Good Food under $30 Awards 2014

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Good Food under $30 Awards 2013

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Taste of the Orient is featured in The Age Cheap Eats 2011.

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Joe Lam and Rebecca Ma

Joe Lam and Rebecca Ma

Taste of the Orient was featured in The Age Newspaper article about food in Castlemaine:

“JOE Lam makes what are possibly the best steamed pork buns in the nation. Light, white and fluffy, the dough breaks open releasing a rich yeasty aroma, the generous filling sweet and flecked with juicy morsels of free-range pork. The tiger prawn dumplings are pretty good too — plump and made with fresh prawns, they are contained in a layer of pleated hand-made rice skin. In fact, everything Lam makes in his small takeaway store tastes good. If it were in inner Melbourne he’d never be able to keep up with the trade. His shop, Taste of the Orient, is on the road to Bendigo in the middle of Castlemaine, a historic town of 8000 or so in central Victoria.
Four years ago he and his partner, Rebecca Ma, were living in the crowded New Territories in Hong Kong. They had never heard of Castlemaine. They knew they wanted to find a “creative” education for their two boys. They started searching the globe for a Steiner school and Castlemaine kept coming up. They enrolled the boys in school, gained entrance into a cookery course to get a visa, took over a takeaway chook shop, painted it red and now do a roaring trade making dim sum.”
Lam and Ma’s is not a solitary tale. Chefs, bakers, cheese makers, food retailers, talented winemakers and front-of-house professionals are moving from the city, and places further afield, to Castlemaine and surrounds. Originally they were attracted by affordable housing, a beautiful historic town surrounded by bush, and access to services. Now it seems they are attracted to each other — hospitality in Castlemaine has reached critical mass, with enough good food businesses to support a population of chefs and waiters. They share a passion for quality cuisine. As a result, the town is rapidly becoming a destination for food tourists, even overtaking, perhaps, its self-proclaimed moniker as “Hot Rod Capital of Australia”.

 

 

 

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