29 March 2010

MFWF Review 2 - Burch & Purchese Announce Exclusive Deal With The Cocoa Alliance During Masterclass

Burch & Purchese are excited to announce and exclusive deal with The Cocoa Alliance based here in Melbourne. The Cocoa Alliance are the Australian distributors of Chocovic chocolate our preferred brand of chocolate. So we are happy to align ourselves with these two great brands and hope to have a fruitful partnership in the future. The deal was completed just before our Masterclass in Flinders Room at the Langham hotel last week. The Cocoa Alliance provided us with the Selvatica range of chocolate for our demonstration and to give away to the attendees. The demonstration itself was titled "New Ways With An Old Obsession" and focused on some of our techniques in chocolate and dessert making. We received great feed back and had a lively exchange of questions from the diverse crowd. We have to say a special thanks to Adriano Zumbo for his moderation and to Alistair McLeod for his MC skills. Burch & Purchese produced three dishes, two of which were produced as tastings for everyone and the chocolate turron (above) went down extremely well as did our impressive gift bag. The bag contained a Burch & Purchese chocolate piece, promotional material from The Cocoa Alliance and chocolate from Chocovic as well as samples from our other partners Fresh As. and Melbourne Food Ingredient Depot and we want to thank all of our supporters in making the day so successful. We will post more on Tommy Roff from Fresh As. and Phil Vernon from Melbourne Food Ingredient Depot later on as they have great products and we have built good relationships with these professional companies. For now, here are a few useful links. 

27 March 2010

MFWF Review 1 - Massimo Bottura - Theatre Of Ideas

Burch & Purchese were lucky enough to spend a little time with Massimo Bottura, the talented chef from acclaimed restaurant Osteria Francescana. Massimo was over for the festival to participate in the Theatre Of Ideas event at BMW edge in Federation Square on Sunday 21st of March. His restaurant holds two Michelin stars and is situated in Modena, Italy and the man himself was as humble and polite as anyone you could meet. It was a pleasure for us just to be in his company over the festival and it thrills us to be up son stage with a culinary master such as this. Massimo's food is right out of the box but still with a firm respect for classical cookery. He says that, like an artist, his food is and outlet for his emotions and the plate is his blank canvas. During his highly engaging and thoughtful presentation last Sunday, Massimo demonstrated his dish "The potato that wants to be a truffle". This concept arose from the similarities in flavour profile of the two ingredients, but the real twist was that it was a dessert! Or was it? These were the questions that Massimo was trying to ask the audience, clearly this dish was conceptualized over a long period of testing and uses his wealth of experience. The dish was presented to host Matt Preston who was excited to be tasting such an evolutionary dish and we were thrilled when Mr Preston walked to the top of the auditorium to ask us to try Massimo's dish. The dish comprised of a sweet potato filling with sweetened hazelnuts, vanilla foam and a generous topping of black truffle. We were surprised as we tasted the dish, as it turned from a dessert sensation, to something more savoury and back again. It was thoughtful food and we have to say a big thanks to Matt for thinking of us, we think he was trying to open our minds to possibilities in dessert making and it certainly did. We can't wait to visit Modena one day to sample the whole menu, but for now we are grateful to have been in the company of and tasted the food of such a great inspirational chef. Check out the website for Massimo's award winning restaurant. http://www.osteriafrancescana.it/ 

24 March 2010

Phew! Festival Over - A Few Teaser Shots Before We Post In Depth!!

What a week, great fun and hard work at the same time. We are now in the process of sorting out our photos and other bits in preparation of a full insight to our experiences in the last week or so. We will post in detail on the many events that we participated in including our successful Masterclass on Saturday. We would like to thank everyone for their support and help and will name them accordingly in the next few posts. For now we will leave you with a few teaser shots and see how many chefs you can name in the top photo!! Answers on a postcard..........

18 March 2010


Our samples from Melbourne Food Ingredient Depot - thanks Phil!

