The March issue

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Australia's best rieslings

We’re spoilt for variety – and value – in Australia when it comes to good riesling. Max Allen picks the top 20 from a fine crop.

Fig recipes

Figs. We can't get enough of them. Here are a few sweet and savoury ways to add them to your summer spread.

Top Australian chefs to follow on Instagram in 2017

A lot has changed since we first published our pick of the best chefs to follow on Instagram (way back in the dark ages of 2013). Here’s who we’re double-tapping on the photo-sharing app right now.

Sleep in a Grampians olive grove this autumn

Under Sky are popping up with a luxe camping hotel experience at Mount Zero Olives this April.

Most popular recipes summer 2017

Counting down from 20, here are this summer's most-loved recipes.

Christine Manfield recipes

As the '90s dawned, darling chefs were pushing the boundaries of cooking in this country. A young Christine Manfield, just starting out at this heady time, soon became part of the generation that redefined modern Australian cuisine. She shares some of her timeless signatures from the era.

Pork recipes

Lunch or dinner, salads or skewers, pork proves itself as a cut above and a versatile go-to. From soy-glazed pork-and-pineapple skewers and spicy bourbon pork to hand-cut pork sausages and a pork scratchings sandwich with apple and cabbage slaw, these recipes will appeal to any pork enthusiast.

Curtis Stone's strawberry, elderflower and brioche summer puddings

"Think of this dessert as a deconstructed version of a summer pudding, with thinly sliced strawberries macerated in elderflower liqueur and layered between slices of brioche," says Stone. "A dollop of whipped cream on top is a cooling counterpoint to the floral flavours."

Lûmé’s multisensory dinner experience

Shaun Quade

Shaun Quade

Shaun Quade is collaborating with a fragrance specialist for what is sure to be an unusual dinner.

Shaun Quade wants to lead you by the nose. At an eight-course dinner next month at his South Melbourne restaurant Lûmé, diners will taste duck from Victoria, vanilla from Far North Queensland, sea urchin from Tasmania and crocodile from the Northern Territory, but they'll also be subject to scents that evoke ocean, rainforest, pasture and wetlands.

The event is called (tentatively) "A Journey around Australia" and it's a collaboration with renowned fragrance specialist and master perfumer Samantha Taylor. Quade's fascination with the power of smell will get free rein.

It's not all about being spritzed with Eau de Kakadu between courses, though. The 25 guests will move to different parts of Lûmé throughout the night (including, possibly, a storage container in the back yard), with temperature and lighting adjusted to reflect the journey. There may even be a hidden fan involved.

"I don't want to sound like a wanker, but I want this to be restaurant as theatre," says Quade. "It's about everybody having their role to play and the dining room being like a stage, but it's also about the notion of tinkering and creating to produce a work that's bewildering."

Quade has never been short on ambition or afraid to bewilder. He's already taken a leaf out of The Fat Duck's playbook and had actors and psychologists in to work with his staff, teaching them techniques to bring a sense of ease to the dining room. He's playing with different scents for different parts of the restaurant and installing lighting that will bring extra drama.

And there's more where that came from. This dinner is something of a taster for the way Lûmé will roll over the next 12 months. Actors from an experimental theatre company, for example, are set to join the cast of chefs and waitstaff temporarily to "take multisensory into overdrive".

"I like to question what going out to dinner means," says Quade. And suddenly there's a whiff of understatement in the air.

Lûmé, 226 Coventry St, South Melbourne, (03) 9690 0185, restaurantlume.com. The Samantha Taylor dinner on 16 August costs $280 per person including paired cocktails; book at lume.tocktix.com.

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