Tumba gets first bite at new winter festival

Courabyra Wines will be one of the hosts for the Winter Bites festival.

Hospitality and tourism businesses across the Snowy Valleys are preparing for the inaugural Winter Bites Festival.

Shared across the townships of Batlow, Tumbarumba and Adelong and staggered throughout June, July and August, the event will shine a light on the high calibre of local produce from across the region, whilst featuring a number of high-profile artists.

After a tumultuous 18 months following the catastrophic 2019/2020 fire season which tore through 45 per cent of the Snowy Valleys and the quick succession of Covid-19 border restrictions, Snowy Valleys’ Executive Director of Community and Corporate, Paul Holton, hopes the event will play a large role in the region’s ongoing recovery efforts, by injecting more than $700K into the local economy.

“In what has been a devastating year for regional tourism due to bushfires and Covid-19 restrictions, Winter Bites is a way to reboot our local food, hospitality and tourism sector,” Mr Holton said.

“We know our produce is regarded as some of the best in the state and now we will have the opportunity to come together and celebrate what we do best.”

Taking place on separate dates throughout June, July and August, the festival will showcase a ‘hero’ element of each individual town and its respective region. 

This includes beef and lamb from Adelong; apples, hazelnuts and cider from Batlow; and cool climate wines, chestnuts and berries from Tumbarumba.

Over 30 local businesses, community groups and producers will also play a part in the festivities, taking turns to host fringe events, food and wine tastings, workshops, farm tours and cooking demonstrations.

A number of headline musical acts have already been announced including Australian country singer-songwriter and ARIA Hall of Fame inductee Kasey Chambers who will perform at the Adelong Showgrounds and two-time APRA award winning duo Busby Marou who will take to the stage at Courabyra Wines.

The Winter Bites Festival is being supported by Destination Riverina Murray and funding through the Regional Tourism Bushfire Recovery (RTBR) Grants.

Destination Riverina Murray’s General Manager, Yvette Myhill, sees the event as a unique opportunity to fill a gap in the region’s seasonal event calendar

“Winter Bites has the potential to become a significant annual event for the region over what is notoriously a quieter winter season and cement the Snowy Valleys region as a destination synonymous with gourmet produce, world-class cool-climate wines and pristine surroundings”, Ms Myhill concluded.

The festival will be in Tumbarumba June 5, Adelong July 17 and Batlow August 28.