Shark liver a food festival hit

21:55, Feb 03 2013
Kawhia Kai Festival
Good vibe: Visitors to the weekend’s Kawhia Kai Festival are entertained.

Although shark liver may not be regular dinner-table fare yet, it proved a hit with hundreds of visitors at this year's Kawhia Kai Festival.

Festival organiser Lloyd Whiu said the local delicacy - which was one of number of locally sourced foods offered at the weekend - was one of the most popular dishes at the event.

The liver, which Mr Whiu describes as having a consistency like pate and a strong fishy flavour, attracted hundreds of dollars worth of pre-sales.

"We just can't get enough of it," Mr Whiu said.

Organisers estimated 5000 to 6000 people thronged Omiti Park Reserve in the small coastal settlement, with wild pork sausages, fried bread, seafood, fermented corn, and cream paua among the food available.

Mr Whiu said there was a good vibe and it was a chance for the community to put forward another face following recent media coverage.

"It was a chance for Kawhia to show its real colours - this is what Kawhia is about."

In the past the event has attracted more than 10,000 people but numbers were down slightly at the weekend, said Mr Whiu.

"But to get that amount of people into Kawhia - with one road in and one road out - it's still good."