Nicolas Gomez, Gerhard Spatz, Petty Sattong, James Dein, Som Gibson and Andrew Hay.
Nicolas Gomez, Gerhard Spatz, Petty Sattong, James Dein, Som Gibson and Andrew Hay. The Northern Star

Chefs line up to leave signature on Rivafest

COMPETITION will be fierce, but Ballina's top chefs have promised to keep their hats on when they battle it out for the crown of the Rivafest Signature Dish competition next weekend.

The competition will be held at this year's Rivafest event as part of Eat Street, a food and beverage area showcasing delicious regional cuisine.

This is the first year Eat Street will be a part of Rivafest, which is Ballina's annual celebration by the Richmond River.

The 2008 event theme is 'Riva of Life', and Eat Street will showcase the rich abundance of ingredients available on the Northern Rivers.

“Whatever takes your fancy, event-goers will be able to delight their senses in a unique and affordable culinary experience; from fresh local produce and seafood, to contemporary and international cuisine,” Liz Shepherd, of Ballina Shire Council's Rivafest management team, said.

As part of the celebrations, the chefs of Eat Street will battle it out from 1.30pm to be named Ballina Rivafest 2008 Signature Dish competition winner.

Chefs from the seven participating stalls will be asked to put their imagination and culinary skills to the test by presenting one of the dishes on offer for the Signature Dish of the day.

Food critic Simon Thomson, from the Sydney Morning Herald's Good Food Guide, will judge the competition. He will be looking for the standout dish that captures the essence of Ballina Shire and the quality and freshness of the local produce.

The seven chefs participating in the competition are from Blackboard at the Beach, Boardwalk, Rakuu Japanese Takeaway, Sandbar and Restaurant, River Thai Restaurant, Ploy Thai Restaurant and The Point Restaurant.

Ballina Rivafest 2008 will be held on Sunday at Fawcett Park, Ballina, from 10am to 9pm.

It will include an indigenous welcome, live entertainment, water activities, cultural and heritage displays, amusement rides, regional cuisine, kids' creative workshops, art and a fire show finale on the river.

For more information go to www.ballinariva-fest.com.au

The Northern Star is a Ballina Rivafest sponsor.



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