A busy weekend in the Borough

It’s that time of year—the festivals start and the whales make their way up the coastline. And it all kicks off this weekend in Maryborough, starting with my favourite event on the Fraser Coast….

Relish Food and Wine Festival

I first went in 2013 and was pleasantly surprised by the event. My expectations were very high second time around, and although there were more food options in 2014, there didn’t seem to be as many stalls and I really struggled on the gluten-free front. My friends were delighted with what was on offer, but I asked at place after place for coeliac-friendly meals to no avail. In the end I bought a bag of organic gluten-free corn chips from someone selling salsa.

relish

Nonetheless I’m looking forward to this year’s event with a stack of new sessions available. Not only can you attend the wine or beer and food matching options (for $25), but there’s also a Wolf Blass Master Class on board the Hervey Bay Boat Club’s boat travelling on the Mary River (for $30) and a long lunch featuring some great local chefs (for $85). I did think about offering my services to live-tweet the lunch (in exchange for a sumptuous repast), but….

On the beer and wine tasting front: Wolf Blass, Vintner’s Secret, Kingsley Grove, Crane’s Wines (a fave of mine from 2013), Clovely Estate, Uncle Bob’s Estate Organic Wine and Yenda Craft Beers will be in attendance.

Of course there’ll be food on sale (and I’m crossing my fingers re GF options) as well as music, stalls and the crowd favourite—foodie talks and cooking demos.

The event stretches from Queen’s Park right around the Portside precinct to the lovely Gatakers Artspace.

Tickets are available online for $12 or at the gate for $15. The gates open at 11am with things wrapping up at 6pm. Check out the Relish site for more info, including a map.

For social media fiends, there’s a Relish Twitter account, Facebook page, and Instagram account.

The hashtag du jour seems to be #relishfrasercoast.

Horsemanship Spectacular

If horses and people riding them are more your thing, local (renowned) horseman Guy McLean will be doing his thing at Susan River Homestead on Saturday evening.

In addition to Guy, his liberty horses and some bush poetry, there’ll be refreshments for sale. Gates open at 4.30 and the show starts at 6pm, so you can pop along after Relish. For more information check out the Susan River Homestead Facebook page.

World’s Greatest PubFest

What better way to recover from overindulging in wine and beer tasting than by drinking more?! Yes indeedy, it’s time for the annual PubFest.

Most years we’re champing at the bit (hee hee, notice how I slipped that in given the above event…. #sorrynotsorry) to regain the world pubcrawl record we won at some point in the past. I haven’t heard a lot of talk about the record this year so I suspect we locals are starting to find the event a bit passe. Who knows? We do have a short attention span and get bored kinda easily.

pubfest-header-logo-2015I didn’t even know what the theme was until I looked up the website (yellow Superheroes incidentally) and… the site’s got ‘Information coming soon…’ type text still there, so….

I’ve never been and have to admit it’s not really my thing; however I know you can get PubFest passports and have access to buses to take you from pub to pub and I suspect it’s great fun if you’re part of a group.

For more info check out the World’s Greatest PubFest website.

Sunday Riverside

It’s that time of the month. Yes really! Sunday Riverside is on again at (outside) the Brolga Theatre near the Mary River. Red Betty will be playing on the River Stage and a dinosaur will be dropping by. As they’re wont to do. #gatecrashingdinosaurs

Pics from FB page

Pics from FB page

I’m ashamed that I’m yet to get to a (first Sunday of the month) Riverside event, but hoping to make it this time. There are some chairs and tables around but you may want to BYO chairs and blankets etc. Food and drinks (including the alcoholic kind! 😉 ) are available for purchase, there are kids games and activities, and entry to the event is free.

The afternoon kicks off at 3pm and check out the Facebook event page for details.

Oh… and most importantly… Monday is a public holiday for most of us so we have a heap of time to recover.

Enjoy!

Relishing what’s on offer

A couple of weeks ago my blogging and real-life buddy, KangaRue and I had the good fortune to attend Relish Food and Wine Festival at Portside in Maryborough.

Screen shot 2013-06-23 at 4.03.59 PM

Sadly I didn’t get to any of the other events: The Gourmet Cooking Classes with Villa Cavour B&B; Coast Restaurant’s Wine and Food Degustation Lunch; The Howard Park Degustation dinner at Muddy Waters; or the Banyan Bubbly Breakfast.

We both, however, lapped up everything on offer at the day-long festival itself.

KangaRue and her friends arrived earlier so had already attended some cooking demonstrations;  partaken in some wine tasting; and started the Dan Murphy Food and Wine appreciation session when I caught up with her.

My grandfather (aka Poppie) worked at the Bond Store back in the days it housed barrels of booze, so it seemed apt that James Squire Tales and Ales (beer and food matching) and port and liqueur tastings were on offer there.

A heap of local cafes and food stalls were on hand and a myriad of wineries offering tastings. I was won over by a Crane Wines Sparkling Shiraz – procuring the last two bottles! (I should note that they do deliver, as do many of the other smaller wineries participating in the event.)

I didn’t venture into the XXXX Gold Mini Retreat but it looked to be doing a good business and I loved that you could wander about with your beer or wine from stall to stall or simply sit at a table and lap up the atmosphere and entertainment.

Early rain didn’t deter crowds and I was impressed at the constant throng of people milling about. There was a $10 entry fee (for adults) which also didn’t seem to discourage locals and visitors alike.

With the Mary Ann steam train, kids activities, music and the Relish photo exhibition (and competition) at Gatakers Artspace, there was something for everyone.

relish

As someone who grew up in the borough (as a friend calls it) I love that these kinds of activities are now available. I only wish that – as a teenager growing up in regional Qld in the 1980s – I’d been exposed to similar stuff back then.

Congratulations to all involved. I was very impressed with the activities on offer and the quality of all of the promotional materials and publications. And I will DEFINITELY be making an effort to attend more festival activities next year.

Relish Map_2013_web(1)