MEET, GREET AND EAT. EVENTS HAVE SPRUNG UP ALL OVER THE UK THAT BRING GOURMANDS TOGETHER OVER LOCAL FOOD AND FLAVOURS
First there was Ludlow, which kicked things off in 1995, then in 1999, Abergavenny – the biggest and longest-running festival in Wales – joined the fray. What started as a small event with 3,000 visitors now welcomes more than 30,000. And the calender is full throughout the year: in 2017 Food
and Travel was media sponsor at nine food festivals all across the UK.
Festivals are a unique way for consumers to build on their culinary knowledge, with unprecendented access to the producers that supply many local ingredients. Increasingly, they are also a chance to interact with celebrity chefs and sample menus from top restaurants in one place at reduced prices. Taste of London, which featured a cookery demonstration by chef Tom Kerridge and stalls from some of London’s top restaurants such as Duck & Waffle and The Cinnamon Club this summer, has made this model famous. When it launched in 2004, 14,000 people attended. This year, there were more than 50,000. The style has also been adopted on a smaller scale to showcase restaurant talent in a specific area, for example at Soho Food Feast and Street Feast in Dalston.