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Margaret River Gourmet EscapeNovember 18 - 20

  • Western Australia
  • Major Events
  • Food and Wine
  • Margaret River

Margaret River region, Western Australia

Fabulous food and wine, top-notch culinary talent and outstanding pop-up events that take advantage of Western Australia’s stunning scenery add up to one mouth-watering festival.

In just a few decades, the Margaret River region has asserted itself as one of the great food and wine destinations. No wonder the annual Margaret River Gourmet Escape is now on the calendar of many global culinary stars. Head to Western Australia’s south-west for a weekend filled with fabulous food, premium wine and a beachside surprise or two.

Reasons to attend

1. With the region’s outstanding natural beauty and enviable reputation for fine food and wine, Margaret River Gourmet Escape presented by Audi attracts the top culinary talent. This year’s international chefs include Marco Pierre White, Rick Stein, Gaggan Anand from Gaggan in Bangkok, Ashley Palmer- Watts from Dinner by Heston Blumenthal in the UK and David Thompson from Nahm in Bangkok.

2. The festival showcases Australian celebrity chefs such as George Calombaris (as seen on Masterchef) Matt Moran (Singapore Airlines ambassador and TV personality) and avant-garde patissier Adriano Zumbo, Australia’s answer to Willy Wonka.

3. The Gourmet Village is the heart of the festival, based at Leeuwin Estate Winery. The weekend program includes cooking demonstrations, premium wine tastings, master classes, Q&A sessions, panel discussions and family entertainment.

4. For those who want to crank up their festival experience into something more exclusive, ticket options include everything from getting on stage with stars at the Devil’s Lair Table of Eight, to the Audi Leeuwin Platinum Lounge Package that includes an exclusive seat in the winery’s air-conditioned restaurant, two glasses of premium wine and dishes that showcase local produce.

5. Witness four talented home cooks from Western Australia go head to head in the finale of Buy West Eat Best’s ‘WA’s Signature Dish’ competition at the Miele Chef Theatre. Gourmet Village attendees can sample the four finalist dishes featuring local produce at the Buy West Eat Best regional pop up restaurant. The trophy will be awarded to the most popular regional dish.

6. The festival’s star chefs share their secrets at intimate master classes. At past festivals, chefs have shared everything from the best ways to fillet fish to making the most of Australia’s flavoursome native produce.

7. Festival-goers can unleash their inner sommelier at the festival’s Wine Lounge. Winemakers and wine writers guide participants as they swirl, sniff and sip their way through a range of top drops.

8. Avid food thinkers can take part in lively panel discussion at Brunch with the Best. Some of the world’s best culinary talent will share their insights into worldwide food trends including Rick Stein, Gaggan Anand and David Thompson. 

9. Margaret River is a relatively young wine region – the first grapevines were planted in 1967 – yet it’s quickly established itself as one of Australia’s premier wine regions, best known for outstanding Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon. Its Mediterranean-style climate, soil and viticulture practices result in high quality fruit with intense flavour. Varieties include Shiraz, Merlot, Semillon, Sauvignon Blanc, Chenin Blanc and Verdelho.

10. Apart from vineyards ranging from boutique to large-scale operations, the region boasts outstanding surf beaches, rugged coastlines, towering native forests and hundreds of caves within Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park (six caves are open to the public). It also sits at the meeting point of the Southern Ocean and the Indian Ocean.

What to look out for

Gourmet brunch, lunch and dinner BBQ sessions, held on the beach beside the Indian Ocean in huge tepees, showcase the region’s stunning natural beauty. The laidback atmosphere encourages diners to kick off their shoes and feel the sand between their toes as they savour a BBQ menu matched to regional wines. Feasts in the Forest and one off dinners in exclusive wineries where international, Australian and local chefs collaborate using premium Western Australian produce. 

How to get there

From Perth, hire a car to drive 270km (three hours) to Margaret River (the name applies to the town of about 6500 residents, the river and the wine region) or fly to Busselton, 50km north of Margaret River.

For more details