magill Estate Restaurant and as guest sommelier at the Park Hyatt Tokyo, Erskine says he’s pleased that he has remained in Adelaide to further his profession. “I could have gone to Melbourne, but I would have been an understudy. In Adelaide, I’ve had the opportunity to take a leading role – and there were a few ideas that I wanted to push. I wanted to see less black, inky wines and more diversity,” he adds, pointing to Auge’s list built around Italian imports and Australian wines made from Italian varietals. “We need to promote a greater sense of identity in restaurants. I’ve pushed the Italian focus of our food through to the wines, and to get more top quality wines poured by the glass. It has been successful because customers have come to trust our judgement.”

Erskine’s deep wine knowledge has been built through diverse means, from working three vintages in three countries to serious academic pursuits. He spent a total of five years studying agricultural science at the University of Adelaide, which included a year at UC Davis, in California, to explore soil chemistry. After commencing work at Auge, James simultaneously completed an honours thesis in soil chemistry. “I wasn’t going to travel the path of an academic, but the studies were designed to get me thinking and learning.”

His ultimate goal is to improve links between wineries and restaurants, which has led to a unique joint venture between Auge and three South Australian wineries. James is currently making three wines for the restaurant under the Vino By Auge label, having sourced montepulciano from Damien Tscharke’s 10-year-old Barossa vines, pinot grigio from The Lane’s Hahndorf vineyards and sangiovese from Domaine Lucy Margaux in the Adelaide Hills.

He is also forming a collaborative group to encourage Adelaide sommeliers to network with wine retailers and wholesale representatives. “I want to see greater dialogue between everyone about wine. Everyone knows quite a bit, there’s a general lack of grooming in that knowledge. It should be developed further; you can never have enough knowledge.”

Auge, 22 Grote St, Adelaide, SA, (08) 8410 9332, auge.com.au

WORDS DAVID SLY PHOTOGRAPHY BEN SEARCY

This article appeared in the September 2008 issue of Australian Gourmet Traveller.

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