The complete programme for the 2019 Abergavenny Food Festival which takes place from 21st-22nd September, promises to be a weekend packed full of food for thought across the Monmouthshire market town. The festival will see an abundance of world-class chefs, cooks, food writers, producers and masters of their trade share their stories, passions and inspiration with visitors at the 21st edition of the festival. Featuring one-off feasts, masterclasses, tasting workshops, demos and cookery classes from some of the best in the business, the full schedule is now available via http://www.abergavennyfoodfestival.com for visitors to book tickets and plan their visit to this year’s festival.
The line-up includes food historian and curator at the British Library, Polly Russell; author and founder of the World’s 50 Best Restaurant Awards, Joe Warwick; cook, food writer and stylist, Georgina Hayden; with editor Miranda York and poet Anna Sulan Masing bringing their highly regarded culinary story salon ‘Voices At The Table’.
Among those already confirmed for this year are Asma Khan, Xanthe Clay, Sandor Katz, Bee Wilson, Rosie Birkett, Elly Curshen, Emiko Davies, Genevieve Taylor, Fozia Ismail, Pete Brown, Jekka McVicar and chefs Anissa Helou, Sam and Shauna from Hang Fire Southern Kitchen, Copenhagen’s Trine Hahnemann, Gareth Ward, Josh Eggleton, Tom Hunt, Cyrus Todiwala and Tommy Heaney.
Families at the food festival
Kids under the age of 16 will again be able to attend the festival completely free of charge. There will be a range of events to keep the little ones occupied. From the Rotary Club’s Young Chef of the Year competition hosted by José Pizarro and Franco Taruschio, to a kid’s takeover of the Festival Farmyard every morning. Diana Henry and Bee Wilson, two of the UK’s most influential food writers, will be at the Borough Theatre discussing the challenges and realities of feeding our families well. They’ll be exploring everything from bad food advice to parental food angst, in what promises to be an essential event for any parent with young children. Bee Wilson will also be appearing at the family area at The Castle for an informal talk from her book ‘First Bite: How We Learn to Eat’ on introducing children to diverse and nutritious foods.
Also, at the family area at The Castle, sponsors Cook School and Rougemont Independent School will be teaming up to offer free kids cookery classes throughout the weekend. Expect guest appearances from chefs Freddy Bird and Jenny Chandler, who will be taking the kids through their culinary paces.
Find the Festival Farmyard in Castle Street Car Park where there’s a kids takeover between 10am-12noon each day. Younger visitors will be able to meet and interact with rare breed animals, climb the tractors, hear talks on keeping animals from Little Bo Sheep and Pig Tails, and join Wild Tots Abergavenny for nature play and creative connections. Children can also get hands on with their food, learning how to plant seeds and churn butter.
The festival’s off-site foraging programme continues to expand with more of these events for 2019. Champions of British wild produce Ivan Tisdall-Downes and Imogen Davis from restaurant Native in London will be taking a group on a Wild & Seasonal with Native forage around Abergavenny. Gathering a variety of foraged herbs and plants, learning to identify commonly found edible plants, and returning to the outdoor cooking area to create a foraged feast around a fire. Also catch them at the Cooking Over Fire area where they will be demo-ing their ‘Clay Pigeon’, a wood pigeon cooked in clay in the embers, and accompanying sides of Burnt Beetroot Hummus & Smoked Cabbage.
Welsh chefs representing
Visitors will also find the new Welsh Chefs Demo Stage, delivered in collaboration with Hybu Cig Cymru in the Festival Farmyard, featuring a wealth of Welsh culinary talent including chefs such as Hywel Griffith of Beach House in Oxwich on the Gower Peninsular, Tom Watts-Jones from the Michelin recognised Hare and Hounds in Cowbridge, and Matt Waldron of Park House in Cardiff. Gareth Ward of Ynyshir, recently named the best restaurant in Wales at the National Restaurant Awards, and Tommy Heaney of Heaney’s in Cardiff will be featured on the Market Hall Stage, and Laurian Veaudour of Cardiff patisserie Cocorico will be taking a masterclass on mouth-watering patisserie and sharing some of his technical know-how.
Cooking Over Fire
The grand finale of the Cooking Over Fire demo area will see no less than five of the UK’s culinary super-stars getting together to produce a stunning feast showcasing an under-used store cupboard staple … maple syrup. From savoury to sweet, a group of fearless fire starters will be using Canadian ‘liquid gold’ in creative and unexpected ways, and discussing the virtues of this democratic, sustainable and ecologically friendly ingredient. Joining hosts Sam & Shauna of Hang Fire Southern Kitchen, will be James Golding, Chef Director at a major UK hotel group and member of the Royal Academy of Culinary Arts’ sustainability committee, Georgina Hayden and Great British Bake-Off finalist and founder of ‘Manon’s Little Kitchen’, Manon Lagrève.
Wristband and ticket sales
Weekend and day wristbands on sale now via http://www.abergavennyfoodfestival.com.
From the chef demos across the Market Hall and Welsh chefs’ stages, family activities, Producer Markets and the night market with live entertainment until late, there is plenty to do and see free with a festival wristband. Access to the Farmyard and Castle area is also included where visitors can find talks in The Dome and the Cooking Over Fire stage. Everything to do with kids is free: free entry for under 16’s, plus free cookery classes and activities on our family lawn. Please check the website for more details.
As always visitors can expect to find around 220 food and drink producers trading across nine market sites including: Cheese and Wine, Fish & Fizz, Street Food and night market, and a special area for New Food Producers. Traders will include Trealy Farm Charcuterie, Halen Mon, Borough Market’s Heritage Cheese, and many, many more.
Tickets are sold separately for all events at the Borough Theatre, Masterclasses, Drinks Theatre, Tutored Tastings, Foraging Tours and off-site events and the Cookery School. Check the website for further info.
Those with an NP7 postcode will receive 20% off the cost of their wristband available online now using the code LOCAL. To qualify for the local discount, proof of address must be shown when online purchases are exchanged for wristbands during the festival.
There is a 10% discount available for groups of 10 or more. Please go to http://www.abergavennyfoodfestival.com for more details.
On social media, follow Abergavenny Food Festival on Twitter: @afoodfestival, Instagram: @afoodfestival and Facebook: Abergavenny Food Festival