Riverland butcher snags country’s best bratwurst

Riverland butcher Nigel Rollbusch says snagging the title of best bratwurst in the nation is “a bit like winning the lotto”.

Waikerie butcher shop Rollbusch Quality Meats took top gong at the national Sausage King Awards in the continental category for its bratwurst sausage.

Rollbusch Quality Meats was the only South Australian finalist to pick up an award at the Australian Meat Industry Council event in Perth earlier this month, a big win for a small business that’s only been running for almost three years.

The winning snag is a German-style sausage made from pork and beef, and Nigel says it’s popular with in-store customers as well as local pubs and a bakery which include the bratwurst on their menus.

The Rollbusch family, from left, Jess, Toni, Nigel and Erin.

“It’s a bit like a mettwurst flavour, we make it from scratch using garlic and a few herbs and spices,” Nigel says.

“To get through to the national awards was great, so when I heard our name being called (as the winner) it was like winning the lotto.”

Nigel has been a butcher for about 20 years, but spent two years prior to taking over the Waikerie butcher shop as a stock agent for Elders.

“This area is a gold mine for quality stock,” he says. “I’ve been a butcher for 20 years, my history is there and my passion is definitely there.

“We source our beef from three local feedlots, the Fogdens, Fisher Brothers and Shannon Brothers, and the pork is from Riverhaven at Taylorville.”

Nigel also entered a turkey and Riverland cumquat sausage in the poultry category of the national awards, but didn’t quite reach the same success as the bratwurst.

Rollbusch Quality Meats is also home to a small fresh fruit and vegetable store, which also sells local cheeses, milk and condiments.

Rollbusch Quality Meats has about eight staff on the books including two apprentices, one of them Nigel’s son, a third-year apprentice.

Nigel’s wife Toni is also involved in the business which supplies a number of local establishments, including the New Land Bakery, the Waikerie and Loxton hotels and the View Point Café at Waikerie.

Recently, Rollbusch Quality Meats expanded its shop to include a small selection of local fruit and vegetables, milk, cheeses and condiments.

Nigel says the small deli has gone “gang busters” since its establishment, increasing business trade by 35%.

“Waikerie is a fantastic area, we have so much local produce here from potatoes, pears and apples to watermelon, rockmelon and coriander,” he says.

“There’s a need for it, it’s what the locals want.”

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Nominations now open for Ag Town of the Year Award

Think your town is an example of an outstanding agricultural community? Nominations for the inaugural South Australian Agricultural Town of the Year Award have now opened.

The new award will form a part of Brand South Australia’s 2019 Regional Showcase program and aims to highlight the vital role agriculture and other primary industries play in regional communities.

Minister for Primary Industries and Regional Development Tim Whetstone is encouraging regional communities to get behind the award and nominate their town.

“The South Australian Agricultural Town of the Year Award is all about recognising and celebrating the role agriculture and other primary industries such as forestry and fisheries play in the economic and social fabric of our regional communities, and the innovation and diversity that come from these towns,” he says.

Town nominations close on February 15, 2019. An independent panel will assess the nominations before selecting the top five towns to be profiled here on Brand SA News.

The five stories will be published from April through to August and will also be shared across social media networks.

“We want to uncover and share stories of excellence in activities that have the underpinning goal of growing and promoting primary industries and driving regional development,” Mr Whetstone says.

Every year Brand SA News brings you a collection of Regional Showcase stories that share the tales of success of regional businesses, individuals and community groups going above and beyond in their region. With the separate Ag Town of the Year stories, we’ll be shining the spotlight on entire towns that are excelling in agricultural practices.

Brand South Australia CEO Karen Raffen welcomes the new addition to the Regional Showcase program.

“The Regional Showcase shares stories of regional success across our channels to demonstrate to the world how fantastic regional SA is and the Agricultural Town of the Year Award adds a new element to this,” she says.

“We’ll be delving deeper into the stories of entire towns that are excelling in their primary industries practices, and the impact this has on their communities and around the state.”

