The Real Food Festival gathers the best artisan food producers from around the Sunshine Coast to celebrate regional flavours and showcase local food – it makes for a great day out with the girls!
My Eat Well Travel Often tour departed Brisbane a little after 8am with a vanload of hungry gals (we all skipped breakfast to make the most of our impending day of feasting). We got to sit back and relax while being chauffeur driven to Maleny.
For me the best part of the festival was making new foodie discoveries (I tasted camels’ milk for the first time) and chatting to the stallholders who all seemed to have fascinating stories.
I was so happy to meet Sally and Peter, Australia’s first certified organic feijoa growers. I’m mad keen on feijoas and have followed the progress of their farm Hinterland Feijoas since they started several years ago.
Another happy moment was tracking down Hello Honey – who make the most amazing cinnamon creamed honey (been trying to get my hands on some since I tasted it on the Paleo Camping Retreat). I eat it off the spoon it’s that good.
As well as feijoa jam and cinnamon creamed honey I came home with a big bag of caped gooseberries, mulled wine spice mix, butter chicken spices, organic muffin mix, and the second recipe book from the lovely Tania Hubbard.
There were talks throughout the day, where you could learn about everything from beekeeping to bush tucker. James Colquhoun from Food Matters gave a great talk and celebrity chef Matt Golinski pulled a crowd with his pasta making demonstration.
Food stalls were spread out around the Maleny Showgrounds and marquees with hay bale seats offered reprieve from the sun and rain.
Hot food, wine and beer, and fresh produce were all on offer – as well as buffalo haloumi, nitrate free bacon, organic wine, single origin coffee, beef jerky, lychee liquor and chocolate covered strawberries… yes, we all came back with full bellies!
If you haven’t been before then mark the Real Food Festival down for next year, take your friends and make a day of it.
Tips for the real Food festival:
- Give yourself plenty of time as there is so much to see and do, I was there for 4 hours and could easily have stayed longer!
- Chat to the stallholders, they all have fascinating stories and can give you tips and advice on their products
- Bring plenty of cash to avoid standing in line for the ATM
- Bring a sunhat and sunblock as the sun is fierce and you can get burnt as you wander around
- Bring a water bottle to stay hydrated
- Plan your day to make sure you see your favourite chefs and speakers
The Real Food Festival takes place every year at the Maleny Showgrounds. Tickets: $20