The weather is starting to show the promise of warmer times and the list of outdoor events is already growing. As food lovers, we are very much looking forward to the extensive list of food and drink events that will be taking place this year.
The best street food operators, food producers, and drink makers, will be travelling the country to show off their excellent array of products, and the choice is at times bewildering, so we’ve collated some of the best food and drink events taking place in the UK food and drink scene. All you need to worry about now is what you’ll be eating and drinking once you get there.
Wales has a history of great produce and the Abergavenny Food Festival is a celebration of this. Having run for the last 18 years this is also the longest running food festival in Wales. There will be activities, tastings, masterclasses, hands-on cookery lessons, and debates regarding food.
(Source:Abergavenny Food Festival)
Architecturally, Bath is a beautiful place and is well known for its history. It also punches well above its weight in the food stakes, so it comes as no surprise that there will be a huge food festival taking place at the Bath racecourse in August. The event will include over 40 stalls of producers selling everything from beers and gin, to gyros and crepes. There will also be a full line up of chefs and food experts holding talks across the weekend.
Bristol – Various dates
Bristol has become one of the food hot spots in the UK and is an ideal location for a food and drink feast. There is a food market taking place almost daily in the city now, so the choice is plentiful. Some of the main fixtures include the Harbourisde Market, Bearpit Market, Temple Quay Market, Finzels Reach Market, and the Tobacco Factory Market. Some of the city’s best known streetfood outfits will be in attendance across these markets, including the Little Taquero, Wild & Rustic, Tasty Ragga, Smoke Catering, for Mice and Men, Niangs, Sri-Licious and so much more.
(Source:Finzels Reach Market)
Food and community are entrenched into the fabric of Bristol so the Food Connections Festival is an ideal place to discuss the two. Unfortunately, the festival is taking a year off in its entirety and will return in 2018. However, they have still put together this day of talks and discussions, which will be held at Bristol City Hall.
Beer, it’s an essential part of British history and culture, and in recent years has become even more important. Craft brewers have been producing all manner of concoctions and the days of beer’s old-man image are long gone. This craft beer festival will celebrate see some of the world’s finest breweries, including Sierra Nevada, Moor Beer Co, Wild Beer Co, Left Handed Giant, Wiper and True, and many, many more.
The pretty regency town of Cheltenham is the perfect backdrop for a weekend of food and drink. The popular Food and Drink Festival supplies some great produce for the bustling spa town, which is surrounded by many great operators. There will be cooking demonstrations, food talks, wine tastings, and of course, great food and drink.
(Source:Bottle of Sauce)
The Cotswold Show and Food Festival covers almost all activities and the food festival is just one part of a huge schedule. There will be over 50 food and drink producers offering some top notch cheese, charcuterie, and cakes, amongst a wide selection of street food offerings. The cookery theatre returns this year, and the lineup includes Marcus McGuinness of the Greenway hotel and spa, Gareth Fulford of Purslane restaurant, who will be joined by further excellent local chefs.
If chilli is your thing then this celebration of all things spicy is the perfect event for you. There will be cook offs, demonstrations, and music, amongst the huge offering of chilli-based food and sauces for you to try and buy. The chilli eating competition is a must and you can somewhat sadistically laugh as a raft of competitors see who can eat the hottest chillies.
Garlic makes everything taste better, but you might be thinking about pasta sauces and baguettes. Well, at the Isle of Wight Garlic Festival you will find garlic in almost everything, even ice-cream, so your love of garlic will be truly tested. Head over to the Isle of Wight and share your passion of the sacred bulb with other garlic-loving folk.
(Source: Isle of Wight Garlic Festival)
Taking place at the Royal Pump Gardens is the Leamington Food Festival, which returns for its 10th year. The two day programme is full of cookery theatre, live entertainment, and food and drink stalls. There is no entrance fee either so you’ll have even more money to spend on the wide choice of food and drink.
Vegetarians look away now because this food festival is a celebration of all thing meaty. The quality on offer at Meatopia is extremely high, and only the best purveyors of meat will be on hand to feed you. The festival was conceived in the US but brought to the UK by acclaimed chef Richard H Turner of Hawksmoor. Now running in both Dublin and London the festival celebrates simplicity and promises the use of only logs or charcoal, which gives meat the best tasting results. Other chefs cooking include Mark Hix, Nathan Outlaw, Mitch Tonks, Jose Pizarro, Yotam Ottolenghi, John Torode, amongst many, many more.
The village of Ludlow has an esteemed food history, and for its size, its number of awards and accolades are impressive. The Ludlow Food Festival also lays claim to being the UK’s first ever food festival and is now in its 23rd year. This year sees a 3 day event celebrating all that is great about food with a packed schedule of masterclasses, taste workshops, demonstrations, cookery schools, and food trails.
Manchester is fast becoming the northern hub of the UK’s food scene. With a constant array of new openings it is challenging any preconceptions people once had too. Now in its 20th year, the Manchester Food and Drink Festival will take place in a number of different locations throughout the city. The huge programme will also take place for over a week, giving everybody a chance to experience it.
(Source:Manchester Food Festival)
The Shrewsbury Food Festival runs for two days and is a veritable feast of activity. Alongside all the food on offer will also be music, crafts, climbing, and even archery, so you’ll be hard pushed to be bored. There will be plenty on offer for kids too so this is very much a family-friendly event. There’s even a dog crèche so pets can come along with you too.
The UK’s street food selection used to consist of overcooked burgers, limp chips, and a Mr Whippy. Now you can find a tapestry of different dishes on almost every street corner and the choice shows no sign of slowing. The Tenby Street Food Festival will celebrate these diverse options and vendors at the festival include La Froga, Pakora Pod, Coffi Cwrt and many more.
(Source:Viva La Toastie)