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Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Bringing the Yankee to Honky

Last Saturday, the stars and stripes were out in full force at the inaugural Great American Barbeque. With a huge variety of food and beverage booths, a stage, a big screen and a dozens of picnic tables; the event covered the outdoor space of The Podium in Cyberport. I was invited along by Hush Up Events - who organised the showcase of American BBQ culture - to celebrate the culinary diversity of the US’50 states. Keeping the promise of craft beers, American wines and cheesecake in mind, I was excited to experience a unique day out.

BBQ Crew
Upon arrival, I was struck by how welcoming the large open space was and instantly felt like I was at a neighbourhood barbeque. The 4,000 square metre venue was decorated colourfully and dotted with little ones and grownups, milling around with hot dogs in hand. The atmosphere was buzzy but not overwhelming and relaxed but not boring. The crowds were certainly present but the queues moved quickly and there was table space for any of those who didn’t feel like panning out, barefoot, on the grass. I think this was a testament to the fantastic skills of the organisers who used wrist bands, and vouchers to purchase food and beverages, to ensure that everyone had a stress – free day. After I was presented with my tickets, I headed straight for the food. Obviously.

Food, glorius food!
I tucked in to the wide variety of BBQ favourites on offer (for research purposes only, of course) and was particularly impressed by the smoky beans, corn on the cob and mac ‘n’ cheese. I also have in on very reliable authority (the husband) that the hamburgers and jumbo hot dogs went down a treat. To sweeten the deal, I enjoyed one of the tastiest baked cheesecakes in a long time and sampled the mouth-watering chocolate brownies. After washing it all down with a couple of bottles of Bud, I was ready for the entertainment on offer.

All You Can Eat
The live band played all-American tunes that injected a feel-good vibe into to event and provided the perfect soundtrack to the conversation of family and friends. Games ranged from a Tug of War competition to the Rose Rib Eating Contest and the Beerhound Beer Drinking Challenge. There was a fine distraction for the kids (and our friend Ben!) who watched old classics at the silent outdoor cinema while the adults let their hair down. These novel twists made the day feel fun, familiar and family – focused.

Ben loving Happy Feet!
Hong Kong Yankees should be proud of this exhibition of all things USA and the celebration of the united tastes of America!

As the day wound down, I chatted with Rachel and Charlotte from Hush Up Events, who filled me in on some of the exciting and innovative music and performance projects they have up their sleeves for Hong Kongers. Hush Up are brining something truly unique to HK and I will certainly have my tickets for the Private Hot Tub Cinema on reserve!

With Charlotte - Hush Up's Event Manager
For more info on upcoming events check out

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