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Calling All Vino Lovers: Hawke's Bay Food and Wine Classic Has Announced Its 2024 Program

The recently appointed Great Wine Capital is eager to show why it is considered the best of the best.
By Emma Clark-Dow
January 23, 2024
By Emma Clark-Dow
January 23, 2024

Hawke's Bay's FAWC Food and Wine Classic is returning for its 12th year, with a nine-day program filled with culinary stars, food and, of course, vino. The 2024 festival will take place from Friday, March 15–Sunday, March 24, with 30 events for food and wine lovers alike. This year's event will be the first time it has been held since Hawke's Bay was declared a Great Wine Capital of the world, and the region is eager to live up to the title bestowed upon it. This list is curated by the Great Wine Capitals network, with Hawke's Bay one of 12 in the coveted category.

One of the most anticipated events of FAWC is the Grand Long Lunch, a five-course meal enjoyed in a top-secret location. Diners expect an afternoon filled with all the region has to offer: culinary excellence, beautiful designs and live entertainment. This year, the lunch — which will of course be matched with Hawke's Bay's top wines — will be prepared by some of Aotearoa and Australia's top chefs, including Casey McDonald of Craggy Range, Zennon Wiljens of Paris Butter and Aussie Callum Hann.

There are a couple of new events on the program this year, including The Late Lunch at The Farm Shop, Waihua Station, where diners will be treated to a three-course meal while drinking in stunning views of the ocean. The BROTHER café in Havelock North also joins the lineup for the first time with Sundowner Groove, a guided picnic set to carefully curated beats.

That's just scratching the surface of the program, with local restaurants throwing extravagant long lunches, experts teaching culinary masterclasses and vintage wine tastings throughout the region — because March is the perfect time to indulge in a vintage.

During the festival, the wine community will be on the hunt for its 2024 FAWC Hawke's Bay Legend, which is typically awarded to someone who has significantly contributed to the success of the food and wine region.

"Sir Graeme Avery was named the inaugural legend in 2021 for his lasting and momentous impact on the landscape of food tourism, and in 2022 Kim Thorp of Black Barn Vineyards was awarded the honours," CEO of Hawke's Bay Tourism Hamish Saxton said.

"Now we're all set to discover the 2024 stories of FAWC Hawke's Bay Legends."

The Hawke's Bay FAWC Food and Wine Classic takes place from Friday, March 15–Sunday, March 24. Pre-sale tickets will be available from Tuesday, January 30, with general admission on sale on Wednesday, January 31 via the event's website.

Published on January 23, 2024 by Emma Clark-Dow
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