Indigenous Chefs Celebrated at Rockpool

Rockpool Bar & Grill celebrates rising Indigenous chefs at inaugural lunch

Wednesday, 1 December 2021: Rockpool Bar & Grill is celebrating the creativity and culinary heritage of young Indigenous chefs across Sydney at a first-of-its-kind, ticketed lunch in January 2022. 

The inaugural Young Indigenous Chefs Lunch on Thursday, 30 January from 1pm is a key event during Sydney Good Food Month and will shine a light on up-and-coming Indigenous chefs from Rockpool Bar & Grill, Icebergs Dining Room and Bar, and Margaret. 

The multi-course event will showcase the culinary talents of Jayde Harris and Luke Bourke (Rockpool), Sam Bourke (Margaret) and Keith Munroe (Icebergs), who have graduated from apprenticeships spearheaded by the National Indigenous Culinary Institute (NICI) in partnership with leading restaurants. Each chef will present several dishes featuring native ingredients. 

Rockpool Bar & Grill Executive Chef and mentor to NICI apprentices Corey Costelloe said it is an honour to host the inaugural Young Indigenous Chefs Lunch at Rockpool Sydney, which has a long-standing partnership with the Institute. 

“The lunch will shine a light on Australia’s incredible talent pool of First Nations chefs as well as the unique and spectacular Indigenous ingredients that inspire four of these young chefs as they carve out promising careers in an exciting industry,” he said. 

Luke Bourke will deliver a main course of Cape Grim Rib Eye with Smoke Tainted Wine Merchants Sauce served with Warrigal Green Puree. 

“The main reason for choosing Tasmanian Cape Grim beef is to highlight the birthplace of my ancestors, the Palawa people, who originated from Tasmania,” Luke said. “Another element in my dish is the smoke tainted wine from Lowe Family Wines, which was salvaged following the bushfires of 2019-2020 with the help of an Australian native spice mix that was added during fermentation. This created a rich, smoky red wine that is a great base for my sauce. Plus, I wanted to feature smoke in my dish because numbuk yabuns, or smoking ceremonies, are very important in Aboriginal culture.”

Jayde Harris completed her apprenticeship at Rockpool Sydney earlier this year and has since been training as a Pastry Chef. For the lunch she has created a canapé of Saltbush Scone with Emu Egg and Onion Custard, and a main dish of Duck and Macadamia Pie with Yams, both of which show her development as a chef. 

“Both dishes draw on my love of pastry and showcase my training of the last few years. I feel more comfortable in the pastry section at Rockpool Bar & Grill than any other place in the kitchen,” Jayde said. 

Keith Munroe will present an entrée of Pipis with Kangaroo Garum and Chilli Oil. 

“The middens found around Sydney Harbour to this day highlight the natural foods like pipis that my ancestors cooked over fire and relied upon. It’s awesome that we can eat pipis cooked over fire still to this day, and that’s how I will be cooking them for this lunch.” 

Sam Bourke has chosen to present three seafood dishes, each enhanced with native ingredients such as lemon myrtle, desert lime, and Davidson plum, which he says: “enables me to explore Australia’s native seafood, connect with the Palawan people of my ancestry and showcase their ingredients proudly.”

Tickets to the Young Indigenous Chefs Lunch are $160 per person, plus transaction fee. A $10 donation will be made to NICI from every ticket sold. 

Rockpool Bar & Grill Sydney will also host the Good Weekend Quiz: Live on Thursday, 23 January from 6pm as part of Good Food Month. Good Weekend resident quiz masters will put participants’ gastronomic knowledge to the test over a three-course meal curated by Corey and his team. Tables are sold in teams of six, at $160 per person, plus transaction fee. 

Canapés on arrival

Smoked Caviar and Lemon Myrtle Pikelet (Sam)
Lilly Pilly Jam Éclair with Aged Cheddar (Keith)
Blue Swimmer Crab Tartlet with Finger Lime (Jayde) Saltbush Scones with Emu Egg and Onion Custard (Jayde)

Shared entrée

Tathra Oysters with Desert Lime Salsa (Sam)
Pipis with Kangaroo Garum and Chilli Oil (Keith) Kangaroo Sausage Sandwich on Dancing Grass Rye (Luke)

First Course

Yellow Fin Tuna with Geraldton Wax, Davidson Plum and Ponzu (Sam)

Second Course

Duck and Macadamia Pie with Yams (Jayde)

Third Course

Cape Grim Rib Eye with Smoke Tainted Wine Merchants Sauce and Warrigal Green Puree (Luke) Native Greens Salad with Burnt Honey Vinaigrette

Fourth Course

Peach, Vanilla and Lilly Pilly Semifreddo with Emu Egg White Meringue (Keith)


Good Weekend Quiz
Table Snacks
Coppertree Farms Butter with Victoire Baguettes Steak Tartare with Bruny Island Cheddar Tuna Tostada with Roasted Sweet Potato Baby Beetroot and Tahini Tarts Charcoal Roasted Marinated King Prawns Goats Cheese Tortellini
Milly Hill Lamb Cutlet with Mint Jelly Glaze
Mains to Share
Wood Fire Grilled David Blackmore Eye of Chuck Australian Native Greens Spanakopita
Roasted Corn Puree with Chipotle and Manchego Summer Tomato and Basil Salad
Coz, Endive and Radicchio Salad with Palm Sugar Vinaigrette
Catherine’s Passionfruit Pavlova
Peaches and Coppertree Cream Wattle Seed and Macadamia Caramel Slice

Media Enquiries: Rockpool Bar & Grill Director of PR Rachel Lebihan | | 0438 701 573.