Tasting Australia, presented by RAA Travel, starts today across Adelaide and regional South Australia. Showcasing the best our state has to offer, this year’s event features its most diverse program yet with more than 200 events across 11 regions for 10 delicious days from 29 April – 8 May.
Minister for Tourism Zoe Bettison said the appetite for attending events such as Tasting Australia is greater than ever.
“After a hugely successful festival season in South Australia, we head into 10 days of the country’s premier eating and drinking festival,” Ms Bettison said.
“Major events like Tasting Australia support South Australia’s tourism industry and showcase to the world our award-winning food and beverage sector which is renowned globally for its quality. We look forward to sharing the stories of our producers, produce and regions to visiting chefs and patrons throughout the event.”
The festivities begin today at 11am with the official opening of Tasting Australia’s eating and drinking mecca Town Square, located in Victoria Square/Tarntanyangga.
Free to enter and open all 10 days, the festival hub is the perfect place to meet for a drink, stay for a meal and explore.
Food vendors popping up at Town Square include Angler, Hubba Hubba Hummus, The Filipino Project, Gang Gang, Chilli Shack, Forage Supply Co, Fire x Soi 38, Sunny’s Pizza, Phat Head, Ragini’s Spice, Boston Bay Smallgoods & the Smokin’ Grillers and Barrio, with desserts by Shubui and Lukoumades. Festivalgoers can choose from six unique bars serving a range of beers, wines, spirits and cocktails and the team from Veneziano Coffee Roasters will be serving coffees from their onsite café.
Tasting Australia Co-Festival Director Karena Armstrong encourages people to head into Town Square for brand new experiences this year.
“The festival’s debut Storytellers Series will be held across both weekends of the festival and the line-up of chefs involved with this series is really exciting – I can’t wait to hear our host Mandy Hall delve into these conversations,” says Ms Armstrong.
“The weekday Express Lunch series is another treat for people visiting Town Square - $40 will get you a plate prepared by some of our leading festival talent like Dave Pynt or Amy Hamilton plus a glass of one of Yalumba’s premium wines.
“As my first year in the role of Co-Festival Director I can’t wait to get out amongst the action and see everyone enjoying the very best eating and drinking experiences our state has to offer.”
Away from Town Square, weekend one kicks off with events in some of South Australia’s best regions including Tasting Australia Airlines trips to Coffin Bay and Flinders Ranges, a long lunch at the country’s most exclusive retreat, Kingsford the Barossa and a special trip to the Adelaide Hills at Seasonal Sojourn, headlined by Tasting Australia Co-Festival Director Darren Robertson.
“I am so excited to be back in South Australia – the produce here is truly world-class and it is one of the reasons why chefs from around the country want to cook at Tasting Australia,” says Mr Robertson.
“Superb local ingredients, the very best beverages and events that take guests to unique and unexpected places – that’s what Tasting Australia is all about.”
The beverage program is as extensive as ever, with Drinks Curator Nick Stock pulling out all the stops.
“From the masterclass series in Town Square, to Tasting Tables and Behind the Bar series both held in some of the CBD’s most loved bricks and mortar venues, to unique beverage events held in region, you’ll find it at Tasting Australia,” says Mr Stock.
“We’ve curated an exciting line-up of beverage aficionados from around the country who can’t wait to share a glass or two with our guests.”
Town Square patrons will have the option for their dishes to be served on a reusable enamel Tasting Australia plate for $2, with all proceeds of plate sales donated to the festival community partner Forage Built.
RAA General Manager Travel and Distribution, Gina Norman, recognises the importance of Tasting Australia to the state.
“The tourism sector plays a critical role in our state’s economy in terms of both driving economic prosperity and employment opportunities, particularly for our regions,” says Ms Norman.
“No other event plays such an important role in promoting the regions as well as the city of Adelaide – Tasting Australia is truly one of a kind.”
Tasting Australia, presented by RAA Travel, runs from Friday 29 April until Sunday 8 May 2021, across Adelaide and regional South Australia.