Hundreds of foodies flocked to the Blue Mountains on February 1 for the Long Lunch in Leura, part of the month-long Roaring 20s Festival.
Arguably the biggest draw card of the event was the Blue Mountains Charleston Challenge, where the community danced its way to a new Guinness World Record, before retiring to the marquee to indulge in a generous picnic hamper of locally made and sourced fare.
Event organiser and owner of participating local business Josophan’s Fine Chocolates, Jodie Van Der Velden, said the inaugural lunch was a great way to kick start the festival.
“It was such a fun day, with beautiful weather, plentiful music and loads of prizes for best dressed ladies and gentlemen, hats and table decorations. There was so much effort invested in costumes, everyone donned their finest 1920s gear and brought out their best picnic tableware for lunch under the marquee,” she said.
Jodie is part of a newly formed Greater Blue Mountains Food and Wine Development Advisory Group called Plate Up, which aims to raise the profile of the Blue Mountains as a food and wine destination. The Long Lunch in Leura was the group’s first public event.
“We erected a 60m long marquee and it was a sell-out event with 172 diners participating! We created hampers of locally made and sourced food, which included dessert from Josophan’s Fine Chocolates. I actually tweeked a dessert I had won the Callebaut Australian Chocolate Dessert competition previously, as I have never had the opportunity to offer it publicly as it’s too labour intensive to serve in our café,” Jodie said.
“There was also antipasto from Leura’s Princess pantry, cold cuts of slow-roasted meats from the wood fired ovens of Vesta at Blackheath, fresh tossed salads from Wentworth Falls’ restaurant Nineteen23, cheese and fruit from The Carrington Cellars and Deli and bread from Schwarz Pâtisserie.
“It’s definitely the start of a great tradition in Leura.”