Food, fun and frivolity: the taste of Tasmania reveals full program

Commemorating 30 years, The Taste of Tasmania unveiled its largest ever program of stallholders and free entertainment including live music, circus and street entertainment, activities for children and the whole family as well as reserved seating for those wanting a guaranteed prime position in the heart of Hobart’s stunning waterfront!

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Taste of Tasmania Director Brooke Webb said “The Taste of Tasmania program is an adventure for the all the senses. From a full culinary program where foodies can enjoy exclusive experiences and get hands on with Tasmania’s leading chefs and culinary influences, to the largest selection of stallholders ever seen at The Taste all proudly showcasing Tasmanian’s best dishes, to a huge program of entertainment and activities for the family and our New Year’s Eve Speakeasy Ball, there is something for everybody at this Year’s Taste.”

This year, The Taste of Tasmania launches a new concept space known as ‘greener grass.’ Greener grass is a new concept that develops small business through incubation and innovation whilst creating opportunities for emerging businesses to grow and develop. Greener grass is a dynamic space where businesses have shorter stay tenure’s and can showcase for 3 days, 4 days or 7 days depending on their resources.

Running from Friday 28 December 2018 – Thursday 3 January 2019, all culinary offerings are proudly 100% Tasmanian, with 112 stallholders, an increase of 35 stall holders from 2017 showcasing delicacies from all over the state. Seafood, cheese, berries, cool-climate wines, craft beers and ciders, gin, whisky and much more will be on offer from established and emerging producers eager to present their wares.

Just some of the standout stallholders at The Taste this year include:

LONG-STANDING FESTIVAL FAVOURITES
Bream Creek Vineyard – Have had a stall every year at The Taste for the last 30 years. Fred Peacock the owner and vigneron is a widely respected member of the Tasmanian wine industry, and known for the care with which he treats his vines. Bream Creek Vineyard are rated by James Halliday as a 5 star Australian wine producer. Bream Creek have a 5 star rating from James Halliday and were recently awarded “Best White Wine of Show’ and “Best Chardonnay up to 12.9%” at the AWC International Wine competition.

Festival Mushrooms – Have also had a stall at every single Taste. A Taste of Tasmania Icon, be sure not to miss their deservedly popular lightly tempura battered and fried Tasmanian mushrooms, served with delicious sauces.

Strawberry Avenue – Started 29 years ago as Strawberry Avenue, this stallholder has since been at The Taste as ‘The Creperie’. This year for the 30th birthday, owner and manager, Ursula Luetke-Steinhorst will revert the company back to its original name and revisit some strawberry avenue classics.

Home Hill – Have been at the Taste since 1997. Home Hill took a well-deserved break in 2014 and in 2018 return to The Taste (with several International awards under their belt) to come and celebrate the 30th birthday of The Taste.

Mures – Celebrating 29 years Mures is a Hobart institution; their fish and chips are supplied by their own fishing fleet.

HIGHLIGHTS:
Fat Pig Deli
– Gourmet farmer stars Matthew Evans and Sadie Chrestman will be serving farm fresh deli style platters in The Atrium.

Gillespie Ginger Beer and Blue Eye Oysters: Home-made ginger beer producers team up with Blue eye oysters to create a 5 meter oyster bar like you’ve never seen before.

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Porky Duck: First timers at the Taste Festival and exclusive providers of Tasmanian grown ducks (from Strelley fields), their menu features crispy duck, duck waffles, duck rolls, dipping duck (master stock) accompanied by home-made Sauerkraut and delicious flavoured Kefir creams.

Big Bessie – Owner and ex Gordon Ramsey Pastry chef Alastair Wise will be bring inventive sundaes made from soft serve, local ingredients and imagination to The Taste. Try the Amy Winehouse, Breaking Bad or the Fat Elvis, which involves bacon marmalade and French toast ‘gravel’!

