Ahead of the Masters Apprentices event on Sunday 2 May, we chat with Nathan Hunter about what it’s like to go from watching cooking shows after school to building a career as a chef.
Have you always pictured yourself working as a chef? What were young Nathan’s dreams for the future?
I’ve always wanted to be a chef. When I was younger around 7 or 8 I remember coming home from school and watching cooking shows like Huey’s kitchen and the like with my mum and I remember thinking to myself that cooking was what I wanted to do.
What was your journey to the kitchen of Fino Seppeltsfield like? Who mentored you through the early years in kitchens?
After moving to NSW in 2010 I starting taking hospitality classes at my high school. When I was in 10th grade at high school my hospitality teacher told me of an opportunity to work in a local fine dining restaurant called the old George and Dragon, where I worked first as a school based trainee and later a full apprentice. I remember one night after a busy service where I’d felt like I did a terrible job and just stuffed up so much I was sitting out the back and my sous chef at the time Greg Cameron sat down next me and gave me a beer and told me something that would stay with me for the rest of my life ‘some of the hardest days in the kitchen can be the best days of your life’. That moment was when I knew Greg would be a mentor for me not only in the kitchen, but in my life as a whole and that cooking would always be my passion.
What do you want to see in Barossa’s culinary future?
When I first started working in the Barossa in the back end of 2017 I was amazed at the fresh produce and local producers that were at the ready to supply the restaurants of the region. If i had with for Barossa’s future it would be to continue those direct relationships between the local producers and the restaurants of this great region.
You can catch Nathan as part of the chef team at Masters Apprentices, a Tasting Australia event Sunday 2 May 2021.
Yesterday’s apprentices > Today’s mentors > Tomorrow’s masters.
5 courses + 10 wines delivered through the eyes of 6 chefs + 10 winemakers destined to make their mark, leading the next generation of Barossa food and wine.
Tickets $155pp – tastingaustralia.com.au