Event in the spotlight: Sydney Showground Menu Launch

Sydney Showground held an intimate launch event last week, treating just over 60 industry guests to a showcase of its new food and beverage menu.

Sydney Showground held an intimate event for just over 60 industry guests to launch its new food and beverage menu. The event was held at Sydney Showground on Thursday, 24 November, and was hosted by the venue’s general manager, Darryl Jeffrey and director of food and beverage, James Farr.

Throughout the evening, guests were treated to a showcase of the new menu as well as a brief Q&A with representatives of featured premium medal-winning products and food and beverage staff.

Operated by the Royal Agricultural Society of NSW (RAS), Sydney Showground has a unique connection to the Sydney Royal brand, and the new menu elevates this by combining fresh local produce with key Sydney Royal medal products to deliver a top-tier experience for clients.

What was the event brief?

With the launch of Sydney Showground’s new menu and catering compendium, the venue wanted to host an event with clients, key suppliers and media to celebrate the launch. The focus for guests was to experience first-hand the high-level of service and quality offered by the Sydney Showground food and beverage team and highlight the unique connection the venue has to award-winning Sydney Royal producers due to its affiliation with the Sydney Royal competitions.

At its core, Sydney Showground’s purpose is to help support Australian agriculture through its parent company, the Royal Agricultural Society of NSW. And this includes bolstering local producers through its event menus and elevating Sydney Royal award-winning producers. Producers who are lifting the bar when it comes to Australian food and beverages.

As a completely in-house food and beverage team, Sydney Showground is specialised in catering for events of all sizes and understands the unique complexities of event catering. This event was created to highlight the team’s skill and provide guests with a broader understanding of the Sydney Showground business.

How did you deliver the event?

The menu launch was hosted in the Charley Room situated in GIANTS Stadium, at Sydney Showground, Sydney Olympic Park.

Hosted by food personality and Sydney Royal President’s Medal Judge, Ed Halmagyi, guests enjoyed a three-course meal that reflected the options on the 2023 Sydney Showground menu compendium, created by the venue’s food and beverage team and Executive Chef, Tim Browne. Throughout the menu, key Sydney Royal award-winning suppliers were showcased to draw attention to the venue’s unique connection to premier wine, dairy and fine food competitions run by Sydney Royal.

Enjoying a completely immersive experience, representatives from Julianne’s kitchen, Rio Vista Olive Oil, Andrews Meats, Meredith Dairy and Tyrrells Wine gave an overview of their products and highlighted the importance of competitions like the Sydney Royal and venues like Sydney Showground supporting top tier products. Before the night wrapped, guests also got to hear directly from Sydney Showground’s Director of Food and Beverage, James Farr and Executive Chef, Tim Browne, in a Q&A format.

The intimate style of the event showcased the high-level and quality service a venue like Sydney Showground can provide while also sharing the venue’s unique ties and connection to the Australian food and beverage industry through Sydney Royal. As a business run by the Royal Agricultural Society of NSW, the event allowed guests to hear firsthand how Sydney Showground differs through its core mission to drive agriculture in Australia.

Who was involved?

Sydney Showground clients, key suppliers and Sydney Royal award-winning producers, Sydney Showground and RAS Executive management, Sydney Showground Food and Beverage team, hosted by Ed Halmagyi, food personality and Sydney Royal President’s Medal judge.

Key Sydney Showground and RAS staff and suppliers:

Sydney Showground General Manager, Darryl Jeffreys, Head of Sales and Marketing, Andrew Roberts, Director of Food and Beverage, James Farr, Executive Chef, Tim Browne, Manager food and beverage operations, Adrian Gleeson.

RAS CEO Brock Gilmour, SRES & Agriculture General Manager, Murray Wilton. Sydney Royal Fine Food Chair, Lachlan Bowtell.

Sydney Showground Suppliers and Sydney Royal champion producers: Tyrrells Wine, Wine Maker, Mark Richardson, Owner of Julianne’s Kitchen, Julianne Lever, Rio Vista Olive Oil Managing Director & Head Miller Jared Bettio, Sunshine Meats Business Development Manager, Nalita Ferraz. Andrews Meats Sales Executive, Con Spanos.

Were there any challenges and how did you overcome them?

The challenges presented were mainly around how to best showcase the 2023 menu compendium in a way that told a story to our clients and guests. To achieve this, the menu took guests on a journey by connecting the producers (suppliers) through interviews with their product, and how it was featured throughout the Sydney Showground menu. Whether that be in canapés, entrée, main or dessert.

L to R: Host Ed Halmagyi, Sydney Showground Executive Chef, Tim Browne and Sydney Showground Director of Food and Beverage, James Farr.


What was the feedback?

The feedback from attendees was incredibly positive. The event told the story of Sydney Showground and its unique connection to Sydney Royal award-winning produce, which is a key factor within the new food and beverage offerings. Not only did guests get to taste and see the high-level of service provided by the venue but they also got to hear about the journey of the venue’s suppliers and how they had been carefully chosen to be a part of the new compendium.

The intimate setting proved to be the perfect choice to showcase Sydney Showground’s event team and most importantly its star food and beverage team.


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