Taste of sum­mer

Sunday Tasmanian - Tassie Living - - FRONT PAGE - Graeme Phillips The Taste Fes­ti­val runs from Fri­day, De­cem­ber 28 to Thurs­day, Jan­uary 3. Visit taste­fes­ti­val.com.au

Water­front fes­ti­val’s new fl avour

CO- CHAIR­MEN Marti Zucco and Peter Sex­ton have cor­rected some of last year’s most trou­ble­some mis­takes and made big im­prove­ments for this sum­mer’s Taste Fes­ti­val.

The most sig­nif­i­cant will be the prod­uct mix of the 41 stalls inside Princes Wharf No. 1 shed and in the pre­sen­ta­tion and traf­fic flow to the 25 stalls in the out­side Pier and Pad­dock sec­tions.

There will be 17 new stalls, in­clud­ing Alis­tair Wise from Sweet Envy of­fer­ing his su­perb ice creams from a re­mod­elled Mr Whippy van.

‘‘ Most im­por­tantly,’’ said Al­der­man Zucco, ‘‘ in the se­lec­tion process and mix of stalls, we’re aim­ing to re­turn the Taste to its roots – a community cel­e­bra­tion of the best of our home­grown food, wine and re­gional pro­duce and of the peo­ple who make them.’’

Of the stalls se­lected this year, 50 rep­re­sent Tas­ma­nian busi­nesses, six are Sala­manca stall­hold­ers and 10 are reg­u­lar stall­hold­ers at other fes­ti­vals.

Thirty- seven of the stalls will be of­fer­ing savoury food, 13 desserts and 34 wine, beer and other bev­er­ages.

And in recog­ni­tion of the im­por­tance of wine and other bev­er­ages to the event, Ald Sex­ton said: ‘‘ We have re­vi­talised the Pad­dock and Pier precincts, re- en­gaged Phil Laing to put on a wide range of tast­ings, got rid of last year’s clean­skins, in­tro­duced qual­ity glass­ware and will be of­fer­ing the win­ning Best- of- the- Taste wines ex­clu­sively in our pre­mium seat­ing ar­eas and at New Year’s Eve.

‘‘ If we say the Taste rep­re­sents the best of

Tas­ma­nia, then, when it comes to our wines, rather than the [ Ho­bart City] coun­cil sell­ing cheap clean­skins, that’s what we need to of­fer.

‘‘ If we have qual­ity wines, then you need qual­ity glass­ware to show them off and we’ll have that as an op­tion for vis­i­tors this year as well.’’

Over­all, the fes­ti­val will ex­pand into the sec­ond Sala­manca lawn area this year with stall­hold­ers on the lawns and The Deck for the first time.

The Kids in the Park sec­tion in front of Par­lia­ment House will be big­ger and bet­ter and the or­gan­is­ers say there will be greater in­te­gra­tion of the Taste with the ac­tiv­i­ties of Satur­day’s Sala­manca Mar­ket. When the ques­tion of costs and pos­si­ble en­try fees arise, they have dis­pensed with last year’s $ 90,000 man­age­ment team from NSW.

Ald Zucco said the stall­hold­ers’ food and drinks side of the fes­ti­val al­most breaks even.

‘‘ It’s ef­fec­tively the an­cil­lary events, the en­ter­tain­ment and Kids in the Park that cost the coun­cil,’’ he said.

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