To access the award guidelines or to nominate, click here.

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Top 15 Regional Showcase finalists announced

We brought you the story of the outback cop and her gang of joeys, seaside bakeries and teenage entrepreneurs.

More than 100 of our 2018 Regional Showcase stories, written by our pool of regional journalists and shared here on Brand SA News, have uncovered tales of success, creativity, and overcoming diversity.

Now we bring you the Top 15 Regional Showcase articles, decided with the help of you – the general public – as well as program sponsors, local councils and Regional Development Australia (RDA).

All pockets of regional South Australia have been covered, from far north in the outback down to the Fleurieu, over to the east on the Limestone Coast and stretching to the west on the Eyre Peninsula.

The Top 15 stories are now in the running to win one of three 2018 Regional Showcase awards, announced at an annual celebration evening on October 26 at The Bend Motorsport Park in Tailem Bend.

One of the accolades, the People’s Choice Award, has been decided by your votes – 5500 of them – throughout the month of August.

The Business and Community awards judged by program sponsors, local councils and the RDA, will also be announced on the night.

Brand South Australia CEO Karen Raffen says this year’s program is shaping up to be another success.

“The number of votes received shows that people are passionate about the great work happening in our regions,” she says.

Tickets to the celebration evening are on sale now. Visit www.regionalshowcase.live.


Max Cranes

Port Augusta-based business Max Cranes is reaching new heights with a move to welcome the largest telescopic crane in the southern hemisphere to its fleet.

The mobile crane will allow the Upper Spencer Gulf business to expand its capabilities in construction and maintenance of wind towers.

Max Cranes, co-founded by Mark Kuhn in 2002, has experienced upward growth in its workforce in the last 18 months as the infrastructure, mining, energy and resource sectors in SA surge forward.

Read the story.

Max Cranes Brinkworth Progress Association

This Mid North community group has worked hard in recent years to beautify the sleepy town of Brinkworth, raising money for the upgrade of visitor amenities, the town hall, camping grounds, playgrounds and walking trails.

Brinkworth had a population of 401 people in 2006, plummeting to just 188 in 2011, before creeping back up to 285 in 2016. Could it be the efforts of local volunteers drawing people back in? Read the story.

Carolyn’s Chemo Caps

Strathalbyn woman Carolyn Mugford is behind Carolyn’s Chemo Caps, special headwear for women who have lost their hair due to chemotherapy.

In the past five year’s she and her team of volunteers have made and delivered 10,000 chemo caps to oncology units in hopsitals across SA and VIC.

Carolyn made her first chemo cap in 2011 to hide her bald and sensitive scalp while undergoing cancer treatment herself. Read the story.

C3 Church Adelaide Hills

The Hahndorf Christkindlmarkt, run by the C3 Church Adelaide Hills, has drawn 90,000 visitors to the old German town’s main street to enjoy a European Christmas market atmosphere.

Now in its seventh year, the Christkindlmarkt held every December is run by volunteers. Read the story.

Clare Valley Enterprises

Clare Valley and Barossa Enterprises is the largest regional employer of people with disabilities, with its workers constructing custom made wooden labelled boxes for the wine industry.

Now the Clare Valley side of the business is looking to double its output and its workforce, following the opening of a new workshop there. Read the story.

Cowell Electric

Eyre Peninsula business Cowell Electric has managed power station and distribution networks for decades, providing thousands of customers in more than a dozen remote towns with electricity.

Cowell Electric has gone through ups and downs in its time, but in 2016 celebrated a major win – a $20m State Government contract to supply electricity within the APY Lands.

Recently, it was reported that the business has been taken over by local engineering and construction group Ahrens with managing director Sue Chase leaving the company for which she had helped create new fortunes. Read the story.

Goolwa Bakery

The Goolwa Bakery on the Fleurieu Peninsula is chasing new ventures by preparing to export its pies and pasties to Asia.

