Food and wine fest a sellout
By MEL MARTIN
BACK to its home base of Park Beach Reserve, yesterday's Food and Wine Festival was such a huge success that food outlets were running out of food early.
Hungry hordes cleaned out the Plantation Hotel barbecue in only a couple of hours, and long queues featured at every food stall for the entire day.
But apart from the queues, stall holders and crowds alike were thrilled with the day.
"It's been an absolute pearler," Todd Cowling from Fishermans Katch said.
"We're about to sell out, it's been an excellent day."
For most, the fact that the festival was back at Park Beach from last year's attempt to hold it at Coffs Harbour International Stadium was a winner.
"It's going very well, we're a lot happier with the format this year compared to last year," Raleigh Vineyard and Winery proprietor Vinny Dingle said.
"From what I've seen there's not enough food outlets. I think a lot of restaurants decided not to come back this year because they didn't enjoy the experience last year, and I'm sure the crowds are so much bigger this year because the event is back at this venue."
This sentiment was echoed by the crowds, who rated the atmosphere as one of the best ever.
"The atmosphere is fabulous, last year didn't have any, but this year is great. People are back and enjoying it, it's fantastic," Ann Sergeant said.
Coffs Harbour City Council event coordinator Jenny Oloman was also thrilled with the day.
"It's probably the biggest one ever, we're over the moon," Ms Oloman said.
"There are thousands of people enjoying the beautiful food and wine, and the band, everyone is having a great time.
"Some restaurants ran out of food, so some people were disappointed, but it's really difficult to guess what's going to happen."