2016 Melbourne Food and Wine Festival picks

Tickets for the 2016 Melbourne Food and Wine Festival go on sale today.  Ready, steady, run to your computer because lots of the good stuff books out super quickly (I have learnt this from bitter experience).  

Wines from Levantine Hill at the launch of the Food and Wine festival.
Wines from Levantine Hill at the launch of the Food and Wine festival.

I was lucky enough to head along to the launch of the festival this week and got a bit of a sneak peek at the events which are on this year.  There were fabulous toasties from Maker & Monger at the Prahran market, Beluga caviar (!) and wines from Levantine Hill and let’s not forget Tivoli Road’s cremé brulee donuts.  

Posh toasties
Posh toasties from Maker & Monger

This is what I’ll be scrambling to get tickets for: 

  • A regional world’s longest lunch.  This is such a great way to check out some beautiful areas of Victoria. I know some people who go to a different region every year. There are 24 to choose some so you won’t run out quickly! For a taste of what you can expect check out my review of the High Country Regional Longest Lunch. Various prices. Often around $140. Friday 4 March. 
  • A gin experience in a beach box with Bass & Flinders. This is a new event at the festival and sounds amazing. You come away with your own personalised bottle of gin.  $158.  Every Saturday of the festival.  
  • Garden picnic at the NGV.  Includes entry to the Andy Warhol/Ai Weiwei exhibition. $30. Friday 4 – Sunday 6 March. 
  • St Kilda on wheels. You get transported via rickshaw on a restaurant crawl.  In previous years I’ve been on the Footscray Rickshaw run. I can’t find it in the program this year so it looks like St Kilda may have the rickshaws. It was such a highlight that I’d love to do this again. $209.  Tuesday 8 – Wednesday 9 March. 
Canape heaven at the launch
Canape heaven at the launch
  • Art and Sole.  You get to wander around the Johnston Collection while eating a five course meal prepared by St Crispins. Culture and cuisine in one glorious evening. Tuesday 8 – Wednesday 9 March $173. 
  • One of the international chef dinners.  Given I don’t travel as much as I used to I’ve come to the realisation that these dinners are the closest I’m going to get to eating at some of these iconic international restaurants.  At the moment I’m eyeing off the Costardi Brothers (otherwise known as the “risotto brothers”) at one of my favourite new restaurants this year, Tipo 00. $148. Sunday 6 March. 
  • Restaurant Express. I try to hit up as many of these as I can every year as it’s such a bargain way of getting to eat at some top restaurants.  For $40 you get two courses and a glass of wine.  Here’s a recap of previous express lunches.  
  • Of course as always I’ll be popping down to the festival hub (which is free) this year it’s a dairy theme – hello cheese and I’ll try to make it to some master classes.

Gourmet Chick was invited to attend the launch of Melbourne Food and Wine Festival 2016.

Doughnuts from Tivoli Road
Doughnuts from Tivoli Road

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