Market Gardeners Brett and Keitha Young supply produce for the Gather at Coriole restaurant from gardens found both on the Coriole estate and alongside our Sandalwood vineyard in McLaren Flat. Keitha told us all about the project:
"It has been so fulfilling to grow so many diverse, rare and heirloom vegetable varieties that aren’t found wholesale. Through our seed networks we’ve sourced some rare crops that aren’t found anywhere in Australia, like some Ukrainian cherry tomatoes, Mexican yard long beans and Central American maize corn.
"We are also saving seed from the varieties that thrive the best and taste the best so that we can strengthen and adapt them over several years to our bioregion.
"Restaurants have the potential to significantly influence food culture so for Gather to prioritise our local, seasonal and organically grown food is crucial in supporting and reinvigorating regional, small scale and regenerative food systems, especially for the Fleurieu.
"We really appreciate Chef Tom Tilbury for his passion, flexibility and excitement for our rare, seasonal produce. He is always willing to take whatever we have, even when I text him with surprise finds that same morning, and then turn them into something creative, pickled or delicious. The food miles are minimal and our produce is always as fresh as can be, harvested and delivered the same day.
"We have just finished up our diverse range of summer crops = 12 heirloom tomato varieties, 6 heirloom bean varieties, snake beans, multicoloured sweetcorn, maize corn, heirloom zucchini, squash, melons, apple cucumbers, Kiwano/African horned cucumber, cucamelons, banana capsicums, garlic, potatoes, radishes + edible radish pods as well as interesting herbs like anise hyssop, amaranth leaf, fennel flowers, purple basil, purslane, green coriander seeds and more.
"As we await our Winter crops (turnips, broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower, celeriac, onions, kohlrabi, broad beans etc) we are transitioning through Autumn crops like daikon, winter radishes (Black Spanish + watermelon radish), heirloom pumpkins, rapini and chicory."
Above: Brett, Keitha and their junior apprentice!