Somerset fayre and street entertainment as festival returns to Portishead

The marina comes alive during a previous food festival.

The marina comes alive during a previous food festival. - Credit: Archant

The very best locally-produced food and drink will be showcased when a popular festival returns to Portishead Marina on Saturday, with social distancing measures in place.

GingerBeards Preserves always go down a storm at the eat Festivals.

GingerBeards Preserves always go down a storm at the eat Festivals. - Credit: Archant

Now in its third year, eat:Portishead is a free all-day event attended by a swathe of food and drink producers from around the region and its organisers hope to put on plenty of free entertainment too (Covid-guidelines permitting).

More than 60 food and drink producers will set up shop alongside the marina, near Mizzen Court, and in a newly-expanded festival area, across the North Bank and up as far as London Square. The stalls will have a wide variety of goods including farmers’ markets favourites like ales, bread and cheese, alongside top-quality street food, with world flavours being created with local ingredients.

The team hopes to have strolling balloon artists and street entertainers in attendance and provide a soundtrack of feel-good background music – but of course, are guided by Government restrictions and best practice.

Organiser Sarah Milner Simonds said: “We hope to have booked better weather for this year’s outdoor festival and are really pleased to be working here again - creating a great free day out for the whole family. We have attracted some excellent food and drink producers and we hope visitors will be interested in the stories behind the produce.

A feast of the senses awaits with stalls such as Wallaces demonstrating its wares.

A feast of the senses awaits with stalls such as Wallaces demonstrating its wares. - Credit: Archant


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“The feedback from our producers was fantastic in 2018 and we know there was a big demand for a repeat. This year has been challenging for everyone and we are aiming to create a warm, safe welcome to this summer’s event. We will be providing additional hand sanitiser facilities, a new layout with more room, and are taking on board the latest government recommendations.”

The event is fully accessible and there are plenty of gluten-free, vegan, vegetarian and dairy-free options, as well as smaller portions on offer. The festival is also single-use plastic free and all food-to-go packaging is fully compostable so bring a shopping bag and get ready to fill it with goodies.

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The festival will open at 10am and run until 4pm. Find out more at the festival Facebook page or website www.eatfestivals.org

The crowds flock to a previous eat festival in Portishead.

The crowds flock to a previous eat festival in Portishead. - Credit: Archant

Spotlight on the traders...

Passion and Soul Food

Secret Orchard Ciders always draw a crowd to their stalls.

Secret Orchard Ciders always draw a crowd to their stalls. - Credit: Archant

After 20 years in the hospitality and restaurant industry Laurie and Michelle decided to turn their passion for great food and service into their own business. And so, in 2008, Weston-based company Passion and Soul Food was born.

From canapes to cocktails, from formal dining to street food, nothing is off the table!

It offers bespoke menus tailored to clients and their guests, as well as providing professional staff to ensure events run without a hitch. For more information visit www.passionandsoulfood.com

The smell of soul food cooking drew a hungry crowd at a previous food event.

The smell of soul food cooking drew a hungry crowd at a previous food event. - Credit: Archant

Pitchfork Ales

Based in West Hewish, near Weston, Pitchfork Ales is a brewery which has built an enviable reputation for high-quality, flavoursome cask ales over the past three years. When lockdown hit the country hard, with almost every single customer of the brewery being a pub, Pitchfork Ales had to think fast to survive and BeerDriveThru.com was launched.

Offering freshly-tapped cask ale – just like in a pub – the brewery set up the online click and collect website using Covid-secure contactless collection. The company soon picked up more than 400 new customers enjoying a variety of beer styles in a number of sizes with even a Beer Festival Party Box available.

A beer festival party box sold by Pitchfork Ales, who will be at eat: Portishead.

A beer festival party box sold by Pitchfork Ales, who will be at eat: Portishead. - Credit: Archant

Director Dave Turner said: “Lockdown forced consumers to seek out local producers and as Weston’s leading brewery we were well-placed to be able to supply excellent beer, at a very good price and in a safe and secure environment.

“We’ve always had a local focus with the eat:Festivals we attend serving fellow beer-lovers in the region and we’re super-pleased this has been able to expand and continue through the challenging lockdown period.

Beers from BeerDriveThru.com are available every Thursday, Friday and Saturday and North Somerset Times readers can get a five per cent discount by entering the code NST5 at the checkout.

Pitchfork Ales will be at eat:Portishead selling bottles of beer and giftpacks.

One of Passion and Soul Food's waggons at another festival.

One of Passion and Soul Food's waggons at another festival. - Credit: Archant

Passion and Soul Food attend events all around the region.

Passion and Soul Food attend events all around the region. - Credit: Archant

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