Promotional chocolate supplied by The Cocoa Alliance

Each of our attendees receive a handcrafted Burch & Purchese chocolate piece

Chef Andoni from Mugaritz is presenting 'Theatre of ideas' at the Langham

Are we going to see the famous Mugaritz bubbles on Sunday?
Phew! It's all go at Burch & Purchese HQ, this morning we met with Chef Andoni and his chefs Javier & Leire from Mugaritz. They have a demonstration on Sunday and we have made ourselves available to help them with ingredients and some prep work to ensure all goes smoothly. It is always such an honour to be in contact with great chefs and we are excited that we are able to help. Chef Andoni along with two star Massimo Bottura are planning a spectacular demonstration and we can't wait to see their cuisines first hand and listen to their philosophy on food. We especially wish all the best to Andoni and his team after the tragedy of the recent fire at Mugaritz and we hope positive things happen for them soon.
Back to our Masterclass on Saturday and we are preparing tastings for the class along with gift bags for the attendees to take away. We took hold of some specially prepared samples from our friend Phil Vernon at Melbourne Food Ingredient Depot today which will form part of our giveaway. We are giving away a recipe and the components in the gift bags so the public can go away and make some of the more obscure recipes at home. It was Chef Andoni and Dan Hunter from the Royal Mail that introduced us to Kaolin clay a few years ago so it ties in well with the weekend. Also The Cocoa Alliance, the official Australian distributors of our favourite chocolate, Chocovic, have provided us with giveaway samples. We will be including all of these goods as well as a handcrafted and sprayed exclusive chocolate piece from Burch & Purchese which we made yesterday. Tomorrow we are meeting with Tommy Roff from Fresh As. who is flying in from New Zealand with yet more samples from us from his range of freeze dried fruits. So if you are lucky enough to have procured a ticket for our Masterclass, we have some great presents for you!! Other stuff, we bumped into Chef Andrew McConnell today and he was with David Chang, a special Momofuku dinner is planned for tonight at Andrew's restaurant Cumulus Inc and we wish them well with that. That's it for today so far, it's back to the kitchen to finish preparing for the weekend. We will update you again tomorrow as we will have more fun stuff to tell you by then!!
Check out these links for further information.

http://www.mugaritz.com/index.html    Mugaritz
http://www.cumulusinc.com.au/            Cumulus Inc
http://www.momofuku.com/                 Momofku
http://www.mfcd.net/depot/                  Melbourne Food Ingredient Depot
http://fresh-as.com/                                Fresh As.
http://cocoaalliance.com/                       The Cocoa Alliance
http://www.royalmail.com.au/               Royal Mail Hotel

17 March 2010


Ok so it's not exactly pastry related per se, but we thought we would let you know how the festival is shaping up from our point of view. The function we attended yesterday was at the stunning balcony of Siglo above The European on Spring street in the city. Porkstar were the sponsors in association with Australian Pork. Although we here at Burch & Purchese have used bacon on our desserts in the past, yesterday was all about celebrating the pig in delicious small bites from The European's chef Ian Curley and St.John (London) chef superstar, Fergus Henderson. As is the philosophy of one of the worlds best chefs, nose to tail of the beast were used in preparing the food. Excellent full flavoured small bites were made from some of the most unfashionable part of the pig and they seemed to go down with great success. From our point of view the function gave us a chance to meet up with some internationally famous chefs including Fergus himself. It gave us a chance to network with local chefs, food media and contacts which is always of a great benefit. Chef Ian Curley was charming and is clearly an excellent chef and organiser so well done to him and thanks for the hospitality. We also met with Miss Phee Gardener who, along with Luke Mangan, is one of the hardworking people behind the Electrolux Young Chef/Waiter Of The Year awards of whom my wife Cath Claringbold is a state judge. We at Burch & Purchese support any initiatives to improve skills and prospects among young persons in the hospitality industry. Check out these links below for further information.

