Earlier this year, we sent 8 lucky winners to complete exciting internships in South Australia. Today’s blog comes from one of those winners, Sarah, who worked as a food ambassador for Vili’s Pies – an iconic family run meat pie company in Adelaide.
When I discovered I had won the chance to do a working holiday in South Australia I couldn’t wait. I have always wanted to explore Australia and the chance to tie that in with gaining valuable work experience seemed like a once in a lifetime opportunity.
My time in South Australia is an experience that I’ll never forget. Some of my favourite moments were spent relaxing at the beach, hiking in the hills and trying all of the delicious food the region has to offer.
Mentor me – Who made all the pies?
I spent one month working at the iconic Vili’s Bakery. Here I learnt how all of the delicious pies and pastries are made by hand in the. I got stuck in making the products and was lucky that I was able to spend a lot of my time in the cake department! One of the most memorable things I made at Vili’s was a cake for the Royal Adelaide Show, which was devoured by over 2,000 hungry people!
As well as perfecting my baking skills I spent time with the sales reps learning about how the products are sold to market. I performed safety checks with the QA department and spent time learning about how the products are exported around the world, including the UK.
Adelaide itself is a mecca for food lovers – especially Central Market which is a must visit place for any foodie or foodie-wannabe.
Here you can find the freshest produce, the tastiest cakes and the most delicious cured meats and fish all under one roof. And the coffee? In-cred-ible! In the city there so many eateries to discover – including gourmet pizza restaurants where you sit at the bar you can see the pizzas being made right in front of you (and even a dessert pizza which is covered in chocolate and pistachios).
It’s no secret that South Australia has some fantastic food and wine. Residents are passionate about supporting local producers and this follows through from the kitchens to the plates served up. Whilst there, I visited two wine regions, Barossa and McLaren Vale. It was so much fun to sample all the different varieties and I learnt that South Australian has some of the best wines!
Pies and pasties feature heavily in South Australia cuisine; they’re even sold in the Starbucks. However the pies are very different to English pies. They are designed to be eaten whilst holding them in your hand rather than with cutlery. This means the pie filling is a lot thicker, with more meat and less runny than pies in the UK. The pasties at Vili’s Bakery in Adelaide have even won awards beating Cornish Pasties from England!
Walking off the pies
Whilst staying in Adelaide I spent time exploring the Adelaide Hills, 20 minutes outside of the city. Here you can find stunning scenery and amazing native wildlife. I walked the popular route of Waterfall Gully to Mount Lofty as well as other lesser-known routes. You can often see koalas in the trees and kangaroos in the bushes. There are cockatoos flying in the skies and frogs croaking in the waters. It is so near the city yet you feel like you are a whole world away. There are so many walks you can do – I wish that I’d had more time there to explore further.
South Australia is a fantastic place to explore. It is thriving with gourmet delights and numerous nature trails to discover. There was so much to do in just five weeks, it really was hard to leave!