4 August 2023

Australian barbecue boss headed to Hilltops for a grillin' good time

| Edwina Mason
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man barbecuing

One of Australia’s top pit masters, Adam Roberts, is headed to the Hilltops town of Young to create flame-cooked food as part of the new Winter Glow Festival in August. Photo: Adam Roberts.

Nothing says winter more than standing around a meat-stacked wood fire stoking the coals and chewing the fat, so to speak, and that opportunity awaits in the Hilltops region in August.

One of the leading figures in the Australian and New Zealand barbecue scene is heading up country to create amazing flame-cooked food at a new festival the town of Young hopes will become a regular on the annual calendar.

The Hilltops Winter Glow Festival is a community celebration of winter that will feature hearty seasonal foods, rousing live music, activities for children, roving LED light performers and fireworks.

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To be held at Young Showground on Saturday, 12 August, the event features barbecue grand champion pit master Adam Roberts, who comes with peerless knowledge and experience cooking over a wood fire using smokers, grills and barbecues.

A multiple-trophy-winning and grand champion barbecue contest competitor, Adam has authored two internationally bestselling books, Ribs & Sides in 2017 and Barbecue Like a Boss, released in late 2021.

He also wrote, directed and narrated the internationally awarded documentary series Beyond the Flame.

American-style barbecuing involves slow-cooking meats over indirect heat from wood, charcoal or pellets. The meats are typically marinated or rubbed with a mixture of spices and sauces before being cooked – resulting in bold flavours and a smoky taste.

It is becoming more prevalent throughout Australia, which has long been known for grilling meat and fish over open fires or on hotplates.

man barbecuing meat

Inspired by the American style of barbecuing, Adam has gone from strength to strength since setting up a food truck after returning to Australia from New York in 2012. Photo: Adam Roberts.

Adam’s influence on the American style of cooking can be traced back to 2014 when he co-founded the Australasian Barbecue Alliance (ABA).

Before that, he had set up his own food truck after a visit to New York in 2012 and he and a friend began introducing people back home to the American style of barbecuing. Adam’s involvement in the industry has flourished to this day, and he has achieved a great deal of success.

He comes to the Hilltops fresh from the hugely popular Vivid Fire Kitchen in Barangaroo, Sydney, where he took on the role of resident pit master supporting some of the world’s best barbecue experts and chefs over the full 23 days of the Sydney Vivid Festival.

The same month, he organised and participated in the ABA Top 30 Invitational Contest in Port Macquarie, alongside the best barbecue teams in Australia.

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At the Hilltops Winter Glow Festival, Adam will create mouth-watering food, provide cooking demonstrations and, during his regular presentations, offer barbecue and outdoor cookery fans invaluable tips and tricks of the trade to take home and utilise.

Adam says he is looking forward to his Hilltops visit and estimates that he has visited hundreds of small towns in Australia and New Zealand.

“I love getting out there and connecting with people and sharing the love of barbecue,” he said.

The Hilltops Winter Glow Festival will be held from 4 pm to 9 pm at Young Showground on Saturday, 12 August. Entry is free. For further information, visit the Hilltops Region website.

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