x DOWNLOAD FREE RECIPE BOOK Featuring a selection of recipes from The Neff Market Kitchen chefs and our traders

Mussel Festival

A Seafood Street Party


General Event Information:

When: Saturday 11 March 12pm-10pm & Sunday 12 March 12pm-8pm

Price: Free entry, music and entertainment

Address: South Melbourne Market, Cecil Street

Getting there: Walk, drive or catch the 96 or 12 Tram to South Melbourne (more details)

Complete with mussels, music and merrymaking, this is one seafood street party you don’t want to miss. Spend the day in the sun with friends and family, feasting, drinking, dancing and celebrating seafood, all to the sounds of Melbourne’s hottest jazz. Over the weekend expect a great mussel cook up from iconic Melbourne chefs, plus street peddlers, the sounds of Bourbon Street, a little bit of calypso and great local wines.

Think sangria and piping hot mussel paella, wok cooked drunken mussels and craft beer, mussels cooked in Bia Ha Noi with a crisp white wine, and artisanal ice cream and fun for the kids. We have some of the region’s top chefs and restaurants taking part each year as well as our own South Melbourne Market restaurants Claypots Evening Star, Paco y Lola, Köy and Simply Spanish.

Other activities during the Festival:

  • Roaming performers
  • Live jazz in the Market
  • Kids free face painting
  • Kids community mural workshop

Want to see how much fun you’ll have:

2015 Jazz Flash Mob:

At our 2015 Mussel Festival we surprised our Market shoppers with a jazz flash mob starting in the Food Hall, with upwards of 30 musicians jamming their way through the Market.

Take a look here:

Music line-up:

Port Phillip Mussel Festival (8)

A HUGE part of the Mussel Festival is the live music, and it has not become one of Melbourne’s biggest FREE jazz festivals.

Sit back and listen to some of Melbourne’s best jazz. Full program coming soon but we will be featuring:

  • Simon Stribling & Lauri Lister – A Hot Little Number
  • Paul Williamson Hammond Combo
  • Elvis
  • And plenty more.

Restaurant Menu Inspiration:


Paco Y Lola:

  • Wok-cooked Drunken Mussels


  • Turkish Mussel Bulgur Rice
  • Wok-tossed Mediterranean Mussels

Simply Spanish:

  • Freshly Steamed Mussels:
    •  Tomato & White Wine with fresh herbs, black olives and a hint of chilli
    • Cream & Fennel with fresh dill and sliced fennel in a cream sauce
    • Coconut Cream & Red Curry with rich coconut cream, Thai basil, spring onions in a zesty Thai red curry sauce.
  • Piping hot seafood Paella – that they’re famous for

Aptus Oyster Bar:

  • Fresh Oysters – single, half dozen or dozen:
    • Bruny Island Oysters
    • St Helen’s Oysters
    • Smoky Bay Oysters
    • Sydney Rock Oysters
  • Cooked Oysters – single, half dozen or dozen:
    • Kilpatrick Oysters
    • Mornay Oysters
  • QLD Cooked Tiger Prawns
  • QLD Cooked Bug Tails

Free Mussel Cooking Demonstrations

Japanese Style Stirfried Mussels The Neff Market Kicthen

During the Port Phillip Mussel Festival the Neff Market Kitchen will be holding some FREE mussel cooking demonstrations with Kathy Spurling from Neff.

Watch this space for more information.

Instagram Competition:

We will be running our Instagram Competition again in 2017 so watch this space for details.

In 2016 the winner was @gemmaelise posted this fantastic photo with the caption ‘J’aime beaucoup les moules’.

Winning Photo by GemmaElise

Media Release

January 2017

The 2017 Port Phillip Mussel & Jazz Festival – a two-day seafood street party – will be back this coming March and is a must-do for seafood, jazz, food and festival lovers.

Melbourne’s oldest permanent market, South Melbourne Market, will turn into a mini Bourbon Street, serving up more than five tonnes of molluscs and featuring some of Australia’s best jazz bands.

Now in its fourth year, the free-entry event is set to have South Melbourne Market and surrounding streets buzzing on Saturday March 11 and Sunday March 12.

Due to the festival’s increasing popularity and to allow for a bigger and better celebration, the Market will close both sides of Cecil Street between Coventry and York streets.

City of Port Phillip Mayor Bernadene Voss said: “This festival really showcases what the Market, now in its 150th year, is all about – a vibrant celebration of local food, culture and community. Fittingly, the word Jazz has been added to the title this year because we’ve seen how popular jazz performances and the New Orleans feel of previous festivals has been, and delivered an even more exciting jazz line-up this time.”

Setting the mood on the Ruby Gils Stage by Claypots from midday on both days will be some of Australia’s best jazz bands with special guest jazz musician Simon Stribling.

Simon started playing trumpet at the age of five and went on to lead the world-renowned Fireworks Jazz Band (formerly Hotter than Six), which toured internationally. Simon has toured, recorded and performed with some of the best traditional jazz bands worldwide. In 2000, Simon moved to Vancouver in Canada, and met his now wife, musician and percussionist Lauri Lyster. They moved back to Australia and are together reinventing the jazz scene in Manly, Sydney.

