And all that jazz…downsouth

Polish your dancing shoes, pack your glad rags and head to Dunsborough, Busselton and Margaret River this June long weekend (2-5 June) for the biggest Jazz by the Bay festival to date.

With more than 40 events across 20 locations and 200+ musicians descending on the Margaret River Region for 4 days, the joint will be jumping. In 2017 there are new venues on board, international and interstate acts, returning favourites, and some of the State’s best jazz, soul and funk talent. .

More than half of the events are free – many just require a meal purchase! Tickets for the Buena Vista Social Club Young Guns, Karen Lane singing workshop, Cathrine Summers at Chandeliers on Abbey, Serge Le Goueff and the Steve McQueens are all available from Sticky Tickets – search for Jazz by the Bay. For other ticketed events see our website or enquire direct with venues.

This year’s highlights include:

  • Buena Vista Social Club Young Guns with Adam Hall and the Velvet Playboys (Piano Box Jazz Bar, Old Broadwater Farm
  • Vintage Hollywood Jazz – Cathrine Summers and her 6-piece ensemble delighting guests with a cheeky up-tempo night of vintage classics at Chandeliers on Abbey. Cathrine will also be performing at Ramada Resort Dunsborough with her trio
  • The Steve McQueens – a neo-vintage soul-funk band from Singapore with a gorgeous sound, Clancy’s Fish Pub Red Room
  • Elle Deslandes, Danny Moss and Harry Mitchell in the gallery with dinner at The Studio Gallery & Bistro.
  • Nadira and Friends (Tas) at Rivendell Winery on Friday, Freddie Grigson and Allira Wilson on Saturday and Jazz Jacks Trio on Sunday!
  • Bonnie Scott’s Jazz Duo at Rustico at Hayshed Hill on Friday and European Jazz Club with the Jessie Gordon Trio at Rustico on Sunday
  • Sassafras Gypsy Jazz at The Goose in Busselton
  • Free live entertainment all day at Lions Park, Dunsborough from 10.15am to 3.45pm on Saturday and Sunday – including some of the Festival’s headline acts, big bands, soul, swing and more!
  • Workshops including singing the blues with Karen Lane (UK), and swing dancing.
  • A Saxophone Journey with Serge Le Goueff – jazz musical theatre where Serge will take the audience on an unforgettable musical trip. (Old Dunsborough Hall)
  • Roving entertainment in Busselton and Dunsborough by The Magnificent 7 Trad Jazz and SSB Quintet
  • Cassandra Charlick Duo performing in Ngilgi Cave (Sun 11am-1pm – free with Cave Tour ticket purchase). Cassandra will also appear at Morries Margaret River with her Trio, and with her Gypsy Jazz Trio at Aravina Estate
  • Decadent Champagne High Tea and Jazz with Charmaine Clements, Danny Moss Jr and Ookii Effendi at Pullman Bunker Bay Resort
  • Jazz from the American Song Book by Mr & Mrs Smith Trio with a Creole-inspired lunch at Clairault Streiker
  • A weekend of jazz at Caves House Hotel – from Friday night to Monday afternoon with the Karen Lane Quartet (UK), the Sets, Cassandra Charlick Trio, WAAPA Jazz Guitar Duo, and the Penny King Quartet
  • Jazz takeover at Provence Estate by the best youth jazz bands in the region including Margaret River SHS Jazz Band, Bunbury Catholic College Jazz Guitar Ensemble, WA Youth Jazz Orchestra, and Geographe Bay Music I – and best of all it’s free!

You can find the full schedule at

L-R Cathrine Summers, The Steve McQueens, Charmaine Clements, Pete Jeavons

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International Jazz in the Margaret River region, June 2-5

