Sous chefs will take the reins on Sunday nights in September, in the process raising money for a good cause.
This September, the spotlight shifts from head chefs to the next generation of leading ladies and men with the launch of Sunday Sous Sessions. In a month-long series of intimate Sunday dinners, sous chefs from some of Sydney's most well-known kitchens will take charge, designing their own five-course dégustation menus inspired by their culinary journey from childhood to today.
"Head chefs are now often travelling, leaving sous chefs in charge," says Aaron Teece, the brains behind the idea. "This dinner series gives the public a chance to get to know these chefs and experience their passion and talent."
First up is Andy Ashby of Nel Restaurant, who will use truffles from Braidwood, Tinder Creek duck and Fraser Island spanner crab on his menu, followed by Khanh Nguyen from Cirrus and Sam Young, who has taken a new role with Merivale but was most recently on the pans at Ms G's. Rounding out the month is Alex Farrow of North Bondi Fish. Each course will be introduced by the chef, discussing their influences and choices, while wines and spirits will be selected by the chef and their home restaurant's sommelier.
The September dinners are set to take place at the former Marque site in Surry Hills, where Mark Best provided a training ground for many of today's established chefs in the 17 years his restaurant was open.
A portion of ticket sales is being donated to the mental health charities R U OK and Beyondblue, which assist people living with depression and anxiety. Many chefs have thrown their support behind R U OK since the death of Bistrode's Jeremy Strode, who also fundraised for the charity.
Teece plans to make the sous chef dinners a regular thing, with talks of a longer series in the first half of 2018. For now, make the most of Sunday nights in September.
Sunday Sous Sessions, each Sunday in September starting 3 September, Studio Neon Pop-up, 4-5/355 Crown St, Surry Hills, NSW. Five courses $165, tickets available online.