Food Adventure South Wales

Last Word: Adventure!

Food Adventure South WalesThe Taster publishes a regular final interview with a character in the foodie world; in our last issue, this was Carol Adams, founder of Food Adventure South Wales. Originally from the Bronx, New York, Carol spent many years traversing the globe before finally settling in the UK — but, never one to put her feet up, she soon got busy setting up her foodie experiences company: it now attracts visitors from the USA and Europe as well as the rest of the UK. Here’s her story:

“Food has always been a passion  in my life but never a career until now. I grew up in the Bronx, New York, but my original career (in finance and social regeneration) brought me to live and travel in many countries, from the US to France, Israel, West Africa and South America. I’ve always had hobbies around food: in the Bahamas, I was director of a wine & food society; in New Orleans, I organised culinary tours; and over here (earlier this year) I cooked gumbo on ITV’s cookery show Mel and Sue.

I always tried to get to know a country through its food. I loved going to markets; whenever I saw someone buying an ingredient I was curious about, I asked them how they cooked with it. This often led to invitations to come home and cook along with the family! — In this way, I developed extensive knowledge of various cuisines.

When I moved to Wales 10 years ago, I was astounded by the quality of the local food — but also by how little known it was. My husband, Mark, started a food blog (Corpulent Capers) about local restaurants, and persuaded me to start writing about food producers. If I discovered something I loved, I’d go to the producer’s farm or site to learn what made their produce so special.

The blogs were great successes. Mark and I became part of a virtual ‘food community’ and often, my readers would say ‘Oh, I’d love to go with you the next time you visit a producer’.  Thus the idea for Food Adventure was born.

Once I had the idea, I met with food producers, devised tours and set up the website.  In 2014, the first tour for paying guests was ‘A Wonderful Welsh Wine Adventure’. This was a full-day minibus tour of two vineyards in Monmouthshire with a five-course lunch. Up until this point I had no idea if any one would buy a ticket or not! You have no idea how much I celebrated when I sold the first ticket! People came from all over Wales, and also from Bristol. It was a success!

I invited the press and key partners to my official launch. We learnt about dairy farming and ethical rose veal at a Welsh dairy farm followed by a cooking demo and lunch at an award-winning tapas restaurant.

I’ve now used my knowledge of food in Wales to create many unique outings, and I have guests from as far away as London and the US. I offer ‘Tipple Adventures’ for those interested in drinks; or dining adventures for those who want to discover a great restaurant. People can learn skills, such as making bacon or preserves, from award-winning artisan producers; or more general cooking with top chefs, cooks — and myself! In our foraging adventures, farm visits and walks, people can discover beautiful scenery and historical places as well as great food. It has all been a great Adventure!”

To book a tour or class, see foodadventure.co.uk or, if you would like a more bespoke experience, ring Carol on 07542 689608.

Food Adventure South WalesCarol recently also started contributing ideas to The Taster’s seasonal notes (ideas for cooking using seasonal ingredients). To read the full seasonal notes in our printed magazine, subscribe here.

Food Fairs in England 2016

Plan Food Fairs in England 2016 into your diary. Dates and venues do change sometimes, so check for updates. Have a good one!

This month in brief: In the season of harvests and harvest festivals, many many events are on for foodies! Notables include the original Food Fest in Ludlow; a seafood fest in Clovelly; Mark Hix’s Food Rocks fest; pears in Faversham, Fishstock in Brixham (Devon), a wine festival in Oxford and the usual sprinkling of chilli fiestas across the country. Have a good one!

September
October
November
December
January
February 2016
March 2016
April 2016
May 2016
June 2016
July 2016
August 2016

Food And Drink Festivals In England
Shortlink: tinyurl.com/EngFests

Food Festivals This Weekend 28.2.15

Food festivals this weekend in brief

* On Saturday, MAIDEN NEWTON and on Sunday, WINSLEY (near Bath) have Potato Days

* PENRITH is enjoying a Marmalade Festival all weekend

* And OLYMPIA (London) sees a big new BBC ‘Good Food Eat Well’ Show

See our website Events Calendar for full details of what, where, when, plus links to festival websites & twitter feeds

Have a good one!

Food Festivals This Weekend 21.2.15

Food festivals this weekend in brief

Not a huge amount of stuff on in the regions this weekend, but we have found a couple of things in London and a Potato Day in Somerset. Plus Fairtrade Fortnight and the end of Chip Week. Have a good one also if you’re attending the Gin Festival! All details below:

* In LONDON, today and Sunday see a Craft Beer festival at the Old Truman Brewery on Brick Lane — tweet here. Today is also the second day of the London Plant and Potato Fair in Westminster. Plus, there is a Gin Fest around St Pancras, but tickets have now sold out. Damn – just the thought makes us crave a Martini!

* CASTLE CARY (Somerset) Potato Day on Sunday at Caryford Community Hall, Maggs Lane, Ansford. 11am-2pm. “The original and best potato day” for aspiring and keen grow-your-own fans, by Pennard Plants

* Nationwide This weekend is the last weekend of CHIP WEEK

Fairtrade Fortnight logo* Nationwide Fairtrade Fortnight starts on Monday, continues till 8 March. See the website to find out how to help make a difference.

