The Unbearable Lightness of Being Hungry | A Sydney Food Blog

New podcast – Jordan Toft, Bert’s, Coogee Pavilion, Bar Topa, The Collaroy

August 12th, 2019  |  Published in Latest, Podcasts, Travel

Jordan Toft has been a chef for Saudi royalty and he’s run a chalet in the Haute-Savoie in the French Alps. In Sydney, he’s known for his work at Bert’s (which was nominated for New Restaurant of the Year in the last Gourmet Traveller restaurant awards), The Collaroy, Bar Topa and Coogee Pavilion. His next venture – a restaurant on the middle floor at Coogee Pavilion – has been more than four years in the making. 

Jordan started his career as a teenager and has since worked with many great chefs (he was mentored by Peter Doyle during an influential stint as Est). His career has sent him to Italy and France – and we spend a lot of this conversation talking about Europe because a) Jordan had one of the best meals of his life at Maison Bras in Laguiole, France (the lunch he ate preceding it is pretty hilarious, BTW) and b) because Jordan and I recently went on a Eurail trip that zipped through Spain, France and Switzerland.

We talk about the highlights of travelling via train carriages through this part of the world while flexing a Eurail pass. Some of the memorable experiences we had included eating at Llet Crua, in Barcelona (a cheese shop that specialises in revived Catalan cheeses); foraging for wild Spanish flowers and herbs on the Costa Brava coastline with Evarist March (a “gastrobotanist” who works with the acclaimed El Celler de can Roca); eating desserts inspired by old books and Game of Thrones at Rocambolesc (the gelato parlour run by Jordi Roca, the world-renowned pastry chef); Jordan running into a strangely familiar face at a traditional Lyon restaurant; and taking ultra-scenic trains around Lake Geneva, including the GoldenPass Classic “Belle Epoque” trip up a Swiss mountain to eat mushroom fondue and see Gruyère cheese being made from two-hour-old milk at Le Chalet. Oh and there’s the time Jordan bought 150 euros of jamón and schlepped it through two entire countries, too!

You can listen to this episode on Apple Podcasts or download it via RSS or directly. You can also find it on Stitcher and Google Podcasts nowadays. Also, XL-sized thanks to anyone who leaves kind comments about this show on Apple Podcasts. And major gratitude to everyone who subscribes to this podcast and tells me how much they like listening to it – it’s infinitely encouraging (especially during the incredibly long editing sessions)!

This was a fun country-hopping conversation. Thanks to Eurail and Example‘s Rebecca Gibbs for making the aforementioned trip possible!

You can see my Instagram Story highlights of the trip here (featured are some of the places that Jordan and I chat about during the podcast).

Coogee Pavilion photograph by Will Reichelt. Jordan Toft portrait on the “Belle Epoque” train and photo of Switzerland by Jaime Kowal.

Tags: , , , ,

Your Comments



Hi, I'm Lee Tran Lam. When not blogging with my mouth full, I'm usually writing, presenting Local Fidelity on FBi radio, making zines, producing podcasts or continually breaking promises about how I really am gonna get through my book pile one day.

All the good pictures on this blog are by photography ace (and patient boyfriend), Will Reichelt, (all the dodgy ones can be credited to me)!

The lovely banner is by friend and ultra-talented illustrator Grace Lee.

This site redesign was made possible by the next-level generosity and expertise of Daniel Boud, whose code-tinkering ways are only outranked by his seriously inspired way with a camera.

You can read more about my co-conspirators here.

This is a blog I do for pure fun and zero influence – there's no sponsorship, sneaky advertorial or advertising. I pay for all the food mentioned, 'cos it seems the ethical thing to do.


This is a blog about eating and drinking in Sydney, Australia (with the odd cross-border or off-topic detour). BYO appetite.

Subscribe via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.