Thousands of visitors are expected to pack out the streets of Newport for this Saturday’s food festival – sponsored by Tiny Rebel.
The award-winning brewery which runs Urban Tap in the city centre is the headline sponsor of the free, one-day event which will see 80 stalls and more than a dozen food demonstrations or talks.
Tiny Rebel’s Bradley Cummings said: “We’re a proud Newport business so coming on board as headline sponsor of the festival is a great honour.”
The Golden Lion at Magor is a supporting sponsor – and two of its chefs are on the bill.
The mouth-watering line-up of chefs includes the Celtic Manor Resort’s TV chef Larkin Cen, Ben Periam of Mojo The Food Bar, James Sommerin of The Esplanade in Penarth, and Steve White of The Ruperra Arms.
The festival’s hotly-contested teen chef competition final will be staged at 10am upstairs in Newport Market, and there will be a battle of the burgers there between Pretentious Burger Kitchen and Meat Bar & Grill at 4pm.
There’s also a packed programme of entertainment with choirs and bands performing throughout the day.
Here are 9 tasty things to do at the festival:
Learn how to make perfect pasta – including a simple dish anyone can replicate at home – with the Executive Chef of The Park Michelin-starred restaurant and The Brasserie at Lucknam Park Hotel & Spa, Hywel Jones. His session will take place at 11am in the upper area of Newport Market.
Spice up your life with a tasting of some of the hot and fiery sauces from Monmouthshire producers Sorai. If you love chillis, these sauces are for you! We recommend the onion and balsamic sauce which has a hot tang.
Brush up on your cake decorating skills at a demonstration with Nia Thomas in 44 High Street at 2pm. Nia has 18 years of experience in decoration and sugar craft – and she has passed on her skills in classes and day schools for the past two years.
Sample fantastic, fresh, and funky vegetarian food at the Parsnipship stall – created at their base in South Wales. We’re in love with Parsnipship’s haloumi burgers.
Catch a demonstration by Gwent chef James Sommerin, whose Penarth restaurant has been awarded title of Best in Wales in the Good Food Guide 2016. He’ll be at the Pobl offices at 11.30am. He has inspired his 17-year-old daughter to work alongside him in his kitchen.
Check out the sweet taste of Clam’s Handmade Cakes at their stall – last year, they did a roaring trade. So pop along early to get the widest selection of cakes!
Learn how to cook with beer with the help of Tiny Rebel’s Paul Turley. His demonstration will be in the Pobl offices at 2.30pm.
Taste some wine or liqueur from exhibitors Cwm Deri Vineyard. We caught up with them at the recent Abergavenny Food Festival and loved their light and bright elderflower gin and smooth sloe gin.
Grab an ice lolly with a kick from Mojo The Food Bar’s pop-up cocktail bar – or a special cocktail created by mixologist and head bartender, Andrej Madaras.
From top chefs and food writers to TV presenters and a former star of the Great British Bake Off – this year’s Abergavenny Food Festival will be a feast for its tens of thousands of visitors.
Last year’s event attracted 30,000 people, and this year’s festival will run from Friday night (September 16) to Sunday.
This year’s line-up has a taste of cooking from India, Italy, France, Spain, Malaysia, Poland, Japan, Korea, and the UK.
MasterChef: The Professionals presenter and former Le Gavroche senior sous chef Monica Galetti talks about her new book, The Skills, and stages a masterclass at the Borough Theatre on Friday evening.
On Saturday, Abergavenny Food Festival favourite Cyrus Todiwala will be at the Borough Theatre showing visitors how to get 120 dishes out of 10 spices with recipes from his new book, Mr Todiwala’s Spice Box. The chef, restaurateur, and author has been called the UK’s best Indian chef.
Acclaimed chef and restaurateur Jose Pizzaro will share culinary secrets from his new book, Basque, during a session at the Borough Theatre on Saturday.
Founder of the Riverford Field Kitchen, Jane Baxter, will give a taste of her new book, Leon Happy Salads, at the Masonic Hall on Sunday.
What To Eat Now star Valentine Warner returns to the festival with new fish recipes at the Priory Centre on Sunday, and Llansantffraed Court chef Tim McDougall will be demonstrating recipes with Usk Valley beef, Monmouthshire lamb, and Bristol Channel sea bass at the Priory Centre on Sunday.
If you’ve been diagnosed as a coeliac, Naomi Devlin will be holding a masterclass at the Priory Centre on Saturday called River Cottage Gluten Free. She will be preparing some of the 120 recipes in her book – which don’t compromise on taste.
Miss Foodwise blog editor Regina Ysewijn will prepare 17th Century puddings from her book, Pride and Pudding, at the Masonic Hall on Saturday.
You could learn Japanese cooking with food writer and chef Kimiko Barber at the Borough Theatre on Saturday.
