Owner and chef Lee Cecchin of Old Saltbush has recently come back from Brisbane after serving a special Broken Hill themed lunch at the esteemed La Chaîne des Rôtisseurs Bailliage de Brisbane.
The event was held on the rooftop of the Thomas Dixon Centre, where Chef Cecchin’s lunch, against the panoramic backdrop of the Brisbane skyline, showcased indigenous flavours, earning full endorsement from the diners present. “It went really well. We went up there to cook a lunch using Indigenous flavours and showcase what Broken Hill has to offer, and diners were very, very receptive to the food,” Ms Cecchin reported to the Truth in an exclusive interview.
Organising such a feat — transporting a taste of Broken Hill to Brisbane — was challenging, yet Chef Cecchin succeeded admirably. She shipped bottles of locally produced gin and her celebrated emu pies, and personally brought upwards of sixty rolls from Sufi Bakery on the flight. “Everything was authentic from our kitchen. And once I was there, I completed the preparation on site, serving lunch to between 40 and 50 people,” she recounted.
Despite her confidence in her culinary skills, Ms Cecchin acknowledged some pre-event nerves. “You know your craft, but it is the unknown of how it will be received that’s daunting. You’re in the spotlight more than usual,” she reflected.
Ms Cecchin extended her gratitude towards her good friend Josh Lopez, who also served at the event, and the staff provided by Cuisine on Cue, a Brisbane-based catering service, especially the two chefs who assisted her with the lunch. “The guys alleviated a lot of the stress because they were familiar with the venue. They were my eyes and ears, and the two chefs who came to help on the day were simply awesome,” she expressed.
Following the success of this event, La Chaîne is now in talks to organise a three-day culinary celebration in Broken Hill for 2024. When queried about her enthusiasm for the potential event, Ms Cecchin shared with the Truth, “I want to showcase Broken Hill and what we have to offer. I have a few ideas, and I am pretty excited about it.”
To sample the wares that Chef Lee Cecchin is bringing to the forefront of Australian dining culture, head to 1 Oxide Street and the Old Saltbush – but be sure to book, there’s some busy days ahead for Chef Cecchin with Christmas just around the corner.
“The next few weeks will be manic all over the place with Christmas functions. People are gong to want to be celebrating and we have quite a bit on over the next few weeks.”
PICTURE: STUART KAVANAGH