The Herb and Chilli Festival - 18-19th March
2016 was another great festival. Friday had some real rain (40mm in the afternoon and 40mm overnight) which made Saturday a bit wet and muddy, However the Wandin mud is good stuff and by lunchtime we were drying out. The weather did play havoc with parking and made 20% of the carpark unusable. Numbers were down on Saturday but well up on Sunday with some beautiful autumn weather. Over 5000 attended over the two days and they all had a great time. We had some new stalls come along and ten who returned for their fifth consecutive year.
Hot Sauce Alley was a real hit with many new sauces, relishs and rubs being released at the festival. Hellfire Wing Challenge was popular with lots of victims trying their mouths on some very hot wings. The Food court gave plent of yummy mouthwatering treats and the kids had their fun on the free rides in the Kidz Zone. Couple of head blowers were the Hot Chilli Ice Cream and the world's hottest dim sims. Both are coming back in 2017.
The Cooking Stage, managed by festival Chef Dani Venn was well attended. Several presenters gave easy to do recipes and tips on how to spice up your cooking. On top of this visitors were treated to a range of music and dance displays. Overall fantastic food, great music, hot chillis and a good time was had by all.
We are starting plans for 2017. Chiils have been propagated and the young seedlings are popping up. Dates have been sent and invites went out to to stall holders at the end of August. Preliminary details are below and maybe modified as we get into full planning. Tickets will be on sale from November through TryBooking.com or follow links on this web site. Buy tickets on line through TryBooking and get a free HACF gift and also avoid the queues. Please like us on Facebook and we will keep you informed of all the action as it happens.
Remember every chilli is a good chilli and life is too short for bland food.
Important information at a glance:
Date: 18-19 March, 2017 10.00am to 5.00pm
Address: 125 Quayle Road. Wandin - off Warburton Highway
Tickets: Online through links above and below OR at the gate on the day.
Parking: Free and on site or nearby
Friendly: We welcome: dogs (well behaved), bicycles (separate parking), motorcycles (dedicated parking area), disabled (level site with no stairs, dedicated parking area), vegans (food available at many stalls), families (free entry for kids, kids zone with free entertainment, no junk food).
To join our mailing list so you are the first to hear about the 2017 festival, click here
What is there - summary?
We want every one to come along, have a great time and get value for for their money and time:
- Everyone gets a fee Herb and Chilli Festival book and program
- Everyone gets a free online Herb/Chilli Growing course (TBC)
- Everyone who buys a ticket gets a free plant
- We have four stages (Speakers, Buskers, Cooking & Entertainment) running from 11.00 to 4.30ish both days (see details on 'About' tab)
- Free activities for the kids (and kids at heart) including Jumping Castles, Face Painting, Pony Rides and Animal Farm
- 70+ stalls selling food and other products and providing information. All prices are kept at reasonable levels with most food dishes under $10 and most drinks at standard bar prices
- Access to some of the world's best Hot Sauces - Australian, American, Mexican, Japanese
- Free parking
The Australian Chilli Cookoff is back for 2017!
Hot Sauce Alley will again be a feature of the event!
- Blonde Chilli presenting: Blair's Death Sauce, Volcanic Peppers Lava, HellFire, CaJohns and many more.
- Diemens Hot Sauces made using the Tasmanian Pepper Berry
- Jungle Rain Gourmet Chilli Sauces featuring Sadistic Slumber and Jungle Mustard
- Melbourne Hot Sauce with their award winning Smoked Jalapeno and Chipotle BBQ
- Hells Breath relishes and sauces showing off Jennifer's passion for flavour
and two new members of THE ALLEY;
- Crowleys Hot Sauces, Jason is bringing his favorite sauces down from Wagga
- Grumpy Gary's Hot Sauces, Handcrafted sauces that are a bit milder but still hot and tasty
International Food Court
2000 square metres with over 20 food vendors showing off food styles from all over the world.
Selection of expert speakers covering a broad range of topics on how to use herbs and chillies
Musicians and dancers that will get your toes tapping. A variety of performance from several different cultures and a key band each afternoon. Interspersed with the Hell Fire Wing Eating challenge 4 times each day.
As usual we have a collection of chefs doing their favourite dishes for you. You should be able to go home with collection of new meals to do at home. 2016 will see the return of Festival Chef: - local friend and supporter Dani Venn.
A simple stage with Nati Anton doing her Flamenco dancing and several other buskers and entertainers.
Australian Chilli Cook Off - for the fourth year we have some amazing teams competing to make the yummiest Chilli - register your interest through link above
The Herb and Chilli Festival Sauce Award. Two awards this year - best relish and best hot sauce from our exhibitors
Best Stand. Again we will award the most colourful and exciting stand the 'Best Stand' award.
Kids Fun Zone
To entertain the young ones (and young at heart) we have our kids zone. There is a HUUUGGE jumping castle - Giant Fire Engine Slide - from USA plus Pony Rides, Face Painting, Petting Zoo and photo points - all free!