GIVEAWAY: A Family Pass to Curious Beasts

Curious Beasts

While not food related per se, the school holidays are almost upon us and the chances are that parents will be thinking about what to do to entertain a raft of small people for something like six weeks.

Our now six year old (no more Master 5!) is an enthusiastic eater and so any outing has to involve lunch. He loves going in to town and picking somewhere to eat (often determined by whatever is closest!).

The other thing he loves in town is the Museum and in particular the giant squid that you can find by the stairs. You can run up and down the stairs looking at that squid for quite a long time …

At the moment, South Australians are very lucky because the SA Museum is hosting Curious Beasts: Animal Prints from Dürer to Goya. This showcases the British Museum’s collection of animal prints from the fifteenth century onwards. This was a time when Europeans were exploring the world and combining this adventure with scientific curiosity. Needless to say, many of the images are somewhat remarkable!

I’ve got a family pass to giveaway – so this is some free school holiday entertainment! Technically, the competition is open Australia-wide but the exhibition is in Adelaide (until 5 Feb 2017) and there’s no travel included, so not a lot of point unless you’ll be holidaying here before then!

The competition closes on Thursday 15 December – the last day of school term!

Curious Beasts Giveaway


GIVEAWAY + Hunter Valley Food and Wine Festival

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Here in Adelaide we’re in recovery from the McLaren Vale Sea and Vines Festival and making sure we’re well recuperated and match-fit for the Adelaide Hills’ Winter Reds.

We’re totally spoilt for choice. Across the border in NSW the Hunter Valley is busy gearing up for its annual Hunter Valley Food and Wine Festival.

In the Hunter they do things in style. A food and wine festival over a weekend? They see that and raise us one. It’s been on for a whole two months! There have been 70 events across this time and over 150 wineries to check out and can be found in site. And you have just TWO WEEKS left to get yourself a piece of the action as things wrap up at the end of June.

I have quite a soft spot for the Hunter Valley. A loooong time ago, while still a poor uni student, I spent some time in Sydney, babysitting a friend’s apartment and then taking a few days to check out the Hunter Valley. My then boyfriend and I stayed at a hotel in Cessnock (it had cheap Coopers Sparkling!) and, as we had no car, we took a bus tour around the wineries. Even then I had, quite rightly, a ‘thing’ for Semillon.

And Semillon is the grape for which the Hunter is most famous. When young, it is lean and its acidity can be frightening. But with age, it mellows, and develops toasty, honeyed characters backed with bright acidity and great length. Hunter Semillon is not only distinctive and not only one of Australia’s great wines, it’s one of the world’s great wines.

The other grape variety which thrives in the Hunter is Shiraz. But South Australian readers will know we do a pretty decent version of that in the Barossa!

The Hunter Valley is an easy trip out of Sydney, so for anyone on that side of the country – you have plenty of time to plan a trip to make the most of this two month extravaganza. There is a huge range of cooking classes, degustation meals and other food and wine experiences on offer – and many of them are very keenly priced.

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Events you can still head to include a Chocolate and Sea cooking class at Twine Restaurant will set you back $95 – cook confit trout, crispy skin salmon and chocolate fudge cake. OK – you have to cook your lunch but you also get to eat it and enjoy wine too.

You can also learn to cook paella and churros or enjoy an indulgent high tea. For the full event listing check out the Hunter’s regional website.

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Now to the exciting part – which is the giveaway. Which is wine. And, since we’re talking Hunter Valley – it is, naturally, Semillon and Shiraz. The 2011 Littles Homestead Vineyard Reserve Shiraz & the 2016 (that’s right – the latest!) De Iuliis Single Vineyard Semillon.

Just enter via the widget below!

Hunter Valley Competition

WIN! Paul Newman’s Own Aioli

Paul Newman Aioli

Disclaimer: I was sent the two new aiolis to try and Paul Newman’s Own has supplied the prizes.

I know that if you turn on a cooking programme on tv you’ll see a chef/cook/contestant whipping up mayonnaise or aioli in a matter of moments. And I’m pretty sure that most people don’t actually do that at home. We don’t do that at home. And do you know why?

Because when we want mayo or aioli we usually want such a tiny amount that the effort to make our own just never feels worth it. Plus, the whole point of having a BLT for dinner is minimal effort!

Paul Newman’s Own has just introduced two new aiolis to sit along its plain aioli: basil and black pepper and smoked paprika. The first thing I was impressed to note is that the products are made with the same things that you or I might use: oil, egg and no artificial flavourings.

Paul Newman’s Own is also a not for profit entity: all profits go to the Newman’s Own Foundation and they are then distributed to charities in the regions where the products are sold. So when you buy any of the products you can be confident that the profits will be directed back to charities in Australia, if not South Australia.

Last year, for example, the Foundation’s focus areas were children with life-limiting conditions and (fittingly, for a food company!) nutrition. South Australian charities that benefited were: Australian Cranio-Maxillo Facial Foundation, Day of Difference Foundation, Down Syndrome Society of SA and The Epilepsy Centre. (Check out the website for the full list of Australian 2012 recipients).

However, all these warm and fuzzies are just a bonus – they’re not the thing which will get you buying the products in the first place. That all comes down to taste.

I was sent jars of both the basil and black pepper and the smoked paprika aiolis to try out. The basil and black pepper aioli had an outing on the lazy Sunday night dinner: the BLT, while the smoked paprika I used to make a very quick and simple celeriac remoulade.


admittedly, this could be any random BLT … but trust me, it has aioli in it!

Of the two, I definitely preferred the smoked paprika aioli. This had a stronger flavour all round and definitely a stronger garlic flavour. The basil and black pepper was very subtle on the BLT (maybe I’m too stingy!) but tasted on its own, the fresh basil flavour does come through.

Paul Newman Aioli

For the remoulade, I simply chopped the celeriac very finely, put it in acidulated water and, after draining it, mixed through the aioli. This is a very easy way of doing remoulade and you could complicated it by mixing through a little sour cream or crème fraîche, or some mustard – but the beauty of the smoked paprika is that you don’t need to do any of that.

I also thought that both would work really well as a dip on a plate of crudités. They’re very pretty colours and the garlic is not overpowering.

If you’re interested in trying the new aiolis, you don’t even have to head to the shops. Paul Newman’s Own has FIVE prize packs (one of each aioli in a cute bag) for Eating Adelaide readers.

Entry is easy – just use the Rafflecopter entry form below*.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


You must be resident in Australia (and have an Australian postal address).

The only mandatory task is liking Eating Adelaide on Facebook.

Winners will be contacted by email, and published on the Eating Adelaide Facebook page. They will need to respond within 48 hours, otherwise I will redraw.