The Nantwich Food Festival took place the weekend of 1st, 2nd & 3rd of September 2017. What is remarkable about this nationally acclaimed food festival, is that it is run entirely by volunteers. It is also one of the few festivals to be based entirely within a town centre.
A market town, Nantwich dates back to 1720 & boasts one of the largest collections of historical buildings in Cheshire. There are an array of beautiful buildings in the town centre from Elizabethan, Georgian & Victorian times. One of its famous landmarks is the 14th Century Church in the town centre, St Mary’s.
The town holds 3 markets a week on a Tuesday, Thursday & Saturday as well as a Farmer’s market the first Saturday of the month. It is certainly living up to its Market Town heritage! There is such an abundance of fabulous food & drink producers in & around the county of Cheshire that it is perfectly placed to host such an event as this Food Festival.
There are no shortage of independent traders in the town itself, including an abundance of cafés, bars & restaurants.
The Nantwich Food Festival 2017
We headed into Nantwich & parked in a makeshift Park & Ride car park which was more park than ride! Still, it only cost £1.50 & was easily within walking distance of town. Our first stop was actually for coffee (and a wee) in Harrison’s Café Bar. This is on a corner of a busy street opposite Welsh Row where there are some beautiful flower baskets attached to the railings by the side of the river.
From here we made our way up into the town centre where there were a number of small tents with individual stall holders as well as a marquee hosted by Cheerbrook, a local farm food shop. There were a lovely array of local producers offering ice cream, pickles, jams, honey, cakes & of course gin!
Mornflake, another big sponsor of the festival hosted the food hall which was a lovely area. There was hot food available from so many different corners of the world. Persian, Mexican, Chinese, Italian Pizzas & more. As usual, an array of funky food & drink wagons were present! In the centre was a covered area with tables & chairs for people to sit, relax, enjoy the atmosphere & a little bit of music as well as their food.
A Lovely Day Out
It was a lovely day out, we were there for a good few hours. Again, I was there during the daytime only so missed out on the evening experience (note for next time). There are so many bars & café to enjoy too it would be very easy to make a day & night of it. Crazily, considering the array of food options available in the food hall area, we chose to eat in a local bar! The Cheshire Cat which is in Welsh Row
Summing Up The Nantwich Food Festival
Looking at the list of exhibitors on their website, I would say we probably missed seeing quite a few of them which is a shame. But I came away with some interesting meats for Mr N from Shaw Meats Ltd an artisan charcuterie. These included air dried wild boar, air dried wild venison & bresola. I also bought some delicious cheeses from The Cheshire Cheese Company. The Garlic & Black Pepper really is lovely. Creamy, crumbly with a kick from the black pepper. We have already made great headway into it!!
A further purchase was this damn fine Luxury Christmas Pudding by Burtree Puddings! My daughter & I are the only ones to eat Christmas pudding in our family so this little one for £4.99 was the perfect size.
I do love the way the festival is spread throughout the town, but although there were maps up, I think it probably contributed to us missing out on a few suppliers. I would most definitely go again though, but next time, I will make sure I ask for more clear instructions on what is where & also check out the exhibitors on the festival website first. That way I will know if I am missing out on anything!!
The best things about our visit were the diversity of the foods available, the setting, the weather & the fact it was free to attend! Highly recommended!