1. The Spier Secret conference will be showcasing a number of entrepreneurs whose passion for great food and drink has inspired them to launch their own successful ventures. Wongama Baleni, co-owner of Department of Coffee, the first locally owned artisanal township coffee shop, is a speaker at this year’s conferece. His business opened in July 2012 across from the bustling Khayelitsha train station.
  2. Fritz Schoon cut his baking teeth at the renowned Ille de Pain in Knysna before opening his own bakery, De Oude Bank Bakkerij, in 2010. Established in the corner of an old bank in the heart of Stellenbosch, today the bakery forms the core of Schoon de Companje, a gourmet emporium. Fritz will share the story of grain at the conference.
  3. SulSolSal, also speaking at the conference, is designing a special edition of Carne do Sol, a preserved food and braai dining experience. Featuring both lesser-known and much-loved cuts of beef, this three-course meal is prepared according to the traditional Brazilian ways of preserving food and preparing it on the fire.
  4. Friday’s conference line-up ends with a Spier 21 Gables and stokbrood pairing.
  5. This year the conference focuses on traditional food methodology and how it talks to ethical and sustainable food production.
  6. Over 50 of the best local food producers, restaurants and food trucks will be at the Saturday market on 25 October.
  7. The market offers a special Woolworths DIY braai area where you can braai your own meat or wait while someone braais your meat for you.
  8. Spier has a free stokbrood and marshmallow braai stand at the market.
  9. A special area for kids offer a petting zoo, pony rides, face painting, a chicken jumping castle and Jade de Waal’s Food Jams for Kids.
  10. All Spier’s wines – including Spier 21 Gables, Spier’s flagship wine range which is named after its historic gables —will be available at the market.

Continuing its focus on ethical food production, the Spier Secret conference aims to go beyond buzzwords, exploring what concepts like artisanal and sustainability really mean to those who farm, cook and enjoy food. 

Vanessa Marx, the executive chef of Cape Town eatery Dear Me, wants to encourage people to think about what they are eating, how it was produced and where it comes from. Marx is passionate about creating fresh food using seasonal, sustainable and locally sourced ingredients; this includes using only SASSI greenlisted fish. In 2013 she was awarded the Eat Out’s first-ever Rising Star award for promising young talent.

Ole Hansen, a Norwegian salmon smoker, will be explaining his approach to sustainably-sourced salmon. Hansen & Lydersen, his family’s smokehouse, operates in Stoke Newington, London. He sources fish from a family-run farm and insists that his suppliers adhere to strict sustainable harvesting standards and welfare practices. In 2012 he was awarded an Honorary Young British Foodie Award for “his commitment to the family business and top quality salmon”.

Sheryl Ozinsky and Kurt Ackerman, two of the Oranjezicht City Farm’s founding volunteers, will be presenting the Food Dialogues Report, inspired by a 10-part series of talks about food, urban and farming issues held earlier this year.

Buy tickets to the conference here on Quicket.co.za.