NEWCOMERS
Karjalanpiirakka – Karjalanpiirakka is a Finnish pie made with crispy rye crust filled with rice, and originates from the eastern part of Finland called Karelia. Offered this year for the first time at the Taste of Tasmania, these Karjalanpiirakka are handmade by Nanna Bayer, a local ceramicist. This is nannas first food stall, and the pies will be accompanied by a special Finnish birch leaf detox drink.

Iraqi kubba – Run by Nagham Al-Knani and her daughters, Iraqi kubba is a beef filled potato and rice dumpling, fried and served with traditional Iraqi salad and sauces. Nagham has lived in Hobart for over 10 years but this will be her first stall at The Taste.

Pikelets and Dreamz – This is owner Gilly’s first year at The Taste managing her own stall, but Gilly grew-up at The Taste making blueberry pancakes for her families business Huon Choice berries who were at the first ever taste of Tasmania and throughout the first festival. This year Gilly is partnering with Angus and Ewen from The Spirit People and together they will be making pikelets with “hyper-local” produce.

Circle of Life: Premiering at The Taste ahead of its official opening in February, 2019, Circle of Life is the next offering from The Pilgrim group offering specialised coffee and delicious fresh donuts.

Afghani Bolani – A family business started during a trial market stall program run by the Migrant Resource Centre. The first solo stall that sells potato and leek, stuffed and fried flat-bread. A traditional Afghani street food.

FESTIVAL FAVOURITES

Lost Pippin and the Lamb Baa – Come along and enjoy estate grown prime lamb and own farmed grains with house made Pear and apple ciders and freshly made salad pairings.

Waji – He’s back! Waji serves huge and very popular platters groaning with Tassie seafood prepared in a variety of cooking styles and flavours.

Bertas Creamery and Milkbar – Berta’s Creamery & Milkbar with Valhalla has been showcasing Tasmania’s popular Valhalla Ice Cream at The Taste of Tasmania since 2011. Don’t miss these super popular ice-creams in specialty cones, served from 3 stall fronts on Castray.

Josef Chromy – Started at The Taste festival in 2006 and for 12 years have been showcasing their diverse variety of sparkling, red & white wines. This year, Josef Chromy are festival supporters of The Taste and can be found in the ‘The Atrium by Josef Chromy’.

Valle Nella Bocca – The team from Hobart’s much loved Italian Pantry teams up with local farmer and chef, Will Chapman and Lawrenny Distillery to make handmade filled pasta’s and anti-pasto platters inspired by the premium distilled products of Lawrenny estate.

DRINKS

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Seven Sheds
– In a Taste exclusive Seven Sheds will be releasing their Platypus 400 milestone brew, their 400th brew in 10+ years, made from locally grown hemp seeds.

Paradise Island x Brian Wine – Pick up a refreshing summer drink like no other, Beer wine, which is 51% beer blended with wine. A unique paring many won’t be able to pass up!

Spirit People – Well known for creating delicious bespoke cocktails at a range of events, Spirit People are releasing their first production of distilled products at The Taste, including schnapps made from Jerusalem artichokes!!

Winsome Spirits – Brian was a scientist at the CSIRO but now his ultimate goal is to create a series of unique absinthe’s that are based on the five rivers of the Greek underworld. Two absinthes made from herbs in his lower Longley garden and Tasmanian saffron will be available to try at The Taste.

Rukkus Fried Chicken – A local ethical fried chicken restaurant, this year Rukkus are adding a house made strawberry soda to their menu as they make their premiere at The Taste festival.

Tassie Can Bar: Showcasing all the small-batch, craft brews available across the state of Tasmania (and one cider!). Everything comes in a can, proudly brought to The Taste by T-bone brewing company.

EXOTIC AND RARE FARE
palawa kipli
– palawa kipli will be serving up Aboriginal inspired street food. One of their dishes (paruwi) will include crickets from local edible insect supplier Rebel Foods.

Paradise Island – Catch Paradise Island serving up a Caribbean themed menu using fermented and foraged foods and handmade fresh tortillas, fresh reggae beats blasting on the decks and wine on tap. A new business from a local team including Adam James from Rough Rice, Tassie’s fermenting guru.

