12 June 2012 by Luke McCormick
Western Australia will be in the international food and wine spotlight in November when the world's best chefs, culinary and wine critics and celebrities attend a new premium food and wine event in the Margaret River Wine Region in Australia's South West.
The four-day Margaret River Gourmet Escape will be an annual event with the potential to develop into the highest profile food and wine festival in Australia and the Asia-Pacific Region.
"Australia has a few good food and wine festivals, but Margaret River Gourmet Escape will be a truly international standard event, providing a fantastic attraction for locals and visitors, as well as priceless promotion for the Margaret River Wine Region and Western Australia as a whole," said Tourism Western Australia CEO Stephanie Buckland.
The first major signing for Margaret River Gourmet Escape is Heston Blumenthal, the owner of the famous Fat Duck restaurant in the United Kingdom and known throughout the world for excellence, innovation and creativity.
Blumenthal is currently rated in the top ten of San Pellegrino's top 50 restaurants awards for his new restaurant Dinner By Heston Blumenthal.
"I am really excited about coming to Margaret River. Firstly it's one of the jewels of Australia - the most beautiful setting, and it just happens to produce some of the best wines in Australia, and some of the most amazing produce," said Blumenthal.
In another major coup, Rene Redzepi from Denmark, whose restaurant Noma was recently ranked the world's number one for the third time, will also appear at Margaret River Gourmet Escape, as well as Australian favourite Justin North of Becasse in Sydney, local star Matt Stone of Greenhouse in Perth and Dany Angove of Leeuwin Estate Winery in Margaret River.
Ms Buckland said talks were underway with many more of the world's and Australia's top chefs and a number of culinary and wine 'celebrities'.