Gouger Street, Adelaide
Written by Max Anderson
Costume designer Mariot Kerr works all over Australia but Gouger Street, in her home town of Adelaide, suits her tastes better than any. It’s all thanks to the colourful Adelaide Central Market.
“When I’m away, one of the places I miss most is the Adelaide Central Market on Gouger Street.
“The Market’s an interesting part of Adelaide’s history. It started in 1869 but is now the largest undercover market in the southern hemisphere. And it’s part of my history, too. My parents used to take me there when I was very little and it was like visiting another world – so exotic and such a shock to the senses. I find it just as exciting now.
“I love the noise – the competing calls of the stallholders and eager customers – the smells of freshly cut flowers, bread straight from the oven, spicy cooking from Asian Gourmet, and the huge paella pan at Comida. There’s colour, too: Lisa King’s mural on the western wall is amazing.
“A highlight of my childhood trips was a visit to Lucia’s. It’s even better today with the addition of its cool contemporary charcuterie: Tom greets his customers by name and we sit at his workbench to watch him concoct his delicious panini, usually enjoying a few samples along the way.
“I love cooking almost as much as I love costume, and there’s no better place to source local produce. I get my seasonal fruit and vegetables from the House of Organics and the Mushroom Man, artisan bread from Dough, as well as olives, fine oils, the best cheeses, and the freshest fish. There are imported ingredients, too. Little Tokyo is great for yuzu and bonito flakes, Jaggers for rose petals and pomegranate molasses, and Kuo Chi Oriental Supermarket for almost everything Asian – including advice on how best to cook it!
“I’m proud of the market and love showing it off to overseas actors and film crew. Of course they’re all fascinated with Something Wild, which sells Australian native ingredients like saltbush, ice plant, emu sausages, and kangaroo steaks.
“Outside the Market, Gouger Street is a continuous strip of restaurants and is great for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. I especially love Chinatown (perfect for yum cha on a Sunday morning) and Field St for pho.
“And while exploring the neighbourhood I’ve also unearthed some amazing costumes including silk cheongsams, cashmere scarves, and rare Edwardian garments from the Grote Street Antique Market. Push Pin in Compton Street is a tiny vintage shop in one of the smallest, sweetest buildings in town. I’ve even been lucky enough to find a frock or two for my leading ladies in films such as Red Dog and Tracks.
After beginning her career as a pattern maker on seminal Australian movie, Shine, Mariot Kerr has gone on to become one of Australia’s leading costume designers. Working in TV and film, her recent work includes Red Dog, Tracks, and Deadline Gallipoli.
Distance: 11,276 km
Flight Time: 12 hours, 55 minutes