Monday, 8 November 2010

Brisbane Good Food and Wine Show 2010 - Preshow Thoughts

I can't believe that it's November already and the Brisbane Good Food and Wine Show is over for another year.

Before I started writing this post, I had a look back over my thoughts on the last few shows (in fact. I've created a label just for Good Food and Wine Show posts) to see how previous shows compared to 2010. I realised that for the two out of the last three years, the first post of each show talks about how either other people or I were disappointed about the quality of the show and felt it wasn't as good as the year before it. I have to say, my initial reaction to the 2010 Brisbane show was that it wasn't as good as last year and it certainly couldn't be compared to the quality of the shows put on in Sydney and Melbourne.

Interestingly, it seems that numbers were down on last year for the shows in Sydney and Melbourne. Melbourne's 2009 show had the benefit of being on the Queen's Birthday long weekend, stretching the show out to an impressive four days and 41,782 visitors, but it still seems that the 2009 numbers far eclipsed those in 2010. According to the Post Show Reports, the 2009 Sydney show attracted 53,135 or 40,643 visitors, depending where on the page you looked. This year, over 27,000 people visited in Melbourne and over 38,500 people in Sydney.

19,367 Brisbanites attended last year's show and put in a very impressive effort of spending an average of $199.84. That was more than Melbourne's average!!! Good show, Brisbane.

The 2010 Celebrity Theatre roster was quite lean here, when tickets first went on sale it consisted only of George Calombaris and Gary Mehigan, Matt Moran and Manu Fieldel. That meant there was only three shows. When I compared that to six in Sydney and Melbourne, five in Perth and the four in Adelaide, I was disappointed. I know that Brisbane is the last in the show tour and with the first shows beginning in February it must be a scheduling nightmare for the promoters, but you should be as committed to putting on a great show for the last stop as you would for the first. Or maybe I'm still a little disgruntled that we missed out on Gordon Ramsay last year.

Anyway, after viewing the schedule, we decided that we might give the Saturday show a miss in 2010. Last year, it was incredibly busy on Saturday and from what we could see, there wasn't that much on offer to justify all the crowds and pushing. The 2009 Post Show Report says that there were only 3,538 visitors on Friday compared to 8,690 on Saturday and 7,139 on Sunday.

In hindsight, it may have been a little premature to make such a call three months before the show when tickets first went on sale, because when I was planning our visits in October - yes, I am that much of a control freak - I noticed that there was now a fourth show. It was only scheduled once, on Saturday afternoon, and it had not been there before. It was called Janella's Healthy Food Experience and it was presented by Janella Purcell, who I only knew of from The Biggest Loser Masterclass. Mum has Austar and poor Channel 10 reception, so she knew Janella mainly from her work on Good Chef/Bad Chef.

I hadn't seen my mother since earlier this year and I have made quite a few lifestyle changes since her last visit (as an aside, my weight loss is starting to slow now and it's getting a bit harder to move the weight, but I'm still committed to getting to my goal weight and as of this morning, I've lost 18.9kg). My mum has always been a very healthy cook with little to no sweet tooth to speak of. Growing up, my sister and I were taught about the value of healthy cooking however I don't really think what Mum was trying to tell us really clicked with me until recently. Cakes and other baked goods were always only treats in our house. I think once I realised that I could make tasty treats whenever I wanted to indulge my sweet tooth after I moved out of home I had to get that out of my system first. Now, my sweet tooth is surprisingly satisfied with dates or dried cranberries or beautifully tasty Noosa Reds cherry tomatoes. I have learned so much about not only organic food, but also vegan and raw cooking (or uncooking, as the case may be). I was so excited to share all of this with my mother. Previously, we had both loved cooking but it was like we were in different chapters of the same book. Now we are on the same page.

Wow, I am verbose today. And here I was considering condensing the whole weekend into one post. Now I might have to split them up because my pre-show thoughts are rambling into a post on their own!!!

Anyway, Mum and I are both really into healthy cooking and eating and we were both interested in what Janella had to say, so we ended up booking tickets for Saturday too.

Aside from my initial misgivings with the range of exhibitors and shows, we were still excited. D was going to come with us on the Friday and my aunt and her partner were going to join Mum and I on the Sunday.

We were all set... Roll on the show!!!

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