If eating can be classed as a hobby then I’m pretty much semi-pro! James and I love going to cafes, pubs and restaurants throughout the North East but even though we tick somewhere off our list of ‘must-visit’ eateries nearly every weekend, the list just gets longer and longer as we discover even more amazing places. I blame all the fabulous North East Bloggers and their never ending stream of rave reviews!
So, you can imagine my excitement at the return of NewcastleGateshead Initiative’s EAT! Festival from 20 February – 1 March 2015. The Winter edition of this fabulous foodie festival is called ‘EAT IN!’ and it promises ten days of feasts, parties, fringe events and a rather thought provoking competition…
I’ve honestly never seen a line up of events that got my taste buds tingling quite as much as EAT IN! Even the brochure itself (which you can read online HERE) takes you on an adventure through food with talk of supper clubs, paladares, eat-along-movies and cocktail nights, I was drooling just reading it!
I’m not going to re-create the whole brochure in this post and I should probably point out that many events are already sold out but I have picked five highlights to tell you about and I absolutely urge you to go and find out more because there are still LOADS of ways to get involved. Enjoy!
Future City Future Chef – Fri 20 Feb 6-9pm – The Core, Science Central – £15 inc talks and refreshments
Student chefs from the region have been working hard to cook up the food of the future and you can help chose the winning dish at this unique event. There’ll also be guest speakers discussing sustainability in the food industry and a chance to try some of the futuristic food.
Drink Along Gatsby Deluxe – Fri 27 & Sat 28 Feb 7pm – The Lit & Phil
With live jazz, bootleg cocktails, Charleston dancers and all the decadence you’d expect from a Gatsby themed evening, you can understand why I’ve picked this event as a highlight! Tickets for the Saturday evening unsurprisingly sold out in no time! There are still places available on Friday night but sadly I can’t make it 🙁
I did manage to get tickets to a champagne tasting event at the stunning Lit & Phil during a previous EAT! festival so I can safely say that anyone lucky enough to be going to Drink Along Gatsby will have an absolute ball!
Medieval Lenten Feast – Sun 1 March 7.30pm – St Nicholas Cathedral – £40 inc welcome drink and 3 courses
The second Sunday in Lent is traditionally celebrated with a meal to lift the spirits of those who’ve been fasting. It also lands on St David’s Day this year so no doubt there’ll be Leeks on the menu at this medieval feast, along with locally sourced fish, artisan breads and lashings of Lindisfarne Mead. All this plus a live harpist in the candle lit surroundings of one of my favourite places in Newcastle, St Nicholas Cathedral, it’s so beautiful in there! Get tickets for this event and you’ll feel like you’ve stepped back in time.
Fringe Event – Davenport’s Chocolates – 28 Feb Various Times – Green Lanc Industrial Estate – From £5
Geordieland has its very own chocolate factory in Pelaw and you don’t need a golden ticket to get in! At the moment the chocolatiers at Devenport’s are busy making Easter eggs but they have still found time to organise tours and workshops giving chocolate lovers like me a chance to make (and hopefully taste) our own creations.
Fringe Event – The Art of Pizza Making – Various Dates – Gibside – From £6
On the occasions that James and I have attempted to make our own pizza at home the results have been far from arty and usually resulted in me spending several hours cleaning the kitchen afterwards, so we’re looking forward to picking up a few tips! The workshops take place in the bakery at Gibside which is part of the National Trust – it has its own wood fired oven too which should help create perfect pizza.
Do any of these events take your fancy or have you already booked for one the many others? Do let me know in the comments box below.
Thanks to NGI for the use of some of the images in this post
By Rachel Kershaw