FOOD FUN: Pictured getting set for this Saturday's inaugural Ballina Street Food Festival are, from left, Kat Creasey from The Design Collective, general manager of the Cherry Street Sports Club Tere Sheehan, the club's operations manager Brad Benson, club executive chef Jim Coakley and Matt Whalley from The Design Collective.
FOOD FUN: Pictured getting set for this Saturday's inaugural Ballina Street Food Festival are, from left, Kat Creasey from The Design Collective, general manager of the Cherry Street Sports Club Tere Sheehan, the club's operations manager Brad Benson, club executive chef Jim Coakley and Matt Whalley from The Design Collective. Graham Broadhead

Gourmet street food rolling on to greens

FOOD glorious food will be celebrated at Saturday's inaugural Ballina Gourmet Street Food Festival at the Cherry Street Sports Club.

The event, organised by The Design Collective, will host 30 food vendors with a range of delights being cooked up on the back greens of the bowling club, which will have a retro look in terms of the seating and lighting.

And some vendors will be bringing food trucks.

But if you're thinking food like dagwood dogs, think again.

Kat Creasey, from The Design Collective which regularly organises similar events, said mobile food vendors was a new trend, with chefs choosing to renovate things like caravans and vans to cook and sell their food from.

She said owning the "food truck revolution" was a lifestyle choice for many chefs, who then use their mobile kitchen to cater for a variety of functions.

Many choose to renovate retro caravans or old vans, with the freedom to then travel.

"There are about 330 registered mobile food vendors on the Gold Coast alone," she said.

But Kat stressed the food they prepare is high quality.

Matt Whalley, also from The Design Collective which has been organising food festivals in the region for the past two years, said there will be Asian influences among the vendors as street food was common in those countries.

Tere Sheehan, general manager of the Cherry Street Sports Club, said, at the moment, the club had the "biggest food truck of them all".

Their food currently is being prepared in three purpose-built mobile kitchens used in the mining industry while major renovations are being completed.

Entry to the street food festival is free, but each vendor will charge for the food. There will be plenty of variety, including vegetarian and vegan, and taste plates will be available.

The festival will be held from noon to 9pm. There will also be live music and kids' activities.


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