Owner Ben Hage will send batches of pepper pies and pastries to Singapore in 2019, and is also in discussions with a Singaporean grocery retailer.

It’s a big move for the country town bakery which has fed hungry locals and tourists in Goolwa for 105 years.

Read the story. 

Flinders Machinery in Booleroo Centre has diversified its services.

Flinders Machinery

This family-owned business in Booleroo Centre in the state’s Far North is striving to help fire up the local economy by expanding its services and supporting job creation.

While two mechanic workshops and two bank branches have shut their doors in the past five years, Flinders Machinery has helped pick up the slack, extending its workshop to allow for servicing of the town’s vehicles.

It also takes on a small number of apprentices. Read the story.

Hafeezullah Haidari

Naracoorte man Hafeezullah Haidari runs a small Indian restaurant in Naracoorte. He came to Australia in 2013 after fleeing persecution in Pakistan.

He has rebuilt his life in the South East, and aside from running the restaurant, he gives back to the community that took him in by cooking free meals for the local CFS during bushfires, and also trains local students in hospitality.

Read the story.

Little Local Co

The Little Local Co coffee shop in Tailem Bend has finally brought good coffee and homemade baked treats to the transforming town.

Run by Amy and Neil Chinsami, the couple are preparing to open a second Little Local Co establishment along the main highway soon.

They draw inspiration on their Aboriginal and Fijian backgrounds, incorporating ingredients such as wattle seed from the Coorong and Raukkan areas into their cold brew. Read the story. 

Amy and Neil Chinsami of Little Local Co. Photo by Glenn Power.

Paulett Wines

Paulett Wines in the Clare Valley established its Bush DeVine Café and planted a native sensory bush garden to create a point of difference.

The family-owned business not only knows how to make a good drop, but they also incorporate native bush tucker produce into the café’s dishes.

The extension of their business cafe has also allowed them to support youth employment. Read the story.

Ryde Clothing

Renmark teenager Nathan Woodrow runs his own clothing label, Ryde Clothing, inspired by his love for skating, mountain biking, and wake boarding.

It took one magazine interview for word to get out about his label a few years back and now Nathan has sold more than 1000 units across the country.

He sketches the designs himself before screen printing them onto fabric from his home studio – a shipping container in the backyard. Read the story.

Renmark entrepreneur and streetwear designer Nathan Woodrow.

Susan Pearl

Susan Pearl from the Far North town of Blinman is an example of selflessness at its best.

Susan is the historic copper town’s first responder, meaning that if there is an accident or medical emergency, she’s the one on scene until an ambulance crew arrives.

Susan is also rostered on in Hawker and Port Augusta, and splits her time between the medical services and running tours at the Blinman Heritage Mine. Read the story.

Tumby Bay Progress Association

The Tumby Bay Progress Association celebrated the unveiling of a stunning artwork painted on the town’s giant grain silos in April this year.

Painted by Argentinean artist Martin Ron over five weeks, the mural has become a tourist attraction and joins a number of other silo artworks that have recently popped up across SA and VIC.

The progress association ran the project, officially launched in conjunction with the Colour Tumby Art Festival. Read the story.

Tumby Bay locals gather with Martin Ron at the silo mural. PHOTO: Robert Lang Photography.

Senior Constable Tiffany Greig

Senior Constable Tiffany Greig is stationed at the most remote police station in SA, 1200km from Adelaide in the red sandy town of Murputja in the APY Lands.

It’s not unusual to spot a rescued joey in the back seat of her patrol vehicle, as Tiffany takes in injured wildlife and is also followed around by a pack of cautious yet friendly wild dingoes.

Tiffany is also a bit of social media star with thousands of Instagram followers and once appearing on Channel 10’s The Project. Read the story.

We’re still on the hunt!

Just because the Top 15 has been announced doesn’t mean our story gathering is finished!

Regional Showcase is ongoing and we’re on the lookout now for more cracking regional yarns for inclusion in next year’s program.

