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The inaugural Adelaide Food Fringe festival is back on the table

Eat | Drink | Explore

After a false start in 2020, the inaugural Adelaide Food Fringe festival will be held in May this year, with restaurants, wineries, breweries and community groups encouraged to register their events around the state.

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To be held from May 7 to 16, the new Adelaide Food Fringe festival promises to celebrate South Australia’s diverse food and beverage landscape in the spirit of other successful open-access festivals, such as SALA.

Event founder Vic Pisani designed the Adelaide Food Fringe as an affordable open-access festival of special dinners, cultural celebrations, picnics, cooking classes, tours, breakfasts, and more. The festival was first slated for 2020, but was inevitably cancelled due to COVID restrictions.

Pisani is calling for businesses to register their events for an expanded 2021 Adelaide Food Fringe program, which is not associated with the Adelaide Fringe arts festival.

Inspiration for the food festival came from festivals of a similar format, such as SALA, Adelaide Fringe and Umbrella Winter City Sounds. Rather than a site-specific event, the program calls for any business to register their events around the state.

Pisani, who also runs event series The Travelling Table, took inspiration from says host venues may include brewers, wineries, distilleries, venues, clubs, producers, communities and cultural institutions.

Multicultural organisations are encouraged to register their events for the 2021 Adelaide Food Fringe.

“The idea with this event is that it happens after Tasting Australia and it’s a more affordable option for people to get involved in an event that showcases South Australian produce,” Pisani said in 2019, when the event was first conceptualised.

Tasting Australia is programmed for April 30 to May 9, with the Adelaide Food Fringe launching on May 7.

The festival will also stage a dedicated International Pub Week from May 9 to 16 for pubs to register their events, highlighting the stories, people and patrons behind South Australian pubs.

The festival is backed by the City of Adelaide, Pirate Life and Never Never Distilling Co and has released a poster featuring the artwork of Adelaide artist Billie Justice Thomson.

“Like so many in our industry, our festival was a victim of the COVID shutdowns last year, which of course was devastating, but the silver lining was that we still achieved so much as a proof of concept despite not making it to the finish line,” Pisani said.

“Before COVID hit our shores, events in our 2020 program were selling out and audiences, clubs and businesses were engaging with the program beyond our expectations and the cultural diversity, affordability and range of food and beverage experiences people brought was amazing.

“As a festival, 100 per cent of our line-up is curated by the businesses, clubs and individuals bringing their events to our program.

“Because I don’t curate any of the program I’m just as excited as anyone to see what the line-up will be.”

Businesses will be charged registration fees to host events, with 10 per cent of all fees to be donated to Foodbank. Registration is free for not-for-profit organisations such as multicultural groups.

Last year, the festival donated all of its registration fees to Foodbank, resulting in 1080 meals provided to South Australians.
This year, the festival aims to fund 5000 meals through registrations.

“We’re also really proud that through our festival we were still able to achieve another big part of our mission in helping Foodbank provide meals for people experiencing food insecurity,” Pisani said

To register an event, visit adelaidefoodfringe.com.au

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