Monthly Archives: September 2012

Byron Farmers Market part of Crave

The Byron Farmers Market is a feature of this year’s Crave Sydney International Food Festival, with well known Chef Gavin Hughes from The Byron at Byron Resort and Spa leading free weekly tours of the market throughout the month of October.

This year the Festival has expanded to include regional NSW. “Crave is all about fabulous chefs, fine restaurants and excellent NSW produce” said Festival Director Joanna Savill, herself a regular Byron visitor. “Byron Shire is one of the best regions in the state when it comes to fresh produce and Gavin Hughes is famous for his commitment to using it. This tour is a great way to bring together all the things that the Festival is about and a wonderful chance for visitors to gain an appreciation of local produce and the work that goes into growing it”.

Gavin will introduce the growers and food producers, talk about the produce and how best to choose it and use it. “There will be a bit of talking and a bit of tasting” said Hughes. “Whether it’s locally grown figs, John Singh’s pork or Coopers Shoot vine ripened tomatoes, there is a story behind everything I put on the plate. By understanding where food comes from I treat it differently, and I can hopefully bring some of the producers’ passion to the plate”.

Anybody is welcome to join the tours, which will depart from the northern entrance to the Byron Farmers Market (closest to the Police Station) at 8:00am every Thursday throughout October.

Downloadable high res images:

Photo #1 – Byron Farmers Market

Photo #2 – Gavin Hughes, Head Chef at The Byron at Byron Resort and Spa

Photo #3 – Hugh Armstrong from Coopers Shoot Tomatoes, a regular of the Byron Farmers Market

Photo #4 – Gavin Hughes from The Byron at Byron


Byron community releases affordable Country Home Range

Tallowood Ridge Estate in Mullumbimby is tackling head on the affordable housing crisis

Summerland 128

which envelops the loved-up Byron shire, releasing a range of country style homes which allow both house and land to be purchased for under $300,000.

Mullumbimby’s thriving music, café and alternative lifestyle scene have seen many make the tree change from Byron Shire’s coastal areas to the picturesque town, which lies twenty minutes inland from Byron and ten minutes inland from Brunswick Heads. Celebrated jeweller Victoria Spring has been a “Mullum” identity for some time. Comedian Mandy Nolan, Rainforest Rescue CEO Kelvin Davies and Producer of wildly successful childrens’ fairytale The Grimstones Roe Ritchie have all purchased in Mullumbimby’s Tallowood Ridge Estate, which offers the region’s first NBN coverage.

“The marketplace in Byron Shire is reserved for the well-heeled” said Rose Wanchap of Byron Bay’s Red Rose Realty. “Many of our workers live outside Shire because they can’t afford to rent and they can’t afford to buy. For the first time, I see light at the end of the tunnel with Tallowood Ridge. They’re really nice homes and, for the first time, they are genuinely affordable”.

While the median house price in Mullumbimby still sits at around $500,000.00, Tallowood Ridge is challenging these prices with its new release.

“We’ve had a lot of requests for home designs that reflect the heritage and rural character of our area” said Christopher Dean, one of Tallowood’s Directors. Chris is perhaps best known for Thursday Plantation, Australia’s iconic tea-tree business which he founded in 1979. Chris sold the business, which by this time had become TP Health, to Thompsons in 2006.

“We’ve come up with a range of six homes, priced from $110,000 for the two bedroom Coolamon 95 to $198,400 for the three bedroom, two bathroom Summerland 172 with its spacious wrap-around covered decks.”

Land at Tallowood Ridge is priced from $181,000 for a 493m² block. “So now it’s possible to own your own home in the Byron shire for $291,000” said Chris. “Each lot offers plenty of room for a pool, bedroom extension or granny flat. New granny flat laws in NSW, coupled with the new first new home owners grant, make buying land as opposed to an existing home the smart choice”.

To add to the incentives, agent Rose Wanchap has pledged to forego her commission, giving it instead back to new owners to put toward their homes, for those who would otherwise not be able to afford home ownership. Further, Tallowood Ridge will accept deposits of only 5%.

A lot of effort has gone into ensuring that the country home range reflects ‘rural Byron’, according to Christopher Dean. “The weatherboard exterior, sturdy posts on the verandas, white trims to corners and windows, classic handrails, round gutters instead of modern square gutters, colourbond roof at “Queenslander” pitch, double-hung windows – all of these things together make up the country style” he said.

“We’re thrilled to be able to offer a high quality weatherboard and colourbond home on land in the Byron Shire for well under $300,000”.

