If you having trouble deciding which part of the British culinary landscape to visit, you could do a lot worse than visiting the North West of England. Some of the food that we all grew up with or that Britain is famous for originates from this part of the country.
We are talking about things like the Cumberland sausage, Eccles cakes and Blackpool Rock, to name but a few. But could you really take this guide to the North West’s finest food festivals seriously if we didn’t give a shout out to Cheshire and their take on crumbly cheese or the Lancashire hotpot, which somehow manages to be humble and magnificent all at once?
Whether you are holidaying in the north west and just looking for a fun day out or are specifically heading northwards for a foodie event, we have you covered. In the following post we will highlight some of the notable events from the fully packed calendar of food festivals taking place in this neck of the woods.
Southport Food & Drink Festival, Victoria Park, Southport
From the 1st to the 3rd of June at Victoria Park in Southport, you can enjoy a memorable weekend celebration of food and drink. One of the biggest draws for people to this event every year is the fact that entry is completely free.
There is a large producer’s market where you are free to try some samplers and buy directly from the stallholders and there will be mouthwatering and inspirational cookery demonstrations by chefs. However, if you are looking to enjoy the exploits of others in the kitchen, there is plenty of street food stalls to enjoy until you are full and satisfied.
Food For Thought, Edge Hill University, Ormskirk, Lancashire
Although veganism is not necessarily for everyone – we know it is a very popular dietary and lifestyle choice, so we felt it was worthwhile highlighting this interesting event in Ormskirk.
Local businesses will be on hand to dish up their favourite vegan delights, while there will also be cooking demonstrations and other showcases of ethical produce and goods. As this event has been set-up by the Festival of Ideas and has the theme this year of Equalities, you can expect riveting discussions and talks regarding theme of Individual Equalities and Modern Feminism.
While it may not be the beer and food event you are used to, if you are looking for something that gives you food to eat and food for thought (as the name suggests) don’t be too hasty to pass on this weekend.
Festa Italiana Manchester, Cathedral Gardens, Manchester
Are you an Italian food lover? Does the idea of a big portion of hot and steamy layers of sugo, white sauce, cheese, mince and pasta that make up a lasagne fill you with delight? Or perhaps you just love one or two or maybe even five slices of pizza with your favourite base and toppings?
Festa Italiana in Manchester looks like it will be the ideal place for you to be on the weekend of the 13th to the 15th of July this year.
This event is hosted by Manchester’s Italian community and transforms the Cathedral Gardens into its very own Festival Piazza where all of the main festivities will take place. While the focus is firmly on Italian food and drink, that strong festive attitude to social gatherings (if you have ever been to an Italian wedding or other event, you will know exactly what we mean) will be present.
Look out for the traditional produce market, live demonstrations and workshops that aim to teach you how to make pasta like Nonna did. All this and lots of tasty street food, a cocktail bar, live music, face painting for children and a 50 metre pizza. Yes, you read that right!
If this has whet your appetite, check out some more Manchester ones here.
Liverpool Food and Drink Festival, Sefton Park, Liverpool
It didn’t feel right to talk about the food festival delights that the North West has to offer without noting at least one in Liverpool.
The Liverpool Food and Drink Festival takes place within the delightful Sefton Park, that consists of 235 acres of gorgeous scenery, as well as an iconic bandstand, waterfalls, lake, Gothic drinking fountains and a dome conservatory.
For one weekend here you will find live music, fun activities and lots and lots of food stalls.
Like many other food festivals on the calendar there will be exciting live demonstrations from celebrity chefs and there is even a children’s village for the little ones.
Although there are many more we could have mentioned, the above gives you an indication just of the wide spectrum of food and drink orientated events that take place throughout the year in the North West of England.