My first EDB or “Eat Drink Blog” the Australian Food Blogging Conference in Canberra

Eat Drink Blog - Australian Food Blogging Conference 2015 in Canberra - A fantastic event on a glorious Canberra spring on

I feel very guilty not to have posted anything for 3 days when I was on a trend of one post a day for the last few weeks. This blog is becoming like a demanding lover. It’s pretty exciting.

The guilt gets less pinching when I look back to the fabulous 3 days I spent in Canberra for EDB or “Eat Drink Blog”: the Australian Food Blogging Conference. This event takes place every year and is hosted by volunteer bloggers in a different city.

This time it was in a blooming Canberra, a city I must admit I had a pretty bad image of. The first time I visited Canberra it was 11 years ago, the day before Christmas. It was a ghost city. The was maybe 2 or 3 cars driving around, not a single restaurant open and a rare soul walking quickly through the deserted streets. I thought a nuclear war had started and I was not aware of it yet.

I came back several times since, went in very bad restaurants every time and swore never to eat in Canberra again.

Well… let me tell you what… my opinion has been thrown upside down and inside out. Let me show you how.

Eat Drink Blog - Australian Food Blogging Conference 2015 in Canberra - Pork Belly Buns at The Hamlet on

The program was packed with food and drink tastings, “delicious” meals, ice-creams and speakers who repeated chronically that a blogger should never say “delicious”… These guys must have read my blog and found inspiration for listing everything you shouldn’t do while blogging… It was a bit of a slap in the face for me and a happy moment too as I’m sure that from now on I can only get better. And that’s exciting (wait, am I allowed exciting?).

The first event was a visit to The Hamlet in Braddon. It is a bit of a fancy parking for high market food trucks or a modern “place du marché” (market square). We were served a colossal amount of food. We sampled some Greek, Italian, Croatian, American, German, French food and I’m probably forgetting a few.

Look above, these buns hiding pork belly and fresh cabbage were served with mini glass bottles containing chilli sauce and salsa verde. They were very juicy and tasty.

Eat Drink Blog - Australian Food Blogging Conference 2015 in Canberra - Croatian food at The Hamlet on

Then, the owner of the rotisserie came to present us with his special skinless Croatian sausages with a (usually) homemade bread, toasted, and its aioli and orange sauce. I loved it. The bread was very fresh and perfectly warm. The sausages were moist and flavoursome (I wonder what spices and herbs he puts in them). I avoided the aioli as I am not a mayonnaise fan but tried the orange sauce which a very good match with the meat.

Eat Drink Blog - Australian Food Blogging Conference 2015 in Canberra - Pizza Margharita at The Hamlet on

An Italian pizza, freshly out of the oven arrived on the table (in the feeding frenzy I forgot to note which type of oven that was). I loved the home-made tomato sauce. It beats any bottled one.

Eat Drink Blog - Australian Food Blogging Conference 2015 in Canberra - Greek food at The Hamlet on

Then a series of Greek inspired dishes by Fillos Souvlaki landed on our table including souvlaki of course, lamb skewers and sausages. They were served with a tzatziki, pita and Greek salad. It makes me go back to Greece where I lived for two years.

Eat Drink Blog - Australian Food Blogging Conference 2015 in Canberra - Loukoumades at The Hamlet on

I was very excited to try the loukoumades, a tad bit disappointed that they didn’t have honey on them, but actually tasted good, not too oily as these Greek dumplings can often be, no fishy taste in the frying oil which was great.

We also found on a gigantic buffet some very authentic French “caramel au beurre salé” macarons (salted butter caramel) from Little Dreams.

There was many more food on offer but there was only so much I could sample. I remember seeing some Peruvian potatoes, German sauerkraut, American looking donuts, Aussie pies, and much much more.

If I lived in Canberra this would become a family favourite for sure. I love the idea of multiple offers in the same spot. OK, you have the food courts in malls, but they are often a bit sordid and have more or less the same chains. Here you’ll find unique cuisine (think Croatian, Peruvian, Greek…) which are all the project of one or a bunch of individuals passionate about what they do. It’s priceless.

Eat Drink Blog - Australian Food Blogging Conference 2015 in Canberra - Marble and Grain whiskey and food matching on

After this we did some Food and Whisky pairing at Marble & Grain, cocktail drinking at Hopscotch and ice-cream tasting at Frugii (links at the bottom). I cannot put all the photos of these yet. But I will prepare individual post of each of them to prove you, if necessary, that Canberra has become a foodie hotspot.

