Another good year at East Midlands Food Festival


Lets face it, who would have planned for a festival on 1 October to be on one of the hottest days of the years? I think this, combined with the festival moving back into the centre of Melton Mowbray, helped to make this a really busy show this year, and there seemed to be good amounts of trade going on.

I went with my usual food co-hunters, Best Foodie Friend and Mini Gourmet Girl. MGG was in heaven, as she is currently favouring fudge as her sweet of choice, and there was plenty of that. BFF and I were a bit more leaning towards the savoury side, and there was even richer pickings there. Some of our highlights as follows:

Good to finally meet the team at Gourmet Spice Co, and get to try some of the products. We tried lots of the balsamics, and could really have taken home the coffee & vanilla version and the Very Cherry version, but settled on just the Spiced Balsamic. Made a great change to regular balsamic in with olive oil for dipping good bread in. Also bought the regular Dukkah mix,which worked really well with some smoked rapeseed oil.


Trying the Battlefield Blue from the Leicestershire Handmade Cheese Company, which was creamy but very pungent, for quite a long time. Loved their cheese wedding cake display too.


Lots of posh cordials, some with lots of heritage like Mr Fitzpatricks, formed in 1890, or ones I hadn’t come across like Breckland Orchard.


Lots of game going on, and not just pheasant or pigeon. This one had oven ready squirrel, not your average Sunday roast! Bad blogger for not writing a note on this one, I think this stand belongs to Natural Game.


Still the best pizza this side of Italy for me, great to meet Jack from Hot Rocks and have the BBQ pork pizza. Great pizza anyway, but the addition of 6 hour slow roasted pork makes it just perfect. And a 90 second cook time most definitely makes this fast food.


Of course, there were some teething issues with the move back to town. Signposting coming from north of the town was lousy (non-existent), as always there were not enough places to sit down and eat, no facilities for card payments at the entrance, no cash machines on site and for me there was too much non food tat. Honestly, at a good food festival, in my book, there is no room for Cotton Traders. But the weather made all things feel better, so here’s hoping the other things can be improved on for next year.


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Helen Tarver

Collector of great gifts and fabulous food, mum, cake baker & eater, wine opener. I write about food and the gift of it in its many forms.

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