DIRT. at Shawarma Bar
Berber & Q’s Shawarma Bar have launched DIRT., a series of monthly sessions that celebrate the diverse soil of the world’s wine. Each month will showcase a particular type of soil; Magma (volcanic wines), Salt (wines of the sea) and Peak (mountain wines).
Guest sommeliers will search high and low for wines that fit the soil criteria and battle out to see whose wines prove most popular with punters. Join the salty sea soil session on Sunday 19 November, when Edouard-Charles Souchal, from Copenhagen’s natural wine bar Manfreds, will go head to head with Nominoe Guillebot of Michelin Starred Lyle’s. Or on Sunday 10 December watch Alessandra Saponara (Fera at Claridges, The River Café, L’Enclume) and head sommelier of Vivant in Paris, Clément Jeannin, compete over mountain wines.
A £19 ticket gets you two glasses of wine and a mezze from owner Josh Katz’ tempting selection – tahini hummus with chickpeas, cauliflower shawarma with pomegranate molasses, harissa chicken thigh and lamb shawarma with bread and butter pickles.
19 November (+ 10 December), shawarmabar.co.uk
The Ethicurean at The Gardening Society
Bristol based restaurant (here are our favourite places to eat in Bristol) The Ethicurean will be swapping its walled garden for a rooftop residency at John Lewis, Oxford Street, this winter. Expect seasonal modern British dishes with a twist, taking inspiration from historic London recipes, including a notable sticky toffee apple cake, Tandoor spiced cauliflower and a limited edition Christmas venison pie. Warming tipples will be served alongside the food, among them an eight-spice mulled negroni and a pumpkin punch served with honeyed Rooibos tea syrup.
21 October – 24 December, johnlewis.com
Clovelly Herring Festival
The ancient fishing village of Clovelly, in North Devon, is the backdrop to an annual festival dedicated to celebrating the village’s ‘silver darlings’ heritage (also known as herring). There will be plenty of herring dishes to try alongside beer tastings, and information about sustainable fishing. It’s a fun, family-friendly day out.
18 November, clovelly.co.uk
Melton Mowbray ChocFest
Not one for those on a diet, all things chocolate is the focus at the second annual ChocFest in Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire. Easing us into the most gluttonous time of the, the festival is dedicated to cocoa-based treats.
If that’s not enough, visitors can book onto talks, tastings and chocolate making workshops. Join one of the workshops and make some edible Christmas gifts.
18 – 19 November, goleicestershire.com
Can’t make it but feel like baking with chocolate? Here are our favourite chocolate recipes…
Taste of London: The Festive Edition
The festive version of sister event Taste of London (held every summer in Regents Park). This one takes place at London’s Tobacco Dock, transforming the space into a foodie’s winter wonderland to showcase the best chefs the capital has to offer. Expect innovative dishes and cooking demonstrations from some of London’s best chefs.
With interactive masterclasses to get involved in between shopping for festive gifts, eating and drinking, this festive event sounds like a delicious way to kick off the Christmas season.
16 – 19 November, london.tastefestivals.com
Northampton Winter Food Festival
Get wrapped up and head along to this seasonal food festival. Keep warm with a mulled wine and some piping hot street food. Outdoor food stalls range from Bare Bones pizza to Burger Meister gourmet Aberdeen Angus burgers to tacos at Baja Cantina. If you want to shop there will be artisan food stalls, or just kick back and catch a food workshop or demonstration.
A Foodies Lounge will be hosting talks from local cider producer Phil Saxby of Saxby’s Cider, coffee roaster Elliot Wallis from Monkshood Coffee and livestock farmer George Steriopulos of The Lost Farm. Have little ones in tow? Childrens cookery classes will be running throughout the event to keep kids entertained.
11 – 12 November, winterfood.co.uk
Wine Festival Winchester
Get merry with a visit to this annual festival dedicated to the humble grape (and take a trip to Winchester to visit our favourite foodie spots here). Whether you’re an amateur or a connoisseur, this two-day event, set in the grand surroundings of Winchester’s Guildhall, is set to be jam-packed with stalls offering tastings and advice. It’s a great way to improve your knowledge and with six different categories (including “let’s get fizzical”, “feeling fruity?” and “tickled pink”) you shouldn’t have too much trouble finding the perfect tipple. There will, of course, be food to go alongside the booze, from charcuterie to chocolate to cheese. End the day with a wine masterclass led by Saturday Kitchen wine experts, Susie and Peter.
24 – 25 November, thewinefestival.co.uk
Tennerfest on Guernsey and Jersey celebrates its 20th anniversary this year with a bumper crop of local food. What was once just a clever way to entice customers into the islands’ restaurants in the winter months (in return, they could choose from special, three-course menus for just £10), has slowly developed into a celebration of the best of the islands’ food.
Hop your way around the shoreline on Guernsey, for instance, trying versions of the local speciality Bean Jar, a traditional cassoulet-style bean dish. Go for classics like fish and chips or feast on local lobsters and scallops. Check the website for details of all participating restaurants, cage and bars – and the special menus they will be offering (each priced between £10 and £20).
1 October – 11 November, tennerfest.com
Hay Festival offers four days of of family fun on the banks of the River Wye. Along with literature, poetry and craft workshops there’ll be a day dedicated to food. On the Saturday, the town’s market square will be filled with over 50 stalls showcasing local produce including ales from Rhymney Brewery and honey from Bee Dazzled Honey.
23 – 26 November, hayfestival.com