Above you can see Glenfiddich whisky being married with black pudding and apple mini skewers. We tasted 3 different whiskies of the same brand and I must confess that I seem to have luxury tastes as the oldest it got, the better I found it.

Eat Drink Blog - Australian Food Blogging Conference 2015 in Canberra - Lucky’s Speakeasy at QT on

Just as I thought that the night was over, the happy team of #EDB15 took us to Lucky’s Speakeasy at QT Hotel.

Eat Drink Blog - Australian Food Blogging Conference 2015 in Canberra - Nightcap at Lucky’s Speakeasy at QT on

We were given “fill your own” doughnuts with syringes by shortly dressed hostesses wearing prohibition era inspired outfits. Despite the fact the a speakeasy is usually a secret and underground affair, this ground floor space with dimmed light and a extensive collection of crystal decanters has a very special atmosphere.
The offer in Whisky is very impressive including Yamazaki 18 years of age which I love.

Thank god, after all this we went off to bed.

Eat Drink Blog - Australian Food Blogging Conference 2015 in Canberra - Hotel Hotel Facade on

As an Instagram addict I could not not go to Hotel Hotel which I had seen everywhere and looked stunning.

Eat Drink Blog - Australian Food Blogging Conference 2015 in Canberra - Hotel Hotel Stairs on

What I love is the concept of marrying design, comfort and craftsmanship. As you know, as Mrs Textile at I am very keen on anything hand made.  At Hotel Hotel I was like a fish in water, old French saying. The decor is spectacular, each room has hand-crafted furniture, framed textile pieces and the lobby is a real art gallery.

After shooting millions of photos of it in the morning we all went to the market.

Eat Drink Blog - Australian Food Blogging Conference 2015 in Canberra - Visit the Capital Territory Farmer's Market on
Eat Drink Blog - Australian Food Blogging Conference 2015 in Canberra - A fantastic event for online foodies on

The Capital Region Famers Market of Canberra is a gem. It has products I haven’t seen yet in all the markets I have visited in Sydney such as giant walnuts, lemon myrtle yoghurt, a muesli bar, black garlic, a gigantic choice of mushrooms, even a pet food stall which looked very fancy. The fruits were beautiful and sometimes, which I love and am looking for, more authentically home grown: looking a bit bumpy on the sides if you see what I mean. When you find those, you know that you are buying the real stuff.
There was a Belgian crepe (pancake) maker and trained as a French Chef who was selling this Cointreau liver mousse which was absolutely authentic and I’m pretty fussy as it is one of my specialities.

Eat Drink Blog - Australian Food Blogging Conference 2015 in Canberra - Visit the fantastic Capital Territory Farmer's Market on

At this market, you could buy flowers and potted plants especially for the veggie patch.  I regretted not broadcasting my first Periscope (live video app). I will post a complete review of the market soon.

The rest of the day was dedicated to watching and listening to the pros. We got to meet and laugh with TV star, food critique and real food advocate Matthew Evans. Geez… what a speaker. I started to cry of laughter and couldn’t stop… Then we heard all about what it means to be the number one restaurant critique in Canberra from the woman herself: Wendy Johnson. After that we were taught SEO and Social Media by Todd Wright of Three sides marketing it was fast, furious and efficient. I have already applied a few of his magic rules.

Eat Drink Blog - Australian Food Blogging Conference 2015 in Canberra - Food photography class on

We then attended a Food Styling and photography class by Tess Godkin. She made it look so simple but there is of course a lot of work and experience in her gestures and techniques. And to finish in fireworks we got gobsmacked by Alice Lau’s presentation on Smart Phone Photography and Videography. With simple ideas and very affordable tools she manages to produce professional recipe videos which mean more than a thousand words and pretty photos…

Eat Drink Blog - Australian Food Blogging Conference 2015 in Canberra - Soy and Sesame roasted cauliflower at A. Baker on

After all that talking and learning we hoped into our Saturday best and all met at the Nishi Gallery to dine in a fine dining restaurant called A. Baker. Not being based in Canberra I didn’t know what to expect. It was a feast I will remember for a long while.
First we were served with cauliflower fried with soy and sesame oil.

