Taste of Durban – an alfresco gourmet food celebration

Filed in Food & Wine, Social Events by on July 30, 2013
Taste of Durban 2013

Taste of Durban 2013

Launched in 2004, at The Taste of London, Taste Festivals are a global phenomenon of unique events, at which the host city’s most acclaimed restaurants and chefs gather to present their signature dishes to visitors – an unforgettable experience of ‘foodie heaven’.  The key difference between Taste and other food festivals, is that the experience, cuisine and atmosphere of each festival is totally unique to the city in which it is held and visitors are able to get ‘up close and personal’ to a city’s top culinary offerings, all at one destination.

Taste of Durban food festival (© Taste of Durban)

Taste of Durban food festival (© Taste of Durban)

Visitors streaming in... (© Taste of Durban)

Visitors streaming in… (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

The Pick n Pay Taste of Durban in association with Orbit Sugarfree Chewing Gum, now in its second year, took place from Friday 26 to Sunday 28 July at Suncoast Casino, Hotels & Entertainment (Suncoast), on Durban’s iconic ‘Golden Mile’.

Havana and Little Havana's delicious menu (© Taste of Durban)

Havana and Little Havana’s delicious menu (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

For the occasion, chefs from nine of Durban’s most fabulous restaurants, will custom-create menus of starter-sized signature dishes designed to reflect their diversity, individual philosophies and talent and in the process showcase the best of Durban’s premium seasonal ingredients and local product.

Lemon Meringue from Elements Cafe Bar (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

Lemon Meringue from Elements Cafe Bar (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

Lining up to show off their talents at the 2013 event were chefs Marcelle Roberts from Café 1999, Louise Potgieter from Havana Grill at Suncoast and award-winning executive chef, Jackie Cameron, from Hartford House. Representing a selection of Umhlanga and Morningside’s top eateries are BAR-BA-COA Argentinian Grill and Butcher Boys, head chef, Themba Mngoma from Little Havana, and executive chef Tony Kocke from elements café bar at the Beverly Hills Hotel. Lucy Markewicz will be flying the colours for the eclectic Freedom Café and popular Indian restaurant Amaravathi Palki, brought the total of participating restaurants to nine of Durban’s best.

 

 

In preparation... (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

In preparation… (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

The 2013 edition of Taste of Durban combined the perfect mixture of ingredients – outstanding home grown talent, the host city’s most acclaimed restaurants, selected exhibitors and celebrated chefs serving signature dishes – truly the ultimate gourmet experience for visitors.

Over three days, this unique international restaurant festival brought together Durban’s most dedicated and sophisticated foodies in an alfresco gourmet food celebration, with opportunities to attend chef demonstrations, tutorials about wine and food pairing and other interactive ‘gastro’ features.

Besides the participation of a selection of Durban’s favourite dining spots, the 2013 offering brought a host of other ‘must-do’ experiences.  These included…

 

Chef's Theatre 'menu' (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

Chef’s Theatre ‘menu’ (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

The Pick n Pay Fresh Living Chef’s Theatre – top local chefs showcased their culinary skills in fun and informative cooking demonstrations, culinary challenges and entertaining Q & A sessions.

The Pick n Pay Wine and Canapé Experience – this was an interactive area where guests learnt to create simple, stylish canapés and how to pair each of them with a range of wines to complement and balance the flavours.

Jackie Cameron from Hartford House demonstrating at the Chef's Theatre (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

Jackie Cameron from Hartford House demonstrating at the Chef’s Theatre (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

 

Learning how its done... (© Steve Yelseth/taste of Durban)

Learning how its done… (© Steve Yelseth/taste of Durban)

 

Lindt (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

Lindt Studio (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

LINDT Studio – Switzerland’s finest chocolate house had their Master Chocolatiers on hand creating delicious LINDOR truffles and fresh pralines.

Simply Asia and Singha Beer Experience – this was a unique Thai dining experience with food prepared by authentic Thai chefs from the Land of Smiles.

The guys from Simply Asia (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

The guys from Simply Asia (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

Asara gourmet burger and wine pairing (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

Asara gourmet burger and wine pairing (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

Asara Bistro Box – Asara released some of their Vineyard Collection and speciality range wines, which were paired with a selection of gourmet burgers and chocolates.

The Consol Mixology Theatre – an interactive studio where visitors learnt how to master the art of stunning seasonal cocktails.

Cocktails in the making... (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

Cocktails in the making… (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

Delicious cocktails served in Consol jars at the Mixology (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

Delicious cocktails served in Consol jars at the Consol Mixology Theatre (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

–          Castle Milk Stout Experience – SA’s premium stout made its first appearance at this year’s Taste of Durban.

–          Sevruga Sushi & Sparkling Lounge – Sevruga at Gateway, had a variety of sushi and wine pairings for visitors to enjoy.

An assortment of sushi (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

An assortment of sushi (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

'Unplugged' entertainment... (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

‘Unplugged’ entertainment… (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

... and Zaffa entertaining the crowds (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

… and Zaffa entertaining the crowds (© Steve Yelseth/Taste of Durban)

Giving Back…

An important part of the Taste philosophy, is the chance to ‘give back’ to the community in the city in which the show is held.  This year, Food 4 Thought, a restaurant revenue-generating project, has been chosen as the official charity.  Food 4 Thought, raises funds and awareness, for the expansion and work of Umthombo, a Durban-based organisation that empowers street children to leave street life and take their place in the community as proud citizens. 

Visitors to the Taste of Durban 2103 were given the opportunity to actively support the work of Food 4 Thought by contributing their leftover crowns (which is then converted into cash) to the organisation or by making a donation at the show.

 

Going Green… 

Implementing sustainable initiatives as part of the show, is a key focus of the Taste of Durban. From the separation and disposal of waste to the use of plates, bowls, knifes, forks, and spoons that are made from natural and renewable resources that are 100% biodegradable after use. Every effort was made the organisers, sponsors, partners and exhibitors to make the event as ‘green’ as possible.  “Taking the environment into account and ensuring best practice in terms of sustainability can only add to the  flavour experience that epitomises Taste,” says Festival Director, Justine Drake.

Naming sponsors Pick n Pay and Orbit Sugar Free Chewing Gum, both place great priority on environmental issues and actively promote and operationalise sustainability in their core activities.  Pick n Pay  is considered South Africa’s ‘greenest’ retailer, with multiple green awards to its name.  The company continues to research, innovate and apply its findings to business practises and ultimately share their journey with their customers, in order to assist them in reducing their own impact on the environment through adopting more sustainable lives.

 

Check out the Taste of Durban Face Book page for more great pics…

http://tasteofdurban.co.za/

http://www.tastefestivalssa.co.za/

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