About The Noosa Forager
Hi I’m Dannielle, I am a chef and founding creator of The Noosa Forager.
Throughout my culinary career as a Chef my journey has seen me leaving Sydney’s Northern Beaches for a European experience taking a position as Chef De Partie at London’s Chapel Lafayette at 19 years old. Spending months exploring Europe, Greece, Turkey and Egypt, having a cultural and Gastronomic Adventure. Later returning to Australia taking Chef positions in different states and coastal towns over the decades.
A favorite destination was the Whitsundays Islands, As Head Breakfast Chef for Club Med Linderman Island. In my down time I discovered Whitsunday Magic…. the freedom, tinny fishing, making beach fires, cooking on coals and chipping fresh oysters of the rocks lining the coral reefs.
My career started with a part time job at 14 years old, filleting fish in early hours of the morning in the back of a local Avalon fish shop with fish monger Old Ray. From there it was Ibiza Cafe at Avalon Beach where I washed dishes and watched the chef at work, before finding myself in the dessert section and making my way around the different sections of the kitchen.
Little did I know how fast I would fall in love with the Aroma, the rush and passion of the Kitchen. I became Head Chef of the Ibiza cafe after returning from Europe. Finding myself privately catering on a Private Yacht in Pitt-Water Sydney, became Head Chef of Spookies Engourie, Front of House Manager of Pilu Noosa, Executive Chef at Arm Chair Collective/ prep kitchen at Moby Dicks /the Boat house Group Palm Beach, casual second Mains & Pasta Chef Cavalino Terry Hills, Pasta Mains Chef at Ventuno Bar & Restaurant at Walsh Bay Sydney, Second Chef at the Wharf Shed Geelong Vic. On the northern beaches of Sydney I had success in owning my own Bar and Restaurant called Fish Bone Oyster Bar & Restaurant in the sea side town of Avalon where I grew up.
Years ago I took a break from working in restaurants and embarked on a 4 X 4 Food Journey with my brother. We left from Noosa and drove to Cape York, living out my dream of living of the land with what we could catch and locally source from the towns as we passed through, stopping to chat to the locals about some secret spots and picking up some locally grown produce, video recording and photographing the journey.
I have settled into family life, returning to Noosa, only this time, instead of commanding the restaurant kitchen, I’ve stepped back and created my boutique business foraging locally produced foods and delicious ingredients that need to be shared. Our Grazing platters are a fantastic and convenient way to sample fresh local produce in one sitting, however i do not stop at Grazing platters, I am a recipe inventor and menu planner, degustation curator and I love using local produce to create in house dining experiences for my clients.
I love nothing more than growing foodie relationships with our local Artisans and Producers. And chatting to customers about food, bringing that story and collaboration of food talents together, providing you with a taste of Noosa and the Sunshine Coast.
Growing up I did countless road trips of the east coast… surfing and fishing and cooking my way to Noosa from Avalon beach, I was drawn to the diverse beauty of Noosa. It’s an adventurous gateway to so many amazing destinations including our surrounding hinterland. We have pristine sandy beaches, national parks, world famous surfing breaks, we are sheltered by native bush land that is hugging our sandy coast line, the North Shore and the magical Fraser Coast. Noosa is renowned for the vibe of Hastings Street, the unique food entrepreneurs seen in the Junction to the hidden pocket of Quamby Place, Gympie Terrace restaurants, bars and cafes lining our stunning river with the jetty’s all servicing us with fun, adventure and coffee. Let’s not forget our Noosaville industrial estate that on both sides of Noosa-Eumundi road has local breweries with restaurants, Gin distillers, bakers, grocers, cafes, coffee producers, fishmongers and many Chefs and Artisans making amazing food products.
Noosa is my home and I have spent the past few years raising my family in this beautiful location. Countless times we have enjoyed jumping aboard the Noosa Ferry, sunset cruise or hired a boat on the Noosa River. During these outings I would always put together a grazing platter for my family and friends. This was the start of my inspiration to bring this passion to life for others to enjoy.
I LOVE COOKING! I love seeing people happy eating food, and i will enjoy showcasing our beautiful local Artisan food, in a setting that is Noosa and building relationships not only for myself but for you with the local producers, farmers, cheese makers, bakers, fishmongers and combining my Chef skills, and knowledge to create something that I would love to experience myself for any occasion or if I was on holidays, visiting for only a short time…. Local Food made with Love! You can see it!….. smell it!….. taste it!…..