The Ultimate Local Foodie Festival Guide
There are two kinds of people when it comes to food – those who eat to live and those who live to eat. This article is for the latter. Whether you love trying new food or seeking inspiration to wow guests at your dining table; get your napkin ready and take your taste buds on a tantalising trip. We’ve handpicked these food festivals that serve the best in local produce from the fresh and cured, the sweet and savoury, to the boozy and juicy.
Where: Orange, New South Wales
When: 8 -17 April 2016
What first started as a weekend is now a glorious 10-day food binge. Recognised as one of Australia’s longest running regional food festivals, Orange F.O.O.D Week (Food of Orange District) is held around every April, during the harvest periods for Orange, Blayney and Cabonne.
Start off with an evening at the Night Market, where you’ll find more than 50 stalls selling fresh produce and cool climate wines. If you’ve managed to avoid a hangover from the previous nights’ wine tastings, start the next morning at F.O.O.D HQ or the Sunday Producers Market to learn from producers and experienced chefs. For a unique dining experience, book a seat at the 100-mile dinner table or a ticket on the F.O.O.D Train, where you’ll depart Sydney famished and disembark unable to eat another bite. Don’t worry, there’s room for exercise on this eatcation. Walk it off during FORAGE, a 3.6km stroll through vineyards and farms where wine and food tastings are located conveniently every 500 metres.
Where To Stay:
Situated in the heart of Orange is Templers Mill, a simple yet modern motel that accommodates small to large groups of friends and family. With comfortable rooms and spacious 1-to-2 bedroom apartments to choose from, it’s the best way to get a fresh squeeze on the bountiful city of Orange.
Where: Forrest Place, Perth
When: 16 October – 29 April 2016
Through the Summer months of October to April, the streets of the world converge every Friday night at Twilight Hawker Market. Perth’s original and biggest street food market, it’s the one place where you can start your meal with some refreshing Vietnamese paper-rice rolls and Mexican tamales, tuck into an entrée of zesty Spanish paella and succulent Lebanese lamb koftas, and finish off with authentic Thai mango sticky rice and creamy Italian gelato.
What makes this food festival truly unique is the variety of 30 over stalls that pop up every week. Some stalls remain as all-time favourites with their stoves cemented firmly into the pavements of Forrest Place whereas the remaining ones are anyone’s best guess. Like a game of food roulette, you’ll never know what you’re in for.
Where To Stay:
For the rest of the week, explore the city of Perth while you enjoy an elegant and luxurious stay at COMO The Treasury. Choose from 48 contemporary rooms and suites with king-sized beds, over sized windows that bathe the space in natural daylight, and breathe in the beautiful skyline as you soak and relax in the deep-form bathtubs. And when TGIF comes along, grab a bus or taxi and head straight over to the Twilight Hawker Market.
To best enjoy the widespread the Twilight Hawker Market has to offer, grab family and friends (not to mention their appetites) and check into Assured Waterside Apartments. With 35 spacious and fully self-contained 4-star apartments, spend some quality time visiting nearby attractions and getting reacquainted with each other, before taking the ferry across Swan River and getting acquainted with the delectable treats that await you Friday night.
Those who love luxurious hotels and being close to all the wok-frying action will be pleased to know that Pan Pacific Perth offers the best of both worlds. Just a short walk away from the Twilight Hawker Market, neighbouring attractions and overlooking Perth’s iconic Swan River, guests can look forward to an indulgent, pampering 5-star stay and the hotel’s equally recognised 5-star service.
Where: Centennial Park, Sydney
When: 10 – 13 March 2016
Where: Albert Park, Melbourne
When: 12 – 15 November 2016
Think of these food festivals as a bake sale for adults – replace baked goods with dishes designed by the city’s best restaurants. Running over the course of four days, you’ll get to design your own tasting menu from the best these great cities have to offer in one convenient location.
With artisan producers showcasing their art, cooking demonstrations that’ll make a chef out of anyone, and live music and entertainment, you can’t call yourself a true foodie until you’ve stained a napkin or two here.
Where To Stay:
Just across the street from Centennial Park, The Hughenden Boutique Hotel offers guests and their satisfied bellies a variety of rooms to hibernate in. From cosy B&B-style rooms to a grand 3-bedroom suite, this accommodating Victorian-esque hotel allows even your pets to enjoy the sweet, suite life.
Check those bags and appetites into Ravesi’s Hotel’s unique boutique rooms where you’ll get to enjoy surf and turf, literally. Only a bus or car ride away from Centennial Park, visitors get to experience Summer in true Sydneysider fashion – indulging in fine-dining before fine-tanning at famous Bondi Beach.
Located at vibrant Potts Point, Larmont Sydney by Lancemore is only a walk away from Centennial Park and Sydney’s classic attractions. With 76 stylish boutique rooms to choose from, it’s the best place to sleep off that food coma.
It doesn’t get any more convenient than this. A street away from Albert Park, Melbourne’s city business district, the beach, and Luna Park, checking into Abode by Easystay’s studio apartment hotels makes your stay all too easy.
Those seeking a more contemporary, lavish stay will find comfort at the Pullman Albert Park hotel’s 169 rooms and suites. If you didn’t already catch it in its name, the hotel is situated beside Albert Park and its golf course, where you’ll be able to swig some wine and swing some clubs.
Where: Clyde, Central Otago
When: 27 March 2016
The only bunnies you’ll see over at Clyde on Easter Sunday are the ones on the barbie. Held annually every Easter Sunday in the historic town of Clyde, this food festival raises a glass and celebrates wines from the world’s most southern vineyards and raises its forks to its local produce. With over 20 food stalls serving you and over 20 wine stalls to pour you a glass, treat yourself to more than just chocolate bunnies and eggs this Easter.
Where To Stay:
Hartley Homestead is far from a hobbit hole.Offering guests the comforts of home, this charming and quaint Bed & Breakfast is an apartment with two spacious rooms that open up to scenic views of its lush gardens and wide-open Central Otago landscapes.