This year’s Stratford Upon Avon Food Festival moved out of the town centre to the racecourse and was brought forward from September to this weekend.
I don’t know if people were unaware of the changes, but when we arrived on Saturday lunchtime it was a lot emptier and smaller than I was expecting.
We ambled through the three marquees talking to stallholders, buying pickles, salami and sauces, tasting vodka and marvelling at the infused gins and rainbow macarons. We then followed the music outside and happily munched our way through a Lazy Cow burger, portion of churros, sinfully rich ice cream and sank a Pimms before departing.
Walking around, sampling food and chatting to producers is my favourite part of food festivals. As I will miss this year’s Stratford Food Festival http://www.stratfordfoodfestival.co.uk next weekend (14 – 15 September) here are five local food companies that you should look out for.
Treat yourself to the chocolate fudge brownies from Daisy Blue Bakehouse which have won a Great Taste Award 2013. Stock up on Tregunther’s preserves which include ingredients grown or picked by Sarah Tregunter and are made to family recipes. The smell of freshly baked artisan bread will direct you to the Grants Bakeries stand. You could snack on gourmet nine-hour slow-cooked Cotswold lamb, served with salad in an artisan bap, from BBC Good Food Show Midlands Street Food winners Ross and Ross. And if you like to plan ahead, you can place your order for a Christmas turkey with Heart of England Farms
As Autumn approaches there is a bountiful array of food festivals being held, where you can shop and eat local produce. Details of Leamington, Stratford and Shipston food festivals are now on the Events page along with a chocolate making class, Squisito Supper Club, Gastro Card dinner and fashion show – plus a Rude Food Fiesta!
Also, just to give you a heads up, I am working with Gastro Card to produce a new events calendar for food and drink events in the Midlands, so please get in touch if you would like to add any activities firstname.lastname@example.org
I spent a very enjoyable few hours at the Stratford Food Festival recently, sampling new products, talking to producers and soaking up the atmosphere. Here are a few of my photos.
Fabulous funghi from Carluccio’s
A happy customer at The Olive Stall
Perfect pastry from The Pieminster
Quirky branding at Oh So Hot
Sampling – the best part of any food festival
The Cookery Theatre line-up
The audience patiently waits for the next Talk & Taste Theatre speaker
Rachel’s Cupcakes stand was popular – especially the limited edition chocolate rose love potion cakes, made with tea from Bluebird Tea Company.
I’m currently working on some new features – a foodie guide to Leamington Spa, a review of Purnell’s Bistro and Le Truc Café, a new chef profile plus a guest post for British Cheese Week. I’ll be adding these to the blog over the next two weeks. Oh and pictures from the Statford Food Festival next weekend too.