January is coming to an end. And with it, will come the end of intense dieting, alcohol-bans and hibernating until payday.
So, to make up for missing out on all of all the good things in life (for what’s felt like the 10293 days), I’ve put together a list of the best foodie events in the North East to help you plan your 2020 calendar.
Rockcliffe Hall’s Festival of Food: 1st – 8th February 2020
To kick start your schedule, the luxurious Rockcliffe Hall Hotel and Spa is hosting the Festival of Food for a second year. Running for a full week, the event begins with an artisan food fair with street food vendors, local artisan producers and live chef demonstrations. Throughout the week, there will also be special lunches and dinners where you can spend an evening being wined and dined by some of the North’s finest chefs, including Terry Laybourne and Josh Overington.
Some events are already sold out! More details over on the Rockliffe Hall website: https://www.rockliffehall.com/festival-food
The Big Spring Beer Thing: 19th – 21st March 2020
If you’re a frequent visitor of craft breweries or the pubs and bar that sell such delights, you’ll know all about Steam Machine Brewery based in Newton Aycliffe. Well, the team are hosting a second beer festival after the huge success of their first event last year. With over 40 beers, lots of street food, live entertainment and one-off brewery collaborations, it’s no wonder last years event was a complete sell-out.
Tickets are available now on EventBrite, get yours to avoid disappointment: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/the-big-spring-beer-thing-tickets-86486006975
Great North East Sausage and Cider Festival: 4th April 2020
For the first time ever, the touring Sausage and Cider Festival will be stopping in the North East! Rainton Meadows Arena will play host to the huge UK festival. There’ll be some of the best and most unique ciders from across the country, as well as the biggest array of the finest sausages available. What could honestly be better? If you love a sausage but not a cider, fear not! There’ll also be craft ales, lagers, prosecco and artisan gin available throughout the day. It’s an over 18 event only, this one, so make the necessary plans so you can get bladdered. See you there!
Tickets start at £10pp which you can purchase on EventBrite: https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/the-great-north-east-sausage-cider-fest-tickets-90161207599
Bishop Auckland Food Festival: 18th-19th April 2020
If you’ve followed me for a while, you’ll know it’s my favourite event of the year. It’s very local to me, but the effort and time that goes into the planning of such a small town event, it’s no wonder people travel from across the region to visit. Each year the event gets bigger and better. They always have a string of impressive guest chefs, cookery workshops and live demonstrations. Its gradually taking over the whole town with every food producer and vendor within a commutable distance wanting a piece of the huge crowds that gather.
Last year we did Gingo and Beer Tasting plus a masterclass with Mr Masterchef himself, Greg Wallace. The spring time weather has always made an appearance, so grab a gin (from Juniper 1933) and challenge yourself to see just how much scran you can fit into a single weekend!
More details on the free entry, the workshops and traders here: https://www.bishopaucklandfoodfestival.co.uk/
Darlington Food and Drink Festival: 1st – 3rd May 2020
The first weekend in May sees the return of Darlington’s award-winning Food and Drink Festival! The organisers focus on showcasing the best of Darlo town, offering opportunities for local restauranteurs to use a demonstration kitchen, sharing tips and showing off their skills, as well as local foodies to hire stalls and sell their goods. Last year, the festival coincided with the Jazz Festival, bringing a whole other level of entertainment to the weekend. It’s a really family friendly event too.
For updates on who’ll be attending for 2020, keep an eye on their Facebook page: https://facebook.com/events/s/darlington-food-drink-festival/730157477522300/?ti=as
Seaham Food Festival: 13th – 14th June 2020
From the folk behind Bishop Auckland’s insanely successful foodie fest, Seaham Food Festival is returning for its second year in 2020! Everything that Bishop offers but on the North East’s beautiful coast line! Luckily my brother is a Seaham resident so I get to enjoy this event quite easily too. Fingers crossed for glorious sunshine, everyone!
You can sign up online to receive announcements of exhibitors, traders and events across the weekend: https://www.seahamfoodfestival.co.uk/
I’ll continually update the list as new food and drink events in the North East are planned and announced, being your one-stop shop for your scranning plans in 2020!
And don’t forget, you’ve got the more regular events across the region too…
- Quayside Market: Every Sunday at Newcastle Quayside
- Orange Pip Market: The last Saturday of every month, between April and September at Middlesbrough. (Read more about the Teeside market over on The Northernist: https://www.thenorthernist.co.uk/2020/01/9-reasons-why-you-should-visit-orange.html?m=1)
- Durham Full Moon Market: Once a month on the 3rd or 4th Friday in Durham Market Place, commencing 20th March 2020
- Street Food Fridays: A new street food vendor takes over Caps Off, Bishop Auckland every Friday. Craft ale and good food: https://www.facebook.com/capsoffshop/
Have I missed any? Let me know in the comments so I can add them to my Foodie Events in the North East guide…
Lots of love, LB x