Mike Whitney and the Sydney Weekender team spent a few days filming around Port Stephens this winter, on the invitation of Destination Port Stephens. The segment, which focuses on fresh Port Stephens Seafood, will go to air this coming Sunday, August 6 on Prime7.
The crew was hosted by PRD Nationwide at the spectacular Bluewater Splendour beach house which Sydney Weekender selected as a recommendation for a unique coastal getaway at Port Stephens.
Local oysters and the oyster growing families who have farmed pristine Port Stephens waters for generations were of particular interest and will be the focus of the featured segment. Mike Whitney had no hesitation in rolling up his sleeves and pitching in with Dean and Stephen Cole at Cole Brothers Oyster Farm.
“We can be so proud of the local product. Mike really does love his oysters and as someone who travels Australia extensively, his compliment that our Karuah oysters were probably the best he has tasted gave should give all of the local growers a real sense of pride in the quality of what we do.”
Said Dean Cole of Cole Brothers Oysters.
Sydney Weekender filmed out on the oyster leases where the Coles showed Mike the ropes around setting and harvesting oysters. The former star of Australian cricket got a real kick out of holding a dozen oysters in the palm of his hand– as the Cole brothers introduced him to baby oysters for the first time.
For the Sydney Weekender crew, it was an early start the following day as they filmed Bob Monin’s fishing boats coming into the marina on daybreak. Fascinated by the appeal of ‘Trawler to Table’ dining around Port Stephens during Love Seafood and year-round, this was something the producers were keen to capture.
“That’s what Love Seafood is all about – fun ways to experience the freshest local seafood, right here at the source, with the producers.” Says Danny Eather, Destination Marketing Manager for Destination Port Stephens.
“We should see some great interest, particularly among the Sydney market, in joining the celebrations at this year’s Love Seafood events.”
An authentic taste of Port Stephens wouldn’t be complete without an experience of the fabulous local food culture. Featured for the segment was chef Ben Way of Little Beach Boathouse, in light of his particular synergy with local fishermen and oyster growers.
“It’s not unusual for one of the Monin brothers to text me at 3am to tell me what’s running and see what I fancy for the day’s menu.” Ben told Mike. “Little Beach Boathouse has also had a relationship with the Holbert family oyster growers for years and their plump oysters just walk out the door. People can’t get enough of them!”
The featured segment on Port Stephens and the Love Seafood festival goes to air on Sydney Weekender, Channel 7, on Sunday, August 6 from 5.30pm
“Both Mike and his producer were so taken by the enthusiasm and generosity of our seafood community, and by all of the ideas, we put forward to them around Port Stephens as a destination, that they have said they will absolutely be back to film more stories. That’s great news for the region and all our operators. “ Danny Eather said.