The aromas of sizzling wild boar sausages, creamy Stilton cheese and warm doughy bread all lingering in the air. It can only mean one thing: food festival season is in full swing.
Please try to control your stomach as we round up the best autumnal feasts in England…
York Food & Drink Festival, until 28 September
Sink your teeth into everything from gourmet chocolate to Yorkshire salami from the markets sprawled over Parliament Street and St Sampson’s Square at this 10-day foodie spectacular. If you’re not bursting at the seams after taking chunks out of various stalls, you can always join a chocolate dining club, learn how to make bread the traditional way in the beautiful Mansion House or create curry classics with the York Cookery School.
The Great Cornish Food Festival, 26-28 September
Eat your way through some of Cornwall’s finest foodie establishments as pop-up stalls from a selection of the county’s best restaurants cook and serve mini mouth-watering signature dishes in Cornwall’s ‘capital’ Truro. Guest chefs include Nathan Outlaw, Jack Stein (son of Rick) and Andy Appleton from Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen Cornwall. Once you’ve had a good old wander around the festival site, pop over to the newly refurbished Old Ale House, featuring a brand new River Cottage menu and a selection of Skinner’s Brewery beers.
Taste of Cumbria, 26-28 September
Cumbria adds a touch of glamour to the festival season with an appearance from the county’s superstar chef Simon Rogan. He’ll be bringing a taste of L’Enclume and Claridge’s Fera to Cockermouth with a pop-up restaurant serving four delectable courses all paired with a specially-selected glass of wine. Along with Michelin-starred dining, there’ll be over 100 stalls showcasing local artisan and gourmet goodies on Main St, whiskey tastings with the Lakes Distillery and various other master classes covering everything from sushi to coffee.
Melton Mowbray Food and Drink Festival, 6-7 October
Granted a PDO (Protected Designation of Origin) for its delicious delicacy, Melton Mowbray in Leicestershire hails its eponymous pork pie at an annual festival featuring mouth-watering rural food and drink. Expect swathes of stalls piled high with the freshest countryside produce, including Melton Mowbray Pork Pies, Stilton cheese and local ales, along with a few surprises too. Alcoholic ice creams, chocolate kebabs and gold-infused bubbly anyone?
Great Bath Feast, 1-31 October
Along with its Roman and Georgian heritage, we think Bath should be celebrated for its foodie credentials too. Every year the UNESCO World Heritage Site puts on a month-long foodie bash with everything from a festival dedicated to cheese to a 10 day celebration of craft beer, ale and sausages at the Roman Baths Kitchen. Don’t miss the Tenner Feast, a purse-friendly initiative which sees restaurants and shops around the city offering £10 promotions.
Norfolk Food and Drink Festival, until 12th October
Eat your way through Norfolk as East England’s luscious lowlands put on a month-long rural feast with various festivals taking place across the county. There are extra special events to celebrate 10 years of the festival, including the tallest jelly competition, chocolate afternoon tea and dining in the dark in Norwich, The Big Slow Breakfast in Aylsham, restaurant week in North Norfolk and farmers markets galore.
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