Apr 12, 2018

Tasting Australia (and Australia itself) has a ‘great male chef’ problem

Adelaide's much venerated Tasting Australia will open with a disproportionately small number of women chefs celebrated. Is this a symptom of a biased industry, or is the festival culpable in sustaining the sausage party?

Jane Howard

Freelance arts writer

This Friday sees Adelaide's Tasting Australia festival opening. The culinary centerpiece of Events SA’s annual program since 1997, the festival plays host to a local and international program with a breadth of food styles and cultural influences. But while the food may be diverse, the festivals choice of culinary "stars" exhibits a significant gender bias. The Australia that crowds will be invited to taste is decidedly male in flavour.

2018 sees a three-man creative team and three male “ambassadors”, with the award winning Cheong Liew as patron across both. They are joined by 37 individual and collective stars. Of these, 27 are individual men, and just three individual women. The remainder is made up one pair of brothers, one pair of sisters, two husband-and-wife teams, and three families.

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2 thoughts on “Tasting Australia (and Australia itself) has a ‘great male chef’ problem

  1. Austin ADAMS

    I’ve found it hard to find the right person or forum to leave this comment. Perhaps this one is appropriate. As a frequent visitor to Adelaide from Brisbane, and as a wine lover who likes to BYO, I have found Adelaide’s corkage charges to be uniformly outrageous. Why in Adelaide does a lowly Chinese restaurant, one where the Brisbane corkage charge would be at most $3, feel it has to charge $15 and up. In higher-level Adelaide restaurants it’s even more outrageous. It’s enough to have me dreaming of high conspiracy.

  2. Margot Saville

    Great article. I get GT and couldn’t believe the all-male line-up. As it’s well-known that women usually have control of the household’s discretionary spending, this sort of programming seems so outdated.

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