by The Huon Valley
Once one of the most feared food critics in Sydney, Matthew Evans earned the respect of his readers with his honest, and sometimes scathing restaurant reviews. He often noted that the produce served, was not of a quality that could be found at local farmers markets. In 2008, Matthew embarked on one of Australia’s most high profile tree changes, beginning a new chapter on his own small farm in the Huon Valley.
“I came to the Huon because, in the first instance, I was attracted by the beauty of the place, the fact it gets more rain than some places near Hobart, and ultimately because I love the mix of people that really make the place.”
The Gourmet Farmer
Transitioning from big city living to becoming a bona fide farmer, with virtually no experience, would be a daunting task for anyone. Having a camera crew follow your progress certainly adds another layer to the story.
Matthew’s determination to succeed at his new life has been documented in the hit tv series, Gourmet Farmer. Beamed into households across the country, the show has followed Matthew’s progress over a number of years and inspired many to think about where their food really comes from.
“I believe it’s good to eat seasonally, to source food locally, and to care about what you put in your mouth and the mouths of your loved ones. This builds vibrant families, vibrant communities, and mutual respect amongst all the people who make the Huon what it is.”
The People Make the Place
“My best trade secret is to love thy neighbour (or at least like them enough to look to them for support). What your neighbour knows about this land, how much they can help you achieve what you want in life, and how you can get the most out of the season, the soil, the seas around, is more than you can learn in any book.”
When you live in a community, where the your neighbours share your ethos, it truly feels like home.
“It’s a like minded community, where milking a house cow isn’t unusual, turning a pig into your own sausages is quite a normal thing to do, and having access to farm fresh produce is the norm.”
I don’t think I would have done as many amazing things if I wasn’t so inspired by the beautiful surroundings and magnificent produce of the Huon.
- Matthew Evans