TOURISM will receive a boost when the Melbourne Food and Wine Festival rolls into town for its regional closing weekend from March 15.
In a first for the renowned festival, more than 15 events throughout the Goldfields, Pyrenees and Grampians regions will showcase local food and wine.
Pyrenees Shire tourism co-ordinator Jennifer Ganske said five different events in the Pyrenees would play a significant role in further establishing the area as a must-see food and wine destination.
“We are absolutely thrilled to have this event come to the region,” she said.
“Not only will it boost tourist numbers during the event, but it will also play a big role in attracting tourists in the future as it allows us to tap into a hugely successful event and gain access to people from Melbourne and surrounds who are passionate about good food and wine.”
Home to renowned wineries including Redbank, the Pyrenees stood out because it was still a boutique region, Ms Ganske said.
“We offer an old world experience in a new world setting,” she said.
“It’s not often these days that you can show up to a cellar door and be greeted by the wine-maker.”
Three events in the Ballarat have already sold out, signalling the region’s love of good food and wine.
Melbourne Food and Wine Festival chief executive officer Natalie O’Brien said closing the festival with regional events was an easy decision.
“Regions like the Goldfields have some of the most beautiful produce in the country,” she said.
“The region has some wonderful events that celebrate its history, its local producers, brewers and winemakers with events that appeal to a variety of ages.”