A Taste of the Sunshine CoastResearch conducted by Tourism Australia shows that great food, wine and local cuisine was now a major factor in holiday decision making.

The challenge, however, was that for people who have never visited the country, the research showed only 26 per cent associated the destination with good food and wine offering. For those who had visited, Australia ranked second for its food and wine experiences behind France and ahead of Italy. Tourism Australia’s new campaign, Restaurant Australia aims to narrow the perception gap between those who have visited Australia and those who have not.

Backing the campaign and keen to tell the world what they have to offer, the Sunshine Coast has an abundance of quality food experiences. From producers and waterfront restaurants to food festivals and cooking schools, the region is a foodie wonderland guaranteed to tempt your tastebuds. Come and taste, tour, catch, cook, share and eat like a local.

Producers and Growers

You can get up close and personal with fresh produce and growers at any number of the region’s farm gates or providores such as Kunara Organic Marketplace, factories like Maleny Cheese or major food attractions such as the world’s largest operating Ginger Factory.

Find The Masterchef Within

Learn how to create a culinary masterpiece at one of many cooking schools based on the Sunshine Coast, where some of the region’s best chefs will teach you the tricks of the trade.

• Kitchen Carnivale

• Freestyle Experiences

• Red Hot Chilli Pepper

• Spirit House

• The Long Apron

• The Tamarind

Seafood

As one of the busiest ports on the eastern seaboard of Australia, Mooloolaba has the freshest seafood – straight from the trawler! Head to the end of Parkyn Parade and choose from an amazing selection of Mooloolaba Prawns, fish, oysters, lobsters and crab. Be sure to get in early for the catch of the day.

Indulge in a local drop

Enjoy a local drop at Flame Hill Vineyard, Maleny Mountain Wines and Eumundi Winery and Brewery or take a visit with Sunshine Wine Tours. If you prefer a brew, visit the Sunshine Coast Brewery, Brewbake at the Big Pineapple, Ettamogah Pub or pour your own at TAPS Mooloolaba.

Food Identities

Sunshine Coast’s Shane Stanley has recently been announced as an ‘Ambassador’ for Restaurant Australia’s new culinary campaign. The Director of Noosa’s famed Farmers Market, Shane is passionate about quality, but he also recognises that food is part of an overall experience,

and his model for farmers markets has been a template for many other successful markets around the country. We are fortunate that he has expanded his markets on the Sunshine Coast and will open Big Top Market Fresh in Maroochydore later this year.

Food Festivals and Events

The region is blessed with freshly grown produce and culinary masterpieces are transformed from paddock to plate for you to savour. The Noosa International Food and Wine Festival is the most well-known foodie event but don’t miss The Real Food Festival celebrated every September where you can talk, taste, buy and connect with local producers. The Sunshine Coast has a variety of other food events and festivals and an abundance of accommodation options and event packages, so why not stay, play and feast?

www.visitsunshinecoast.com.au