Kangaroo Island FEASTival

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20141215_111327Penneshaw – your first view of KI from the ferry

Late last year I was fortunate enough to spend a long and (almost) child-free weekend on Kangaroo Island. In order to celebrate a clutch of significant birthdays a large group of us booked out a couple of the Kangaroo Beach Lodges and headed over, cars filled to the brim with essentials (mostly red wine and beer). I really need to write about that …

Just prior to that, I’d been invited to the official KI FEASTival launch at the Central Market. While KI might be deservedly well known for wildlife, its food and wine industry is blossoming and the annual FEASTival, now in its fourth year, is going from strength to strength.

This year, FEASTival runs from 1 – 8 May and there are a ton of events on a wide range of scales. If you’re seeking a smaller, more intimate experience you will find those, alongside much bigger dinners for a hundred or so people.

Over the last few months I’ve been fortunate enough to speak with a number of KI food and wine producers and they have all been enthusiastic about their produce and passionate about opportunities to share it with the wider South Australian community. For many of them, the island’s isolation, while generally a blessing, can cause problems when it comes to ‘exporting’ to the mainland so visiting is the perfect way of sampling as much as possible!

From my own trip to the island, my two must see picks would be Island Pure, sheep dairy and soon home to the island’s only brewery and Kangaroo Island Spirits. Even if you don’t like gin, the KIS cellar door is just remarkable.

If you haven’t been to KI for a while (or if you’ve never been!) then early May is the perfect time to go.

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