Chef dishes up feast for gala
AN EVERYDAY bloke is how Robin Hine likes to describe himself, but the truth is he's no ordinary chef.
This weekend his culinary expertise will be on display when he caters for Warwick's 150th Mayoral Gala Dinner.
While the menu choices hark back to an early time in history, the ingredients – where possible – have been sourced from present locals.
“My father always said support those who support you,” Mr Hine explained and it's a mantra he has built a business on.
“We have been here for 50 years and we've always tried to buy locally where possible.”
And he said it was an honour to be invited to prepare the meal for the 250 guests plus who will dine and dance on Saturday night as part of the city's birthday celebrations.
“Margaret and I are very honoured to have been asked to cater,” Mr Hine said.
“We do appreciate it is a very special time for Warwick.”
But the successful local businessman, who describes himself as an “ordinary Joe” was a little reluctant to don the chef's garb for a photograph.
“I am not the parading around type,” he confided.
“I just like getting on with the job.”
Yet that doesn't mean he is adverse to the finer things in life.
On Saturday his meals will be served on the finest of fine china – Noritake – or “five star plates”.
“It really is the best of the best,” Mr Hine said.
And without letting out too many secrets ahead of the big meal he said the menu had been determined by organisers from Southern Downs Regional Council.
“We were conscious of creating a meal that was reminiscent of 150 years ago,” Mr Hine said.
“So we have focused on roasts and the sort of food that would have been served at gala occasions back in the early years of our region.”
But he said in true chef-fashion some old fashioned favourites would be recreated this weekend with a modern twist.
“In a practical sense we have to cater for different dietary needs, but it will still be true to our heritage,” Mr Hine said.
He hinted the three course meal would finish with an Australian classic and something similar to the classic winter warmer, a plum pudding.
While he couldn't be exactly sure where the meat for his dishes originated, he said it had all been purchased locally.
Meanwhile SDRC gala dinner organiser Janine Crawford said the meal would be complemented by breads from the local Brumbies bakery and quality wines from Symphony Hill Estate at Ballandean.
“We have tried to support local growers and producers as part of our celebrations for Warwick's 150th,” Ms Crawford said.