Apollo Bay Seafood Festival announces full program for its triumphant summer return

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Apollo Bay Seafood Festival announces full program for its triumphant summer return

Image: Apollo Bay Seafood Festival. Supplied.

Experience Victoria’s finest local catch at Apollo Bay Seafood Festival ‘23 February 17-19.

Seafood-lovers can breathe a sigh of relief with the much-anticipated return of the Apollo Bay  Seafood Festival celebrating the diversity of Victoria’s freshest marine produce for its first proper event in three years this February. 

Once again taking over the picturesque Apollo Bay Harbour, food and travel lovers will be able to feast on a curated assortment of seafood, listen to renowned speakers on a range of different locally focused topics and enjoy live music by the sea. 

Visiting chefs include Dan Hunter (Brae), Paul West (River Cottage Australia), Jerry Mai (Pho Nom)  and Jenna North (Lucy Liu) and more. 

Apollo Bay Seafood Festival returns with special dinners, conversations, live music, pop-up restaurants, cooking demonstrations and seafood markets

Keep up with the latest food and booze news across the region here.

Kicking the festival off on Friday night is a series of dinners presented at the best restaurants  Apollo Bay and the Otways have on offer including: 

  • On the highest point of the Great Ocean Road The Perch Lavers Hill will offer a nine-course  degustation menu sourced from local farmers and fisherman.
  • Enjoy a five-course dinner at Graze Apollo Bay including local octopus, southern rock lobster, bass strait scallops and local snapper.
  • The Birdhouse presents a five-course seafood dinner with spectacular views over Apollo Bay.
  • Casalingo offers a three-course dinner inspired by traditional Italian dishes and local seafood.
  • Sandy Feet featuring a five course Seafood and Bush Tucker Dinner showcasing local seafood.

After a forced two-year hiatus, Harbour Day is bigger than ever. From 11am -8pm on Saturday  February 18, the Apollo Bay Harbour will be filled of pop-up restaurants, cooking demonstrations,  and a seafood market offering of myriad of pescatarian treats such as seafood dumplings,  Southern Rock Lobster, abalone sashimi, organic oysters, giant paella pans, octopus and Apollo  Bay bakeries’ famous scallop pies.

A new program introduced this year are cooking demonstrations that feature underutilised seafood, festival-goers see Peter Hilcke’s educational demonstration focused on abalone or Rosa Mitchell cooking with sardines, as well as scallop pies and locally caught seafood. Kids will be able to get in on the fun with a hands-on educational program featuring interactive demonstrations and displays, sailing lessons, casting competitions and harbour expeditions.

The festivities will continue well into the evening with performances over two stages in a stellar music lineup including Fenn Wilson, Hobson Bay Coast Guard, Go Dog Go, The Beachniks, and local Aria award winner Matt Orchard

Conversations ‘On the Edge’ panel talks return on Sunday 19 February, 10 am-(TBC). Hosted  by Richard Cornish and Hilary McNevin, hear local fisherman, scientists, ocean activists, farmers chefs and Indigenous knowledge holders speak on key critical issues that affect the  ocean, land, and how to live harmoniously, rather than depleting the environment.

With more speakers to be confirmed, hear Lisa Deppler from OCEAN (Otway Climate Emergency  Action Network) report on seismic testing in the Otway Basin, and the results of their protest  actions. Andy Warmbrunn a senior park manager in conjunction with Southern Parks Australia  and researchers from Deakin University will explore the Apollo Marine Park habitat mapping,  biodiversity assessment, and capacity building in Indigenous Sea Country management. Learn  about wakame cultivation with Mike Houghton from the Australian Seaweed Company.

The chef’s panel features Dan Hunter (Brae), Paul West (River Cottage Australia), Jerry Mai (Pho Nom) and Jenna North (Lucy Liu) discussing sea urchins, seaweed, eels and wild caught  venison. Conversations seek to challenge our way of seeing the world, and how we interact with  the environment.

Tickets are on sale now at www.apollobayseafoodfestival.com