Tassie Small Fruits – Supporting over 10 local growers with their stall, Small Tassie Fruits will offer up many varieties of small fruits people may never have seen including golden raspberries, gooseberries, tayberries and black currants, red currants and white currants (which are quite rare)

Provenance coffee – Travelling to The Taste from Launceston, make sure to stop by Provenance Coffee for one of their nitro brewed iced single origin roasted coffee, on tap.

Lauds – Lauds offer up plant based, dairy and lactose free cheeses. Lauds are also showcasing their range of dairy and lactose free cheeses in a variety of dishes. Think Mac ‘n’ cheese sticks, Tasmanian truffle and plant based cheese toastie. Foodies can also buy platters of their plant based cheeses.

For the best seat in the house The Taste of Tasmania offer reserved seating for visitors wanting a guaranteed seat amongst the action. With three, four hour long, sessions on offer each day, reserved seating costs $25 and is located in a prime waterfront location.

This year the Children’s and Families program takes place throughout the entire Taste Festival site and is humming with free activities for all the family. Move to the rhythm of the beat in cultural dance and drumming workshops, get physical with circus and acrobats, little ones create with art play and there’s fantasy face painting for all ages. For the active ones try your hand at cricket, tennis or soccer or jump into a Zorb ball, take part in bike and board demos and test your skills on the skate ramp.

There’s no need to run away with the circus, kids can just head to The Circus Drop Zone and learn circus skills daily. For something more hands off, kids can sit back and enjoy the acrobatic storytelling of Hazel Suitcase Circus or laugh out loud and be bewildered at The Little Big Adventure Stage with short snappy performances for the whole family.

For the trendsetters, Unicorn Manes will be providing free out of this world haircuts and styles for those young and young at heart, there’s no better way to end the year or begin the next then with a totally new do!

As the sun begins to set, settle in with the family for The Taste’s FREE twilight cinema. In honour of the Taste’s 30th birthday the twilight cinema will be showing some great classics from the 80s. Travel Back to the Future with Marty McFly and Doc Brown, escape to a fantastical world in The NeverEnding Story, phone home with E.T. wax on wax off with The Karate Kid, enjoy detention in The Breakfast Club or let Wesley and princess buttercup tell you a tale of love and adventure in The Princess Bride.

Every night of the Festival a headline performance from some of Australia’s best party bands play main-stage including: four times ARIA nominated powerhouse Mojo Juju, acclaimed indigenous vocalist Emma Donovan with rhythm combo The PutBacks, blazing funk-party band S.O.T, 10 piece latin explosion Son del Sur, the raucous New Orleans inspired Jazz Party and the most exciting new RnB artist in Australia, Kaiit.

In addition, there will be three special, never-to-be-repeated performances when The Taste present 1988, a wonder-band that fulfils all those 80’s hair, fashion and smash hit fantasies. Made especially as a love letter to 30 years of Taste, this glorious over-the-top tribute show, promises to surf the biggest FM radio waves that 1988 served up.

The program of free circus and street performances is set to dazzle minds and astound with a lineup of incredible artists set to rock The Taste. Gag hags will love Australia’s favourite comedic daredevil Ernesto The Magnifico whose addiction to danger will have them in stitches. For those with nerves of steel catch some of the hair raising shows by Extreme Bicycle Stunts or contortionist and sideshow extraordinaire Samora Squid and be amazed by one of the world’s elite street performers Shep Huntly.

Test out dance moves with the steam powered mobile nightclub-slash/time machine Gramophone Man playing all the best pre-WWII Shellac or witness the singing gentleman-adventurer and one man band extraordinaire ‘Uptown Brown’ and his “Goodtimes Gyratorscope”, a musical machine which permits an athletic fellow to play multiple instruments at once.

As night descends on the Waterfront, wander the streets trading secrets or jokes with the live comedic installation Talking Lamposts; catch some fire and flag twirling accompanied by the ancient Japanese rhythms of the Taiko Drum ensemble; or revel in wonder at the internationally-acclaimed dancer and 2014’s Miss Burlesque Australia, Zelia Rose, who returns to Australia after three hugely successful back-to-back American tours with headlining burlesque legend Dita Von Teese.