To view the full range of homes visit

Downloadable high res images:

Photo #1 – Summerland 128

Photo #2 – Tallowood Ridge Estate, Mullumbimby NSW

Photo #3 – Brunswick 110

Photo #4 – Bangalow 132

Photo #5 – Coolamon 95

Sample Festival rescued by Community Engine

Organiser of the Sample Food Festival – A Taste of Northern  NSW Remy Tancred was desperate last week when Essential Energy notified her that they could no longer sponsor the power at this years’ festival.

“They are great people and are still loaning us their barbecue” said Remy Tancred of Essential Energy, who last year powered the restaurants at the wildly successful inaugural event. “But their structure has changed so they just can’t do it this year. We seriously would not have been able to run the festival, supplying the restaurants with power is crucial”.

Remy ran into Dean Power from Community Engine the day she heard the news last week. Community Engine offered the money she needed to get powered and going that same day.

“They came to the rescue with a few thousand dollars” said Ms Tancred. “They certainly put the capital “C” back into community, they’ve really come in with community spirit”.

The hip pop-up shop in Byron Street Byron Bay through which Community Engine has operated this year is closing this month as they spread their wings nationally.

“Our Byron pop up shop is closing but we’ll be popping up at Sample with a stall on October 6th and we’ll pop up regularly around the region” said Dean Power. “We’re certainly not leaving town. We are thrilled that our pilot in Byron Bay has been successful. Our dream was always to help the community here get going on the Engine, which was very new, then take this wonderful community of businesses, individuals and community groups out to the rest of the country and connect them with others”.

The Community Engine Northern Rivers $100,000 giveaway has plenty of money left in the kitty, according to Power. “We’ve just given out over $11,000 and are so happy to see new organisations signing up all the time” he said.

To find out more about how to increase your web presence through this free tool go to or call Dean Power on 0429 328333.

Downloadable images:

Photo #1 – Dean Power from Community Engine with Remy Tancred from Sample Food Festival at the Bangalow Showground  Carly Brown Photographer

Photo #2 – Dean Power from Community Engine at the Bangalow Showground, home of Sample Food Festival  Carly Brown Photographer

Photo #3 – Sommelier Matt Skinner will delight at Sample Food Festival 2012

Photo #4 – Katrina Kanetani from Satiate (now Town in Bangalow) at Sample Food Festival 2011

Justin North to cook for Champagne Dinner

The most prestigious event on the Australian culinary calendar has been announced. On World Champagne Day, Friday 26 October, one of Australia’s most awarded chefs will prepare the 2012 Vogue Living Champagne Dinner at The Byron at Byron Resort and Spa.

Returning to The Byron at Byron for the fifth year running, this year’s event welcomes back renowned Chef Justin North, a much-loved friend of the resort.

Justin’s previous ventures include Bécasse restaurant, which was regularly awarded two Chefs Hats by The Sydney Morning Herald and three stars from the Australian Gourmet Traveller Restaurant Awards. Justin also operated the celebrated Quarter Twenty One (awarded a Chefs Hat in 2012), Etch, Bécasse Bakery and Le Grand Café. Justin and his wife Georgia received the Le Cordon Bleu Professional Excellence Award in the 2012 Sydney Morning Herald Good Food Guide.

Justin will craft a lavish four course French degustation to match five of the world’s finest Champagnes. Champagnes to be enjoyed are Ayala Brut Nature, Agrapart Terriors Blanc de Blancs, Philipponnat Royale Réserve Brut, 2000 Pol Roger Vintage Brut and Bollinger Rosé.

“It is a privilege to be invited back to The Byron at Byron to oversee what has become one of the most anticipated annual culinary events in Australia” said Justin North.

The extravagant dinner, styled annually by acclaimed Domayne Stylist Sue Kropp, is supported by the Champagne Bureau as a way of sharing with Australians the versatility of Champagne.

7:00pm Friday 26 October, The Byron at Byron Resort and Spa

$190 per person including four courses with five matching Champagnes.

Or enjoy the Vogue Living Champagne Dinner two night package for two:

  • Two nights’ accommodation in a Superior Suite
  • Full buffet breakfast daily in The Restaurant
  • Friday afternoon canapés and sunset drinks
  • Four course gala dinner with five matching Champagnes
  • Saturday canapé class with Head Chef Gavin Hughes
  • Complimentary yoga class daily
  • Late check to 12 noon Sunday

$1195 for two people in a Superior Suite

Elisabeth Drysdale, Director of the Champagne Bureau says “Australia is the eighth largest market for Champagne in the world, and what better way to celebrate this than to hold a dinner at the lush Byron at Byron”.

Bookings 02 66392105 or