Jazz by the Bay goes global 

It seems fitting that in its fifth year, Jazz by the Bay is going global, with international acts making an appearance in Dunsborough, Busselton and surrounds for the first time.
This year’s headliners include three musicians from the legendary Buena Vista Social Club orchestra teaming up with popular Perth jazz crooner and musician Adam Hall with the Velvet Playboys; UK-based jazz singer and recording artist Karen Lane with her four-piece band, and festival favourite the vivacious Cathrine Summers.
Festival Director Cindy Wiese said Jazz by the Bay 2017 would expand to four days for the first time.
“Thanks to growing demand, this year’s festival will run from the Friday to the Monday of the June long weekend (June 2-5), and we’re shaping up to have more than 20 artists performing in about the same number of venues across the region. 
“Jazz by the Bay turns the heat up in winter, gets visitors and locals out of hibernation and into some cozy venues to enjoy cool jazz. I’m really excited about the way this year’s program is already looking,” she said.
The Buena Vista Social Club had phenomenal international success 20 years ago when their first album was released, spectacularly reviewed and word of mouth spread around the world. Buena Vista’s irresistible Cuban rhythms did not wane and they continue to sell successfully today.  
Three musicians hailing from Cuba – Lazaro Pompa (trumpet), Pablo Calzado (drums, pictured below) and Camila Cortina Bello (piano) will combine with slick Perth songster Adam Hall and the Velvet Playboys for a night of hot latin and high energy at the Piano Box Jazz Bar at Old Broadwater Farm.
Buena Vista Social Club
The seven-piece band will take on the music of Buena Vista Social Club as well as hit songs from Coldplay, Rolling Stones, The Eagles, Elvis and more, fusing fiery Latin rhythms with pop classics. Wear your dancing shoes! The Playboys are regularly invited to perform internationally. 
Piano Box Jazz Bar tickets are now available for $95 plus booking fee from
Karen Lane has been based in London for 16 years but hails from Perth originally. She has released five albums to critical acclaim, and she has worked with some of the UK’s finest musicians performing from Monte Carlo to Cape Town, and in some of London’s premier jazz clubs. She has a versatile style, swinging from jazz standards to Bossa Nova. 
Cathrine Summers (pictured below) has performed at all but one Jazz by the Bay Festival and her award-winning shows regularly sell out thanks to her charisma, on-stage charm, sultry voice and incredible vocal range. 
Free and ticketed events are scheduled across the Jazz by the Bay long weekend indoors and out and catering for all jazz tastes – for cool cats, swingers, scatters and jivers. 
There’ll be all-day free live music at Dunsborough’s Lions Park on Saturday and Sunday, and ticketed daytime, dinnertime and shows late into the night at wineries, bars, theatres and private properties. 

Jazz by the Bay provides a complete feast for the senses with many events including stunning local food and wine in the experience.

More acts will be announced in coming weeks and a full program of Jazz by the Bay performances will be available from the event website along with ticketing information. Visit the event’s Facebook page for all the latest news and for accommodation options. 
The Festival is made possible thanks to support from City of Busselton, Tourism Western Australia, Department of Regional Development – Royalties for Regions, Retravision, Satterley and more. 

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Tips for the best Gourmet Village experience

Margaret River Gourmet Escape is just a few weeks away and with five brand new attractions in the heart of the festival, the Gourmet Village, a host of new restaurants and producers, special appearances from the inimitable Nigella Lawson plus over 50 culinary stars, you cannot miss this year’s event.

A day at the Gourmet Village (19 and 20 November) is a must-do for visitors to the region, and for locals to enjoy their favourite south-west food and wine experiences in the one location – the stunning grounds of Leeuwin Estate Winery.

Remember, there’s no mobile coverage at
Leeuwin Estate – set a meeting point for your friends before you get there or as soon as you arrive 


With 70 wineries to visit and over 350 wines to try, chef demonstrations, interactive masterclasses, over 130 artisan producers and 10 of WA’s best restaurants planning is the best way to make the most of your day. We’ve put together a list of 10 unmissable attractions to get your taste buds firing.

Tips to make the most of the Gourmet Village:

  1. Check out the Chef’s Theatre schedule to know when your favourite chefs will be on stage cooking up a storm with local produce. Special guests include Nigella Lawson, Rick Stein, Dominique Crenn and Frank Camorra, to name a few, with host Adam Liaw.

Margaret River Gourmet Escape
2. Love a sweet fix? Join the new Sweets and Treats Masterclasses with the wonderful Rebecca Sullivan. Instead of using refined sugar, Rebecca will show you how to use gorgeous alternatives such as local honey, Bahen & Co chocolate and seasonal fruit to create treats with a little less guilt to take home with you. There are 4 sessions per day, $10 each and you can book on the day.

  1. Meet Nigella! If you get in quick there are still a few places left on Sunday to pre-book your place to meet the UK’s queen of cooking and have her latest book signed while enjoying a glass of Margaret River wine. Book online now!