Got an idea? Click on the link below to put forward your story suggestion.

Got a good story? Nominate a story from your region.
Click here to nominate >>

These inspiring regional stories are made possible by:

Major Partner[logooos_saved id=”5491″]Program Partners

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Header image courtesy of SATC, John Montesi, scenery along RM Williams Way, Clare Valley.

Coopers pops top off this year’s Royal Adelaide Beer and Cider Awards

The largest Australian-owned brewery Coopers has good reason to enjoy a pint or two this weekend – it’s taken a swag of awards at this year’s Royal Adelaide Beer and Cider Awards (RABCA).

The 156-year-old South Australian-based brewery’s Sparkling Ale won the Champion South Australian Beer, Most Outstanding Beer in Show, and Champion Traditional Australian Style Pale Ale.

Coopers was also named Champion Large Brewery, while its Mild Ale won Champion Reduced Alcohol Beer and its Sapporo took Champion Other Lager.

A strong field of regional SA breweries also took home awards.

The awards were presented at the Adelaide Showground on July 6 at the Adelaide Beer and BBQ Festival, which plays host to the largest gathering of brewers in the country.

RABCA chief judge Tony Jones says the awards, run by the Royal Agricultural and Horticultural Society of SA, recognise the importance of Australia’s $7 billion beer and cider industry.

“This year’s awards attracted 252 entries from 54 brewers of all sizes from across Australia and New Zealand, with all entries judged blind by an expert industry panel,” he says.

Myponga beer lovers Smiling Samoyed Brewery and Mismatch Brewing Company in Adelaide won the Small and Medium Brewery Awards respectively.

The Adelaide Hills’ Lobethal Bierhaus took home both the Champion Pilsener and Champion Stout Beer Awards with Bohemian Pilsner and winter-perfect Chocolate Oatmeal Stout.

Port Lincoln’s Beer Garden Brewing also found success with its Cage Diver IPA (Champion India Pale Ale) and Section 49 Wheat Beer (Champion Wheat Beer).

Thousands of people will gather at the Adelaide Beer and BBQ Festival this weekend.

The craft brewers recently made headlines with their new release of a stout beer made with native Coffin Bay oysters.

Local Cider makers didn’t go home empty handed, with Kangaroo Island Ciders winning both the Best Cider in Show and the Best SA Cider exhibit with their Colony Cove Draught Cider.

Hahndorf microbrewery won Champion Hybrid Beer with its SmokeStack Rauchbier.

“Many of the entrants will be exhibiting their beers and ciders at the festival which will provide a great opportunity for the public to discover a range of styles from many different brewers,” Tony says.

Visit I Choose SA to meet the people building business and industry in SA, and to find out how your choices make a difference to our state.

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Regional SA tourism operators shine at national awards

Two regional South Australian tourism operators have walked away with gold medals at last Friday night’s Qantas Australian Tourism Awards.

For the second year running, luxury accommodation provider The Frames in the Riverland was crowned Australia’s best Self Contained Accommodation, while Hahndorf’s Adelaide Hills Convention Centre was named best Business Event Venue.

The Qantas-sponsored awards, announced on Friday February 23 in Perth, recognised the best in the business from around the country.

Built in 2014 in Paringa by husband and wife duo Rick and Cathy Edmonds, The Frames offers three private retreats perched on cliffs overlooking magnificent views of the Murray River.

Luxury accommodation exists not only in big cities, but in SA’s regions too.

The couple aims to raise awareness of the Murray River and the emerging boutique wine and craft product culture in the Riverland, SA’s food bowl region.

“To be recognised among the best tourism offerings in Australia is wonderful and we are proud of the opportunity to showcase the Riverland to international and domestic guests,” Cathy says.

“We wish to thank everyone for their continued support, especially our guests who are seeking secluded space to relax and reconnect.”

The Adelaide Hills Convention centre is a popular spot for business events and functions, weddings, birthdays and other celebrations.