For an unforgettable New Year’s Eve experience make sure not to miss The Taste’s New Year’s Eve Speakeasy Ball – a special, once-in-a-lifetime event to celebrate the 30th birthday. As the Festival enters its thirties, revisit the world of the roaring twenties – an era iconic for its high-octane entertainment, carefree fun and wild parties – right in the heart of Hobart! The Speakeasy Ball is proud to present a line-up of dazzling performances, from top Aussie musicians, giant brass bands and bold burlesque!

The awe-inspiring night features a stellar ten-piece band, led by ARIA-winning composer and pianist, Barney McAll, with an incredible array of guest singers including: Tex Perkins (The Cruel Sea), Ella Hooper (Killing Heidi), Monique Brumby, Mojo Juju and Loretta Miller (Jazz Party).

The Taste of Tasmania is the not-to-be-missed summer event, where the culture of gourmet food and beverages converge with awe-inspiring activities, markets, movies, and music in one of Australia’s most breathtaking regions.

Joseph Lloyd
Photo Credit: Taste of Tasmania

Entry to The Taste of Tasmania is FREE, with premium events (including New Year’s Eve) being ticketed.

WHAT: The Taste of Tasmania
WHERE & WHEN: Friday 28 December 2018 – Thursday 3 January 2019
Princes Wharf, Hobart, TAS, 7000

Website: www.thetasteoftasmania.com.au Facebook: facebook.com/thetasteoftasmania Instagram: instagram.com/thetasteoftasmania

The Shambala Fields of Lost Paradise

Lost Paradise, the mind-blowing immersive festival experience held over New Year’s in the enchanted hinterland of Glenworth Valley, has announced its incredible three-day (29 December-1 January) Shambhala Fields programme line-up for 2018.

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With an ever-growing desire for a place for festivalgoers to nourish their mind, body and soul, Lost Paradise’s family-friendly Shambhala Fields programme curated by experienced yogi and doula Catriona Byrne, has doubled in size, and this year indugenous and cultural tent is a dedicated and for the very first time, a women’s only sanctuary. The stream-side oasis will showcase some of the most experienced and qualified teachers from around the world encouraging guests to guests to learn, unwind, and reconnect.

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YOGA & MEDITATION TENT:
Designed by award winning bamboo architects, Lucid will be the calming centre of Shambala Fields.  The space will feature highly regarded and respected international master yogis such as Mark Whitwell – conducting special sessions on how The New Feminine is a collaboration between men and women – and Simon Borg Olivier, who has been teaching for 35 years with masterclasses on spinal freedom, energy gathering, and accessing your unconscious. Renowned local yogis will also lead the program including Truth Robinson’s ‘Secrets of the San Bao’,the resounding heart workshop with Aimee Pedersen and Matt Omo which combines the practices of yoga and sound healing, and Hatha Yoga with Eliza Giles.   With benefits ranging from muscle relaxation, increased oxygen levels, and curing stress-related illnesses, guests can also take part in laughter yoga with Jeevi Ramtel aka the Laughing Chef for one of the funniest types of exercise at the festival.

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TALKS TENT:

The dedicated talks tent is a new area that will immerse guests in new ideas and conversations, challenging thought and inspiration, from neuroscience, and medicinal mushrooms, to urban farming, mental health, drug awareness, and inspiring stories from everyday people who have overcome the odds and made social change.

Dr. Kaushik Ram, a pioneer of research into the nervous system and who leads ground-breaking talks in Australia and across the globe (including TedX), will present his ‘Forbidden Intelligence’ talk, combining cutting edge neuroscience with the ancient intelligence of intuition. His session will challenge guests by blindfolding them and inviting them to trust their primitive instincts and unlock their natural abilities. Entomologist Tanya Latty will present a talk on how social insects such as bees and ants could help town

planners solve bottlenecks in city infrastructure and urban renewal.

