The Stanthorpe Apple and Grape Harvest Festival is going all out this year with new ways to appreciate all that the Granite Belt has to offer.

With new Seasonal Harvest Tours, dinners and appreciation sessions, the Stanthorpe Apple and Grape Harvest Festival will be a real celebration of the region’s producers.

“We are really excited to introduce Seasonal Harvest to the mix of events on offer across the festival, offering visitors the opportunity to find out what it is like to be a farmer and how the seasons affect the harvest,” says Harvest Festival Director Trevor Fitness. “Visitors and locals will be able to sample fruit and vegetables straight from the paddock, learn how this produce is turned into award winning products, and sample the ways fresh seasonal produce is served up by the region’s top chefs with some delectable harvest dinners.”

Varias Restaurant’s seasonal menus always utilise the abundant quality ingredients available in the region, and to highlight local produce, beer and wine Queensland College of Wine Tourism (QWTC) will host a Harvest dinner at Varias with Head Chef Ben Lanyon.

“We are privileged to act as an ambassador for the region’s produce and for a growing host of suppliers and small businesses working with us, providing a great and increasing support to the local economy,” says Lanyon.

Fitness also stressed the importance of local produce to the festival. “The festival has long been a celebration of harvest season, but this year we really wanted to get back to the core essence of the festival and reconnect the event back to the produce and producers.”

Granite Belt Wine & Tourism Director of Marketing Sarah Reeves agrees, adding that the festival offers visitors a chance to really connect with the local community.

“We are honoured to be working with the committee to develop Seasonal Harvest and offer visitors a reason to stay longer and learn about where their food comes from – all while sharing our passion for fresh seasonal produce,” says Reeves. “The tours, dinners and sessions have all been specially crafted to showcase the diversity of the product currently in season, meeting colourful producers and pioneering winemakers along the way and creating gourmet menus that showcase regional heroes.”

The appreciation sessions will be held in a special marquee and include cheese and wine matching, cooking demonstrations and wine appreciation. Full and half-day tours include harvest lunches and dinners, vineyard walks, sunset tastings and farm visits.

Will you be checking out the Stanthorpe Apple and Grape Harvest Festival? What are you interested in trying? Let us know!