4. Have your say in the Battle of the Breweries presented by Mane Liquor. Over 4 sessions each day, beer connoisseurs will be able to taste and learn about some of the south west and WA’s best beer where breweries will go head-to-head in a battle that will ultimately crown Gourmet Escape’s Best in Brew 2016!

  1. Sharpen your skills at the free-to-attend Wüsthof Knife Skillery workshop. Learn from the best with Guy Grossi, Ben Knights, Scott Pickett, George Cooper, Hadleigh Troy, and Mike McEnearney all taking turns on the knives. Hone your cutting skills whilst preparing local cuisine and enjoy eating it at the end of each session.
  2. Appreciators of wine will enjoy Around the Barrel. Wine expert Nick Stock will unlock the secrets to what makes the perfect wine and how to enjoy it, featuring the region’s top wineries and their winemakers. Book on arrival.

Margaret River Gourmet Escape
7. Take advantage of trying dishes from some of the region’s top restaurants, chefs and produce in the one location. There will be 10 to choose from including Leeuwin Estate, Vasse Felix, Xanadu and Rustico at Hayshed Hill and each will provide a tasty signature dish to enjoy throughout the day.

8. Sample the region’s best produce, wines, beers, spirits, treats and temptations from more than 100 artisan producers. Think of the Gourmet Village as your one-stop South West shop!

  1. Get up close to the stars of Margaret River Gourmet Escape at the Gourmet Greats presented by Winning Appliances – pairing our visiting chefs with local produce and cooking demos – and Consuming Conversations in association with Food Network where some of the world’s best discuss the latest food trends and thought provoking topics. Both are free to attend.

10. Plan ahead. Check out the program online to schedule in your favourite activities – and pre-book your tickets online – it’s cheaper and you can avoid the queues.

The lovely Michelle and Sarah enjoying the Gourmet Village

The lovely Michelle and Sarah enjoying the Gourmet Village

Gourmet Village entry starts at $40 ($30 for Seniors) plus booking fee and there are a number of packages available, which include Village Currency, tasting glasses, premium experiences add-on events or for those of you who do not think one day is enough, a Weekend Pass.

Village Currency Cards are new for 2016 and used to purchase food & wine. These can be purchased in advance (for collection on the day) or from roaming Currency Sellers inside the village in $30 increments. Currency can be topped up throughout the day and importantly any unused currency can be refunded at the end of your village experience.

I wish I was an Audi driver. Audi customers get preferential parking (Stevens Road entrance) fast track entry and access to the Audi Customer Lounge with complementary beverages and reserved seating.

Bus transfers are available via Southwest Coachlines from Bunbury, Busselton, Dunsborough, Yallingup, Augusta and Margaret River. Check online for details.

Tickets are available via Ticketek. For event information visit

Margaret River Gourmet Escape


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Antonio Carluccio in Margaret River on SBS Thursday

A new TV series set in the Western Australia’s greater south west region and starring much-loved TV chef Antonio Carluccio and respected WA Indigenous elder and performer Dr Richard Walley starts Thursday 8 September at 6pm on SBS.

In Antonio Carluccio’s 6 Seasons Richard take Antonio on a journey of discovery, culture, wild gathering and cooking, which includes a visit to the extraordinary annual food festival Margaret River Gourmet Escape.

Antonio and Richard in Boranup Forest low res

Richard Walley and Antonio Carluccio in Boranup Forest in the Margaret River region. Photo: supplied

During the six half-hour shows, Richard introduces Antonio to the six seasons of the Aboriginal calendar and the availability of native and foraged foods at different times of the year.

What they cook

Together they cook with some incredible WA produce including kangaroo, pearl meat, marron, yabbies, wild duck, wild honey, bush pepper, quandongs, bush limes and other truly unique Australian foods that Antonio had not seen or tasted before.

They hunt and fish, catch crabs by hand with local kids, discover ancient forests and sacred places, and experience dance and music by a blazing fire in the clean crisp star-filled night to the sounds of a didgeridoo.

Each episode is set in a different part of the south west and showcases the people, food and rich history of the area. Episode six focuses on the Margaret River region.

Antonio said…

Antonio said his impressions of Aboriginal culture were changed by the experience and he observed a strong belief in family life and respect for elders and ancestors.

“This provided me with a wonderful opportunity to forage in nature and see for myself how a great variety of foods I had not previously encountered were imaginatively prepared and shared.

“Richard and I shared our deep knowledge of food and culture which, whilst our countries are at extreme geographical distance, we found that our philosophy of food and life was very close indeed.”

