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March into Merivale 2014

Bars, Drink, Eat, Events, Play, Restaurants / February 18, 2014

Owning and operating 25 bars, 12 restaurants, 10 event spaces, 3 accommodation hotels and a music company, business giant Merivale is now one of the biggest hospitality and entertainment companies in Australia. Starting out as a fashion house over 45 years ago the Hemmes family of entrepreneurs including hospo pin-up boy Justin Hemmes appear to be taking over Sydney. One thing’s for sure- they know how to throw a good party.
The March into Merivale Food and Wine Festival is returning to Sydney for its 6th year. From now until the 11th April this 8 week adventurous feast will feature over 60 events across a range of Merivale establishments. This is a culinary playground for all food and drinks lovers in Sydney!
Snatching up the chance to go to the launch last Wednesday night at the Ivy, I didn’t know what to expect. I knew the theme ‘Born to Cook’ drew on the chefs’ first, favourite and funniest food experiences and I was about to experience just how clever the Merivale lot really are when it comes to hosting events.
March into Merivale
It was like stepping into a fairytale with green fairies fluttering about and Little Red Riding Hood greeting guests as they arrived. It was a lot to take in- the bustling crowd, the line of food stalls, the massive ‘ASK HERE’ signs and fairytale characters around every corner. Each Merivale restaurant was represented offering a few signature dishes each from their pop up market style stall. Where to start in an enchanted wonderland…like all good fairytales- at the beginning.
Little Red Riding Hood
Sipping a Chandon and pomegranate cocktail I raced upstairs to Level 1 of Ivy where I had mini snow crab tostada and sweet & sour lamb ribs from  Ms G’s Then I hit up the El Loco stand for a quesadilla fix.

Ms G's
Mini Snow Crab Tostada, Green Papaya, Guacamole, Chilli and Lime Dressing and Sweet and Sour Lamb Ribs.

El Loco Qusidillas
Black Bean, Queso Fresco and Huilacoche Quesadilla

The line was long for the latest Merivale restaurant Papi Chulo – who wouldn’t line up for pulled pork and slaw burgers?
Papi Chulo Pulled Pork
Chopped Memphis-style Kurobuta Pork Shoulder with Tangy Slaw and Soft Roll

Like Alice in Wonderland I jumped down the rabbit hole to the Ivy Ballroom, fought my way through the crowds and arrived at the Est stall for some prawn salsa and then honey mouse.
Est Savory
Prawn, Avocado, Mango, Coriander Salsa on Crisp Rice Flour Wrap

Est Dessert
Yellow Box Honey Mousse with Fresh figs, Orange caramel and Honeycomb

So I had sweet, then went savoury again with Mr Wongs dumplings and spring rolls.
Mr Wong Duck Springroll
Aromatic Duck Spring Roll

Mr Wong Dumpling
Scallop and Prawn Shuma

Rolling around like Humpty Dumpty it was time for this little lady’s fairytale ending.
March into Merivale includes $33 meals at participating Merivale Restaurants including . They also have some exciting one off events including:
Puttin on The Ritz- a high tea in the beautiful heritage dining room at est. from $70 pp
Raw Deal- Uccello head chef David Lovett will abandon his oven and cooktop for one night to present this five-course menu of fresher-than-fresh raw delights. $75pp
Mixology 101- The ultimate cocktail masterclass at Palmer & Co. $75 includes class, 4 cocktails and canapés 
Mozza-Making- Watch and learn how the experts make burrata and mozzarella at Palings. $45 includes demo, buffet dinner and drink.
For more info and a full list of what’s happening CLICK HERE

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