The Great British Summer means spending a rare sunny day in my local park with a jug of Pimms and a plentiful picnic, so the idea of spending the first weekend of June at the Foodies Festival at Kenwood House seemed the perfect kick off to the warmer months.Being a bit of amateur foodie, I was pretty excited to be spending the day sampling some of London’s finest eats. After starting the day with a flute of bubbly in the VIP area, my friend Sinead and I began our stroll around the Hampstead Heath grounds, on a quest to try as many of the diverse offerings as we could fit in our empty stomachs.The options around the festival were endless, with everything from gourmet bbqs to Vegan treats and outlets dedicated to all things spicy. The enthusiasm of the stall holders was almost infectious, as they passionately told us about their wares and answered any questions we had, many offering samples for us to try.Along with the food stalls, there are lots of workshops and demonstrations happening around the grounds including classes from top chefs and the winners of Masterchef and Great British Bakeoff, which allow a little time to digest and make room for some more sampling!We followed the sound of some light organ music to a tent that was hosting a vintage tea dance complete with enthusiastic participants and some gorgeous vintage accessories you could buy for your kitchen, which added a touch of tradition to our afternoon.With so much to see, do and taste, we noticed that time was getting away with us and made a last dash to find the liquid nitrogen ice cream that we had heard some fellow guests raving about earlier in the day.
The Foodies Festival takes place across the country during weekends throughout the summer. The full schedule can be found on the website I would definitely recommend a visit for any fellow foodies or families looking for a day out that appeals to stomachs young and old!If you do head to one of the events this summer, make sure you check out some of my favourites from the day:Truscott Arms. This gastro pub had a truck with delicious small plates of key things on their menu, think pork ribs and cannelloni; oh so amazing! Their wine list was neverending too….I will definitely be making a trip to this Maida Vale treasure very soon. Pinkster Gin. Nothing is more refreshing in summer than a gin and tonic. Pinkster Gin is made up of five botanicals and infused with raspberries, giving it a gorgeous rose colour and subtle sweetness. Perfect for a gift or cheeky evening cocktail. Breadtree. Sometimes when it comes to food, simple is better. This could not be more true of the Italian bruschetta served up by the artisans at Breadtree. Fresh tomatoes and rich pesto served on crusty bread, it certainly held its own against any I’d had before (even in Italy!). Gaucho. This famous steak house set up shop at the festival and the crowds flocked. There was a queue until the BBQ meat ran out and after trying the succulent lamb we understood why. Hiver. I love the concept of infusing different flavours when it comes to a good summer drink. I’m not a massive beer drinker but the sweet smell and refreshing taste of honey beer made this craft beer quite the innovation. Giovanni Rana. This lively stall was one of my favourites, just the thought of their gorgonzola and walnut ravioli makes my mouth water. The best part? Their delicious pasta is sold at Sainsburys! Doukan. We couldn’t go to the festival and not try some street food, Luckily Doukan Moroccan restaurant was there serving chicken kebabs and other spicy delicacies, which more than satisfied our cravings. The London Brigaderia. These little balls of heaven from Brazil, made out of condensed milk were available in so many flavours it was difficult to choose! My favourite was the coconut, it was the perfect sweet treat after spicy street food. Popcorn Kitchen. Anyone who knows me, knows that I am a popcorn fiend. So when I heard the words ‘best popcorn you would ever taste’, I was pretty intrigued. A full bag shared with my friend whilst relaxing on the grass at the Riot bar and I’d say they weren’t far wrong. Custom Creams. Sinead was sceptical about liquid nitrogen ice-cream but anything to do with my favourite frozen dessert and I’m there. The idea is that because the ice-ream is created when you order, you can design it yourself and therefore have whatever flavour you could possibly imagine! Our taste buds were blown away by a mix of peanut butter, nutella and brownies.
For more details on the Foodies Festival including dates, locations and tickets, visit http://www.foodiesfestival.com/