Food festivals are becoming my favourite events to attend. Not only is it a day spent eating and drinking lots of fantastic local produce, but it makes for a great day out, especially if the sun is out.
And I am so happy that I was able to attend the Towcester Food Festival for a 2nd year running. And even better when its only a walk away from me!
Last weekend, the Towcester Food Festival came back to Towcester Racecourse for a 5th year running, providing a tasty day out for the local community. People far and wide gathered to sample the great food and drink on offer from exhibitors of all sorts of niches, from cheese and deli, gin and wine, to Moroccan lamb burgers and coconut cocktails of which you could drink from actual coconuts!
Anything was possible at Towcester Food Festival and being my 2nd time attending the event, I am proud to say that this years event excelled.
As we reached the entry of the Towcester Food Festival, the atmosphere was buzzing with excitable locals, foodie lovers and families enjoying what was on offer, from the entertainment at the kids area, to the chef demonstrations, wine tastings and live music on offer. And not forgetting all the food and drink that was on offer, which I was eager to go and try!
Josh and I are huge foodies, so it was really hard for us to decide which exhibitor we would visit first, so we decided to take a walk around and see what took our fancy.
Eventually, Wraps took our attention, as it had the biggest queue - which must of meant it was a popular choice. Despite the long queue, it was worth the wait. We indulged in our chicken wraps, smothered in melted cheese and drizzled in smokey BBQ sauce (Josh went for garlic mayo... thanks, dear!) The perfect first choice to wet our appetites, all washed down with a MerriMen Brewery ale, whom the people were incredibly friendly and 'merri'!
We eventually met up with friends as we enjoyed a good catch up whilst deciding where we would go next. Louise and I were keen to visit the Warner Edwards stand to sample their gin (did I mention that I am a huge Warner Edwards gin fan!?) and I am so pleased that I got to try their Honeybee gin and their Sloe gin (which I had no idea was a thing, oops!)
I regret not buying a bottle, as Warner Edwards gin is hard to come by!
However, we moved on and got to browse all the other exhibitors. There was a huge amount of local produce and brands exhibiting this year, more than I remember seeing in the previous year.
The weather was gorgeous as the whole of Towcester was greeted with rays of sunshine, so we decided to sit on the grass, take in the atmosphere and get a jug of pimms to share, which was only £20, plus you got £5 back when you return the jug.
It was a refreshing beverage to drink whilst we enjoyed what was going on around us and listened to the local talent. Little things like this showed that the organisers behind Towcester Food Festival made sure the event was a success.
Later on, we started to get peckish again. So we ventured around to try some Turkish Delight before venturing to the Tasting Tent where we took part in a wine tasting to sample white wines that would compliment fish dishes.
Wine tasting? I'm there!
I really enjoyed all the wines we tasted, especially the fizzy champagne which I really wanted to purchase, as we received a 10% discount voucher to use after the wine tasting, but unfortunatly you could only buy 6 bottles rather than just the one - I'm not quite sure I would have gone through 6 bottles!
I've heard about them.
I've heard people rave and say how they are the best thing on the planet since slice bread.
I never tried them. Until now.
And I 100% understand what the fuss is all about.
We started to get peckish and we headed to StrEAT17 where I spotted their Halloumi fries with green chilli jam which looked mouth watering. So I got a portion of those whilst Josh picked a Moroccan lamb burger.
Thank you StrEAT17, because you made me fall in love with Halloumi fries and I'm pretty sure I need to get myself some of your Halloumi fries again very very soon, because not only was there plenty to tuck into, but they were big and crispy on the outside, but they were soft and oozing with halloumi.
They were probably my highlight of the whole festival.
Other drinks we sampled during our visit were Healy's of Winwick ciders, which was a different cider to try opposed to my usual choice of a Saxby's Cider (who were also exhibiting.)
I didn't go away from the Towcester Food Festival empty handed - I couldn't resist picking up some Cobblers Nibble and Northamptonshire Blue cheese from Hamm Tun Fine Foods and I picked up some more selections of Jam's from Queens Park Preserves, as I loved their Mango and Lime Jam I picked up from the Althorp Food Festival.
I've mentioned several times that I truly believe the event excelled itself this year compared to last year and it made me wish I came back on the Sunday because I didn't sample enough of what was on offer in Northamptonshire.
We are incredibly lucky to live in such a foodie loving county and everytime I visit a local food festival, it encourages me to continue supporting local brands and to choose local produce whenever possible.
I am really pleased that I was able to run a competition for one lucky winner to receive tickets to the event. Congratulations, Sarah! I was unable to meet her and congratulate her in person, but her gratitude for the tickets meant alot to me as I was pleased I was able to give someone a day out.
Did you attend Towcester Food Festival? What was your highlight?