Gourmet Safaris Autumn 2023 Newsletter


Autumn Newsletter

Hello dear friends

Looking forward to snuggling in and cooking and eating as the weather cools.

And if cooking isn’t your thing, Its simply a perfect time to get out and explore.

Whether you dive into one of our walking tours, breakfasts, bus safaris or banquets, there’s no better time to be alive with tastebuds.

New Zealand Safari

Come and discover the Central Otago region of New Zealand with its spectacular jagged mountain peaks and pristine lakes, brilliant wineries and passionate food producers and chefs keen to have us enjoy their incredible produce.

For 2024 we will explore in the warmth of late summer with its glorious long twilight – 9th – 15th February.


We stay at the luxurious Hilton Queenstown right on Lake Wakatipu with its sweeping views up to the Remarkable Ranges and with walking and bike tracks at the front door or lounge chairs in the sunshine.

We are lucky to have some good friends on the ground who create great experiences for us. We’ll take a private boat trip to a beautiful untouched island in the middle of Lake Wanaka; a lunch at Sam Neill’s Two Paddocks, curated by one of NZ’s top chefs and matched with superb wine; a private garden visit to a thoughtfully created paradise – one of the most impressive gardens of NZ; a movie screening in our own private cinema; feasts created just for us plus some simple joys like taking the water taxi across Lake Wakatipu to Queenstown; standing on top of the Crown Range in that clean fresh air; enjoying meeting chefs and artists, farmers and winemakers and tasting some of the best of the region. Click here for more information

South Australian

We are so fortunate to have so many hosts waiting to welcome you into their restaurants and homes, markets and wineries. There are many experiences crafted just for our group including a unique tasting of wine and cheese in a special location; a gorgeous food loving caterer Tina and her husband Peter who create the most abundant Greek feast for a long Sunday lunch in their home, a lovely day in McLaren Vale, in the Adelaide Hills, a couple of days in the Barossa and exploring in Adelaide – with two big produce markets with guided tastings; two very different galleries welcoming us in, a cooking class with Matteo at Casa Carboni; wine tasting with the makers…the list goes on. Dates for 2024 – 14th – 21st March. Click here for more information

Victorian High Country Safari

Italian families, incredible wines, long tables, bocce competition with lashings of Prosecco…there’s so much to love in this 6 day breath of fresh Alpine air and some of the most charming hosts in Australia. We always time our visit to early autumn to get warm clear days and nights just starting to cool down.

We’ve been lucky enough to join forces with some charming Italian families who welcome us in and create simply exquisite experiences – thank you to the Pizzini and Dal Zotto families, Simone and Miranda families, to Pietro Porcu and many families who host us – the Crookes, Waddingtons, Rivett family, Sluga family and Jane and Brian Casey along with Don Arden, Rita and Henry Hilton, Michael Ryan, our friends at Gapsted Wines, Dan, Jay & Sharon at Pepo Farm plus the team at Lancemore Milawa.

Plus my dear friend Franca and her husband Donald who share their home and show their well-stocked cellar and vegetable garden; Franca’s parents, Angelo and Mary and friends Jenny and Nadia. A golden trip into a great part of Australia. 3rd to 8th March 2024.  Click here for more information.

Tasmanian Safari

In November we have a glorious week in Tasmania which is like seeing a whole bunch of food loving friends and eating and drinking along the way in very cool places.

We are based in Hobart and visit up and down the Derwent – out to Mount Field National Park to walk amongst the tallest flowering gums in the world; to the Agrarian Kitchen and Stefano Lubiana; in Hobart to Salamanca and Farmers Market plus breakfast out at Pigeon Hole cafe in West Hobart; plus top restaurants Peppina, Glasshouse, Peacock and Jones; a glorious day at Mona and a special lunch there; out to Bruny Island for tastes of oysters and cheese and much more; through the Huon Valley to producers and farmers ready to share the best of what they have.

It’s a great safari. Hope you can join us. Unpack once. 16th to 21st November 2024. Click here for more information.

International Safaris

We have dates for next year and are in the process of updating pricing but we know you love to plan in advance so here’s what 2024 holds:

Greek Islands: 3rd to 15th September 2024 Click here for more information.

Sardinia and Corsica: 10th to 21st June 2024 Click here for more information.

Spain and Portugal: 20th September to 3rd October 2024 Click here for more information.

Sydney Safaris


A great shorter way to experience safaris and other cultures – we offer Turkish, Lebanese and Indian breakfasts. Look out for our Lebanese brekkie on 29th April in Greenacre – it’s such a delicious abundance of dishes you may not have discovered before…with cooking demonstrations and hosted by our long term Lebanese guide Judy Saba. These are the best mornings as you have breakfast and the opportunity to find some of the ingredients and tastes at nearby emporiums. Great way to have a morning with friends and of course, like all our safaris, these are the best gifts!

Walking safaris 

After 25 years, still the best way to explore a cuisine and a village – we offer Italian walking safaris in Haberfield, Turkish in Auburn, Vietnamese in Cabramatta, Lebanese in Punchbowl, and a visit to some great producers with our Marrickville Safari on Thursdays. Click here for all our Sydney Safaris.


Mother’s Day at Colombo Social

We love the many delicious courses of traditional Sri Lankan food at Colombo Social and the opportunity to visit and be hosted by mother and son Shiranie and Shaun Christie David. It’s the best day of food and cooking demonstrations and its neatly scheduled so you can treat your mother…or as some mothers have done, band together and treat yourselves by coming along. Each mother receives an indulgent gift from our friends at Adora Handmade Chocolates in Marrickville. Last places available for this feast including cool climate wines from Gapsted Wines. Saturday 13th May. Click here to book.

Fundraising for Turkiye and Syria

When we heard news of the devastating earthquakes in Turkiye and Syria, we were deeply concerned for the many families and businesses we had been lucky enough to meet on our Turkish Safari with chef Somer Sivrioglu. The epicentre was Gaziantep, a city that enthralled all our visitors with its 1001 Nights charm and ancient bazaars and pistachio growing families who kindly invited us into their village for lunch.

We decided to see what we could do to fund raise by gathering Turkish goods in a hamper to share some of the food and culture and make it easy for people to donate. The results were overwhelming. We raised $25,000 that has been sent by Unicef direct to Turkiye and Syria. Thank you to many of you who purchased these abundant boxes.

And thanks to generous donations from Two Providores and New Directions Packaging for the hampers, to Ali Fuat Kahveci at Grand Foods in Melbourne and Muhammet Eris at Gima Supermarket in Sydney for the many Turkish goods including Turkish Delight, pepper paste, sumac, oregano, ajvar, tahini and pekmez, pickled peppers, and to our friend Somer Sivrioglu for signed copies of his superb book Anatolia with recipes for people to enjoy, and to our friends the Isaac family at Harkola for taking orders and delivering around Sydney. A mammoth task. George Bousarma at Syncorp Consulting and Megan Rogers Signarama Blacktown for the stickers. Plus Trevor Harding from Real Turkish Delight, Faruk from Beta Foods, Mark from Basfoods, Chris from Benino Foods for contributions.

We joined Turkish friends to pack 200 hampers at the back of Gima Supermarket. Thank you to our packers: Turkish guide Ulku Gani and her sister Leyla Birer, our hosts at Cook and Co Auburn Arzu and Sedat Acma and daughter Selim, Muhammet Eris and nephew Ibrahim and staff Memet and Ugur, Memet Kose from Grand Foods, Toufic Charabati, Mary and Felix and Anne.

Thanks for supporting us.


All the best to you

Maeve and Suzy 



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