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Friday 24 May 2013

Why Hobart is so hot this winter

Hobart is currently one of the hottest spots on the planet, so what better time to visit than over the next few weeks, when Tasmania's capital is actually at its coolest. 

Between May 29 and June 2, Hobart hosts both the Savour Tasmania culinary festival and the Red Wine Weekend. 

While Savour events starring visiting mega chefs such as Belgium’s Kobe Desramaults along with mainland superstars like Shane Delia, Giovanni Pilu, Colin Fassnidge and Darren Purchese and locals like Luke Burgess and Matthew Evans are largely sold out, there are still plenty of tickets to see Tasmania’s top  winemakers - and sample their wares - for the wine weekend at Princes Wharf No. 1 on June 1-2.

Vineyards from throughout the state will showcase range of reds from a variety of vintages (including world-renowned pinots noir) with tickets at $25 including tastings, tasting notes and a Plumm glass to take home.

Would-be aficionados can hone their knowledge with a series of master classes hosted by the likes of vigneron Gerald Ellis, wine writers Nick Stock and yours truly, and other experts including Tim Goddard, Curly Haslam-Coates, Sue Dyson and Roger McShane. 

For full Red Wine Weekend details visit

Other Hobart winter highlights include new exhibitions at the Tasmanian Museum & Art Gallery (TMAG), which  has undergone a striking redevelopment, with new features bringing visitors face to face with the mystical Tasmanian Tiger and other Tasmanian stories.

The team at MONA, meanwhile, will host the new Dark MoFo festival of music, art and noise from June 13-23 coinciding with the museum’s latest exhibition, The Red Queen, exploring why organisms ‘constantly adapt and evolve’ – through art, of course.

Festival highlights will include a large-scale fire and light event at Salamanca, a night market at Princes Wharf No. 1, art installations throughout Hobart’s city and waterfront precinct, a music program curated by Brian Ritchie and plenty of Tassie wine and food. Headliners include Martha Wainwright. See

The Red Queen will run through April 2014 and visitors can now get to MONA on board the recently launched catamaran; MONA Roma 1. 

Another winter standout is the Festival of Voices (below) from July 5-14, showcasing a range of world-class concerts, events and activities featuring the likes of Kate Ceberano, Christine Anu, Darren Percival, and the multi-Grammy winning American vocal group Take 6. 

Visitors can attend performances in grand concert halls, churches, historic buildings, as well as small pubs, market halls and street corners; and listen to choirs, ensembles, and solo artists singing gospel, a capella, symphonic choral, music theatre, cabaret and spoken word. 

A couple of weeks later, the Taste of the Tamar wine event will be held at The Long Gallery, Salamanca Arts Centre, 77 Salamanca Place, on July 20-21 from noon-5pm. Entry is $15 at the door, and includes a souvenir engraved tasting glass, tastings and lucky door prize of accommodation for two at Country Club Tasmania, Prospect, and dinner at Stillwater restaurant.

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