Don's Great Salamis of the World Lunch

10/04/2009 11:30:00 PM

Salami macht Sarah froh...

If there was a perfect event for me, I think Don's Great Salamis of the World lunch might have been it. We would learn about salami, there would be copious amounts of salami to eat, and we'd hear from a real life Fleischmeister. (Compound German words being yet another attraction).

When David from Nuffnang called me to ask if I wanted to attend, I do believe my response was a very enthusiastic: "Yes absolutely, I LOVE salami!". It may have sounded sarcastic, but as you all will know, it is very very true. I must admit though, lots of my friends were laughing like crazy when I told them I was going to a salami-tasting event, hehe.

Cute salami-style invite!

The lunch was held at The Tea Room at The European (same building as Supper Club), and was hosted by Masterchef's Matt Preston and Don's Fleischmeister, Gerhard Feiner.

The European
161 Spring St
Melbourne 3000
(03) 9654-0811

I was very excited to meet Gerhard, the Fleischmeister who oversees Don's salami-making processes. (We usually eat Don Hot or Don White salami at home). It takes up to 7 years to qualify as a Fleischmeister, and it is the highest level one can attain as a meat-specialist in Europe. Gerhard is originally from Austria, (which means he has a wicked-awesome accent!!!), but is now based in Australia.

It was also cool to meet the other bloggers - Jeroxie, Adrian, Iron Chef Shellie and Rilsta. We could identify each other as soon as we walked in - a group of Asians with SLR's! (I'm still to shy to take my SLR out to restaurants with me; I stick to my little digi-cam for now).

Top from right: Ich und das Fleischmeister, Gerhard and Matt talk salami; Matt gives Adrian tips on food styling
Bottom: Matt & the foodbloggers (yes we are all that short); Matt shows off his cow-boots.

The afternoon was a mixture of eating and listening to Gerhard/Matt talk about salami. The talk was high on interesting facts and (impressively) low on innuendoes, hehehe. The main points I took away were that: salami should be eaten at room temperature, it shouldn't be sliced too thinly, and it should have a nice colour and not be too dry or hard around the edges.

A few different ways to enjoy salami:
Front: Don White Hungarian Salami, chardonnay vinegar, citrus olive oil, fresh mint and basil fire-roasted capsicums in a shot glass
Back: Oysters with julienne Don chorizo, sautéed and tossed with champagne vinaigrette

Antipasto featuring Don White Hungarian, Don Hot Hungarian, Don Danish and Don Pepperoni

Salami close-up, including kabana

The mains were served wedding-style, with dishes alternating along the table. I was hoping for the steak...
Angus fillet with Don Chorizo and apple rosti and red wine jus

... but ended up with the fish; which I actually preferred. I'm not sure why, but the steak didn't seem to have any chorizo on it, just a piece of pancetta.

The creamy-chive sauce with the fish was just delicious. Chives are my new best friend.
Pan roasted barramundi with roasted beetroot and beer cream with Don Chilli Cheese Kabana chips.

I was interested to try salami prepared in different ways, but I must say I still prefer the classic German style (surprise surprise, Sarah!) of salami mit brot und käse for dinner.

A couple of desserts. Again, these were alternated down the table.
Sage and honey pannacotta with candied sweet potato

I'm not big on odd-flavoured desserts, so was a bit disappointed when this one was placed in front of me. The candied-sweet potato reminded me of that Thanksgiving dish where they bake mini-marshmallows on top of sweet potato (I read about it in a Nigella book), which is served as a supposedly SAVOURY accompaniment to turkey. *Faint!* I shared a couple of bites of this one with IronChef Shellie, and it actually wasn't too bad. I did find the spices/herb a bit strong, and probably wouldn't have been able to eat the full-sized dessert.

Just quietly, I managed to get a sticky-date pudding too.

Sticky date pudding - classic for a reason!

Showbag! I'm a sucker for a good showbag and we got a LOT of salami. It's not in the picture, but we also got a blue and white striped Don butcher's-style apron. I had been thinking about splashing out on a Finnish Marimekko apron, but now that I've got a very kitsch and retro-cool Don one, I'll save my money.

So in my house, this supply of salami might last for a week or two?

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  1. Great write up and photos! Your compact camera does well! :) In time you will get used to lugging your SLR around.

    It was lovely to meet you!

  2. It was interesting the see the difference in dishes between Sydney and Melbourne - salami in a glass? well i never! lol

    Gerhard was so passionate and knowledgeable and Matt - ahh those cow boots are even better in person!

    ps. No SLR? You should bring it out - let Cinderella come to the ball :)

  3. Great post!
    I just linked your review to mine :)

    I'm still snacking on free salami... I know it's not healthy, but it's free!! :P

  4. Rilsta - lovely to meet you too!

    Helen - I know, I was interested to see the differences in the menus too! Lol, I am still toooo shy to lug an SLR around!!

    Shellie - I try not to think about how bad it is for you, hehehe. It'll keep forever anyway so no harm in slowing down. I had home-made veggie soup for dinner tonight, trying to balance out all the overeating last week. ;)

    xox Sarah

  5. Great review lovely!
    Gosh. I did have problems with my SLR that day. Wrong lens! ughhh! So thank god for my faithful little compact. :)
    It was so nice meeting you and everyone. I am sure we are all very Salami-happy now!

  6. Great review lovely!
    Gosh. I did have problems with my SLR that day. Wrong lens! ughhh! So thank god for my faithful little compact. :)
    It was so nice meeting you and everyone. I am sure we are all very Salami-happy now!

  7. Woah..that's a lot of salami! Will you be eating it as is or perhaps cooking with it?

  8. Was great to meet you. Nice work- I'm diggin your photo arrangements!

    And yes, I'm struggling to finish all that meat off. I've been making peperoni pizzas with 3 kinds of cheeses. Totally saturated with fa....but is soooo good.


  9. Penny - I love carrying around my little digi-cam, so convenient!!

    SuLin - well I usually prefer eating salami plain (i.e. uncooked in sandwiches or with cheese), but I'm going to have a salami omelette for supper tonight!!

    Adrian - What a great idea! Mmmm cheese.

    xox Sarah



My email address is sarahcooks [at] hotmail [dot] com.