The line-up on the Ruby Gils Stage by Claypots also includes Paul Williamson’s Hammond Combo, The Shuffle Club, The Pearly Shells, Horns of Leroy, Margie Lou Dyer, Jazz Party and the ever-popular Elvis (impersonator).

Mussels however, remain the festival’s star attraction. South Melbourne Market restaurants Claypots Evening Star, Köy, Paco y Lola and Simply Spanish will be joined by many well-known Melbourne restaurant pop-ups, all serving mussels in every way imaginable.

Other Market traders add to the buzz by offering a range of fresh delights like oysters and prawns from Aptus Seafood, and baguettes from Agathé Patisserie. Local wines, craft beer, cider and sangria will provide the perfect seafood accompaniments – there will also be ice-cream, fresh fruit salad, donuts and plenty more sweet treats to top it off.

Kids can enjoy face painting by professionals who have mastered thousands of designs, and there will be mural painting.

South Melbourne Market general manager Ross Williamson said, “the Port Phillip Mussel & Jazz Festival has become one of the Market’s most anticipated annual events and this year we will be turning it up a notch by closing the whole of Cecil Street and giving festival goers more space to eat, drink, dance and relax.”

The Port Phillip Mussel & Jazz Festival will be held at South Melbourne Market on Saturday, March 11 (12pm-10pm) and Sunday, March 12 (12pm-8pm).

For further information contact:
Greta Donaldson | Greta Donaldson Publicity | (03) 9696 3234 | 0427 658 638

Thanks to our supporting restaurants and stalls:

  • Claypots Evening Star
  • Paco Y Lola
  • Koy
  • Simply Spanish
  • Aptus Seafood
  • South Melbourne Seafoods
  • Catch Seafood



Frequently Asked Questions

What is the Port Phillip Mussel & Jazz Festival (PPMJF)?
Celebrating one of our best-loved seafoods, South Melbourne Market joyously presents the Port Phillip Mussel & Jazz Festival, a Melbourne Food & Wine Festival event. Over the weekend expect a great mussel cook up, from iconic local restaurants to amazing street food to the sounds of Dixieland and New Orleans Jazz, there will be mussels in bucket loads. Come to feast, dance and frolic with family and friends.

When is the PPMJF?
The PPMJF runs from 12pm to 10pm on Saturday 11 March and from 12pm to 8pm on Sunday 12 March, 2017.

Where is PPMJF?
PPMJF is located at the South Melbourne Market on Cecil Street. Cecil Street is closed to cars from Coventry Street to York Street to cater for the event.

Is the South Melbourne Market open also?
The South Melbourne Market will retain normal trading hours on this weekend, opening at 8am and closing at 4pm on both days. Some traders located on Cecil Street may trade longer hours for the festival.

What happens at PPMJF?
Sit back and listen to Melbourne’s best jazz, graze from the amazing seafood stalls, and sip the refreshing sangria, beer and wine. There is kid’s entertainment until 5pm both days, and you’re encouraged to bring a picnic blanket.

Who will be serving food at PPMJF?
All Cecil Street restaurants (Claypots, Simply Spanish, Koy and Paco) will be open as normal, and will also be providing amazing mussel dishes from pop-up marquees on Cecil Street. They’ll be joined by chefs from other well-known Melbourne restaurants all serving up their own take on mussels from pop-up marquees.

The PPMJF will still take place rain, hail or shine. There is plenty of undercover areas & umbrellas to shelter from the rain. Please remember your sunscreen and hat.

Applications For Food Vendors:

  • Applications for food vendors for the Port Phillip Mussel & Jazz Festival 2017 are now open here.
  • Applications will close on Friday 3 February at 5pm.

What are we looking for:

  • As a community event, we favour vendors whose businesses are located within the City of Port Phillip.
  • We will favour vendors who will be selling mussels and other seafood, but also understand that the community will be after a range of food options.
  • Due to the nature of the event we will favour vendors with experience at festivals and events where time is of the essence. We are looking for vendors who can provide quick service to keep queues to a minimum and high quality produce.
  • We are looking for food carts and marquee based vendors, as this is not a Food Truck event.
  • Alcohol vendors are not included in this application process. If you are interested in being an alcohol vendor in 2018 please register your interest with Sophie McCarthy.

Event details:

  • The event is on Saturday 11 March 12pm-10pm & Sunday 12 March 12pm-8pm
  • Cecil Street will be closed between York & Coventry Streets from 5am Saturday 11 March to Midnight Sunday 12 March.
  • Vendors can bump in from 7am Saturday and bump out by 10pm Sunday.


  • 3m x 3m marquees are $1,200 inc GST for the weekend and the cost of the marquee is also included.
  • Food carts are $800 inc GST for the weekend.

What you will need:

  • All vendors selling food will be required to register with Streatrader.
  • Stallholders will need to bring all their own equipment. No fit-out will be provided.
  • Power is available, vendors will need to provide all extension leads and power boards.
  • All electrical equipment must be tested and tagged by a suitably qualified person before being brought to the Market.
  • We recommend all vendors bring your own lighting for the inside of your marquees.

If you would like to apply, please click here.