Travel tips & advice from Peter Gilmore, chef at Quay and Bennelong

Peter Gilmore, executive chef at Quay and Bennelong, Sydney, is one of the chefs headlining the new four-day food festival The Curated Plate, on the Sunshine Coast from August 8-11.

NUMBER OF COUNTRIES VISITED 30

ANY PASSPORT MISHAPS? I left my day bag, which contained my passport, in the back of a taxi in New York as it dropped me off at the airport. When I realised, we managed to reach the taxi company and get the taxi back to the airport with my bag. In the meantime, I missed my flight to Missouri, and had to rebook for the next day. We had to stay at a very dodgy airport hotel in Queens for the night.

I GOT MY FIRST PASSPORT WHEN I WAS 18 in 1987.

MY PASSPORT PHOTO IS well, my 18-year-old passport photos look better.

I CAN'T STOP GOING BACK TO Japan, mainly because I love the culture and it is a food-obsessed nation. They are obsessed with quality and craft and simplicity of design which are all the things I love.

MY LAST TRAVEL DESTINATION WAS Europe for two weeks. I was asked to go over and judge the Roux [Brothers] Scholarship. I went to London and then added a little tour on to take in Scandinavia.

MY NEXT TRAVEL DESTINATION IS Korea with one of my suppliers, Paul Lee from [seller of artisanal Korean products] Table 181, to look at the traditionally fermented foods of Korea.

I'M REALLY LOOKING FORWARD TO visiting Buddhist temples and some of the growers and producers, seaweed farms and miso makers.

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WHAT I REALLY WANT FROM MY NEXT TRIP IS to be inspired by different cultures, learn something and hopefully enjoy different experiences.

I LOVE TO TRAVEL BECAUSE it always opens up your mind, but it also makes you appreciate the joy and freedom of living in Australia.

MY TRAVEL PHILOSOPHY IS plan up to a certain point but be open and flexible enough to change plans as unexpected opportunities arise.

THE ONE TRAVEL MISTAKE I ALWAYS MAKE IS packing too much.

THE ONE THING I REALLY DO GET RIGHT WHEN I TRAVEL IS giving myself permission to indulge, be it in learning, food, or just giving myself permission to be a little bit selfish with my time.

IF I HAD TO SIT IN THE MIDDLE SEAT THE OTHER PASSENGERS I'D WANT ON EITHER SIDE OF ME WOULD BE to be absolutely honest, I would always choose to travel with my family or friends over famous people. Being busy between two restaurants means my time with them is very precious.

THE ONE FAMOUS TRAVELLER I REALLY ADMIRE IS Rick Stein, who has a pretty interesting and exciting travel agenda making food shows all around the world.

THE ONE FAMOUS PERSON I'D LIKE TO TRAVEL WITH IS I really don't know.

AIRLINE FOOD IS generally pretty bad, but I have to say Qantas and Neil Perry are making it more interesting than most.

AIRPORT SECURITY IS painful but I understand that it is necessary.

HOTELS ARE never as good as your own bed, but again are necessary if you want to travel.

I'VE ALWAYS WANTED TO GO TO more of South America, particularly Chile and Argentina. I would be quite interested to find out a little bit more about the culture and the countryside, especially Patagonia.

I'VE NEVER WANTED TO GO TO a war zone. For obvious for reasons.

AISLE OR WINDOW? Anything but the middle seat.

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