What to do at the Weekend:
Tatton Park Food Festival
Food, drinks, live music and a Cheshire countryside setting – it sounds like something absolutely up our alley.
In July, we visited Tatton Park for the annual Foodies Festival for a day of trying (and buying) lots of fab food and drink.
What we did at the weekend:
The Tatton Park Food Festival
Location: Tatton Park, Cheshire
Our rating: 7/10
Set amongst the fabulous Cheshire countryside grounds of Tatton Park, the Foodies Festival, known to some as “Gastro-Glasto”, is the biggest gourmet food festival touring over multiple towns and cities in the UK.
The Tatton Park food festival was a bustling wash of bright colour, featuring a sprawling array of food and drink stands from numerous local businesses.
Throughout the day, you are able to sign up with masterclass demonstrations from notable chefs and experts from across the culinary world.
An impressive line up that featured past Masterchef winners, Great British Bake Off participants, and Michelin starred chefs.
We managed to sign up for a couple of these during our visit (which we’ll talk about further on).
Towards the far end where the cocktail bars were mainly located, the crowds were treated to entertainment from a selection of live bands.
In the evening of each day, there were headline performances from famous pop acts from the nineties.
These included Lee Ryan & Simon Webbe from Blue, Toploader, East 17, and S Club All Stars.
Getting to the Food Festival and Parking at Tatton Hall
We got to Tatton Park for opening time at 11am.
If you are not planning to stay for the evening shows, we definitely recommend getting there as early as possible.
By 2pm, even some of the Masterclass session leaders were showing up late due to the queues leading up to Tatton Hall.
The Roads near Tatton Park
The roads into Tatton Hall are your typical country roads that are fairly narrow and get backed up when there is an event on.
To park at Tatton Park, there is an £8 parking charge – this is on top of your entry fee to the food festival.
This is a mandatory cost if you bring your car and they prefer cashless payments.
What we Bought During the Food Festival
In this article, we thought we would share the love and highlight some of the brilliant independent local food and drinks businesses that we purchased from.
Links to all of the websites are in the headers if you fancy checking them out yourself.
Almost immediately after signing up to our masterclasses, our collective eye was caught by the super-cool Reaper’s Rum logo.
Plus, we both like gin and rum.
At the stall, we were greeted by Amelia, a lovely Scottish lady who had travelled down from the highlands at 3am that morning.
We sampled a couple of the spirits on offer (because what else do you do at 11am?) including the Reaper’s Rum Spiced Rum and Pilgrim’s Gin – Blueberry and Basil.
Both were really good, but Tanith ended up taking away the Blueberry and Basil gin.
This is a beautifully summery drink that cost us £25 for the bottle – very reasonable.
Just next door to Reaper’s Rum (yes we bought stuff from the first two places we went to) was Cafe Cannoli.
These were proper Italian cannoli – rows and rows of delicate fried pastry tubes filled with sweet flavoured cream.
We didn’t even need any free samples with this one.
Later in the day, we stopped by the stall to pick up caramel, tiramisu, and rum & raisin flavoured cannoli (yes we obviously needed more rum).
We’re sorry (not sorry) to say that these didn’t survive the drive home.
Perhaps the most memorable of all of the stalls we visited at the Tatton Park Food Festival was Lucelas Chocolate Rum.
The owner started his business during lockdown as a way of supporting his family and actually named the business after his children.
The flagship product: a chocolate flavoured rum, which was simply delicious.
It is an almost syrup-sweet rich chocolate flavour with a warming hug from the alcohol as it goes down.
It feels luxurious and would be an ideal Christmas drink or ice cream accompaniment for a boozy dessert.
Ben loved it and obviously picked up a bottle.
As well as being a brilliant product that got the nod of approval from everyone who tried the samples, the owner was a top bloke.
We were delighted to hear that this new business was rightfully doing well.
Last up, we bought some Drunken Monk cheddar from the chaps at The Great British Cheese Company.
Three guesses what they sell there.
Anyway, Drunken Monk is a cheddar cheese truckle with a beautiful blend of caramelised red onion, red wine and brandy.
Honestly it’s to die for.
It’s easily some of the best tasting cheese we’ve ever had and definitely worth a fiver of anyone’s money in our view.
Cocktails in Various Fruits
“Well, it’s 5 o’clock somewhere” was Tanith’s philosophy in the early going at the food festival.
Her first purchase of the day was a pretty cool looking and very nice tasting Pina Colada in a pineapple.
Absolutely perfect on a warm summer’s day!
Next up, (and continuing with the theme of cocktails in various fruits) was a refreshing watermelon martini served in an actual giant watermelon.
This was from the Pimms cocktail bar near the main music stage.
It was appropriately shaped like a tennis ball for the Wimbledon tennis tournament taking place at the time.
A Masterclass with Masterchef Winner Thomas Rhodes
In the first masterclass session of the day, we signed up to see 2021 Masterchef Winner Thomas Rhodes.
He was a thoroughly engaging and entertaining guy, who cooked up a posh fried chicken sandwich using a korean noodle crust.
Thomas also whipped up a simple slaw to accompany the sandwich.
We thought that using the noodles and the flavour packets to coat the chicken was a really interesting take and a great idea to try out at home.
Unfortunately, we weren’t quick enough or near enough to the front to get a bite of the finished sandwich, but it certainly looked and smelled good!
The Champagne Cave
Next, we visited the Champagne Cave… well anything that gives you free samples of champagne, is definitely going to get our attention.
While serving up some extremely fancy champagne, (including the house champagne at the Dorchester in London), we were treated to a really interesting session on the different types of the bubbly stuff, as well as how to seek out the best champagne for your money.
This was well worth a visit!
How Much Did the Tatton Park Food Festival Cost?
Adult tickets are £20 each for the Foodies Festival events however early birds can get their tickets for £18.
We were actually very lucky and found our tickets on Groupon for £15 each.
This offer seems to be still available (at the time of writing), so be quick and save a fiver on your tickets.
Although Tatton Park Food Festival is over for another year, there are other events throughout the UK up until mid-September.