There will also be a green panel talk, ‘Lost Paradise’s War on Waste’, opening up the conversation around waste and inspiring guests to be conscious of their footprint on the environment. Festival goers can ask

questions from a panel of experts including Jo Taranto and Corina Seeto from Good for the Hood (featured on ABC TV’s War on Waste), environmental scientists from ‘Green Music’, the ‘EARTH warriors’, and respected elder Phil Bligh who will speak on the topic of sustainability from an indigenous perspective.

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WORKSHOPS TENT:
The workshops tent will feature a range of intensive and enlightening activities that will engage the senses and give festival goers an opportunity to try something new – from belly dancing with Eve White, to drumming workshops with Soul Drummer, sound healing sessions by the Sydney Sufi ensemble, and hoola hooping. For those looking to get creative there will be drawing classes, live art and yoga sessions, cookery classes, spell crafting and forest bathing.

BOARDI INDIGENOUS AND CULTURAL TENT:

BOARDI, meaning ‘placing one’s feet in the earth in a meaningful way’ was the name chosen by the Darkinjung elders for the Indigenous space at Lost Paradise. The space is curated by respected elders Phil Bligh and Dave Beaumont with Shambhala curator Catriona Byrne, and is the spiritual centre of the festival which connects guests to the sacred land and history on which the festival is set. The BOARDI space will have ongoing activities all day, recreating an authentic community atmosphere with talks and and cultural workshops local aboriginal elders. They will be breaking down perceptions of the ‘one dimensional Aboriginal person’ and tackling issues of sustainability, mental health, and disconnection from community and environment from
an Indigenous perspective.   Darkinjung members will host a very special indigenous Opening Ceremony.   The rest of the festival ceases running at this time as a mark of respect, and guests are invited to walk ceremoniously from Shambhala Fields to the main stage for the welcoming. Lost Paradise are proud to work alongside the Darkinjung people, and over the past five years have been building and expanding on a joint vision of sharing culture in an authentic way.

HEALING ARTS SPACE AND THE RED TENT:
The healing arts space will feature creative practices promoting healing, wellness and personal change – massage, body work, psychic, tarot readings, witchcraft, reiki, sound and crystal healing and astrology readings. The red tent will be a first for Lost Paradise, a female sanctuary with a programme run by Jane Hardwick Collins from the School of Shamanic Woman Craft will include women’s circles, Shamanic drum journeys, wisdom of the cycles tutorials, craft activities, and holding space for women who are on their cycle.

HEALTH FOOD:
The hugely popular Holy Cow Chai Tent will be making its debut this year at Lost Paradise with its carnival-themed chill space specialising in edible sweet pleasures and breakfast bowls, alongside their iconic brewed Chai, coffee, super lattes and iced drinks.  Also for the first time, will be the Sacred Cacao Dome,  a geometric dome tent dedicated to cacao elixirs and ceremonies, guided meditation, a cacao party with curated music with different vibrations and beta waves to harmonise and balance guests. The organic cacao bar also provides delicious treats.

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Joseph Lloyd, Contributor
Photo Credits: Gabe Tiano, Jordan Munns, Nathan Bonnici, Tye Winer,

For all ticket and camping details and to purchase tickets visit: www.lostparadise.com.au
Second release 3-day tickets: $349 + bf
Second release 4-day tickets: $399 + bf
All tickets include a general camping spot.

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Where to enjoying Bastille Day with a French wine passport

We attended the free annual event, the Bastille Festival in Circular Quay. Held from 12-15th July, it was a huge street gathering to celebrate all things French: food, wine and art. A precursor to more celebrations to come with the huge World Cup victory by France.

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It was interesting to try different wines from different regions and learn about their influences, flavours and we really enjoyed this.

There were lots of food stalls, an outdoor cinema, music and Christmas in July markets in the Argyle st Rocks Village, so it really made for a lovely night out.

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Held in a few iconic areas of Circular Quay such as near to the Sydney Opera House, Harbour Bridge and the Museum of Contemporary Arts Sydney, it was the perfect backdrop to this event.

