So today I spent my Saturday afternoon at the Great British Food Festival in the Castle Howard grounds. I hadn’t actually heard of this food festival before, but came across it on the internet this morning and an hour later we were on our way.

Being foodies, we’ve been to quite a few food festivals before and loved them – so we were excited to give this one a go.

The location did not disappoint, Castle Howard is stunning. On the outskirts of Malton, the beautiful grounds and castle are like a scene right out of Downton Abbey. I will definitely be returning here for a day out with a picnic regardless of what event is going on.

[caption id="attachment_349" align="alignnone" width="2160"] Castle Howard[/caption]

As we proceeded through the grounds towards the festival, we came to a field filled with pop-up food stalls and marquees. First impressions, I was a bit disappointed, as the £11 entry led me to believe this was going to be a lot larger than previous food festivals we’ve visited that are free.

Although the first glance of the festival was underwhelming, the marquees were packed full of different food stalls and we were offered multiple samples. We tasted brownies, chutneys, and ate our bodyweight in cheese. (I even got more of my all-time favourite cheese – The Cheshire Cheese Company: Caramelised onion and rioja cheddar).

[caption id="attachment_346" align="alignnone" width="2160"] The Cheshire Cheese Company[/caption]

After walking round the stalls, it was then time for the difficult bit; choosing lunch. We were spoilt for choice by the selection of food stalls, and being lovers of Asian food – it was great to see Indian, Thai and Vietnamese. Mexican, Greek, and a range of pizza and burger stalls were also available.

A section of the field had a small stage with live music and deck chairs to relax back in whilst we munched away and drank pink prosecco and cocktails from the pop-up bars. After enjoying this, we headed over to the chef demo tent where a live cooking demo was about to take place by Great British Bake Off contestant Howard Middleton.

All in all, this was a very enjoyable day and we got to try some fantastic food. The last foodie event we attended was Malton food festival, so in comparison to this, Great British Food Festival was a slight disappointment. The prices of the food/drink on the pop-ups were more than average, and we found the entry price a bit steep when other food festivals are free and have a larger variety to choose from. Although the entry price included entry to the grounds as well, this should’ve been optional as our sole purpose was to check out the food stalls. I have to say it, Malton Food Festival, you’re still a current winner!

Sophie Amelia