Eat Drink Blog - Australian Food Blogging Conference 2015 in Canberra - Great wine tasting at A. Baker on

I was sitting with great people: Nicole, wine connoisseur, from Champagne & Chips and Louise, sustainability specialist married to a wine maker, from Willungawino. They were both swirling their glass and making technical comments. It was hilarious and very interesting at the same time.

Eat Drink Blog - Australian Food Blogging Conference 2015 in Canberra - The delicious entree at A. Baker on

It will take a whole post to describe this meal at A. Baker. For me the highlights was the mozzarella di buffala, smoked walnut, quinoa chips, black garlic and Alto Olive Oil entrée. It had different textures, a fun garlic touch and the magic mix of mozzarella and nutty olive oil. The lamb was probably the best slow cooked lamb I have ever had.

Eat Drink Blog - Australian Food Blogging Conference 2015 in Canberra - Dessert at A. Baker on

At A. Baker, presentation was very nice, not too intimidating and not too simple: the right balance of plate styling.

As unfortunately I have to sleep at night, I will not publish more images of this conference in this post but in future posts. The next day, Sunday was filled with great features such as a panel Discussion: “Is Fulltime Blogging the Holy Grail?” featuring Amanda Whitley from HerCanberra, The Merrymaker Sisters and Liz Posmyk. Then we had a hilarious and incredibly didactic presentation called “Fitting It All In- How to build your blog when you are too damn busy” by Carly Jacobs of Smaggle and Little Blog Big. And finally a presentation called “How to Self-publish Your Cookbook” by The Merrymaker Sisters.

Eat Drink Blog - Australian Food Blogging Conference 2015 in Canberra - The best coffee in the World at The Cupping Room on

The last activity of EDB15 was for me to taste coffee at The Cupping Room. I do not drink coffee or tea any more.  I used to, a lot, when I was a heavy smoker but I stopped with the cigarette and all of a sudden about 4 years ago I started to faint if I drank a strong coffee. Yes… nice. At best I start to shake like a French plum tree during harvest.

When we were asked to choose your activities for Sunday, we were offered coffee brewing, fine dining, beer brewing and cupping. I thought, OK, easy, I choose fine dining first and if I’m not in the draw for that, I’ll do beer brewing, as you know I love it. But wait, what is cupping, maybe it’s a cool new trend of cooking things in cups, such as mug cakes and those things… OK, let’s choose that one. Mental note: Flore, never trust your poor English again…

Canberra has the winner of the Best Coffee in the World Contest which takes place in the US. This was pure waste on me but I noticed that my fellow EDBians really appreciated this meal paired with high quality brews.

The best thing about it all is that it made my new foodie friends laugh a lot.


I am going to answer before you ask: YES I am now on a serious diet… And YES I feel a sort of EDB15 blues. Is it already over? Why??


The food shown here was offered to me by the following restaurants in Canberra.
Fine dining restaurant A. Baker at Nishi Gallery
The Cupping Room offering the best espresso in the world and best latte in Australia
The Hamlet
Lucky’s Speakeasy at QT Canberra
Marble & Grain restaurant and bar in Braddon
Hopscotch best bistro pub 2015 in Canberra
Frugii ice-cream and its remarkable made from scratch flavours
The accommodation at Hotel Hotel was at a special price.

If you want to know more about this great annual event or to get inspired by fantastic bloggers, read about THEIR experience of EDB15 here:
Undoubtedly the prettiest food blogger there is: Chrissy from Melbourne blogging at Little Food Blog. Also, don’t miss her her Bacon & Egg breakfast dumplings. Great concept, fantastic recipe.
> Check out the very nice article and photos of Erin from Dreaming of almonds. I love her collages. Don’t go without bookmarking her great Dinosaur Gelatinous Chews recipe.
> Read more about this year’s EDB on Ms Frugal Ears’s blog. What a great write up! I’m very tempted to try her Armenian Nutmeg Cake recipe :)
> More photos and a really detailed report on this great event on Travel and beyond.
> I love Anisa’s wrap up of this year’s EDB, her photography is fabulous check out her blog The Macadames and extend your visit by scrolling down her recipe index! It’s simply fantastic!

