Canberra’s Tri-Annual Food Festival is back and like Jay Z it will have you saying ‘can I get an encore?’ as it moves into it’s new digs at Dairy Road in Fyshwick.
The Forage is arguably one of Canberra’s best feel good stories. Since it was established in April 2014, the festival has provided an opportunity for Canberra’s food community to come together and showcase what it has to offer.
Food trucks that nobody had heard of before, were suddenly in the forefront of the mind of Canberrans in a way that has never happened. Some will argue that the Little National Venue was perfect, others will say The Forage has outgrown the central venue and the ‘hip’ Dairy Road venue will suit it to a tee. As I’m being walked through the precinct that now houses a variety of different vendors, for an exclusive preview, it’s hard to argue with this wave of thinking.
The Forage is about showcasing what Canberra has to offer and for a little capital city we pack a punch. We have award winners in a variety of different areas, if you get a chance stop by Jasper + Myrtle, run by Li Peng Monroe and Peter Channells.
Their story is a testament to hard work and dedication, not only is their chocolate award winning, but their business is now at the stage where they are out of their home and into a new spot at Dairy Road.
From painstakingly wrapping every bar, they now have a machine that does the same thing in 10 minutes that used to take four hours. As I take a bite of their dark coated ginger, I can taste the love and dedication that’s gone into the product, this isn’t any ordinary chocolate, it’s special.
Then there’s Fricken Chicken, the boys that run it use a recipe passed down from their mother, it doesn’t get anymore homegrown than that, and their sauce is dare I say it ‘fricken awesome’.
There will be no shortage of beverages on hand – Capital Brewing Co. is the obvious beer choice, Hang Loose Juice is a top 10 craft beer in Australia; Underground Spirits has the best Vodka I’ve ever tasted, if you do get a chance to see Claudia Roughley ask for the Caramel Vodka, it’s a game changer.
Big River Distilling Co. packed a punch with their Cinnamon Gin and Quarry Hill from just off the Barton Highway provided a no fuss Natural Sparkling, which was my pick of their wines, that complimented the different foods. If alcohol isn’t your thing, Altina Drinks has something completely different, but I won’t ruin the surprise.
For dessert the loveable Cannoli Brothers and Sabi Beverages are on hand to provide the goods. Outside of the food trucks The Forage has given local creatives the opportunity to showcase their talents, and there will no doubt be an opportunity to see some of Canberra’s best emerging singers and songwriters on Saturday.
My best tip for The Forage is to not get there at 2pm, sure the event starts then but get in early and make sure you don’t miss out, because you’ll be kicking yourself for weeks, it’s a be there or be square kind of deal.