Gary is already on to the Next Big Thing – headlining Sydney’s Good Food and Wine Show – but I was lucky enough to spend five minutes with the busy man himself to find out what he has in store.
Also a little selfishly, I was dying for him to reveal his tips on how to make the perfect sauce; you know, the ones that make the MasterChef judges want to drink the sauce like wine!
So, with me pulling on Gary’s arm and the PR pulling on the other trying to whisk him away to his next commitment, I started shooting questions.
I was a little nervous and star-struck, to be honest, but lucky for me, he could have talked for hours – that’s when I really understood how passionate Gary is about food.
Since MasterChef wrapped, Gary has returned to his restaurants to check in on and connect with his staff, planned trips to India and South Africa, travelled the country in search of 2017 MasterChef contestants, and now he is focusing on his other great passion, being part of the Good Food and Wine Show.
“I’ve always loved it is because you are so connected to the audience, especially in the celebrity theatre” says Gary of the event that runs from August 5-7 at the Sydney Showground.
“People are just fascinated by what I’m doing and I kind of come off stage and go ‘wow that feels good’!”
If the 2.5 million fans who tuned in to the MasterChef Grand Final is any guide, Gary is expecting an bigger reception for this year’s event.
“This fascination with food for Australians is just getting stronger. I’m kind of like a rock star in the foodie scene, I love it!”
This Good Food and Wine Show promises to be a haven for foodies, a gorgeous day packed with opportunities to learn, taste, and empty your wallet purchasing goodies from over 200 of the best food and drink exhibitors.
“I think if you are going to punctuate your day you’ve got to get a wine experience, a beer experience, a cheese experience, you’ve got to go first to the celebrity theatre, to see Matt Moran, Colin Fassnidge, myself, Miguel etc.. splash a little cash and you can upgrade and go to the VIP area to get special treatment – it’s like the business class of the food world!”
Gary recommends the Beer Alley and the Cheese Alley as other essential stops: “Microbrews in Australia, it’s massive, people are fascinated by that – get in there and do a beer tasting and get a little info from the experts.”
And the cheese? Well, Gary says it’s not just cheddar anymore, “it’s interesting things wrapped in interesting things, it’s aged, it’s raw milk and all this kind of stuff, I think everyone will love that.”
So, before Gary is finally whisked away I ask the question we’ve all been dying to know!
How DO you make the perfect sauce?
Gary says it’s all about balance: “That alchemy is playing with flavours, coaxing flavour out of it yes, but right at the end you have to have balance.
“On the show I made a sauce when I competed against George and Shanon, which to be honest was pure luck.
“I made a sauce out of the bones of monk fish – which I have done before – but then I used Miso, and then I balanced it with lime… and it was when I put the lime juice in I went mmm nah… and then I put a bit more lime juice in and I went ah! That’s it!”
Learn more about the Good Food and Wine show and purchase tickets!