A Lunch to Honour The Italian Tomato

I had the pleasure of attending an amazing lunch hosted by The Italian Trade Agency and held at Osteria Balla Manfredi at The Star, which was in honour of the amazing Italian Tomato which is exported all over the world and an integral part of of Italian cooking.

Oro Rosso

In celebration of the authentic flavours of Italian cuisine, this month the Italian Trade Agency has collaborated with The Council of Italian Restaurants in Australia (CIRA) to showcase the precious Italian preserved tomato and its industry.


With nearly 1 million Australians of Italian decent, Australia’s culinary culture is heavily influenced by the traditional flavours and cooking styles of Italy; from the beloved pizza and pasta through to a modern style of Italian cooking that focuses on the simplicity and balance of ingredients. Australia is home to some of the most celebrated Italian restaurants and chefs in the industry who are passionate about using only the best Italian produce.

20160428 - Oro Rosso Luncheon Osteria Balla Manfredi - speeches- photo Ken Butti(0142)

Italy is responsible for approximately 13% of the world’s production of tomatoes, placing it third in the world after the USA and China with 5.4 million tonnes of tomatoes processed in 2015. The industry value currently totals 4.7 billion AUD with 2.3 billion AUD in exports. Just over half of the tomatoes are sourced from the central and southern areas of Italy and the remainder are from northern Italy. The production method of Italian tinned tomatoes is unique in the world in that they are ripened to perfection on the vine before being preserved, giving them that much sought after, full-bodied taste and quality that characterizes Italian tomatoes.

To celebrate this remarkable Italian product that is an essential ingredient in cooking around the world, the Italian Trade Agency and CIRA have brought together five of Australia’s most notable Italian chefs for a special industry event on 28th April at Sydney’s Osteria Balla Manfredi. Each chef will create a unique course that highlights the precious Italian preserved tomato across a five-course menu.

20160428 - Oro Rosso Luncheon Osteria Balla Manfredi - GabrieleTaddeucciGiovanniPiluDannyRussoFrancescoSpataroEugenioMaiale- photo Ken Butti(0155)

The chefs participating in the event include:

  •   Gabriele Taddeucci, Head Chef at Osteria Balla Manfredi;
  •   Giovanni Pilu of Pilu at Freshwater;
  •   Eugenio Maiale of A Tavola;
  •   Francesco Spataro of Aperitivo
  •   Danny Russo of Russolini.Antonietta Baccanari, Italian Trade Commissioner comments;

20160428 - Oro Rosso Luncheon Osteria Balla Manfredi - Francesco Spataro - photo Ken Butti(0016)

20160428 - Oro Rosso Luncheon Osteria Balla Manfredi - Burrata with cherry tomato - photo Ken Butti(0009)

20160428 - Oro Rosso Luncheon Osteria Balla Manfredi - Pecorino Tortellini, tomato broth and bottarga - photo Ken Butti(001)

 20160428 - Oro Rosso Luncheon Osteria Balla Manfredi - Tomato Cannoli with Saffron Crema e Fiordilatte Gelato - photo Ken Butti(0001)

“We are really excited to host this special event and to bring together five of Australia’s most respected Italian chefs for what is set to be an informative and culinary experience. Preserved tomatoes form the base of many of the worlds most well-loved and popular dishes and this event will be a creative showcase of how the tomatoes can be used in cooking.”

Industry expert and owner of Pancrazio Spa, the Italian leader company of the vegetable canned industry, Annibale Pancrazio will visit Australia later this month for a talk on tinned tomato production in Italy and its positive impact on Australian food. The Italian Trade Agency is thrilled to have the opportunity to host Mr Pancrazio who will share his knowledge about the distinctive features of this important Italian industry.

20160428 - Oro Rosso Luncheon Osteria Balla Manfredi - Annibale Pancrazio- photo Ken Butti(0153)

“Australia is a country that is renowned for its rich and diverse food culture”, says Antonietta Baccanari, Italian Trade Commissioner, “and I hope this event will communicate to both industry professionals and consumers the importance of working with genuine Italian ingredients to create authentic recipes.”

by Arrnott Olssen
Editor Rogue Homme