Skip to main content

No results found

Hanborough Gate banner
Eat, Sleep, Drink, Eat, Drink

Festivals:

Thame Food Festival

divider
Jack Rayner

Held for the second time at Thame Showground – an expansion from its previous town centre location – Thame Food Festival comes to life on the 29th and 30th September.

With demonstrations, masterclasses, workshops, and more food than one person could possibly hope to sample over one weekend, Jack Rayner spoke to festival director Lotte Duncan to find out more.

How did this all come about – for a local food festival, this has gotten rather large, hasn’t it?

It has, yes! When we started, 11 years ago, there were only a few other places that did similar things. Now local food festivals are a massive thing, especially over the last couple of years. When we started, the festival was basically just a few stalls around the town hall, and then the next year there was a few more. Last year, we made the decision to move from the town centre to Thame Showground, because the event had just become too large and we wanted to make sure that the festival was sustainable. That year was a lot of trial and error, but we've learnt lots and this year we’re taking it onto an even bigger scale, with lots more going on. It is becoming an enormous food festival and a great responsibility."

What are you particularly looking forward to this year?

What I always look forward to most is just seeing the visitors enjoy themselves and the stallholders making money and being able to sell their produce. Some of the stallholders even make the food on their kitchen tables – they're tiny companies so it’s great to be able to look after them. This year, we started a Food Bursary, which supports an artisan producer for a year, through mentorship, financial support, and help with social media, advertising and marketing. This is our way of giving back to the community.

Who are your favourite exhibitors this year?

It’s impossible to choose! We have so many – about 150, from the most amazing breads to the most fantastic cheeses and gorgeous charcuterie, lovely cakes and amazing fudge. We've got beers, wines, cider and lots of lovely gin. Personally, I could fill the whole show with gin, but I eventually have to say no because we're only allowed a certain amount, otherwise it gets ridiculous! Then, we have some fantastic spices, sauces and tea. There's honestly so much. We have a music stage, a pop up pub, a gin garden... There are plenty of places to sit to listen to music and have a drink. We've then got all the sponsor stalls in there as well, who are doing demonstrations and giveaways. On top of all this, we’ve got our famous chefs and bakers doing demonstrations every half an hour. It doesn’t stop!

How will Thame Food Festival grow in the future?

We’ll just keep going. Our visitors have a fantastic time, so they come back the next year, then we get more producers who want to come, and we can further expand. We want to make sure that the festival is an event people mark in their diaries every year.

Thamefoodfestival.co.uk

RECOMMENDED

bb oxford lxkany
Thu 22 Oct 2020

Review:

Brasserie Blanc

I typically reserve Jericho as the area to which I bring my out-of-town friends in an effort to make Oxford look cool. Other than that I rarely venture, until my visit to Walton Street’s

Linden Chocolate Concept 0384 3 rno0ws
Tue 29 Sep 2020

Oxfordshire’s Greatest Grinders

The Science of Chocolate and Coffee

We hear from Yatir Linden, a materials scientist and a pioneer of chocolate made without the high-sugar content of modern brands, and Aaron Torres, head roaster at Ue Coffee Roasters, a Witney-based company who handcraft specialist coffee to perfection, to discover the secrets of some of our favourite things to eat and drink.

01 TOAD 55
Tue 29 Sep 2020

We speak to Leslie Walker of The Oxford Artisan Distillery, ahead of its virtual appearance at IF Oxford, where he and master distiller Cory Mason will explore the wonders of gin.

HNB Sheaf Shield new design 01 9 ctibjc
Tue 8 Sep 2020

The Crown Inn at Benson, a characterful 17th century, Grade II-listed timber-framed coaching inn, is due to re-open its doors on Friday 2nd October 2020, following a major refurbishment.   Located