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I just watched the final hour of the Sydney Siege unfolded live on internet as I was writing this post at 2.24am. It was nerve wrecking to watch as I thought this could only happen in a movie, it definitely sent shivers down my spine but I am glad is over. My heart goes out to the hostages, their families and those who are affected by this unfortunate event. Rest in peace to the people who lost their lives.

We don’t born with hatred, intolerance and racism, let us all support each other and get through this tough time together. Give your loved ones a great big hug this Christmas and be thankful that we all still have each other. #illridewithyou

– Billy

 

Sydney shone brighter than ever for white dinner party.

It was 4.15pm and I was still struggling with the bow tie. And I had to get to a designated meeting point to catch a bus at 4.45pm and I still hadn’t left the house! I was flustered and started to sweat bullets under the pressure and Sydney’s summer heat, by then I was cursing at myself why I had to buy a self-tie bow tie when I could have just bought a clip-on one. I know why, it’s because a fixed bow tie is cheating! I wanted a proper self-tie bow tie, I wanted to make sure that I look at my best for tonight’s special occasion, in all white – because I’ve been invited to Diner en Blanc.

This is the third year for Diner en Blanc to be held in Sydney and it is going to be whiter than ever. This ‘white dinner’ concept was first started in Paris back in 1988, by Francois Pasquier who gathered a small group of friends for picnic at Bois de Boulogne, a large public park in Paris. The dress code was “all white” so that they could spot each other in the park easily. And the tradition remains the same till today.

Diner en Blanc is one of the most ambitious flash mob pop-up dinner event ever. Imagine thousands of people all wearing white, rock up at one secret location along with their tables, chairs and picnic baskets, all sit down and have a feast together; it is quite a sight to behold. We see the numbers of attendees are growing each year, from 1,500 people who attended the inaugural Diner en Blanc outside of MCA to 3,000 last year held at the beautiful Bondi Beach. This year, a strong contingent of 4,000 attendees, in elegant white of course, has congregated at the McKay Field in Centennial Park for another year of the most exciting and anticipated dinner event here in Sydney.

To score a seat at Diner en Blanc is not easy, not only you have to register on their website to enter the ballet system, it is also best that you know someone who attended the event before as your referral. This year’s tickets were all snapped up before 8am, only a couple of hours after they releasing them on internet. I am very lucky to be invited by Seppelt wines, who has been one of the major sponsors for the event in Sydney. So, mucho gracias!

We had the privilege of not having to bring along our own food and wine, and the long white table had also been set up for us as we arrived. I guess the only fun part that I missed out on was to decorate your own picnic table however you like. I had a wander around the park and was quite impressed with some of the punters who really went all out to decorate their tables with fairy lights and all sorts.

There was a great vibe at the event, everyone was in high spirit and all smiley. A roaring cheer as everyone started waving their napkins in the air, a tradition of Diner en Blanc to mark the beginning of the event. We all sat down for a meal where food and wine were passed down the table and shared. Our table was catered by Kitchen catering, which was available for pre-order and collection on site for those who do not want to bring their own food. We were spoilt with choices on the alcohol, Piper-Heidsieck Champagne greeted us on arrival, then indulged in Seppelt’s delicious St Peters Grampians Shiraz 2012, Jaluka Chardonnay 2013 and Great Western Riesling 2013 during dinner.

As the sun set behind us when the sky turned crimson red, the DJs started to spin some groovy tunes to get everyone into the mood. We mingled, we made friends, we took selfies. Then it was time for the final Diner en Blanc tradition where we all light sparklers in unison and wave about in the air. A spectacle of thousands twinkling sparklers to indicate the opening of the dance floor as we danced our night away to 80s and 90s hits.

Here are my photos that I hope I have captured the essence of a memorable evening.

 

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Thank you Diner en Blanc, I shall see you again in 2015!

 

 

[And thank you to Seppelt Wines once again for inviting us to the event!] 

 


 

Dymock’s cookbooks competition – Winner announced!

What an overwhelming response to the competition! Thank you so much to everyone who entered the comp as I really enjoyed reading every single comment. So here I would like to announce the winner who is going to take home all the cookbooks is

Merryn Galluccio

Congratulations! Your heartfelt comment is exactly what we need right now. I hope you will find inspirations in the cookbooks and share your love in cooking with many others.

 


 

David Jones’ Christmas Hamper giveaway – Winners announced!

Thank you everyone who entered the competition here on the blog and also on Facebook. You guys have definitely made my life difficult to pick the winners. But, huge congrats to

LALA (I love someone who is over ambitious~! LOL!)

Karlene Forrest (Facebook entry. Yes, hamper is a great idea for those who are difficult to buy a Christmas present for)

Once again, congratulations! I am sure the hamper will make your Christmas a lot tastier!

 

 

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