Former food critic Matthew Evans chucked in his city life for a taste of small-farm living in Tasmania, that heart-shaped island somewhere down the bottom of Australia. Gourmet Farmer follows the new trajectory of Matthew’s life: from living in Australia’s biggest and busiest city, to a country life in an isolated part of the island state.
6 Seasons: 62 x 30′ Food Series
This is a truly inspirational series. Over five series so far, viewers have had the vicarious experience of living on a farm and cooking the produce it delivers. The audience has grown along with Matthew, sharing not just his triumphs, but his missteps as well.
In Season 1 Matthew’s eager to seriously put to the test his primary belief that we should all be directly connected with our food – either by growing it or rearing it ourselves, or sourcing it from local producers.
In Season 2, having become a fully -fledged family man with partner Sadie and son Hedley, Matthew sets about upscaling Puggle Farm which goes from being home for two pigs to 22, and coming up with ways of preserving and selling the extra pork produce from more than just his market stall.
In Season 3 Matthew’s new goal is to become self-sufficient and generate enough income to support his family. His new property, Fat Pig Farm, makes Puggle Farm’s 10 hectares look pretty insignificant, and is both daunting and exciting. He could have more pigs, more cows, more sheep, ducks, geese, a dairy, a smoker, a hanging room, a polytunnel, an orchard – all on the one plot of land where everything will be integrated: the pigs ploughing the soil, the orchard providing food for the pigs, the cows delivering non-stop supplies of milk (and whey for the piglets). Matthew, Sadie and little Hedley taking on the challenge of making the new farm work.
Changes are afoot on Fat Pig Farm in Season 4 of the series. The architects have been called in, a business plan formed and Matthew Evans is about to go full circle – from reviewing restaurants to building his own. The stakes have never been higher! When the doors are flung open of the farm-to-table restaurant Fat Pig Kitchen, Matthew will serve up only what he grows and rears on his own farm. Food critic turned farmer turned restaurateur…how hard can it be?
In Season 5, it’s all about the soil. Matthew poses a currently novel question, What does what I eat, eat? From what his animals graze on to the earth his fruit and vegetables grow out of, he turns to the soil. His challenge now is to leave his land more productive and healthier for future generations to come. We follow Matthew over the course of a year and four seasons as he embarks on various projects from digging swales to trap water, companion planting, and crop rotation. From foodie to farmer, to chef to rehabilitator of the land. It’s one man versus nature, how hard can it be?