It’s throwback Thursday 😊 and as I have been busy all week I thought today was a good day to write about last weekend! Solihull Food Festival, a relatively local event to me, so I thought why not attend? It was the first time Solihull have hosted this festival so it was a test for everyone.
Being the last weekend of September, you never know what weather to expect, but when you go to events like this you always pray for it to be dry! It obviously worked too, we had great weather, the morning was so bright and warm I needed sunglasses! Every time I attend a food event the sun always seems to come out, it reminds me of the scorchers I attended this summer- I must always bring the luck of the weather to these events!!
The festival was held along the main shopping streets in Solihull, with pop up stalls from local businesses and some others from around the UK. Stalls included Street food from across the continents to buy, tasters and food inspiration, kitchen equipment, craft stalls, pop up bars, and the obligatory drinks stalls. Sampling gins, vodkas and other alcoholic beverages… no one can resist a cheeky tipple.
There was a lot of food that interested me when walking around.. Of course the sweet treat tents. Delicious brownies with mouth-watering flavours from “Tess’ Brilliant Bakes”. But one in particular I had to get a sweet fix from was “Café Cannoli”. Cannoli is something that reminds me of my time living in Italy, they had the traditional Ricotta flavours with the twists of Chocolate, hazelnut, caramel and pistachio! The ingredients all the way from Sicily too, couldn’t get more authentic. They will be at more food events this year so check them out!!
Then onto the savoury: cheese tents (some of whom I have seen at festivals such as Foodies) Such as “Great British Cheese Company” they have wonderful flavour combinations... So I know they are great! Street food from Spain, Paella and Churros.. yes, it is heaven for me! I also spotted my friends the Wiltshire Chilli Farm, Martin wasn’t there which was probably a good thing for me.. it meant no chilli eating competition! Maybe something they can arrange for next year instead 😉
Another unique touch to this event that I quite liked was local businesses getting involved, offering a taster tent for you to try food/drink. The tent hosted different businesses throughout the day, so you could discover new brands. Places like Wagamama, Turtle Bay and other local restaurants and cafes of Solihull came to the streets to feed the crowds.
Along with the food stalls, were entertainment areas for the children, and a dance/cheer group who came along to show off their talent and get people involved. Food and exercise, well go hand in hand and I think are a great addition alongside what was going on.
The highlight, and what I think drew crowds to attend was the Demo tent… A few guest chefs were present over the weekend but the main man Dave Myers, one half of the Hairy Bikers was there cooking up a treat!
The tent was packed out with people who brought tickets to watch Dave cook, he was very entertaining- not only cooking up wonderful food but providing witty banter throughout the demo with the help of his friend and fellow chef Steve Quirk and Sous Chef James Toth.
He even stayed around after to answer questions, pose for photos and sign books. I was so happy I got to get a cheeky selfie, and my book signed- not going to lie I am a fan!!
With food events like this popping up that are free to attend, I think are a good way of getting the public involved and interested in food. There is so much more interest nowadays in food and cooking and with the help of chefs attending these events the nations love of food can only grow and get people get more creative in the kitchen and appreciate good food!
Hopefully, as this was such a successful event, another will be held next year- even bigger and better than what we have just seen! Now on to this weekend and another event for me, The Cake and Bake Show in London.