Food festivals are seriously underrated.
As a first timer at the annual Pick ‘n Pay Taste of Durban last weekend, I expected nothing more than your average food market: some eats to sample and buy, the occasional pop-up cafe, perhaps some wine-tasting thrown into the mix. But I was pleasantly surprised.
Although I have never considered myself a ‘foodie’, the experience was enough to get me to consider the label. The three day event, held at Suncoast Casino, called all foodies to indulge their taste buds with an array of delectable dishes and treats, and sharpen up their cooking skills with demonstrations from some of the top chefs in the business.
Spoilt for choice, I was definitely not disappointed. The alfresco set-up offered something for everybody in a laid-back atmosphere and gave a unique chance to taste something new. From a chicken shumai and sushi to a Castle chocolate-infused milk stout, I can safely say I dove head on into all the culinary opportunities available!
Award-winning wineries and drink brands quenched the thirst of the eager crowds and the Lindt tent was an inevitable stop on the way out (and in) as your favourite guilty pleasure was handmade right in front of you by the master chocolatiers themselves.
9 of Durban’s top restaurants, including Beluga, Market, Cafe 1999 and Amaravathi Palki Indian Restaurant showcased an impressive selection of menus to whet the appetite, which included signature dishes from leading chefs. A diversity of flavours and food types, from curries and steaks to sushi and sumptuous desserts were available for tasting.
Unique to this year’s Taste was the addition of the Durban eKasi Experience which featured three of the city’s popular shebeens: Max’s lifestyle, Tate’s Kasi Grill and One & Only.
The Fresh Living Chef’s Theatre gave people the opportunity to watch live demos and participate in Q&A sessions and The Wine and Canapé Experience provided an interactive space for guests to gain some culinary tips and create their own delicious canapés.
Taste is an event I would definitely recommend you add to your annual to-do list, or at least give it a try next year. Your taste buds will thank you for it.