Joelle and Sascha Brodbeck with the much loved  BrodDogs van.
Joelle and Sascha Brodbeck with the much loved BrodDogs van. Photo: Jay Cronan

Brod's back.

Brod fans rejoice. The Brodburger van is back and will be based at the Belconnen Westfield shopping mall car park. Owner Joelle Brodbeck says the distinctive little red van, which is now rebadged as BrodDogs, would open at the shopping mall starting in the next week. It will sell hotdogs and snacks and will be open for lunch and dinner.

She says the opportunity to set up shop at Belconnen mall came up fairly suddenly and she and husband Sascha had decided to take it and see where it went. The BrodDog van, which had to be lifted onto the site by crane, will operate for at least three months at the car park. It had a work out on the weekend when Brodbeck and her team sold a limited menu of hotdogs on Saturday for a one-off charity day - all proceeds went to support the Cerebral Palsy Alliance.

Brodbeck says the van will be shut for a few days while they finalise their menu and will reopen in the next week. She and Sascha started their business selling burgers out of the bright red van in 2009 on the shores of Lake Burley Griffin and gained a popular following among Canberra diners with their late night menu and outdoor location but were nearly sunk by a prolonged battle with planning authorities.

The battle was finally resolved when Brodburger found a permanent home in a diner-style restaurant at the Canberra Glassworks in Kingston. Brodbeck says the little red van has become a much-loved symbol among Brodburger fans, many of whom have been happy to see it out and about again.

Smoking pork workshop at Griffith Butchery

Join Richard Odell from the Griffith Butchery and learn how to smoke and cure pork this weekend. Odell will take you through a guided tour of the butchery and then explain how he smokes and cures his meat. Bring an apron and be prepared to come home with some pork belly. It's run by the Canberra Environment Centre. The session costs $80 and runs from 2pm-4pm on Saturday July 12. See ecoaction.com.au for bookings.

Changes for Flint in the Vines and Sub-Urban

Flint in the Vines has closed for a couple of weeks and will reopen on July 18 with a refreshed look, new logo and a slightly different name: Flint at Shaw Vineyard. There will also be a new casual lunch menu that includes takeaway from Thursday to Sunday but the restaurant hours will remain unchanged. Sub-Urban in Dickson will also close on Thursday July 10 and reopen Friday July 18 with a slight name change and a new look and menu. 

Let Emiko Davies take you to Italy

Our Food & Wine contributor and food writer Emiko Davies is hosting a 6-day, gastronomy getaway in Tuscany in October. You'll stay at a Renaissance villa, the Villa Campestri, and tour markets, learn the art of Florentine cooking, and visit wineries and olive groves. There'll be cooking classes, visits to restaurants for traditional meals, trips to Florence and the surrounding countryside. Prices start from €2199 (about $3191) and go to €2700 (about $3900) all inclusive. Airfares not included. Contact villa.campestri@villacampestri.it for bookings.

Frank Camorra comes to Canberra for Good Food Month

Canberra's restaurateurs are gearing up for October, when Good Food Month comes to the capital as a standalone event for the first time. Late last week we had confirmation of one big guest in the form of MoVida's Frank Camorra. The celebrity chef will be coming to Canberra for a very special event at Parlour Wine Room - with more details to be revealed. There's talk he might even do more than one event. Fingers crossed - it's pretty exciting news.

Canberra's own Phillip A. Jones, the martini specialist and man-about-town, will also host a four-course gin dinner at Pod Food, guiding diners through some carefully chosen stand out Australian gins matched with food from the Pod Food chefs Daniel Lambert and John Leverink. The full program for Canberra Good Food Month will be published in on August 27.