Some of the country’s leading chefs, cooks, food pioneers and cookery writers are joining Hugh Fearnley- Whittingstall for a weekend of fun on the farm and food for thought at the River Cottage Food Fair on the late May bank holiday weekend.
A food lover’s dream weekend, the Food Fair is taking place at the idyllic River Cottage HQ, a 65-acre organic farm in Axminster, on the Dorset and Devon border. This hugely popular annual event is a treat for all the family to learn new culinary skills, meet the animals and be immersed in a weekend of cooking, growing, relaxing and (most importantly) eating. Held on Saturday 26 and Sunday 27 May, the Food Fair is a must-visit for food-lovers and gardeners, to enjoy the sights, sounds and tastes of spring, surrounded by the rolling Devonshire hills, just a few miles from the Jurassic coast.
The Food Fair has a fantastic line-up of food talent, including Tom Kerridge, Anna Jones, Melissa Hemsley, Nadine Levy Redzepi, Alex Hely-Hutchinson, Guy and Geetie Singh-Watson and Gill Meller plus more names to be announced soon.
In the Food for Thought tent Hugh has curated a line-up of speakers, including writer and environmental activist George Monbiot, which promises to provide thought-provoking and possibly controversial, debate and discussion.
The Fair is packed full of activities from chef demos on the main stage and culinary masterclasses including wild cocktails and spicy suppers, cooking over fire with Gill Meller, artisan food stalls, craft workshops, talks and live music to garden and wild food tours with River Cottage foraging guru John Wright. There’s also a new BBQ area where chefs will be sharing their techniques for cooking meat, fish and vegetables over fire.
A team of River Cottage experts and friends will be on hand across the site to share culinary tips and gardening wisdom, throughout the weekend.
Children under the age of 16 go free and will be kept entertained with a huge choice of activities including pasta and pancake making masterclasses, giant bubbles, games, craft workshops, meet the animals’ area, face painting, skittles and hula hooping – to name but a few.
Tom Kerridge, chef patron of the 2 Michelin-starred Hand & Flowers in Marlow, will launch the Food Fair with a special feast on the Friday evening. Whilst at the Food Fair there will also be the chance to dine inside the iconic River Cottage farmhouse and enjoy a two-course menu for £20, featuring the very best seasonal and local ingredients. For those looking for food-on-the-go, there will be a range of street food stands as well as a fully licensed bar serving local ciders, beers, wines and seasonal cocktails under canvas.
Those keen to learn something new can book onto one of the popular masterclasses. Starting at £20 these include Bread & Butter from scratch in an hour, River Cottage Ravioli, Wild Cocktails and Outdoor Cookery, whilst children can learn new skills such as Fresh Pasta and Pancakes.
For more information and to book event and masterclass tickets, please visit the website https://www.rivercottage.net/foodfair.
The River Cottage Festival will be at HQ on the weekend of 25-26 August and will feature a jam-packed programme of music, masterclass and festival fun. More information as the line-up is confirmed here.
River Cottage Food Fair
River Cottage HQ, Trinity Hill Road, Axminster, Devon, EX13 8TB
Saturday 26 May – Sunday 27 May 2018
- Adults: £12.50
- Children (under 16 years): FREE
- Free park and ride service included in the ticket price
About River Cottage:
River Cottage has been a household name in Britain since 1999, when Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall first brought his hands-on, ethical food ethos to our TV screens. Since then, the River Cottage books, TV series and Hugh’s hard-hitting campaigns have changed the eating habits of the nation, as well as improving the welfare of our farm animals and the sustainability of our fish.
River Cottage HQ, situated on the Devon-Dorset border, is a thriving organic smallholding. It’s also home to a cookery school and chefs' school, and the base for unique dining experiences and events including weddings and private parties. There are River Cottage Canteens in Axminster, Bristol and Winchester. These award-winning restaurants and delis manifest the River Cottage philosophy by using the very best seasonal ingredients from the surrounding area. Alongside fresh, seasonal fruit, veg and wild foods, the Canteen menus showcase fish and shellfish from West Country day boats and organic meat and dairy products from local farms.