Food and Drink


Port Philip Mussel Festival

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This weekend, South Melbourne street vendors will take to the streets for a fiesta fuelled by local mussels and live music. A bit of a change from the usual market soundtrack of fruit and veg spruikers, nanna trolleys and rowdy lads queuing for a dim sim — but equally entertaining

It’s all happening as part of Melbourne Food & Wine Festival, which has adopted the theme of ‘water’ this year. Getting on board the fishing boat will be local seafood venue Claypots Evening Star, alongside Paco Y Lola, Koy and Simply Spanish, who will all be selling their own permeations of mussels by the bucket (starting at $5 a mound).

Big Huey’s Diner nearby will also be offering a special Mussel Po’Boy ($5) for those who need a bit of 1950s rock n roll in place of all the Dixieland and New Orleans Jazz that will be roaring throughout the festival stalls.

Speaking of Huey (for those who didn’t grow up with a TV in the house, we’re talking about the jolly celeb chef Iain Hewitson); he’ll be presenting mussel-cooking demonstrations for the hungry masses throughout the weekend.

But no need to just watch — get your hands dirty and dig in, because all the mussels will be available. All of them. Whether they be in the form of mussel chowder, red curry mussels, cream and fennel mussels, coconut milk, kaffir lime leaf and garlic mussels, mussel paella or — my favourite — deep fried ones. Hey, it’s a weekend for fun, not formality.

The Port Philip Mussel Festival is happening Sat 8 – Sun 9 March.
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