Artisan Files

Melbourne Tomato Festival 2015

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Guy Grossi and his family are highly respected at Artisan House!

Amongst many other influential efforts, The Grossi Family has this year initiated the Melbournese Movement to preserve Italian traditions in what is now their new territory.

Melbournese is about respecting the territory that surrounds us, eating seasonally as nature intended, encouraging new and past generations to come together so that our story can be told for years to come, respecting food and the basic right that all human beings have to eat well.

How we grow our food and where we source it from has a great impact on our health, lifestyle and future. Our food traditions define our culture, our family and ultimately us as individuals.

Artisan House shares the Grossi Family’s philosophy wholeheartedly because after all, one of the greatest decisions we make for ourselves is how we eat.

The Melbourne Inaugural Tomato Festival was a privilege to be at. The atmosphere was light and festive; People across many generations were all gathered together in a relaxed environment, celebrating what we all love – food with a soul and of course, devout Italian tradition and love of capturing the essence of summer in tomatoes and processing them to be enjoyed in the year ahead, until the next summer crop comes about.


There was music, plenty of delicious food, activities for kids (and adults) of all ages, cooking demonstrations, fresh produce stalls and the opportunity to experience being elbow-deep in tomato, making your very own passata to take home.

Home Make It were very much centre-stage and their area was forever buzzing with the sounds of delight from people excited to be processing tomatoes (by hand!) to make passata to take home. This was the perfect setting for the launch of Home Make It Tomato Sauce Kit:


This event was a complete sell-out and we would suggest booking early next year to avoid disappointment.

In the mean time, we can tease you a little with more delights of the day …

That’s Amore Cheese outdid themselves with the launch of their new Mozarella Bar concept stand. What a terrific way to promote their delicious hand-crafted traditional Italian soft-curd cheeses!

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Books for Cooks had a little preview to their massive collection of their new, old and rare culinary books. There was a constant interest in the stand as well-loved chefs, authors and celebrities stopped by to meet visitors and sign books.

Fantastic bread from one of our favourite bread-making artisans himself, Jarrod Hack of Woodfrog but only if you were early! It was excellent to be close-enough to his stand to hear his advice to an elderly bread-making gentleman who had a few dozen tricky questions about baking sourdough at home.

Melbourne Farmers Markets Organisation had quite a presence in the Farmers’ Market area of the festival where happy customers were buying Grandpa tomatoes the size of a small man’s head, strawberries from Benny’s Farm that were scenting the entire area, passata from none other than Lenny Sciala of One Sicilian Lad, until they sold out of course!


There were many cooking demonstrations from well-loved personalities such as Karen Martini, Dani Valent, Glenn Laurie, Frank Camorra, and of course the fabulous Guy Grossi! We were lucky to listen to and fall in love with an insightful and passionate Fabrizia Lanza, who flew in from Sicily to share her manifesto on the traditions of Sicilian cooking:

Fabrizia Lanza

We will be publishing a separate post all about Fabrizia Lanza, her new book Coming Home to Sicily and her upcoming Cook The Farm program.

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By sitemanager in Event Review

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