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We specifically attended the VIP French wine tasting tour with a French “passport” to try wines of 7 regions throughout France.

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We had a map to guide us to each spot. There were a mix of different wines but they were mostly reds. People serving gave a brief explanation of what the wine was.

First up was in First Fleet Park in the Rocks Village where we tried a Sauvignon blanc from the Loire Valley as well as a Red – a Syrah from the Rhone Valley.

The next location was at the beautiful Customs House Village with reds from Bordeaux and Languedoc. Moving onto East Cirqular Quay Village whee we had a Viognier from Beaujolas and a Pinot Noir from Burgundy. The final wine was from Cotes De Provence.

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It was an extremely busy event and lines were very long so it is clearly popular amongst Sydneysiders and travellers alike.

Thanks to BBR agency for the invitation and tickets.

Taste of Coogee Food and Wine Festival

Do you like food? Do you like wine? Do you like food and wine together? Then this is the event for you!! Taste of Coogee Food and Wine Festival is back in 2018! Held over two days, the festival features celebrity chefs and cooking demonstrations, live entertainment, market stalls, gourmet food and wine, and lots more!

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When: Saturday 1 September and Sunday 2 September 2018
Time: 10am – 7pm
Where: Coogee Oval, Dolphin Street, Coogee

The event last year was superb and this year again the event is expected to attract well over 50,000 people, with over 100 stalls dishing out some incredible food and beverages from Australia and beyond.

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You will be able to sample award-winning beers and wines from brands such as Batch Brewery, Petersons Champagne House, Geisen and Aperol, to name a few.

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Whilst you’re there, you can experience cooking demonstrations and sample food from ex MasterChef contestant, Mindy Woods’ and Whirlpool ambassador and former My Kitchen Rules chef, Scott Gooding.

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And stretch out on the grass with a wine to enjoy the wonderful line up of live entertainment on centre stage.

Come and join in the Festival, Saturday 1 and Sunday 2 September 2018.

For further details, click here

https://www.facebook.com/TasteOfCoogeeFestival/

Low and slow @BBQ Food Festival – The Australian Hotel and Brewery

We ventured out to The Australian Hotel and Brewery for the BBQ Food fest 2017. Whilst here, we sussed out the brewery, an expansive pub, originating from 6 brothers wanting to create Australian Craft beers. They set this up in Rouse Hill and it is thriving. The brewery has indoor and outdoor sections, sports bars, dining areas and function spaces. There’s plenty of room to eat and drink. With a massive range of beers on tap and plenty brewed in house, you won’t be short of a new beer to try. 

A $10 paddle is the best way to find your favourite. Pick 5 beers and receive them on a tasting paddle and you’ll be set. We tried the Fire and Brimstone; smoked malts with old and new world hops as well as the Pilsner and Seishermanos; a maize and lemony light drink to clean your palate and perfect for an afternoon drink. It was a hot afternoon so we decided to mix it up with the fresh press apple cider – perfect for summer. Another interesting flavour was the Cranberry Sour – a Christmas exclusive! This blend of Berliner Weiss’s infused with fresh cranberries is awesome! We strongly encourage you to head into the brewery and try some for yourselves. You can also get takeaways and merchandise as well.

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The BBQ festival was a great day out with entertainment and a range of vendors serving up smokey charred goodness. They were also showcasing products and smokers to purchase.

BBQ has always been a thing in Australia, but usually associated with grilling some sausages, different types of meat or to bang a couple of shrimp on the barbie. However, this fesival was more associated with the American style BBQ, cooked low and slow on the smoker. Vendors were serving up a range of meats like smoked brisket, pork belly, pulled pork, beef rib and burnt ends!

IMG_E2895 We sampled the BBQ a number of different crew; Bovine and Swine (from around our neck of the woods) always delivers and we now have some new favourites to add to the list including Black Bear BBQ. Black Bear was started by a couple of mates with a passion for BBQ and now have a joint out at Blacktown that caters to the masses. Another standout was Smokin Grill specialised BBQ food truck, our pick of the day. 

