The Taste of New Zealand Festival has arrived!
Opening on Wednesday this week and running until Saturday, Taste of New Zealand will be New Zealand's greatest ever culinary festival, during one of the biggest weeks in our recent history!
Taking place at Victoria Park in Auckland, Taste will play host to thousands of local and international foodies, some of New Zealand's most talented chefs, international stars of cooking and our own world class food and drink producers.
The green expanse of Victoria Park will be transformed into a vibrant village of artisan food producers, wineries, pop-up bars, and top restaurants from around the country serving their stunning signature dishes.
The star studded line-up chefs is led by one of New Zealand's most famous cooks, Annabel Langbein, AKA the Free Range Cook. She will be joined by several other top kiwi chefs including:
Top UK chef and international culinary identity Rick Stein also gets top billing, bringing the exotic flavours of the Malaysian kitchen to Taste of New Zealand. Rick has owned and run successful restaurants in Cornwall for many years and recently opened Rick Stein at Bannisters on the South Coast of New South Wales, Australia. He is familiar to many as the host of top-rating TV shows including Rick Stein's Far Eastern Odyssey, Food Heroes, French Odyssey, Taste of the Sea and Fruit of the Sea. Rick has also written books to accompany his TV series.
Six time Michelin Star-awarded chef Gary Rhodes is coming to New Zealand for the first time, and is looking forward to rubbing shoulders with chefs and foodies alike! Gary is also an accomplished cookery writer and has hosted a number of TV shows including UK Masterchef, Hell's Kitchen and the original Masterchef USA.
New to the festival this year is an initiative called Taste of New Zealand Awards (TONZA), which recognises restaurants from around the country that are champions of local produce. The TONZA kitchen includes Christchurch chef Jonny Schwass, who is reopening his restaurant in Auckland after it was demolished following the Christchurch earthquake. TONZA will also feature dishes from True South (Dunedin), Te Whau (Waiheke) and other top restaurants to be confirmed.
Visitors will be able to watch cooking demonstrations at the Fisher & Paykel Chef's Kitchen, get up close and personal with their favourite chef talent at the Waiwera Chefs Table, relax in style in the Audi VIP Lounge, partake in Whiskey Masterclasses and take in the festival atmosphere set to fantastic live music with Peter Urlich, Nathan Haines and The Caitlin Smith Trio.
For the full line-up of chefs, restaurants and the festival menu visit Taste of New Zealand Festival online.
Editorial by Nick Chidley
4 October 2011