Or you could pick up expert barbecue tips from the dynamic funders of the Hang Fire Smokehouse at the Priory Centre on Saturday. Sam Evans and Shauna Guinn will also be sharing tales of their cooking misadventure from their book, Recipes and Adventures in American BBQ.
Builder-turned-baker Richard Burr, a finalist in last year’s Great British Bake Off, will tell you how to be a star baker during a session at the Masonic Hall on Saturday. He will demonstrate recipes from his first cookbook, Bake It Yourself.
Norman Musa will demonstrate recipes from his book Amazing Malaysian at the Priory Centre on Saturday, Marie Cheong-Thong and Jon Old will be talking about sake and wasabi at the Masonic Hall on Saturday, and Eleonara Galasso will talk about modern Roman cuisine at the Priory Centre on Saturday.
Vegetarians will find a feast of ideas from Alice Hart when she talks about her new book The Modern Vegetarian at the Masonic Hall on Saturday.
Also on the bill: pop-up restaurateurs Terry and George; food writer William Sitwell; writer and recipe developer Eleanor Ford; Zuza Zak; Brad McDonald; Martha Collison.
The festival features a packed programme of forages and tours, tutored tastings, and sessions at the Artisan Kitchen School.
Former London restaurateur Rob Didier, who trained under Raymond Blanc, is the founder of Orchard Pigs based in Wrexham. His company has a trademark Tractor Wheel Pie made from rare breeds pork, along with a range of mutton, beef and game pies.
Parsnipship in Ogmore Vale has a plethora of pies and other goods for vegetarians and vegans. Try their mushroom bourguignon pie, made with puy lentils and porcini mushrooms. They suggest serving it with olive mash. Their Mexican pie is made with kidney beans and cayenne pepper, and has a paprika crust. They suggest serving it with sautéed potatoes and either lime crème fraiche, or soya yoghurt for vegans.
Their Indian summer pie has chickpeas, butternut squash and cumin, and they suggest serving it with broccoli stems pan fried in lime, ginger and chilli.
If a box of chocolates simply won’t hack it this Valentine’s Day, Welsh food and drink experts have some perfect ideas for lasting gifts:
For the wine lover
White Castle vineyard near Abergavenny has a scheme where you can adopt a vine for your loved-one. That gives them a personalised certificate of adoption valid for a year, a plaque with their name on their adopted vine, a conducted vineyard tour for two people to include a glass of wine to toast the adopted vine, and the chance to join owners Robb and Nicola Merchant at harvest to handpick the grapes from your adopted vine.
The package also includes a bottle of wine from your adopted grape variety to take home and a warm welcome to events taking place throughout the year at The Cellar Door.The price is £45.00 Contact Robb or Nicola on 01873 821443 or email: firstname.lastname@example.org. See more details here.
For the chocolate lover
Book a chocolate tasting and making course at Black Mountain Gold based in Crickhowell.
Your loved one can join a three-hour course for £85, or have a one-to-one workshop with master chocolatier Jules for £250. The courses include an introduction to truffle making, tempering, hand rolling and piping ganache, enrobing and detailing, using dipping forks, mouthfeel and cocoa butter, and chocolate moulding techniques. To book and pay for your place please call the shop on 01873 812362. See more details here.
For the fish lover
Book your Valentine a Welsh fish and shellfish cookery course at Bodnant Welsh Foods at Conwy.
The course teaches people how to cook and prepare sustainably-sourced fish and learn techniques such as skinning, filleting and boning. For lunch your Valentine will try the fish and shellfish they have cooked and pair them with matching wines from Bodnant’s onsite wine cellar.
The next course is on February 27. Your Valentine will learn to cook lobster bisque, citrus cured salmon, poached pollock and black curry powder, halibut wellington and baked scallops and coconut. The day course costs £115. See more details here.
For the cake and bread lover
Your Valentine can hone their baking skills at a half day bakes and cakes course at The Culinary Cottage at Pandy, Abergavenny.
The course will cover beer and soda bread, sweet and savoury pastries, and a chocolate genache-covered creation. The half day course cost £65. See more details here.
For the meat lover
Book your Valentine a place at a Weber Essential course at Angela Grey’s Cookery School in Llanerch Vineyard, Vale of Glamorgan. The course teaches American barbecue, low ‘n’ slow cooking and smokehouse cuisine skills, creating deliciously authentic dishes from scratch. Dishes will include barbecued beef brisket and a side of signature slaw, spicy buffalo wings with gorgonzola dip, stacked ribs, and Bourbon and smoked bacon chocolate brownies.
During the four hours, your Valentine will get hands on with an array of different meats, expand your cooking repertoire on the barbecue and also use the Weber Smokey Mountain Cooker. The cost is £129. See more details here.
For the veggie lover
Your Valentine will love the vibrant veggie recipes taught at Kather’s Kitchen cookery school in Monmouthshire. The dishes will be seasonal The day course costs £85 per person. Call 01292 650801 to book. See more details here.