Margaret River Gourmet Escape line-up announced

New names dominate the line-up of this year's food and wine festival.

Nigella! Okay, now that we've got that out of the way, we can say that this November the fifth annual Margaret River Gourmet Escape sees a fresh crop of big-name cooks and chefs descend on Western Australia's south-west for a weekend of good eating, drinking and living.

While Lawson and fellow television presenter (and Margaret River guest emeritus) Rick Stein might be the most recognisable of this year's guests, the Gourmet Escape class of 2016 has no shortage of big hitters from the restaurant world.

Among the first round of line-up announcements are three chefs from the top 10 restaurants in the World's 50 Best: Joan Roca from former top-ranked restaurant El Celler de Can Roca (currently number two), Mauro Colagreco from Mirazur (number six) in France and Andoni Luis Aduriz from Spain's Mugaritz (number seven).

Other names from the influential list include Londoners Isaac McHale of The Clove Club (number 26 and winner of the highest new entry award this year) and Ashley Palmer-Watts from Dinner by Heston Blumenthal (number 45), as well as Thai food authority David Thompson from Bangkok's Nahm (number 37) and Long Chim. Dominique Crenn, winner of World's Best Female Chef 2016 and owner of Atelier Crenn and Petit Crenn in San Francisco will also appear at the event.

This year's line-up also features plenty of firepower from Sydney and Melbourne. Signing on for another year are past festival guests Peter Gilmore (Quay, Bennelong), Mark Best (Pei Modern) and Frank Camorra (MoVida). Among this year's newcomers are Mitch Orr (Acme), Analiese Gregory (Bar Brosé) and Lennox Hastie (Firedoor) from Sydney, while Andrew McConnell (Cutler & Co, Marion, Supernormal, Cumulus Inc) and Scott Pickett (Estelle by Scott Pickett) will be some of the chefs flying the flag for Melbourne.

Margaret River Gourmet Escape runs November 18-20. Tickets to events go on sale on Friday July 22. gourmetescape.com.au







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