Hahndorf family the Schirripa’s and the team at the Adelaide Hills Convention Centre also celebrated a gold medal win for Business Event Venue.

The convention centre was recognised for its “world-class business event facilities and services” and for its scenic views overlooking the Hills.

Aside from the function centre, the Mt Barker Road location is also home to the Three Gums Bistro and Hahndorf Resort Tourist Park, featuring a caravan park and a range of other accommodation options.

The convention centre overlooks stunning views of the Adelaide Hills.

Eight other SA tourism operators from across the state walked away with silver and bronze medals.

SA Tourism Industry Council CEO Shaun de Bruyn says South Australians should be “extremely proud” of the world-class experiences we have on offer.

“The Qantas Australian Tourism Awards recognise the best of the best in tourism within Australia and set the benchmarks for the best business practice which all tourism business(es) should aspire to achieve,” he says.

“For SA to be awarded ten medals is a fantastic result and will further ensure our brilliant visitor experiences and magnificent regions remain on the tourism map.”

State Tourism Minister Leon Bignell says SA’s visitor economy has increased by 29% in the past four years to a record $6.3 billion, reflective of tourism operators’ dedication and passion for the industry.

Nominations for the 2018 SA Tourism Awards are open until June 25. For more information click here.

Silver award winners:

  • Calypso Star Charters (Port Lincoln) – Tourist Attractions
  • Murray River Walk (Renmark) – Ecotourism
  • Yondah Beach House (Foul Bay) – Deluxe Accommodation

Bronze award winners:

  • Santos Tour Down Under – Major Festivals and Events
  • Calypso Star Charters (Port Lincoln) – Adventure Tourism
  • Mulberry Lodge Country Retreat (Willunga) – Hosted Accommodation
  • Marree Hotel (Marree) – Standard Accommodation
  • Barossa Valley Cheese Company (Angaston) – Excellence in Food Tourism

Visit I Choose SA to find out how you can support our State by choosing South Australian businesses, products and services.

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Adelaide’s Orana is Australia’s best restaurant

By Melissa Keogh

Adelaide food hero Jock Zonfrillo’s Orana has been crowned Australia’s best restaurant, marking the first time in two decades the Gourmet Traveller award has gone to a restaurant outside Sydney and Melbourne.

The Rundle Street establishment was named Restaurant of the Year at last night’s Gourmet Traveller Restaurant Awards.

The gala dinner, held in Sydney, is considered the night of nights in the hospitality world and celebrates the release of the 2018 Australian Restaurant Guide.

In a statement on his Facebook page, Jock commended the Orana team for taking the award for South Australia.

“For the last 16 years I’ve been on a journey and to tell you the truth it’s one I never knew I’d have to make,” he says.

“I’m saying that it’s called a journey because you cannot know what you will discover, what you will do with what you find, or what you find, will do with you.

“One of the things I have found is the most amazing team who don’t just work at a restaurant, they are part of something so much bigger making it our journey and I can’t thank them enough.

“I love each and every one of you, thank you so much for all the hard work, dedication and sheer tenacity involved in bringing this award home for #southaustralia.”

Restaurant Orana in Rundle Street is renowned for its intimate setting and 18-sdf

Restaurant Orana in Rundle Street is renowned for its intimate setting and 18-20 course degustations featuring native produce.

Scottish-born Jock is renowned for ‘foraging’ and using native ingredients in his dishes, but also for his work with indigenous communities.

Earlier this year, his Orana Foundation announced it was working with the University of Adelaide to form a native wild foods database.

With the help of a $1.25m SA Government grant, the database will drive research and determine how native foods can best be produced commercially.

Orana – which means ‘welcome’ in some Aboriginal languages – offers 18-20 course degustations featuring native produce such as lemon myrtle, green ants and ruby saltbush berries.

Four other SA eateries made the top 100 of the Gourmet Traveller list including Magill Estate (14), Hently Farm (50), Botanic Gardens Restaurant (54) and Africola (56).