And while many of the big names have got the ‘full house’ sticker slapped up already, we’ve come up with some dinners and gatherings where you’ll be more than welcome.
The launch weekend is all about enjoying festivities by the Yarra with the Riverside Opening Weekend. One of the most talked-about gatherings there is Food Trucks Unite, where you can grab street eats from Gumbo Kitchen, Taco Truck, Beatbox Kitchen, Massive Weiners, Cornutopia and Dhaba from noon.
Support the locals at the ever-popular Cellar Door & Farm Gate, where 58 wineries, craft brewers and artisan producers will be offering tastes of their wares along South Wharf Promenade. On the other side of the river, WTC Wharf is getting out the astro-turf and tartan blankets for Urban Picnic. Buy a ticket and exchange it for a picnic box from one of the on-site restaurants. Look out also for the pop-up Greenhouse by Joost and Masterclass in Portrait, a photographic exhibition at Queensbridge Square.
For a glimpse into the future, book in to Dinner with Thierry Marx and Stephane Bour at Crown’s Number 8 restaurant on 7 March. Marx is one of the pioneers of modern gastronomy, Bour one of France’s best pastry chefs and together they’re creating a fantasy feast that predicts what we’ll be eating in 2032.
For those who like their food big, head to Fed Square at twilight until next Friday for free Foodie Films. Our top pick is for that night (9 March) with a double bill of Jiro Dreams of Sushi and El Bulli: Cooking in Progress.
For more information, about all of the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival events, visit here.
Tickets for the Cellar Door & Farm Gate cost $35–$40 from Ticketmaster.
Dinner with Thierry Marx and Stephane Bour costs $320 with matched wines, bookings (03) 9292 7899.
The Foodie Films program can be seen here.