Eat, drink and be merry at Aldeburgh Food and Drink Festival 2017

The Aldeburgh food and drink festival at Snape Maltings

The Aldeburgh food and drink festival at Snape Maltings

Celebrity chefs, award-winning producers and street food to descend on Snape Maltings for the annual Aldeburgh Food and Drink Festival on September 23 and 24.

The Aldeburgh food and drink festival at Snape Maltings
Tv chef Valentine Warner with trine hahnema

The Aldeburgh food and drink festival at Snape Maltings Tv chef Valentine Warner with trine hahnemann

This foodie festival at Snape Maltings caters for every whim - whether you’re in the mood for a pigeon sausage roll, honey caramel truffles, handmade bread, or East Anglian charcuterie.

The Aldeburgh food and drink festival at Snape Maltings

The Aldeburgh food and drink festival at Snape Maltings

Between them, stallholders have hundreds of Great Taste Awards. They really are the cream of the crop. Festival favourite Bhaji Man will be there with his flavoursome curry packs and original bhaji making kits. Take home slices of divine salt beef or rolls of the very tastiest brisket around from Cratfield Beef. If you like it hot, head over to East Coast Chilli Co to dip into their fiery sauces. And make a beeline for Fen Farm Dairy – you cannot go home without a generous wedge of their delectable Baron Bigod cheese. To go with it? A loaf of bread from Pump Street or The Cake Shop Bakery. And maybe more cheese and smoked pates from Suffolk Smokehouse and Deli. Oh, and some salami, coppa or lomo from Marsh Pig too.

The festival is proud this year to have 14 new businesses in its start-up area too. They include Fishers Gin, Flint wine, Holy Schnitzels, Nuoi Foods gourmet nut butters, Tosier bean to bar chocolate, and The Lamb Charcuterie Company.

What’s new?

Quite a bit actually. Firstly there’s The Adnams Drinks Experience. Found riverside in a tent, the famous brewer and distiller will host talks, tastings and demonstrations all weekend.

On Saturday pop by for tutored beer tasting with head brewer Fergus Fitzgerald, botanical banter with the ‘make your own gin’ team, cooking with beer, and a Tiptree jam jar gin masterclass!

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On Sunday learn how to brew in your own kitchen, how to garnish your drinks with head distiller John McCarthy, and all about beer and food pairing with expert Melissa Cole.

Also new for 2017 is the Wild Suffolk area, bringing together food, nature, science and art. Drink hedgerow cordials. Eat pigeon burgers. Join in the cook-ups around a camp fire. Meet local bloggers and writers. And talk about your passion for food on the Fish Box stage.

Family fun

Kids will love sampling all the edible goodies at the festival. But did you know there’s a family area too? Introduced last year, the Hillfarm Family Meadow includes face painting, toy tractor rides, the chance to have a go at pressing rapeseed oil and sit on the world’ biggest combine harvester, and pizza making workshops. Oh – there’s ice cream too!

Masterclasses

Due to popularity, many of the workshops are already booked up but spaces on the following remain. We recommend booking as soon as possible.

September 23: Introduction to Nigerian Cooking with Lope Ariyo, 1pm, £20

September 24: Baking to Satisfy Any Craving with Martha Collison, 1.30pm, £20

September 24: Japaneasy Feast with Tim Anderson, 2.30pm, £20

On the fringe

There are a number of brilliant fringe events during September and October. Check out the festival website for full details. They include: a 12 course chocolate tasting dinner, The Feast of St Gobnait, Woodbridge Shuck, Fork and Pork, 10 mile meal, a five course Suffolk supper, and a tour of Pump Street’s chocolate factory.

What’s for lunch?

Wood-fired yums from the Hay Hay truck. Sustainable fish and chips from the funky Fish Hut van. Golden calamari from Bubble and Squid. And thin sliced local beef steak with salad and piquant chimichurri sauce from High Steaks. To cool down we recommend an award-winning ice cream from Handmade by Hadleys (ooh salted caramel), or a gourmet ice lolly from Lickety Ice.

Who can I see there?

The demonstrations line-up incudes Tim Anderson, Dhruv Baker, Galton Blackiston, Jose Pizzaro, Cyrus Todiwala and Martha Collison.

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