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  1. says

    Beautiful account of the weekend, Flore :) Your images are awesome, loved looking through the photography on your website. Something I want to learn more about in terms of the technical side – lighting, angles, sharpness, etc. I think the styling is more my thing, so keen to get some more experience on the technical side of things. Wish we’d had a chance to talk more during the conference, would love to find out what it’s like to live in France. Hope you’re recovering well from the weekend’s indulgences :) x

    • says

      Thank you Chrissy :) I took a few photography courses, one at The School (with Brooke Holm) in Sydney, a French one online very technical but super interesting and I took a course by the girls at A beautiful Mess which I loved and one with Minimalist Baker both in the US. I’m finishing a Lightroom in-depth class in French. What it does at first it to make you realise what you did wrong before, that you need a decent full frame camera despite all the politically correct crap you’ll hear “no need to spend money to make good photos”: if you want Tess’s photos, get a 5D Mark III. I didn’t have the budget so I chose the 6D instead and I loooove it. Lenses are a major question here too. In food photo I think the best investment is a 50mm F1.4 or if you have the budget: the 1.2 (the one Tess had).
      The first thing I will buy when my blog brings a bit of money in is a new body. Canon will have a new gem by then ;)
      If you ever come to Sydney, let me know. I would be glad to see you.

      • MaPy says

        J’adore vos photos. C’est grâce à vous que je me suis inscrite à la formation de Laurent. Je ne suis pas super équipée, mais j’ai bon espoir.
        Bonne continuation.
        Amitiés de Bourgogne/France

        • says

          Bonjour ! Merci pour votre message qui me fait très plaisir.
          J’ai beaucoup appris grâce à Laurent. Je suis en train de faire sa formation Lightroom qui est géniale et m’a fait gagner un temps fou. Je pensais l’équipement secondaire mais maintenant je suis persuadée du contraire (quoi qu’en dise Laurent ;) Il est politiquement correct de dire qu’avec n’importe quel appareil on peut faire de bonnes photos mais ce n’est pas tout à fait exact. Après de nombreux essais, avec les mêmes conditions, même scène, différent matériel, il est évident que le plus cher est le mieux… malheureusement :)
          On ne peut faire qu’avec ses moyens et ce n’est que très récemment que j’ai franchi le pas “full frame” avec un 6D. Aujourd’hui je rêve la nuit du 5DS R, mais ce n’est pas dans mes moyens. Si vous avez envie de vous régaler et que la photo est vraiment importante pour vous, je vous conseille une tirelire spéciale “full frame”. Ca vaut vraiment le coup. Mon objectif préféré est le Canon 50mm F1.4. Une merveille.

          • MaPy says

            Bonjour Flore,
            Un full frame me fait rêver aussi. J’attends quand même d’être plus à l’aise techniquement pour franchir le pas, et bien sûr de constituer le bas de laine nécessaire ;)
            Bonne journée,

          • says

            Le bas de laine est la clé ;) Il est beaucoup plus facile de devenir à l’aise techniquement sur un full frame que sur un “cropped”. Vous verrez le résultat beaucoup plus facilement, ça sera tout de suite top avec moins de boulot. Si le bas se remplit bien, racontez-moi l’aventure !

    • says

      Hi Sherry! Thank you for your nice comments :) Posting still takes me forever… I cannot wait to be a Carly! Let me know if you publish an article, I will gladly add it in my link-love list.

  2. says

    I can’t believe how quick you are at getting up your Eat.Drink.Blog post. I’m so glad that Canberra was able to show you that we really are a ‘foodie’ town – with outstanding producers, cafes and restaurants. I hope that you’ll be back and that you tell all your friends.

    • says

      Hi Shari, I’ve actually become the local Canberra ambassador :) I loved my week-end in the capital city. I had a ball, very good food, very good drinks and more importantly very friendly and passionate people. Can’t wait to read you article. Shout when it’s out so I can link to it.

  3. says

    Such a fab post, Flo! You captured the essence of the event perfectly. SO MUCH FOOD AND WINE!!! Your photos are crazy beautiful. I loved every minute of the conference and cannot wait for next year’s event. In the meantime, I am so happy to have met another local blogger and am looking forward to hanging out soon x

    • says

      Hi Belinda! Thank you for the nice words :) I hope it will be in Sydney next year! Wouldn’t it be nice to discover great new places and go an a local eating spree??? Looking forward to seeing you soon.

      • says

        Your photos are absolutely exquisite! Looking back through my images, and comparing them to yours, I sometimes can’t believe we were at the same event.

        This is such a wonderful recap of the weekend. I’m not sure I’ll get a chance to do one in the short term so I shall just keep referring back to yours to remember how delightful it was.

        Such a pleasure to meet you and I do hope we can stay in touch. I just adore your spark.

