Those of you who know Max Porter would know he’s a famous lover of all things duck. At Native Sun Cuisine in Noosa from 1998 the six course “Duck My Way” certificate menu is legendary; Earning him names such as Duckular, Quack the ripper, The Prince of Duckness and these days Friar Duck. Having more than 4500 inducktees on record gives Native Sun national and international recognition for the only duck eatery in the land.
He’s a Brisbane boy who in 1991 started a 4-year position as Chef de Cuisine at Siggi’s. The beautifully restored Port Office heritage listed building. This is where he established “Window Cuisine” a multiple course menu that introduced people to the taste and style of what was on offer in one sitting, a concept that still remains today.
Taking time out in his final year, Max travelled to France and worked in 9 Michelin star restaurants. His travels took him from Monaco to the Loire Valley via Burgundy, The trip confirmed that a natural common sense approach to cooking guaranteed lasting success.
On Max’s return he packed up his family and moved north to be closer to fresh food producers. Strong friendships were formed. This was the recipe for his little b.y.o, a much loved and a must for locals and visitors alike.
It was based on his love for French provincial and creole life. The under tone was “laissez les bons temps rouler” let the good times roll !
Max calls his Cuisine “food of no fixed address” It’s also been called “original cooking” by the late Mietta O’Donnell. The writer David Bently said it “was a cool little b.y.o you tell your friends about”
Brisbane News has written, ”Max is not a typical chef he’s a man that ensures the flavor of the food never gets lost in the hype.” Kris Riordan, food consultant and writer, has said “While Australia is still a long way from having a national cuisine, it will eventually happen, and it will be helped along by people like Max who are working hard to promote the outstanding quality of our ingredients.” Jill Rowbotham from The Australian writes “Amazing, amusing and is light on his feet for a big man”
This is a place that was quickly added to the Gourmet Traveller national food guide receiving an instant star. The next seven years finds Native Sun appearing in all national food guides as well reviewed abroad.
When Stephanie Alexander released the Tuscan cook book with Maggi Beer in 1998. There were 4 restaurants in Australia approached to help launch this book. At Noosa, Max’s was included, a team was hand picked to reopen “Cafe Vespa” for the occasion. The lunch was in true Tuscan fashion and the main feature was it’s huge wood fired oven. It took 3 days to prepare for this lunch using only the wood oven; This was a triumph which led to helping Stephanie with her next project “The Shared Table”, Noosa was chosen again as a food region.
Food producers were introduced and the filming for the ABC was completed on the 7th May 1999; Max’s 40th birthday. It was the last in the series and is still the most popular in which Max appears. At present his story continues extolling the virtues of our fine feathered friends and local, regional product. His classes are a must for any who are devoted to Cuisine in all it’s true forms.