Taste the flavours of the oldest living, continuous culture in the world. Feat. food by Mabu Mabu's Nornie Berro and First Nation Food Companion’s Rebecca Sullivan. Unforgettable stories of harvests, stars, and seasons by Bruce Pascoe, Uncle Moogy, and Greg Quicke.
Vera Mai means “Moon Feast” in Adnyamathanha, the language of the Flinders Ranges. Produced by Mallee+Myrtle, Vera Mai is presented as a partnership between WellFest Adelaide and Nature Festival. Expect ancient flavours, primordial stories, and an unmissable modern feast.
Food is the foundation of our wellbeing. Harvests and ingredients situate us in time, each dish a daily declaration of our direct connection to nature. Or that’s how it should be. Most modern dining merely delivers distraction, leaving us disconnected from place, season, or cycle.
Vera Mai will re-introduce you to this deeper relationship to food. Featuring the flavours of the oldest living, continuous culture in the world, we will immerse you in stories of the history that brought it to us and the cycles that deliver it afresh each season.
Focused on native food and featuring wild native meats, this extraordinary experience introduces dishes by Nornie Berro (Mabu Mabu) and Rebecca Sullivan (First Nations Food Companion, Warndu), all held in a frame of history and story.
On the night diners will receive a welcome and stories from Ngarrindjeri and Kaurna Elder Uncle Major 'Moogy' Sumner AM, learn about traditional Aboriginal cooking techniques, places where bush food is sourced, how it is picked, foraged, hunted and cooked today, and how contemporary adaptation of locally sourced native foods can form a bigger part of everyone’s household pantry.
Direct from the farm of Bruce Pascoe (Dark Emu), diners will also have the unforgettable opportunity to sample bread made from the first harvests of dancing grass in over 200 years (“It’s beautiful bread. It’s a really dark, rye-like flour. Incredibly dark, incredibly aromatic, but also very tasty”), and will get to personally hear him tell the story of his multi-generational mission to bring it back.
Elevating the experience, diners will hear captivating stories of cycles and seasons from astronomer Greg Quicke (BBC, ABC, Astrotours) who aims to give people access to a “living, breathing conscious experience of being on a planet that is turning as it hurtles through space.”
Food and stories will be paired with wines made with the moon by some of Australia’s best wine-women including: Vanya Cullen (OAM) of Cullen Wines (Margaret River), Charlotte Dalton (Fleurieu Peninsula) + Amelia Nolan of Alkina (Barossa Valley) Lucy Clements of Domaine D'Arbusset (France) + Wine super star Meira Harris - Plane.
THIS EVENT FEATURES THE DREAM-TEAM LINEUP OF…
Nornie Bero is from the Meriam People of Mer Island in the Torres Strait and is the Executive Chef, CEO and Owner of Mabu Mabu. She puts a lifelong passion for Australia’s native bounty at the heart of her Melbourne restaurant and her cooking for this event.
Rebecca Sullivan is a Yale University World Fellow, sustainable living advocate, educator, cook, regen farmer and author of ten books including First Nations Food Companion. She lives off the grid in a straw bale home on 90 acres of native forest in the Clare Valley of South Australia with her partner Damien and their two sons.
Bruce Pascoe is an Aboriginal Australian writer of literary fiction, non-fiction, poetry, essays and children's literature best known for his work Dark Emu. More recently, Pascoe was appointed Enterprise Professor in Indigenous Agriculture and is working to revive the cultivation of Dancing Grass.
Uncle Major ‘Moogy’ Sumner AM is a world renown performer and cultural ambassador of Kaurna and Ngarrindjeri arts, crafts, martial arts and traditional culture. His work spans performance, traditional dance and song, cultural advice, and arts and crafts, such as wood carving, and martial arts techniques using his handcrafted traditional shields, clubs, boomerangs and spears. He is a strong supporter of innovative art and has featured in many media productions and cultural collaborations.
Greg Quicke is an award-winning presenter, Outback astronomer, and educator. He joined Professor Brian Cox as the Practical Astronomer for the last 4 seasons of the BBC’s and the ABC’s Stargazing Live and with the ABC made the multi award winning 10 part television series ‘A Stargazers Guide to the Cosmos’. He aims to give people access to a “living, breathing conscious experience of being on a planet that is turning as it hurtles through space.
Tickets are limited and include, food, drinks, chats and some big moon vibes. $185 per person 6.30 - late. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for questions or details.
Vera Mai is supported by