O.MY is a gorgeous, produce driven restaurant in Beaconsfield, Victoria. It is run by three brothers, Chayse, 22 Blayne, 24 and Tyson, 28. Chayse is Sommelier & runs the floor, Blayne is Head Chef in the kitchen and oldest brother Tyson manages production. He also exhibits some of his own art, more to that later.
O.MY first opened its doors to customers 18 months ago and it has been an amazing journey since then.
This year Blayne was nominated for Young Chef of the Year with The Age Good Food Guide. The award recognises Victoria’s best chef under 30 and is one of the most prestigious food awards within Victoria. Past winners include George Calombaris and Adam D’Sylva. An interview with Alla Wolf-Tasker, Phillip Mouchel and Andrew McConell lead to Blayne being shortlisted. The award will be announced in September.
As to the question of how nervous Blayne is about the whole award process he says this. “I am excited for what it means for the restaurant and for all my staff, but I am just trying to stick to business as usual, doing what I know and love no matter who walks through the door.”
I have eaten at O.MY many times and have written a lot about how much I love it. A visit to O.MY is personified by perfect service, an intimate and sophisticated dining room and creative and delicious food.
“The whole is bigger than the sum of the parts” is never more true than when dining at O.MY.
I met with Blayne Bertoncello recently to find out a little bit more about what inspires the man behind the pans and to find out where this food journey first started.
Blayne and two of his brothers grew up working at restaurants in the local area. At some point they decided that they would like to do their own thing, no matter how small, and so they set about finding a building that they could love. What they ended up with is an old Butcher shop with tons of character, in their local Beaconsfield.
They set about renovating the building and have kept part of the exposed brick storage door as a feature. Liberal sprinklings of modern art, some of it created by Tyson himself, completes the fit out.
Part of what now sets O.MY apart from other local eateries is the fact that they offer a Degustation Menu only. This means Bayne is able to cook what he likes in the kitchen and bring the best of it to you, the diner. O.MY grow a lot of their own fresh produce in their kitchen garden and also at what is affectionately known as “Cardi Farm.” They also have locals providing them with produce that is abundant and in season and they are not averse to a little foraging. There is apparently quite a strong underground of locals with busy, bustling veggie gardens.
Blayne’s favourite dish is also my favourite; Pumpkin with chilli and garlic. Built around the no waste philosophy of food, the pumpkin is presented at the table covered in a pasta sheet made from the pumpkin skin and even the pumpkin seeds are roasted and added to the dish. It was amazingly delicious. The idea for the dish came to Blayne as he was sitting in a Hotel in Japan earlier in the year, reading cookbooks featuring no wastage recipes (how very rock star). Like everything else at the restaurant, the pumpkin dish is seasonal so you will have to visit at the right time to try it.
On the day I visited Blayne had also cooked lamb shoulder with garlic puree, turnip, wheat berries, rosemary and fresh silver beet.
Potato with artichoke and a 2 hour cooked egg.
He also took me for a tour around his kitchen, showed me his beautiful sour dough starter (the bread here is a passion and a highlight) his black garlic powder made from garlic cloves dehydrated for 3 months and a gorgeous, black truffle who’s providence will never be revealed!
- Favourite local cafe? “The General Food Store for its seasonal breakfast menu, great staff and quality coffee.” Blayne also mentioned “Big Spoon, Little Spoon” in Warragul although he was worried it was not local. I say a 40 minute drive is close enough for great food.
- First dish you ever cooked? “Fettuccine Carbonara.” Classic! .
- Most memorable meal? “Parsnip and apple dessert from Brae.” Hard to imagine so here is a pic. Brae is one of the top restaurants in Australia and was recently listed in the Worlds Top 50 Restaurants, 51-100 List. The man has style.
- Favourite dish you have cooked? “Pumpkin, chilli and garlic.” I have to agree.
- Name a chef who inspires you? “Renee Redzepi from the two Michelin starred restaurant Noma, in Copenhagen.” You can follow him on Instagram here.
- Why Beaconsfield? “One, because it is where we live and two, because there was no other degustation restaurant in the area.” All three brothers grew up in the area and attended local schools. Blayne wanted to create locally, the kind of restaurant he loved to visit in the City. Smart man.
- How do you create a menu? “Once we got into the garden, we knew we had to create food around what produce we could harvest and this stayed with us. “
- How have the locals responded to O.MY. “They have been great. Locals drop off regular supplies of lemons, kale, or whatever else is in season. We have a lot of local people come in as our regular customers.”
- What is it like working with your brothers? “It is just the same as when we were growing up together, except now we have facial hair.”
My final question for Blayne was “So do you still love it?” Blayne showed no hesitation in saying yes. Having started in the kitchen of a local restaurant when he was younger and finding he “loved the adrenaline rush” of a working kitchen, he then got addicted to “creating a dish and seeing people enjoy it”.
I recently had the pleasure of dining in the small, private dining room out the back of O.MY. And yes, we did really enjoy it.
Two friends had insisted that I take them to O.MY so they could see for themselves. We had a fantastic, intimate dining experience that was also bundles of fun. It was like having an off-the-charts dinner party at home, but with better food, decor and wine. AND without having to do the dishes. Part-ay! I could not recommend it enough.
Tyson is the eldest of the three brothers. He is responsible for the creation of some of the art in the restaurant, but also for overall production. Tyson sources the gorgeous ceramics, glassware and pottery and was even recently spotted making his own plates (on Instagram). He also sometimes cooks and sometimes acts as a waiter. Plus, Tyson is a keen gardener and oversees the veggie patch. Talented? Yes. He is also smart and sweet and a hard-working behind the scenes genius (or something like that).
Charming Chayse is the Sommelier at O.MY and also he also manages the floor. Friendly and funny, he somehow manages the perfect balance of attentiveness as a waiter. People love meeting Chayse, just read the reviews of O.MY. His chatter makes the food come alive for the diner. He also manages the restaurant floor like a boss.
Chayse is energetic and enthusiastic about his much-loved wine list. He might even share some music tips with you if you ask nicely. Plus he is friendly and nice.
Yep, these three brothers are all so very nice. And nice is awesome, in case you were wondering.
So I absolutely loved meeting Chayse, Blayne and Tyson at O.MY and taking a peek around their kitchen and restaurant. They were so friendly and welcoming, just as they always are when I eat in their restaurant. Blayne is a Chef on the move and his produce based cooking is exciting and delicious. I look forward to seeing what adventure he has in front of him next.
Good Luck in September boys from all of us at eatmystreet!
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23 Woods St
(03) 9769 9000
Dani B xx