It was really good to be back into all things gatherings after Johan and I took a good 6 months off to finish renovations in our unit. This was the first one for 2016 - a winter gathering at Dryridge Estate.
As luck would have it, we picked the coldest Saturday to host this outdoor get together — so cold that it snowed overnight in Blue Mountains & surroundings! Despite the weather forecast (and we were prepared for the worst!), we were relieved to be greeted by clear blue skies and dry conditions in the Megalong. And even though the wind got a little too chilly at some points of the day, it was quickly forgiven by the picturesque backdrop of the Megalong that enveloped us.
Guests arrived to an array of Australian cheeses to enjoy over the short wine tastings run by Emma from Dryridge Estate.
We were well fed by our friends Tom and Lucy from Sageori, who cooked up a warm, hearty stew which they named "All the Best Bits" — beef short ribs cooked in Bahen & Co. 70% cacao PNG bars, beer and coffee. Yep, definitely all our favourite things! There were also chicken & leek and roasted winter vegetable pies which warmed our bellies, made by our local pastry chef at Bruni Patisserie (you'll find them at The Beaches Markets every Friday). Oh let's not forget a side of roasted winter vegetables and a lot of gravy to wash it down with! And wine — oh, the wine!
The dessert table was mostly prepared by our good friend Amy Nhieu, who baked a naked layer cinnamon and spiced apple cake and warm berry tarts, along with vanilla speckled biscuits and a delectable jar of warm gooey caramel sauce! There was also a chocolate and raspberry tart which incorporated more of Bahen & Co.'s wonderful cacao bars, all served with tea from our wonderful friends at Endeavour Tea.
It was a perfect winter's day together with old and new friends. Johan and I are pretty stoked to see that even after 4 gatherings, people are still sharing our continued love for food and community. One of the most important things that we've learnt through our gatherings is despite the fact that much of world functions through social media, there is still that ever present need for people to congregate; to meet face to face, to converse and to laugh together. Perhaps the most important realisation however, is that the act of sharing a meal together is still (and will always be) paramount to our everyday lives.