James Squire Edible Biography

To celebrate the life and times of James Squire, Australia’s first brewer, the wold’s first edible biography was held in The Cell Block Theatre of Darlinghurst Gaol.

James Squire Edible Biography
Cell Block Theatre

Guests were transported back to the late eighteenth century, in a manner different to the way that James Squire was transported from England to Australia in the 1780s, to a room with long tables for the feast that was to come. A storyteller from the day brought to life highlights of the life of this criminal and scoundrel who become the colony’s first brewer, a district constable and philanthropist.

James Squire Edible Biography
Long Tables

Each course was a link to an event in the life of James Squire to which the period storyteller would explain. The bespoke menu provided an interpretation of dishes of those times with produce that would have been available then and all were paired with James Squire beers and cider.

James Squire Edible Biography
The Perfect Storm

Guests were served The Perfect Storm cocktail with Stow Away India Pale Ale, Vermouth and Lime upon arrival to accompany Ship’s Rations (appetizers) of corned beef with piccalilli, Pease pudding and cow’s hey, salt fish and sauerkraut.

James Squire Edible Biography

To start, fresh oysters dressed with finger lime caviar and a Hop Thief 7 American Pale Ale granita were paired with One Fifty Lashes Pale Ale,

James Squire Edible Biography
Pork Cubes

followed by chilli caramel glazed pork belly cubes.

James Squire Edible Biography
Mid-Course Vegetable Reviver

The Mid-Course Vegetable Reviver of farm grown Parramatta Valley produce of carrot, baby turnip, asparagus and broccoli in a Hop Thief 7 American Pale Ale beer batter was served in a paper cornucopia and paired with The Swindler Summer Ale.

James Squire Edible Biography
Sultry Fog

This was not just brews, food and story. There were theatrics to accompany such as a fog created on stage to mirror the saying ‘sailors of many nations who were vague about the locations of Ninevah or Babylon could find their way way to Squire’s in a thick fog’.

James Squire Edible Biography

Even a cat o’ nine tails threatened.

James Squire Edible Biography

The main of Deconstructed Beer Wellington served with Parsnip cream, wilted sauteed spinach and glazed baby carrots was perfectly paired with Nine Tales Amber Ale.

James Squire Edible Biography


The dessert of Beer Gelato of Yeast and Honey alongside The Constable Copper Ale and Brown Bread panna cotta, with a malt and pollen crumb was paired with The Constable Copper Ale.

James Squire Edible Biography
Funeral Procession

The solemn funeral procession, with casket, to mark the passing of James Squire delivered thankfully not his remains but the cheese course,

James Squire Edible Biography

with three cheeses served with loquat chutney and oat chutney paired with Orchard Crush Apple Cider.

James Squire Edible Biography
Post Prandial

To farewell the evening, a Jack of Spades Porter Martini with vodka and coffee liqueur was served accompanied the plum duff truffles.

James Squire Edible Biography

This edible biography fulfilled in educating about James Squire though word, performance and through an eighteenth century inspired dining experience that would long be remembered. This story of James Squire was brought to life by Bompas & Parr, London and the bespoke menu created by Aria Catering.

James Squire Edible Biography was held on Thursday 4th February 2016.


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About the author

Kevin Burke

Kevin Burke is the Co-Founder of Gourmantic. He was first carried onto a plane at 3 months old. He enjoyed it so much, most of his efforts have been to get back in them to travel. He has lived on 3 continents and in addition to his love of travel and food, he is passionate about wine, chocolate and music.

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