        • says

          Hi Nicole! We had such a good time. I loved sitting beside you. It brought me back to girls dinners in Paris :) We should do it again! As I said if you ever go to France, let me know. I’ll prepare a tour of northern Burgundy for you. I need to convince you on the Gris too… Thanks for your (too) kind words about my article. I’m glad finally some people are reading my articles. I have about 117 published posts and I don’t think many human being have seen them hahahaha! Not even my family as they can’t be bothered reading in English.
          Let me know when you publish yours whenever it is. I’ll add it to my Link-love list.

        • says

          Well… looking at my everyday planning and the organisation needed for such an event… I might hide under the table for that one. But who knows… if I find a good team around here…

  4. says

    Oh Flore, what an amazing account of the weekend! And you were so quick in putting up the blog post! Thank you again for attending EDB6, it was a pleasure to show you Canberra and it makes me so happy that you have changed your mind on the foodie scene here! Hugs, keep in touch! Giulia xx

    • says

      Thank you Giulia! I cannot thank you enough for all the good work you did to organise such a big event with so many people. You did it with a huge smile, never complaining and so efficiently. Hats off to you!
      I will definitely go back to Canberra with Wendell my husband (we’ll have to drop the kids I wanna do a pub crawl ;)
      Keep in touch!

  5. says

    Wow Flore!

    Your photography is stunning, photos I took in Lucky’s Speakeasy were so dark, and yours perfect. Love the pic of Nicole and I too.

    Well done on your EDB15 post being published so quickly! I will be sure to spread some “Link Love” when I publish mine too.

    I’m thinking of a Sydney trip next year, it would be lovely to catch up.

    All the best and lovely to meet you!

    Cheers, xx

    • says

      Thanks Louise :) You’re so sweet. I love this photo of you and Nicole it show how much we had fun. Please do contact me when you come over. I would love to see you. (thanks for the link love!)

      • says

        Thanks for the link love Flore! (A phrase I’m sure we didn’t expect to be using after the conference!). Your photos are just beautiful. Well captured!

        • says

          Hahahahahaha! Absolutely :) I’m all about link love these days. Thanks for yours, it’s very sweet. And thank you for your kind comment. I am still a photography student but thank to this blog forcing me to train a lot, I hope I will make progress.
          I love your blog :) I laughed a lot reading your I quit sugar series. “My man goes to town” etc Hahaha ! Loved it :)
          Keep in touch!

  6. Sophie says

    Your article about EDB conference is just FAB!!!. What a thrilling show for foodies like you.
    I like that you switch “delicious” with “the best” ;-)

    • says

      Hi Sophie, Just got your comment as I was feeling atrociously guilty for not answering your Whatsapp messages… It’s just hectic at the moment (I love the “at the moment” ;) Cold weather in France = lots of orders and new products being launched on and EDB = lots of things to write down, new people to interact with and new blog post to prepare…
      Thanks for your lovely words. I’m trying to improve my writing which is sadly very poor in English. It is what probably what has stopped me to launch my blog for years. But what the hell, as they say… I’m having so much fun :)
      Hope to have a post EDB chat with you soon!! Call me when you can.

  7. says

    It sounds AMAZING although I would have been in a food coma after the first night I think – pacing yourself is clearly essential. And we all secretly love a food blogger who gets excited and says delicious now and again, makes them easier to relate to.

    • says

      Hahahahaha ! You’re so right! I’ve got to find myself a richer vocabulary though.
      We all were in a complete food and booze coma after the first day. Strangely enough, the next day, 2h before lunch I started to starve. I guess my stomach gets easily used to feeding frenzies (unfortunately)!

    • says

      I did! Canberra is a very interesting town full of passionate people.
      Thank you guys for your energy :) Your presentation was great. I had many questions to ask you but it went too quickly ;)

    • says

      Thank you! I was amazed by the food but also the locals :) I found people very friendly, very keen to do their best and truly interested in the quality of the products they use or consume. This is great!


  1. […] Last Saturday we didn’t make pancakes for breakfast.  But I did make them that day. It was a busy day, with Big A’s twilight fete in the afternoon and filming a cooking show in the morning.  Blogger Eileen from The Food Avenue and I featured in filming for A Taste of Canberra.  We cooked three items that recreated food that has become well known in the Canberra food scene.  Yes, Canberra has a food scene and this was in evidence at Eat Drink Blog 15 and the faint surprise by visiting food bloggers from interstate. […]

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