2009 Good Food & Wine Show Round-up

Mind Your Manners
I’m the youngest child. While being the youngest rocks (your parents are sort of over it by the time they get to you and let you run wild), it also means you have to learn to fight for things. Meal times, snack times, birthday cake-you’re the smallest, so you have to get in there and get dirty. Youngest children of the world unite: fight for your food.

There must have been a hell of a lot of people who were the youngest in their family at the Good Food & Wine Show on the weekend. I have never seen so many incredibly greedy, rude, and pushy people scrambling to get samples.

Now, you know I love my samples. They’re great. They’re free food. But I also love my manners. I see a sample, I wait patiently until there’s room at the table. I inch in slowly, careful not to jostle any fellow sample patrons. If the proprietor of the stall is talking to a potential customer, I don’t interrupt. I wait until they are free, I catch their eye, and I say “may I try the triple chocolate fudge explosion, please.” I taste it, look at their other products, and note their name should I wish to purchase the product.

What I DON’T do, is shove my fat ass in front of everyone, mindlessly grab at whatever food is on offer, openly gape and talk about “Why is that girl taking photos of the food? Oh my god. How weird,” (yeah, we heard you), and forget my pleases and thank yous, and interrupt potential sales, and have no idea of the product name of what I just ate or what business it came from.

Ahem. Forgive me, I’m a bit grumpy today. When I managed to fight the crowds for long enough (and trust me, there were crowds – get there early next year), I tried some great stuff. White Chocolate Chai ice cream from Spirit House was delicious and creamy, and tasted like a sweet, iced chai latte (left). D tried the Red Chilli and Dark Chocolate version and it had a unique bite that snuck up on you after your mouth had been flooded with rich chocolate. We also loved the mousse from Nicholson Fine Foods. The White Chocolate was creamy and had a custard-like texture, and the White Christmas flavour tasted similar but had a little spice.

Black Savourine cheese from Yarra Valley Dairy was boss. It had a flavour similar to blue cheese, but it was much tamer; it would definitely appeal to more sensitive palates.

It seemed like the most samples on offer were alcoholic (Baileys stand, left). I tried Big Head beer and was surprised at how strong and heavy it tasted for a zero carb beer. This is a perfect example of why these shows are good: I will most likely buy some the next time I visit old mate (First Choice), but if I hadn’t tried it at the Show I doubt I would consider it. Baileys, Kahlua, Stones Ginger Beer and a plethora of wineries were also offering their wares.

Other favourites were also there, like The Peanut Van (fresh peanut butter, pictured)¬†and The Cupcake Parlour. I tried an awesome muesli-like, seed-packed concoction called Kapai Puku, from Zone Fresh. Another example of something I doubt I’d ever try or buy otherwise.

The best part of the show was probably the Celebrity Live Theatre. We went to one of Matt Moran’s sessions. So, confession time: I have a crush. The man is hot. He’s also a very, very good cook, and is pretty damn funny. He smoothly ran through his show with charisma and confidence, giving away prizes flippantly, and peppering everything with some colourful phrases (“I hate vegetarians,” was one. Oh Matt. You are so cheeky).

While a lot of vendors were selling some of their wares, there weren’t many sit-down eateries at the show. The was the Wild Oats restaurant, and I think that was it (correct me if I’m wrong). I also saw a stand selling fresh haloumi slices, and there were a few coffee carts. Granted, this probably makes sense as it ties the Wild Oats restaurant to the celeb shows, but a small seating area and a few ‘meal’ stalls would have been good.

So, if you can get past the crowds and the greedy people, the Good Food & Wine Show is an excellent chance to try a variety of food and wine you haven’t had before. It’s also a great opportunity to find out more about products direct from the vendors. Plus, there’s Matt Moran’s arms.

Good Food & Wine Show 2009 (Brisbane)

Friday November 6 – Sunday November 8

Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre


3 Responses

  1. Steph Bond @ Bondville says:

    I loved the White chocolate chai icecream from Spirt House too! We (stroller + toddler + I) went on Friday and it was dead. No atmosphere and most vendors very bored. As you mentioned, not too many food samples; mostly alcohol samples (not great for the preggy women) – but plenty of happy punters looking quite drunk. I was surprised at the lack of food magazine stands (they are usually all over the southern states' shows), and the lack of value in the "sample bags". We saw Gary and George and they were a great, fun double act, but what is with the 30 min "warm-up" show before they came on? Too much for the toddler and we had to leave just as they were frying doughnuts. Not sure I'll go next year…

  2. Gastronomy Gal says:

    Oh my goodness. I couldn't believe the rude people at the food and wine show either. By Saturday afternoon everyone was tanked and were pushing around just saying to the wine vendors 'gimme some port'- My answer would be- how about no. You obviously aren't a potential customer and i'm pretty sure your palate can't distinguish between this port and the last 43 you have tasted. I agree wholeheartedly- have some manners! I might try and get there on Friday next year to avoid a similar scenario.

  3. Ally says:

    Is it is better in Syd and Melbs?

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