French black truffles: Canberra regional truffle festival will be held from July 18-27. Photo: karleen minney
Food and Wine brought you the news in February that Antonio Carluccio would be the celebrity ambassador for the Canberra and Capital Region Truffle Festival in July and his itinerary has now been confirmed.
The much beloved chef, who helped bring Italian cooking to Britain, will be making several appearances in Canberra and at special events. There are several ways to get your Carluccio fix - he'll be in the region from July 18-27.
If you want to get up close and personal, there are several ticketed events on offer. There will be a special dinner featuring Carluccio on July 25, details are being finalised for that one - expect an announcement shortly. On Saturday July 26 he'll be the guest at Grazing in Gundaroo for another dinner ($195 a head). And on July 27 the chef will be at 3 Seeds cooking school taking a special lesson ($330).
Truffle ambassador: Antonio Carluccio who will be coming to Canberra. Photo: Veronique Mandray
Tickets have nearly sold out for that one. And if you're cashed up you can spend a whole weekend with Antonio Carluccio at the luxury Wolgan Valley Resort in the Blue Mountains for $740 a night from July 18-20. He'll be signing books, doing a cooking demonstration, mingling, and tasting wine. Former Food and Wine editor Kirsten Lawson will also be the MC at a special gala dinner in Carluccio's honour on the Saturday.
But if your pockets aren't that deep, don't despair — you can catch him for free at a couple of places around town. Carluccio will appear for several hours at the Citroen car showroom in Phillip on July 25 from 10.30am. The next day he'll be at the Capital Region Farmer's Market in Hall (July 26), putting on a gourmet cooking demonstration. And finally he'll be at the Fyshwick Markets where he'll be making an appearance on July 27 from 10.45am, signing books and doing a market tour.
Carluccio is one half of the celebrity duo Two Greedy Italians alongside Jamie Oliver mentor Gennaro Contaldo. We like to think Carluccio has a little link to the Canberra region through former food and wine editor Kirsten Lawson, to whom he opened up in a very candid interview in 2012.
Other events on the truffle festival calendar include a long lunch with former MasterChef contestant Mindy Woods, celebrity chef Tom Walton and local ice cream genius John Marshall of Mr Frugii ($225, June 25, at the Mercure Hotel). Or there are truffle hunts and cooking demonstrations featuring My Kitchen Rules contestants Emelia and Andrew. For more information go to trufflefestival.com.au