Five UK Festivals for Food Lovers

Best UK festivals for foodies

© Shutterstock


Best UK festivals for foodies

© Shutterstock Five UK Festivals for Food Lovers After a two-year Covid-induced hiatus, the great British festival is back. Here are five events that will delight your stomach as well as your mind.

Smoked & Uncut, 9 July, The Pig Near Bath, Somerset

The food-savvy folk behind The Pig hotels and Lime Wood Hotel have gone and launched a series of one-day festivals at several of their properties. Jools Holland, Sister Sledge and The Dub Pistols are all in the Smoked & Uncut line-up while chef Angela Hartnett OBE and friends will be hosting Italian-inspired feasts. Guests can take a break and sit down at a table inside the hotel’s restaurant for a civilised three-course meal with drinks (£95 per adult, plus £3 booking fee). Hartnett will be joined by her husband Neil Borthwick of The French House in Soho, long-time champion of British food Mark Hix and seafood aficionado Mitch Tonks.

Other dates: at Lime Wood (23 July, Lyndhurst, New Forest), Lee Tiernan (of F.K.A.B.A.M., formerly Black Axe Mangal) and Ed Wilson of Brawn and Sargasso (all in London) will be joining Angela.

The Big Feastival, 26–28 August, Kingham, Oxfordshire

Run by musician-turned-cheesemaker Alex James (former bassist with Blur), The Big Feastival is held at James’s farm in the Cotswolds. This year’s musical line-up includes Stereophonics, The Human League and Basement Jaxx. Last year saw the debut of Feast on the Farm, a “rustic dining experience in the heart of the festival”. The multi-course menu returns this year for more lavish dining. (Tickets from £17–£72.50 per adult, in addition to entry fee).

Wilderness Festival, August 4-7, Cornbury Park, Oxfordshire

One of the best upscale extravaganzas for those who appreciate the good things in life, from music to the arts – and good food. will feature In addition to music by Underworld, David Morales and Róisín Murphy Wilderness Festival will featurea world-beating team of chefs cooking up all sorts of feasts in a variety of settings.

The Chef’s Table will be serving seven-course tasting menus from pioneer of live-fire cooking Niklas Eksted, sustainability-minded Will Devlin of The Small Holding in Kent and other top chefs. Serving up five-course menus at the Long Table Banquets will be restaurateur Robin Gill and Quo Vadis’s Jeremy Lee. The Wilderness Kitchen is the place to head for vegetarian and vegan dining from Bahraini-British chef Noor Murad (of Ottolenghi Test Kitchen) and Helen Graham of London Middle Eastern restaurants The Palomar and The Barbary. Add to that bars from Nyetimber and Bombay Sapphire, and you may never want to leave.

Meatopia, 2–4 September, Tobacco Dock, London

This daytime festival (no overnight camping), which calls itself ‘the ultimate Bacchanalian party’, is one for carnivores. Founded in New York City by the late food writer and historian Josh Ozersky, it’s been a London institution for more than a decade. Meatopia is all about cooking over live fire, celebrating diversity, great produce and sharing knowledge.

This year’s line-up of 60 chefs includes Mexican-born Andrea Cavita of recently opened restaurant Cavita in London’s Marylebone, Ghanaian-British chef-restaurateur Akwasi Brenya-Mensa of Tatale restaurant, James Whetlor of Cabrito, who champions goat meat… and dozens of other talented chefs. You won’t leave hungry.

Camp Good Life, 16–18 September, Hawarden, Wales

Billing itself as ‘the small festival of music, food, fire and ideas’, this boutique festival is held on the Hawarden Estate in Flintshire, once the home of former British prime minister William Gladstone. Camp Good Life will include poetry readings and talks, plus music from Fran Lobo and Michael Head & The Red Elastic Band.

Food lovers will be treated to a stellar line-up of chefs including chef and cookbook author Ixta Belfrage, outdoor-cooking connoisseur Gill Meller, Ukrainian-born Olia Hercules, James Golding of The Pig, Cornwall-based chef Emily Scott, and ‘eco-chef’ Tom Hunt, who will be cooking sumptuous live-fire feasts in the Estate’s gorgeous grounds. Note to the festival-shy: this place has The Best Festival Toilets in the World…