FORK TALK - A CHAT WITH OUR FOOD, WINE & DINING EXPERTS
Michael Demagistris — Many Little Bar & Bistro, 2-5/159 Shoreham Rd, Red Hill South

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Tell us about Many Little’s bistro, bar, and cellar door.

Many Little is a community hub; it’s a meeting place, somewhere to relax and celebrate local producers. The owners, Sam and Emma, have built a really stylish place to enjoy food and drink the best Victorian wines and the most interesting boutique spirits in a relaxed venue.

How has it been since you opened last December?

We’ve been adapting and changing since opening and I think we’ve got a great offering. If you head along for breakfast, lunch, dinner or just drinks, you’ll find yourself planning your next visit. Many Little has a real charm about it.  

What can customers expect from your menu?

The menu features bistro classics and some interesting combinations thrown in to keep it interesting. My favourite part of the menu is the specials board, where we feature estate-grown produce and try out new dishes — not to mention the rotating beers on tap and the weekly cocktail specials.

What’s your go-to trend to serve up that customers are loving?

I wouldn’t say it’s a trend, but we are really about family-style eating, ordering a heap of different plates — snacks, entrees and mains — and sharing them among the table.

 What is your style in the kitchen?

Pickling and fermenting will always hold a place on the menu. With my food I’m always creating things packed with flavour and bringing balance to the wonderful salty, sweet and sour flavours, which in my opinion lift dishes and bring them to life.

What do you enjoy doing in your spare time?

Spending time with my family — my beautiful wife and kids — and of course eating out!

What do you love most about what you do?

Sharing my knowledge with my team and seeing their passion; the creativity and storytelling that you can share through food, whether it is presentation, taste, nostalgia, a recipe passed down or a local producer to showcase.

Do you have any advice for aspiring chefs?

Be true to your vision and work hard to share it on the table with others. Learn as much as you can and never underestimate the value of international experience. It will open your eyes to a whole new way of thinking about food. My No.1 piece of advice is think about how you can lead the future, understand seasonality and make the most of your surroundings. Look locally first.

KATE SEARS

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