The new North Coast Food Festival, “Sample – A taste of Northern NSW”,  was launched on Monday, 6th June.

Eight of the region’s top Chefs gathered at North Byron Events at North Beach, where the festival will be held on September 10 this year.

After several hours the creative group had devised their initial plan for the gala dinner to be held as a part of the festival – a four-course dinner featuring local seasonal ingredients, accompanied by matching wines and live entertainment.

“Nine chefs, four courses, many surprises,” is how Leah Roland, who is co-ordinating the chefs, describes the event.

“It’s incredibly exciting to work with such a vibrant and talented group. There was no ego today, just a heap of good ideas.”

The gala dinner is already a quarter sold, according to festival organiser Remy Tancred.

“I encourage anybody who wishes to attend to book soon. It will be a very special evening indeed,” she said.

Chefs preparing the dinner include new owners at ate and Satiate Katrina and Karl Kanetani, Gavin Hughes from The Byron at Byron, Joseph Griffen from Harvest, Perry Hill, Monique Guterres-Harrison from Seaweed Cuisine, Peter Flemming from 561 Alphadale, Scott Frost from Seven Mile Restaurant and Adam Smith from Fleurs.

The festival will commence at 9am with farmers markets and a range of food produce, health and lifestyle stalls.

Twenty restaurant marquees will operate from 9am–3pm, serving $5 and $10 tasting plates. The best of these will greet the four Sample judges – Joanna Savill, Barbara Sweeny, Belinda Jeffery and Steven Snow, for the test of who will win the Golden Fork Award, to be announced at the Gala Dinner.

Cooking and lifestyle demonstrations will be held throughout the day, including Simon Grigalius from My Restaurant Rules, Leah Roland, Principal of the Bangalow Cooking School teaching both adult and kids cooking classes, and Phil Dudman and Julie Ray showing us garden to kitchen tips.
“Restaurant marquees have all been filled, however, a number of other stalls are still available, including farmers market, producer and lifestyle stalls,” said Remy Tancred.

Tickets for the Sample Gala Dinner are $160 and include canapés plus four courses with matching wines. For festival enquiries, including gala dinner bookings, contact Remy on 0414 925 811 or email

PICTURED: Chefs (back) Jo Griffen, Karl Kanetani, Scott Frost, Adam Smith; (front) Peter Flemming, Gavin Hughes, Monique Guterres-Harrison, Katrina Kanetani.