I am, and have always been, a big lover of food festivals. Admittedly in my younger years this mainly came in the form of the Reading Festival, which wasn’t exactly known for its culinary depths! More sweaty mud covered cider lovers in search of a dodgy burger or fairground standard hot dog.
In my later, and some would argue wiser years, my taste has somewhat changed. Nowadays I am looking for something that is a little bit less intense and one where I come away smelling a little bit sweeter and more able to speak to other humans whilst actually remembering what happened!!
In the UK we are spoilt with such a great range of summer food festivals and these seem to be on the rise every year. They seem to be getting grander in scale and covering such a wide range of food styles and cultures.
My local food festival is in Thame, Oxfordshire. Every year this festival grows and grows and last year it actually had to move from its town location to just outside of town to a large farm to enable it to house the amount of food stalls, stages, bands and other attractions they have.
I always take my two young sons to this one as it is local so I don’t have to put up with a soul grinding car journey with a 7 and 3 year old, who have never been quiet for a minute in their lives, even when they are sleeping! They love to walk around and listen to all the live music, and try anything and everything they can get their little hands on! I think it’s very important to expose them to a wide range of food styles and cultures, I’m not saying that they like most of them, but we have a rule, as long as they try everything then it’s fine. There are loads of child friendly festivals all over, Thame, Ludlow, Bristol vegan fair, to name just a few, but one of the best has to be the River Cottage Festival. So much to see, do and eat plus you are in the absolutely stunning surroundings of Axminster.
If you fancy a day out, without the little ones, then Meatopia is the one to aim for. All live fire cooking with loads of the best meat you can find and a good amount of booze to go alongside of it, if that’s your thing.
Your local food festival is just a quick Google search away, these and of course ones which are a bit more of a road trip away.
Enjoy the weather while it lasts and check out your local festivals, you won’t regret it. Unless your local one is the Reading Festival, then you could potentially have quite a few regrets heading your way!