Sydney Table collaborative dinner series at Carriageworks

Author: Maggie Scardifield
Photography: Zan Wimberley

A number of Sydney's leading chefs and creatives are pairing up to cook you dinner (and then some) at Carriageworks. 

Two heads, it's been said, are often better than one. And from 27 May until 18 June, the Sydney Table dinner series will pair a chef with a different visual artist, photographer, dancer or florist to get the creative juices flowing.

Each duo will design and execute a one-off dining experience for the series, which will be held at Carriageworks in Eveleigh as part of the Vivid Sydney program. Kicking things off is Acme chef Mitch Orr in collaboration with dancer, choreographer and Sydney's favourite instructor in BeyoncĂ© moves Amrita Hepi (or, as Orr calls her, "the straight flame emoji"). Their dinner will be "Acme steeze" down to a tee, he says. "Amrita is a really good friend and incredibly talented. We'll be doing something loud, tasty and interactive that takes the piss a little."

Ester chef Mat Lindsay is taking a slightly different tack, choosing ceramicist Ion Fukazawa as his collaborator. "Ion makes the glazes for his plates, bowls and cups out of the spent ashes from our oven," says Lindsay. "We've only just started planning, but hopefully there'll be some live fire and cooking in ashes involved, and maybe our dish of burnt leeks with sesame and breadcrumbs."

Other dinners in the series include evenings by former Noma alumnus Sam Miller (of Silvereye) with artist Lisa Madigan, Hamish Ingham ( Bar H, Banksii) with designer Vince Frost, and Mark Best ( Marque) alongside photographer Petrina Tinslay. Bloodwood chefs Claire van Vuuren and Mitchell Grady, meanwhile, will collaborate with florist Anna McMahon on their dinner, and former Bird Cow Fish chef Alex Herbert will team up with illustrator and muralist Thomas Jackson. A last-minute addition teams up GT's own art director Anna Vu, who illustrates the blog Good Food Crap Drawing,  with the Pinbone team for a dinner on June 16. "She's the greatest human I've ever met," says Pinbone's Mike Eggert. She really gets Sydney dining, she doesn't take it too seriously, she's got a fantastic eye for what's cool and translates that in a brilliant way. The menu will definitely include Texta-friendly food. We might get everyone to draw too."

The chefs will use produce from the Carriageworks Farmers Market, and other than that it's free rein for what goes down at the dinners. Included in the $150 ticket price will be the set menu, a dry Archie Rose Martini with river mint distillate, Asahi beers and Cake Wines -  and attendance will be capped at 50 guests to keep things intimate.

"I wanted to bring the best of food and art together in one room," says chef and Carriageworks creative director Mike McEnearney, who helped put together the line-up. "It's like eating in the green room with your favourite chef or creative."

The Sydney Table at Carriageworks events, 27 May to 18 June; tickets $150 per person via Ticketmaster. For the full program see,

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