15 March 2010

Burch & Purchese Dishes - 23 Roast Pumpkin, Chocolate, Bacon & Maple Jelly UPDATED

Last month we posted dish 20 which was a Roast Pumpkin, Chocolate & Maple Bacon dessert http://burchandpurchese.blogspot.com/2010/02/burch-purchese-dishes-20-roast-pumpkin.html
Well we have been working hard updating and refining the presentation and we are happy with our efforts. This is the current incarnation of this delicious and original flavour combination. Present is the roast pumpkin ice cream and our dark 'Tarakan' chocolate mousse as well as a maple gel and pumpkin pebbles. We served this to over 100 guests at the popular 'Shared Tables' event at the Sofitel hotel's restaurant No. 35 and it was received really well with lots of positive comments coming our way. As always we will revisit our creations with a view to refining and improving on them where we can.

14 March 2010


This is one of our favourite times of the year at Burch & Purchese, the Melbourne Food & Wine Festival 2010. This year we are heavily involved with the program and we are busy preparing for our sold out Masterclass at the Langham next Saturday. 'New Ways With An Old Obsession' is the title for our class and we hope to enthrall the attendees with some of our signature tastes, techniques and dishes. The festival seems to get better and better every year and we are proud to be involved and to share the stage with some of the most exciting chefs from overseas and Australia. We are especially looking forward to seeing David Chang and Alex Atala in action as well as Peter Gilmore, Claude Bosi and French baking genius Gontran Cherrier. We are also excited to announce that we will be helping legend chefs Andoni Luis Aduriz and Massimo Bottura in their 'Theatre Of Ideas' session with Matt Preston on Sunday next week. Wow, so much to learn from all of these great chefs. We hope you get to experience a great festival and hopefully you are attending one or more of the 250 events planned in Victoria this year. We will keep you posted on our involvement and hopefully pass on some of the skills we hope to learn from some of the worlds greatest chefs. See you soon

08 March 2010

Burch & Purchese Sponsor BalletLab

Last week Burch & Purchese were invited to help promote Philip Adam's stunning BalletLab concept. We were pleased to accept the offer and donated two very special prizes to be auctioned off at last Thursday's fundraiser. If you don't know of BalletLab and of Mr Adam's special work then check out their website here http://www.balletlab.com/about/. We are always happy to support creativity and originality and we feel the BalletLab concept sits very well next to our brand. We donated one of our signature avant-garde chocolate cakes as well as a unique afternoon tea experience for six people to be prepared in the winners home by us. We are happy to say the auction went well and we managed to raise a significant sum for BalletLab. Congratulations to the winners and we look forward to providing them with a creative treat of our own.

Sorry For Leaving You!! Been A Bit Busy.

Hey! We must apologize for the lack of content on this blog in the last three weeks. It truly has been a manic time for us and did not allow much time out of the kitchen. We will endeavor to update this blog as and when we can, and we are going to introduce a set timetable for posts in the future, so that you can always have something new and interesting to read.
As we said the last few weeks have been pretty busy for us and we will highlight here the latest developments. In coming post we will elaborate in further detail on the events and news.

  • We have just completed a lengthy consultancy project with one of Australia's most successful restaurant groups. Our client was happy with the fresh input and we view this as a great success.
  • Our chocolate celebration cake creations have been in serious demand and we have been working hard on compiling a product list with images to distribute as soon as possible.
  • Burch & Purchese sponsored a high profile event in aid of BalletLab, the progressive, avant-garde creation of Philip Adams. 
  • We are close to announcing an exclusive deal with a major chocolate company whom we have built a solid relationship with.
  • Cooking classes at Melbourne's newest cooking school have been undertaken and we have helped them with images for their new website.
  • Burch & Purchese provided the desserts and petit fours at the popular Shared Tables networking lunch at No.35 restaurant.
  • We have been working hard on putting together a great Masterclass at the upcoming Melbourne Food & Wine Festival and have some exciting guests coming along.
  • We have been actively looking at sites for Burch & Purchese first shop which we are getting ever closer to making a reality.
Phew!! Lots more as well so look out in the coming weeks for more in depth on these subjects, new subjects and our journal of the Melbourne Food & Wine Festival. Sorry again for our absence and we promise not to leave it that long again! Happy cooking - Darren & Ian