A STORY OF FOOD
Storytelling is what turns a tour into an experience and connects people to places. Creative Tours and Events owner Josh Donohoe savours conversations with the passionate folk behind the Sunshine Coast foodie scene and hearing their success stories.
An avid traveller, Josh created his personalised tours to introduce guests to the makers, brewers and growers at the heart of the food and hospitality industry and drive home their passion and commitment to quality and innovation. He can draw upon 30 to 40 Sunshine Coast businesses – from farms to coffee roasters, breweries to pantries – for his Hinterland Farm to Fork Experience and Sunshine Coast Craft Beer Tours, for example, allowing tour guests and private groups to learn and taste in one-hour stops and 90-minute lunches.
Josh considers that, per capita, the Sunshine Coast is the craft beer-brewing capital of Queensland, with 17 fully operational breweries in the region. And each has a story to tell.
One of Brouhaha Brewery’s most unusual craft beers, for example, is also one of its most popular: Strawberry and Rhubarb Sour. Matt Jancauskas and his team at the Maleny brewery on the Blackall Range created it as a quirky one-off collaboration brew in 2017 for the annual Brewsvegas craft brewing festival. Now Matt laughs at the suggestion he’s created a gold medal-winning monster. “It’s just gone from strength to strength.
“Strawberries are a no-brainer up here. They’re so prominent on the Sunshine Coast. They add that beautiful pink colour to it and they add that really sweet berry nose which draws you in.”
Creative Tours and Events’ half-day craft beer tour and full-day Hinterland Farm to Fork Tours usually call in at Brouhaha Brewery for lunch (also an option on the Hinterland Cheese and Wine tour), when some of the Sunshine Coast’s best produce comes together on a plate. The Falls Farm at Mapleton is responsible for some of those ultra-fresh ingredients. The idyllic 16ha farm near Mapleton Falls is typical of the Coast’s farm-to-fork philosophy. The Falls Farm focuses on regenerative farming practices and permaculture philosophies.
Owner Ben Johnston says that when you take a holistic approach to farming and focus especially on soil health and quality, everything grows more quickly and profusely.
A farm tour is often included on Creative Tours and Events’ Farm to Fork Experience.
“Part of the Sunshine Coast plan is agritourism and we fit in a sweet spot,” says Ben. sunshinecoastcraftbeertours.com.au