This month sees the return of the St Andrews Food and Drink Festival, which launched on Sunday 1 November and will last until the end of the month. The festival is a joint effort by many of the most celebrated chefs in St Andrews and concludes St Andrews’ contribution to Scotland’s Year of Food and Drink. It aims to highlight and promote some of the best food and beverages available in the area, with a particular emphasis on food that is locally sourced.
The Food and Drink Festival is unlike other local food festivals in its sheer scale, including over 50 events over the course of the entire month and taking place in culinary venues across town, from the Old Course hotel, to Playfair’s Restaurant, to Jannetta’s. The festival offers St Andrews residents opportunities to experience a wide range of local cuisine and simultaneously allows collaborating local dining establishments a chance for promotion.
The festival began on 1 November with one of its largest events, the indoor street food market at the Old Course hotel. The event featured many of the prominent chefs and establishments that will be hosting events throughout the month. There were stalls from Martin Hollis of the Old Course hotel, Alan Matthew of the Fairmont hotel and Ian MacDonald of the St Andrews Links Trust, who helped launch the very first St Andrews Food and Drink Festival. They were joined by Geoff Smeddle of the Peat Inn, Stewart Macaulay of The Adamson, David Aspen of Rocca, Duncan McLachlan of Playfair’s Restaurant, Grant McNicol of the Terrace Restaurant at Rufflets Country House Hotel and Sergejs Savickis of the Seafood Restaurant. Each chef was given a stall featuring cuisine prepared with seasonal ingredients.
The event also provided champagne sorbet courtesy of Jannetta’s and coffee from Zest café. Visitors booked tickets in advance for £25.00 and had access to all of the ‘market stalls.’ Ian MacDonald of St Andrews Links was quoted before the event saying visitors would be able to “eat and drink their way around the very best that St Andrews has to offer.”
This, however, was only the introduction to a month of events put on by local dining establishments which will cover a wide range of culinary interests and budgets. On 10, 17, and 24 November, for example, Zest café will offer an event called “Specialty Coffee – Home Brewing” which will include a presentation about brewing coffee and a bag of single origin coffee beans all for £30. On those same days, Eden Mill Distillery and Brewery is offering free beer tours, which will include a tour of the brewery and a beer tasting. There will be a Fife farmers’ market on Argyle Street on 7 November and Eden Mill tasting sessions at the Rusacks Hotel from 9 to 16 November. Jannetta’s will offer an event on 21 November called “An Evening Celebrating Gelato,” which will allow visitors to see and taste gelato as it is made.
Also as part of the festival, bars and restaurants around St Andrews will be celebrating Thanksgiving on the 26 November.
These and many more events will feature throughout the month; however, in most cases space is limited, so those interested should book places in advance. For more information about the festival and a full schedule of the events visit: http://www.standrews4you.co.uk/ st-andrews-food-drink-festival-2015/