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Festival Headliners Top A Full Menu Of Fine Wine, Food And Music


Marlborough Wine & Food Festival organisers are delighted to announce the first range of festival headliners for the 2024 event on 10 February.

Now in its 37th year, the Marlborough Wine & Food Festival is renowned for its well-crafted blend of award-winning wine, excellent food, inspirational chef demonstrations and masterclasses matched with carefully selected entertainment.

With the full list of exhibiting wineries, food producers and masterclass hosts close to being finalised, Wine Marlborough Ltd General Manager Marcus Pickens is delighted to announce some very tempting entertainment offerings.

Starting with the Culinary Pavilion, open to all ticketholders, celebrated chef Matt Lambert will showcase his inventive and accessible approach to preparing seafood such as locally grown Ōra King Salmon.

“Chef Lambert is extremely well-regarded for his holistic approach to cooking and attention to detail, and we are so excited to have him on board for the 2024 festival. He brings a global flavour to New Zealand kaimoana.

“Everyone at the festival should make sure they get a chance to see him in action in the Culinary Pavilion, making magic in one of several chef demonstrations we can announce soon,” Marcus says.

In complement to the dozens of wineries, food trucks and pop-up restaurants, several live entertainment zones are also shaping up.

Drax Project will perform as the festival’s headline act, bringing their unique pop R&B sound to the main stage.

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“Drax Project are an in-demand live act and we are delighted to bring them to Marlborough,” Marcus says.

“They have made great waves with their US performances and radio chart-topping releases. And being a Wellington band that busked their way up to the big stages, we know New Zealand audiences love them.”

Reggae-fusion band Sons of Zion are also confirmed in the line-up.

“Sons of Zion have such an innovative sound and summer-ready vibe – the perfect fit for a day in Marlborough enjoying fine wine and good food, and their laid-back vibe appeals to all ages,” Marcus says.

“We love to support New Zealand born-and-bred musical acts, and can’t wait to see these artists bring their best to the festival.

“I am really looking forward to seeing AACACIA as well. She seemed to burst onto the scene with her catchy songs and lovely voice, and is building an impressive reputation as a performer, collaborating and touring with the likes of Drax Project and Six60. Her sound will go well with fine wine and food!”

A heritage festival appreciated for its local flavour

“What I love about Marlborough is the wide-ranging appreciation for this annual festival. While Marlborough is world-renowned for its wine, and our reputation for excellent locally-produced food is on the rise. We know it, and so do people across the region who make this a regular summer holiday highlight,” Marcus says.

“The Marlborough Wine & Food Festival is New Zealand’s longest-running food and wine festival. People know that we are onto a winning formula after 36 years. By making amazing wine and food the stars of the show, you can’t help but have a great time.”

“It’s just wonderful seeing people return year after year and who we now see bringing their adult children – the new generation of wine and food lovers – for a special day.

“We are very conscious of the diversity in ages and tastes and design the exhibitors and entertainment with that in mind, so keep an eye on the festival programme as it shapes up on our website.”

Marcus encourages people to secure their tickets before they sell out, and to book any travel and accommodation soon after.

“Festival tickets make a wonderful Christmas gift, as does special bottle of Marlborough wine while you’re still thinking about getting your perfect festival crew together.”

Festival facts

  • Saturday 10 February 2024
  • Renwick Domain on Uxbridge Street in Renwick
  • This is strictly an R18 event
  • There is on-site parking, and the site and facilities are mobility-friendly
  • Taking buses is encouraged, and bus tickets are available now
  • General Admission, VIP Retreat and The Lounge tickets are on sale
  • A Standard General Admission ticket grants access to the Culinary Pavilion, where celebrity chefs will give free demonstrations.
  • In addition to the free demonstrations in the Culinary Pavilion, tickets can be purchased for one or more of four different 50-minute Masterclass.
  • Exhibitors, wineries and entertainment will be published to the festival website over the next weeks:

About Matt Lambert

Born and raised in New Zealand, Lambert marries a passion for incredible produce with innovative cooking and impeccable plating techniques he has honed both at home and abroad.

The winner of the Best Food Artist category of the 2019 Best Chef Awards, Lambert held a Michelin star at his successful New York restaurant, The Musket Room, from 2013 to 2020. Lambert also competed on the Food Network’s Chopped and appeared on CBS New York and NBC New York.

Upon returning to New Zealand, Lambert became executive chef of The Lodge Bar Group, which operates fine-dining restaurants in Queenstown, Auckland and Australia.

About Drax Project

Drax Project’s unique pop R&B sound has seen them supporting the likes of Ed Sheeran and touring Europe with Camilla Cabello and Christina Aguilera.

Their performances have established Drax Project as a 'must see' live act, with highlight US performances including the i-Heart Radio Festival, Rolling Stone Magazine's Coachella party and two sold-out headline club shows in New York.

The band's self-titled debut album achieved great success with "Catching Feelings" and "Woke Up Late ft. Hailee Steinfeld" receiving global accreditations, including US RIAA Gold and over 20 platinum accreditations across Australasia. Their collaboration with New York Neo-soul group Phony Ppl on "Catching Feelings" became a hit in the US RnB radio top 40 for much of 21/22.

About Sons of Zion

Sons of Zion made their mark in 2009 with their self-titled debut album, following it up in 2013 with their full-length studio album Universal Love, which included the smash singles “Be My Lady”, “Good Love” and “Tell Her” – the latter two songs achieving #1 Urban and #1 NZ airplay, respectively.

They have achieved a multitude of Gold, Platinum and Double Platinum singles and albums throughout their career. They have repeatedly performed at notable New Zealand musical events, including Jim Beam Homegrown and One Love.


AACACIA has collaborated with Matiu Walters and Marlon Gerbes of Six60, producer Imad Royal (Doja Cat, Chainsmokers) and Drax Project. Her self-titled debut EP features further collaborations with Six60 and with Drax Project, after she appeared on their Platinum selling single “Firefly” alongside diamond certified US rapper Fetty Wap.

AACACIA has played tour support for L.A.B, Drax Project and she has supported Six60 at stadium shows, and opening slots for Six60, Niko Walters and Coterie.

© Scoop Media

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