Maitland's tasting feast on The Levee
On May 20 - 22 Maitland Taste, presented by Mutual Bank, returned to The Levee all in the name of celebrating good food, wine and produce from the Hunter Region and surrounds.
With Maitland's reputation growing as a hub for quality local produce, restaurants and home cooks, the three day event focused on sustainability with stalls and activities featuring local, regional and organic produce.
The program included gourmet food and artisan markets, food trucks, cooking and garden demonstrations, live music, kids activities and more; extending into the night with vibrant installations and pop up eateries. Visitors were able to taste their way through the many local restaurants and food trucks peppered throughout The Levee whilst taking in the sounds of live music from talented local musicians.
The Shared Zone
Wandering through the site, there was plenty of local restaurants and food trucks peppered throughout The Levee along with the sounds of live music from talented local musicians. A range of local food and wine focussed market stalls, food trucks, cooking demonstrations, kid’s art activities, were all on hand as well at live music from local musicians to enjoy.
Pop Up Eateries
Three pop up eateries each with their own distinct flair, line up of live entertainment, food and seating areas were available to visitors, along with the ‘Lost Spirits Laneway Bar’, a speakeasy style bar hidden away in Coffin Lane. ‘The Coop’ was to be found at St John’s Parish Lawn, focusing on an international menu of poultry delights and a surprise sculpture which will delight and brighten up the site. Adding some warmth and atmosphere to the evening will be firepits and a talented line up of musicians.
Brought to you by Slow Food Hunter Valley, The Pumpkin Precinct was jam packed with produce sourced from the local region. Purchase direct from the farmer or you could get the kids involved in one of the cooking workshops that will have them using sustainable ingredients sourced from local produce.
Cooking workshops were available for kids to make ‘Handmade Orecchiette with a Toasted Cauliflower and Cheese Crumble’ and Seed Tape workshops with Kendall Harrison, Slow Food project leader for Maitland Seed Library were available on both Saturday and Sunday.
For all you green thumbs out there, a range of Garden Demonstrations were happening over the weekend of 21 and 22 May. The demonstrations provided learning about how to make your backyard more self sufficient and explore the many practical ways to get a backyard thriving with food, herbs, and flowers using organic and permaculture techniques.
Demonstrations are the perfect way to learn some new cooking ideas and skills that you can take home and put into practice in your very own kitchen. From paddock to plate and playing with flavours, there will be a range of expert presenters taking the stage to teach their tips and tricks about cooking with delicious fresh, local produce.
The Kitchen Stage was hosted by Newcastle locals Matt Gawthrop and Luke Stewart, who were crowned champions of My Kitchen Rules in 2019. Their love of Modern Australian and Italian cuisines proved to be a perfect match for the boys who met as teenagers in a representative cricket team. Since winning MKR, Matt and Luke have shared their food and experiences at private events and pop-up restaurants in the Newcastle and Hunter region.
As well as hosting the stage, Matt and Luke conducted some demonstrations over the weekend. Patrons were entertained and delighted by the tips and tricks provided when cooking delicious fresh local produce.
Bee Zone is a chance for the public to get a close up view of a functioning beehive without the need for a bee veil or other protective equipment and were hosted by Geoff Wightman, Heather Wightman and Barry Vickery.
The live music program at Maitland Taste hosts some of the region’s greatest up and coming independent songwriters across four locations throughout The Levee, Central Maitland.
There was pop up music spaces within The Shared Zone, as well music performance spaces at the three pop up eateries located throughout Central Maitland.
You could also catch large lighting installations on display throughout The Levee over the weekend of Taste. There was four incredible flower installations and a heart arbour which lit up The Levee, and brightened the streets at night. You also couldn't miss the giant rooster on display in ‘The Coop’.
Maitland Taste will return in 2023, for more details visit www.maitlandtaste.com.au