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Finding Australia's best truffle: 'Are you out there?'


Map of Australia's truffle growing regions.
As I found out, finding Australia's best truffle is a glorious truffle journey.

In this truffle blog post, we are setting out on an exciting journey to find Australia’s best truffle. You might wonder, should I, a decidedly biased farmer, have any say in this quest? As a truffle producer, how could I not favor my own truffles, you ask? Well, consider this an opinion piece where you get to be the judge of what might or might not be Australia’s best truffle. Are you ready for this roller coaster ride? Let’s dive in!


I must admit, this may be one of the most challenging posts I’ve ever written. Initially, I thought it would be an excellent idea, but I've started, restarted, and revised this post countless times, never quite satisfied with the drafts. The idea originated one day while I was planning my list of posts for this truffle season. I had the usual topics: a post about the dogs, one on pairing, another on truffle biology. The list was coming together nicely. Feeling accomplished, I took a break to make a cup of coffee and did some casual browsing.


While searching for a new lens for my camera, I typed into the search engine, "What is the best ultra-wide-angle lens for my digital SLR camera?" This routine search got me thinking: has anyone done this for truffles? To my surprise, nothing came up! Inspired, I added it to my list, and there it sat until I needed some content for a social media post.


With the social media post live, I was surprised to soon receive a phone call from an industry colleague. After exchanging warm greetings and catching up, he asked, "So what are you thinking for that best truffle in Australia post?" Flattered by the interest my idea had generated, I didn't give it much more thought until a few weeks ago when it was time to write it. Only then did I begin to grasp the enormity of the challenge I had set for myself.


So, let's start by setting some boundaries for this exploration. To find the best truffle in Australia, I needed to define what it might actually "look like"—in other words, how will I know when I’ve found it?

 

But where to start? I thought, lists are good. First, it needed some order. Surely, there are essential qualities that truffles must have. If there are must-haves, there should also be good-to-haves, and logically, a list of nice-to-haves. This was a decent start, but something was still missing. My thinking needed a kind of crowning element. This stumped me for a while, prompting more research. I studied coffee appreciation sites and wine sites but found nothing. Then, I thought about what people commonly ask for at our markets.

 

Interesting, I thought, reflecting on it, there are some common themes. The first is origin: where do the truffles come from, or are they from Western Australia people ask? (Good marketing, guys.) Believe it or not, we’ve found that many people don’t know truffles are also produced in NSW, Victoria, Tasmania, South Australia and even in Queensland. Another frequent question concerns size. You’d be surprised how often someone says, “I’ll take the biggest one you have, mate,” or, “Do you have a smaller one than that?” Then there’s the aroma—every time, it literally leaves people speechless.

 

Now back to that list, which, to be honest, had been feeling a bit lackluster and aimless. This is where it gets personal. I kept returning to the question: what do I want out of a truffle? I began to realise that this quest is actually; very personal. I know what I want from a truffle—it’s the one that will perform best on my plate. My thinking is, if truffles are so valuable and expensive, they should live up to the hype and deliver on the plate. What do you think?

 

Closing in on Finding Australia’s best truffle.

Let’s start to bring this together.


From years of searching for, finding, and using truffles, it has been quite a journey. I have researched, tasted, and combined truffles with a plethora of ingredients, and still, I am amazed at what they bring to the plate. But here’s the kicker: I still haven’t mastered predicting how the aroma will play out in a dish. It takes chefs years to get this right, and one day, I will too. But I don’t see this as a drawback. Every time I’m surprised by how the aroma turns out on the plate; I know I’m making progress. This for me, is the glorious truffle journey to finding Australia's best truffle.

 

And there you have it. For me, it’s not out there in a truffle’s location, size, or even its aroma; it’s in me and my journey. It’s about what I need to do to match that aroma to its final performance on the plate. It’s the repeated smelling, the ongoing research, the continuous tasting, and the enjoyment of that lovely, lovely food. All of it! What a journey. My journey to find Australia’s best truffle.


I am interested to know what you think.

 

And that’s a wrap, a post about a journey. Stay tuned next week when we post our blind taste testing truffle list.

 

If you liked this post, please consider sharing the joy with your friends and fellow truffle lovers. If you've got any truffle stories or questions, as always, we're all ears.

 

Ciao for now truffle lovers.

 

 

Carmine

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