Rootstock crowdfunds sustainable kitchen

14 November, 2017 by Madeline Woolway

Rootstock Sydney is launching a crowdfunding campaign to fund Rootstock’s first sustainable kitchen. The campaign kicked off on 8 November and will last until 7 December on the Australian-based platform Pozible.

The festival’s co-founders Giorgio De Maria and James Hird have conceived a modular, sustainable kitchen, designed by architect Silvester Fuller and sculpture Dion Horstmans. The kitchen build is a continuation of Rootstock’s initiative to fundraise and promote various indigenous agricultural programs driven by Victorian author and activist Bruce Pascoe.

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Rootstock aims to raise $22,000 to fund the kitchen, which will then be donated to three indigenous Yuin communities on the south coast of New South Wales: Digging Stick foods, Yuin Women’s Group and Wurdi Youang.

“The intention of the project is to showcase innovative, sustainable design,” says Hird. “Ultimately, we want to help out local communities by providing kitchens that provide maximum output with a minimal environmental footprint.”

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On 26 and 27 November, Rootstock will host a handful of Australia’s most innovative chefs in the kitchen including Ben Shewry (Attica), Jock Zonfrillo (Restaurant Orana, Bistro Blackwood), Mat Lindsay (Ester) and Kylie Kwong (Billy Kwong). The chefs will take shifts in the kitchen during the two-day event, in a line-up co-curated by Pasi Petänen (Café Paci).

Dishes will be cooked over fire — wood-fired oven, the ‘cooking tree’, and butterfly spit — with the menu set to feature charcoal Moreton Bay bug tails, spit lamb tacos, and blistered fire-roasted pineapples. Artisan bakery Iggy’s Bread will serve up croissants in the morning, while an Italy x Australia mortadella party will be hosted on Sunday night.

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“Fire is the oldest cooking technique in Australia,” says De Maria. “As we’re donating the kitchen post the festival, we wanted to build a kitchen that utilises this power source in a way that is also functional and can be used to feed large numbers at community gatherings.”

A strong line-up of themed Rootstock bars will round out the experience, dedicated to Blackmarket Sake, orange wine, pet nat and Two Metre Tall wild fermented beer. Access to the sustainable kitchen and Rootstock bars are free, while tickets to the wine tastings start at $55 per session. Complementing the food and wine offering will be Rootstock’s returning eponymous bottleshop, carrying a range of wine and a series of wine posters made by Gianluca Cannizzo available for purchase.