The Melbourne International Film Festival opens in 4 days and runs from 30th July – 16th August. I am a huge fan of film but food always comes in as my number one interest. An avid MIFF-goer suggested I compile a list of Foodie movies featuring at Melbourne International Film Festival which I thought was a fantastic idea.
For those people who like food so much they want to watch films about food, this is for you. Here’s my pick of the top 5 foodie films I can’t wait to see at MIFF. I’ve paired each film with a recommended MIFF Food & Film partner restaurant/venue so you may as well make a night of it.
1. FOODIES – English
People travel across the other side of the world to watch a football match.. why not to try a restaurant? What compels a person to spend enormous amounts of money and time in pursuit of the world’s finest dishes? This revealing documentary chronicles the journeys of five of the internet’s most influential restaurant bloggers (Brit Andy Hayler; former model Aiste Miseviciute;Opinionated About Dining‘s Steve Plotnicki; Perm Paitayawat, aka The Skinny Bib; and Hong Kong’s Katie Keiko, from K’s Luxe Dining Table), self-appointed food critics from all corners of the world who’ve devoted their lives to the culinary quest and amassed huge followings as a result.
To eat: This is all about seeking out the fine food in life and trying it all. Cumulus UP $$$$ is your place to do that. I’d book if it was a weekend but they do accept walk-ins. The menu and experience is well worth it.
2. For Grace – English
For aspiring chefs: Curtis Duffy takes haute cuisine to the extreme. The former troubled teen turned renowned chef has set his sights on opening his own restaurant, Grace – but he doesn’t just want his Chicago eatery to be American’s best. He wants a three-star Michelin rating for creating molecular gastronomy. He wants perfection, and he’s willing to sacrifice everything to achieve it.
Chicago Tribune dining reporter Kevin Pang and filmmaker Mark Helenowski chart Duffy’s quest, making tragic revelations about his upbringing while documenting his tenacious pursuit of his culinary dreams. A smorgasbord of meticulously crafted meals provides a visual feast; however it’s personal drama that drives this behind-the-scenes look at fine dining, uncovering the cost of and plight behind Duffy’s food obsession.
To eat: Niew Amsterdam – $$ for American BBQ with a Melbourne twist and cocktails all evening. You’ll have to book for dinner but the lunch menu is also great and usually fine for walk ins.
3. Good Things Await – Danish with English Subtitles
This film would be perfect for the conscious eater. For more than three decades, Niels Stokholm has run a biodynamic farm in Thorshøjgaard, Denmark, creating organic produce in accordance with his belief that humans and nature should coexist in fundamental harmony. Yet while his products are enjoyed by some of the finest restaurants around the world, including Noma and Restaurant Julian, Stokholm is under threat from a bureaucracy that doesn’t see eye-to-eye with his sustainable farming methods. Good things await is a cinematic meditation on an idealist devoted to the Earth’s future.
To Eat: The Meatball & Wine Bar $$ sources the finest quality Australian ingredients and the origins of each type of meatball can be found on their website. Again, I’d suggest booking if you’re looking to go on a weekend but they do a fantastic lunch as well.
4. Cooking Up A Tribute – Spanish with English subtitles
Brothers Joan, Josep and Jordi Roca – masterminds behind the triple-hatted El Celler de Can Roca in northern Catalonia – are superstars of the culinary world. After being declared the second best restaurant in the world last year (it has since been voted best restaurant in the world), the trio decide to shut the place down for five weeks and embark upon a monumental journey across South America with the entire kitchen and dining-room staff. Their mission: to return with 57 new dishes informed by the traditions and cultures of the places they visit.
To eat: I couldn’t look past MoVida – $$$ to perfectly compliment this film. Fantastic Spanish Tapas with each meal bursting with flavour. Really good idea to book
5. Foodie-ism – are we full up?– Speaking event
Last but not least, this talk looks really interesting. As someone who does photograph (sososo many) of my meals, and spend days writing about them.. photographing them and sharing them I can’t wait to go along and hear what others think.
Does your meal really exist if you haven’t photographed it? In an age when everyone is a food critic, and chefs are some of our biggest celebrities, many of us seem more focused on documenting our food experiences than actually eating it!
Join The Age’s Dani Valent, Pulitzer Prize-winning food critic Jonathan Gold (City of Gold, MIFF 2015), chef Shane Delia, Gelato Messina’s Declan Lee, intolerable foodie Kate McLennan and food blogger Emily Naismith as they discuss the trend of foodie-ism and whether it has gone too far.
To eat: Asian Beer Cafe $ for cheap eats, cheap jugs of beer and cartoon characters everywhere. You don’t need to book and you don’t need to take any photos of your food! Or, Loop Bar $ is a fantastic rooftop bar (with bar snacks & Pizza) and delicious drinks.
Was there anything on your list that was a must see? Let me know in the comments below.
I’m so excited to see these foodie films and please let me know if you end up seeing one. Have a wonderful day and happy MIFF!
Please note the descriptions of the films are from the MIFF website with some of my own comments and observations included.