Milky Lane also had a food truck, if you see this truck, around make sure you get into their burgers. The Kevin Bacon was a tasty behemoth with double beef, double cheese, bacon and truffle. Seriously insanely good.

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The Tsuru food truck was also there and we sample a few bao and fries.

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We finished with something sweet from Loaded Magnums, which as the name suggests is a Magnum ice cream loaded up with additional ice cream and a range of toppings. Knafeh is also a favourite! The bearded bakers are entertaining and amazing cooks.

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The Australian Hotel and Brewery is a great venue, it was a hot day, so it was good the staff let us slip inside to enjoy our food. We loved the BBQ Food Festival and had a great time chowing down on some quality BBQ. We will definitely be keeping an eye out for BBQ Food Fest 2018.

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The Australian Hotel and Brewery

350 Annangrove Rd, Rouse Hill NSW 2155 

Australian Brewery Menu, Reviews, Photos, Location and Info - Zomato

The Art of Dining @Westfield Hornsby

Art of Dining, held at Westfield Hornsby, is an annual festival celebrating food, drink and entertainment.

This year’s Art of Dining was a wonderful community event where people of all ages gathered together for an enjoyable afternoon, with musical acts who performed on the main stage and engaged the crowd with dancing – one act even encouraged kids to get on stage to play the bongo drums!

There was also a jumping castle, which all the kids loved of course.

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Outside the Dining Precinct at Westfield Hornsby, there were a number of stalls set up, offering a range of different delicious cuisines.

We were lucky enough to have sampled what Joyful House had to offer at the Eat.Drink.Westfield event back in August and so we made a bee-line straight for their stall to get a yum cha fix. We had plenty of tasty morsels, such as salt and pepper chicken wings, spring rolls, mixed dumplings, fried won tons and pork buns.

We also couldn’t resist the bite sized mango pancakes being served up by Westfield Hornsby favourite, the House of Canton.

For the adultsShores were serving up the perfect combination of oysters and a glass of champagne. Craft beers and cocktails were also available from the bar. It was very enjoyable taking in the entertainment and performances on the main stage whist sipping on an Aperol Spritz.

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Food trucks are so in fashion these days and they were certainly popular with the crowds at this event.

Inbocca were selling pizzas, lasagne cubes and arancini, whilst The Wienery had a variety of mouth-watering bites, including bacon wrapped hot dogs – definitely a popular choice.

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We tried the Egyptian food from El Qahirah, which has introduced us to the wonders that this cuisine has to offer.

One of our favourite meals of the day was an Egyptian street food dish; a bowl of rice and lentils, topped with a middle eastern spiced tomato sauce, macaroni, chickpeas and fried onions with a magic ‘Dukkah’ flavouring of vinegar, spices and chilli. This dish, called Koshary (meaning Cairo), is the National dish of Egypt and we can certainly see why! Wow!

They also have flatbread pouches filled with the works for a healthy option!

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Alexander’s Bakery make a variety of Macedonian filled pastries. The Burek, with a range of sweet and savoury fillings (our pick being the spinach and ricotta and the smokey pulled pork) was delicious! These were selling out super-fast with the crowds and we highly recommend trying some.

One must finish their dining experience with dessert… and that we did with some beautiful little patisserie foods from Love One More Bite. Their tarts were not only visually appealing, but also extremely tasty. Our favourites were the unicorn and the special skull feature, perfect for Halloween.

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The food was on point and the entertainment provided ambiance whilst dining, with a range of acts including Malaika Green, Mi-kaisha, Phil Maxwell and The Modern Glitch.

The skill displayed by the face painters from Kozi and Pinky Entertainment was very impressive with children queueing up for face art. But, who said it only has to be for children? It was Halloween, so we decided to line up for some painted faces too! The line moved quickly and there was no cost involved for shoppers. Our “Day of the Dead” faces are testament to their amazing skills!

This annual event certainly brought people together – watch out for its return next year. We cannot wait to see what Westfield Hornsby puts together next year, this event is definitely not to be missed!