See our website Events Calendar for full details of what, where, when, plus links to festival websites & twitter feeds

Food Festivals This Weekend 14.2.15

We’ve scoured the internet for food festivals this weekend, and things are still warming up (ie there’s not a vast amount on), but we have unearthed the following:

Potato Days in Codford, near Warminster today; and also in Dulverton tomorrow (Sunday)

* The Maslenitsa — “London’s biggest cultural celebration” — in Trafalgar Square tomorrow, see Twitterfeed for more

* The Causeway Speciality Market at Coleraine Town Hall (9am-4pm) tomorrow

Pic by Bonne Maman

Pic by Bonne Maman

Plus, across the UK, it is of course Valentine’s Day today: so we hope you’re enjoying a ‘hearty’ breakfast in bed (har har). Just make everything heart-shaped (even if it’s just toast) and add some roses, and you can’t go wrong:

 

 

Winstons Wish

* It’s also the Final Breakfast Weekend of The Great British Brekkie; join in & support Winston’s Wish, the charity for bereaved children (see their twitterfeed)

 

 

NB Chips are the big thing next week — it’s Chip Week — designed for lovers of all chips, whether straight, chunky, crinkly or wedges (the chips, not the fans); and Tuesday is Pancake Day (Shrove Tuesday)

See our website Events Calendar for full details of what, where, when, plus links to festival websites & twitter feeds

It’s rather dull and murky here. May the sun emerge and glimmer on all food stalls today. xx

New Food Calendar 2015 — February

Thank goodness for that. Goodbye, January

The Taster has continued collating his Calendar of Events for 2015. Here’s the summary for FEBUARY.

Valentines DayAfter the dark dreariness of January, The Taster has espied the green shoots of culinary activity in 2015.  We expect to see chocolates, special dinners and other treats on Valentine’s Day on the 14th, quickly followed by pancakes on Shrove Tuesday (the 17th).

Not so very much on in Northern Ireland although there is the Causeway market on St Valentine’s Day (probably get some nice romantic gifts there) and a food conference at St George’s Market in Belfast on the 17th (click on the link to book a place).

In Scotland, two events of note: the Kingussie Food on Film festival (5th-8th) and a taste of Loch Fyne up near Cairndow on the 13th.

In London, there’ll be a lot of borscht soup and other Russian delicacies during the week of Maslenitsa (8th-15th), and a huge new BBC food show on at Olympia from the 27th.

For all homegrowers and allotment-lovers, England sees a lot of Potato Days and Seed Fairs. Arguably the largest cake event, Cake International, takes place in Manchester, while Penrith enjoys its annual Marmalade Festival. Lots more events, see the calendar for full details.

In Wales, we have found the day of the soup in Cardiff on the 3rd and 10th; plus the international culinary championships in Rhos-on-Sea.

More generally, among other things, 1 February is British Yorkshire Pudding Day;  another Breakfast Week takes place from the 2nd to the 8th, raising funds for bereaved children; and FAIRTRADE FORTNIGHT begins on the 23rd.

Bye for now. From The Taster to all our readers,

HAPPY FEBRUARY!

Food Festivals this weekend 31.1.15

* This weekend sees a large Potato Day in Whitchurch (Hants)

* Today (Saturday), Urchfont also has a Potato Day; and this morning is the very last opportunity to see off Breakfast Week with a bang(ers)

NB this evening’s Brixton Night Market has been cancelled, but will be on again on 27-28 February

* Tomorrow (Sunday) is Yorkshire Pudding Day! Plus Seedy Sunday in Brighton and The DuckPond Market in Highgate

Plus, we should just mention The COTSWOLDS Bite 2015 is on all next week. It’s not a one- or two-day festival as such, but a succession of “breakfasts, brunches, lunches, teas and dinners; pop-up restaurants; cocktails and fine wines; talks and tastings; meet the chef and book signings; food fairs and farmers markets” etc. Book places here

See our Events Calendar for full details of what, where, when, plus links to festival websites & twitter feeds, not just for this weekend but for events next week too.

Wherever your wellingtons may take you – have a good one!

Food Festivals this weekend 28.11.14

Food festivals this weekend in brief

Festivals are ramping up as we slide towards Christmas . . . hold on tight!

* This weekend sees festivals at Lincoln Showground, Edinburgh‘s Hopetoun House, Birmingham (BBC Good Food Show) and Belfast (ongoing Christmas Market)

* London has a glut of weekend-long events, including Gerrards Cross, Southbank, Hyde Park, Brick Lane and Chelsea, plus a gin festival on Saturday in Bermondsey and the Urban Streetfood market on Saturday night in Shoreditch

* Saturday only: festivals in Ashby de la Zouche, Bristol, Aberystwyth and Hay-on-Wye

*Glasgow holds a feast for St Andrew on Sunday

See our website Events Calendar for full details of what, where, when, plus links to festival websites & twitter feeds

It’s mildly over-cloudy here. If you’re off to a fest, may the sunbeams of joy constantly illuminate your artisan coffee with special syrup. xx

Food Festivals this weekend 21.11.14

Food festivals this weekend in brief

* Food & Drink Fest starts today, on until 30 November, in St Andrews, Scotland

* Saturday sees the Highland & Moray Food & Drink Festival in Inverness

* Belfast Christmas Market continues today and all weekend

* Christmas Fairs getting into full swing in London at the South Bank and Hyde Park

* Continuing nationally, is Eating In/Out Week: today is Chinese Cuisine day, tomorrow (Saturday) is Italian Day

See our website Events Calendar for full details of what, where, when, plus links to festival websites & twitter feeds

It’s pouring with rain here, again. But does it bother us? Not at all; we’re having fish’n’chips. If you’re off to a fest, may the downpour of destiny never dilute your sliders of autonomy. xx

Food Festivals details this weekend 14.11.14

Food festivals this weekend in brief

* Today and all weekend sees the “Living North” festival at York racecourse and the Real Food Fest on London’s Southbank (plus the ongoing Winter Festival)

* Gin festival tomorrow in Newcastle and the start of the Christmas Market in Belfast

* Herring festival Sunday in Clovelly

* A Christmas Food & Craft fest all weekend in Welshpool

See our Calendar for full details of what, where, when, plus links to festival websites & twitter feeds

If you plan on catching an event, may the rains of disconsolation never cloud your condiments of joy. xx