The new series will air on SBS weeknights from Thursday 8 September at 6pm.

Antonio Carluccio’s 6 Seasons was commissioned by and made possible with support from IMG Culinary Australia, organisers of Margaret River Gourmet Escape, and was produced with the assistance of Screenwest and Lotterywest. It was produced by CM Film Productions and directed by Carmelo Musca and Richard Walley.

Antonio Carluccio and me at Margaret River Gourmet Escape last year

Antonio Carluccio and me at Margaret River Gourmet Escape last year



This is not a sponsored post. The content of this post is from a media release from Margaret River Gourmet Escape. I am a huge fan of Antonio Carluccio and of the Margaret River Gourmet Escape, which is why I’ve shared this with you.


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Shorehouse, Lucky Chans & Asado at Taste of Perth this weekend: Quick $20 tickets

This weekend, Taste of Perth – touted as Perth’s greatest restaurant festival – has got some hot new stalls to tempt taste buds, held at Langley Park from tomorrow through until Sunday.

Buy tickets online quick for just $20 (instead of $30).

123 TOP Saturday 1505015 Jessica Wyld

See the full program and menu card here


The Shorehouse, led by Head Chef Ollie Gould, will be offering Shark Bay cuttle fish and blue swimmer crab for seafood lovers.

The first crowdfunded restaurant Lucky Chans will be bringing their people-pleasing bao’s to Taste of Perth for the first time, offering the perfect accompaniment of Beers & Baos.

There’ll be 36 dishes on offer from the Taste of Perth restaurant line up that includes:

• Print Hall – Award winning Perth favourite Print Hall returns to Taste of Perth with dishes from their diverse range of dining options from oysters to teriyaki short rib.

• Asado – Offering options for the adventurous diner, preview their tripe house sausage at Taste of Perth before it’s added to their restaurant menu. For the super brave, Asado will be

dishing up their signature pig head tacos.

• Nobu – Featuring festival-first soba noodle soup, Nobu will also be serving their world famous yellowtail sashimi served with jalapeño and yuzu soy.

• Manuka Woodfire- Also a newcomer to Taste of Perth, Manuka Woodfire will have plenty on offer including dishes to cater for the vegos from blackened carrots to a festival exclusive roasted apples and figs.

• Silks – Serving their iconic wok fried king prawns with honey lime glaze and crispy red rice, Silks will also have a Taste of Perth special mango panna cotta to cleanse your palate and come back for more.

• Bib & Tucker – Showcasing local hero ingredient WA famous Fremantle Octopus, Bib & Tucker will be roasting octopus with ink cracker, beetroot skordalia and khol rabi.

• Bistro Guillaume – Serving a delectable leg of duck confit with peas, speck and shallot.

Each restaurant will create 3-4 exquisite signature dishes in ‘taste’ sized portions starting at just $6 per dish, allowing you to create your dream tasting menu.

639 TOP Food 150517

Visitors will have the opportunity to cook and dine with their with some of Perth’s culinary superstars including Hadleigh Troy (Restaurant Amusé), Scott Bridger (Bib & Tucker), Joel Valvasori (Lalla Rookh) and Robert Murphy (Bistro Guillaume), as well as one of Sydney’s hottest chefs, Nelly Robinson (nel.).

Book your tickets now at Ticketek in advance to save 30% off the door price.


Taste of Perth operates like a restaurant with a lunch and dinner service. A Taste session lasts for 4–5 hours (session dependent) to give you time to enjoy your pick of restaurant dishes, browse the artisan stalls, enjoy some of the many attractions and relax to the live entertainment. Tickets are sold for each session and are only valid for the time and date indicated on the ticket.

Lunch sessions Friday  12:00 – 4:00pm  – FREE!! Thanks City of Perth. 

Friday dinner 5:30 – 9:30pm

Saturday lunch  12:00 – 4:00pm and dinner 5:30 – 9:30pm

Sunday 12:00 – 5:00pm

023 TOP Friday 150515 Jessica Wyld


WHAT: Taste of Perth in partnership with Electrolux 2016

WHEN: Friday 29 April – Sunday 1 May 2016 – lunch sessions from 12pm, dinner from 5.50pm

WHERE: Langley Park, Perth

TICKETS: QUICK – just $20 at Ticketek or pay $30 at the gate


524 TOP Food 150517

Photo credits: Jessica Wyld

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