It's white truffle (magnatum) season in Europe. You may know that the mighty magnatum remain the gift of Mother Nature - they occur in wild forests only. Unlike black truffles (melanosporum) human beings have not yet managed to cultivate magnatum.

The earthy, fungal fruits hold a mystique for the average cook, but in the hands of a professional they promise to deliver a meal not to be forgotten. The truffles used at Flemington are handpicked by Friend & Burrell, procurers and suppliers of some of the world’s finest foods. With caviar, prosciutto, Iberico Jamon, Sabarot Snails and Paspaley Pearl Meat among the products that they source for leading chefs, restaurants, cafes, caterers and home cooks, they are well-placed to select only the finest black truffles.

Fitzroy's hot-spot wine-bar-eatery Napier Quarter was recently reviewed by Age Good Food Guide's Gemima Cody. The go-to ingredient was our beautiful Olasagasti anchovies completing chef Eileen Horsnell's rye bread with boiled egg, salsa verde and mayonnaise - "possibly Melbourne's greatest breakfast and bar snack in one".

It’s all systems go for our Truffle & Charcuterie Celebration with Friend & Burrell this Sunday, so to make it easier for you we’ve prepared a trusty guide showcasing exactly what’s on offer. Enjoy!

It's this universe between kitchen and producer where Simon Friend and Bryan Burrell weave their magic - together for over 15 years they have been purveyors of the finer things in life. Through Friend & Burrell they provide the best restaurants and delis in our city with the very best ingredients from around the world. With their well-honed sense of taste, we set them free on the city to sniff out the hottest truffle dishes around town to try right now.

On today's show we spoke to Karen Batson from Melbourne's iconic restaurant and bar Cookie. We chatted about how she discovered modern Thai cooking, the changing scene of Melbourne inner-city dining, and some of her favourite Thai ingredients. We had a good chat to John at the Vic Market. To finish the show we were joined by Simon Friend from Friend & Burrell. We spoke about his childhood in Gippsland, how he grew up with excellent food, and how he became committed to supplying "The World's Finest Foods".

When I researched the Robb Report story on Australian truffles, I had the pleasure of meeting Melbourne-based Simon Friend and his partner Bryan Burrell. They do business as Friend & Burrell (, but they might as well be called The Good Tastes Guys because they’re Australia’s go-to suppliers of gourmet mountain hams from Spain, Giaveri caviar, and big tins of Iranian saffron. The two former tennis professionals are also major distributors of black truffles from the Australian Truffle & Wine Company.

Following last year’s success, Morris Jones' executive chef, Matthew Butcher, has again teamed up with Matthew Donnelly, of The Commoner, and Simon Friend, of luxury food purveyor Friend & Burrell, for a dining experience featuring foraged mushrooms, truffles and Pinot. Curated by Butcher, this event is already a standout on Morris Jones' Food Society calendar.