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After a nice scrumptious lunch of Bambi burgers, we signed up for Angela Hartnett‘s Master Class. I’m not much of a Gordon Ramsay fan but this lady has got to be one of his best proteges to date. After taking on Ramsay’s tongue-lashing in his kitchens she went on to become Marcus Wareing‘s sous chef at GR’s Petrus (now reopened, by the way) and after that, Head Chef at The Connaught (now headed by another kickass female chef, Helen Darroze). She now heads the kitchen at Michelin-starred Murano.
|The nakakairitang host is still there. She forgot the name of Angela’s sous chef!
After the class we went on to view some more stalls.
Cotsworld Gold oils are really healthy (made of rapeseed), really good for value and absolutely taste-tastic. The first foccaccia stick I dipped into the garlic-flavoured oil did it for me. I was instantly motivated to cook more and eat out less. My favourites were the rosemary and garlic infused oils so I bought a bottle each. Not only have they made my meals taste nicer, they’ve made the aroma of my kitchen so scrumptious you’d stick your tongue out to taste. I kid you not.
There were a lot of stalls for pastries and yummy drinks like Jimmy’s Iced Coffee
which the lady kept on saying came from Australia. This was such a hit and we understood why. It was so refreshing!
‘s macarons have had a cult following as they don’t really have an onsite cafe and everything’s pretty much ordered online. They have really intriguing flavours such as charcoal & coffee, asian melon, cassis, charcoal & jasmine, champagne & peach etc. The lady in me decided to try the very pink lychee martini macaron. Delightful! Enough crisp on the bite and a velvety buttercream that burst with flavour. Super sarap, forget birthday cakes, I want a beach themed macaron croquembouche for my birthday!
There were a lot of gelato stalls as well including Oddono’s
who pride themselves for using Valhrona
for their chocolate-based gelato. I swear, with all the free tasting we’ve had I probably had about 4 big scoops! My favourite stall was Ariela’s Gelato
who had the best balance of flavours and creaminess of a perfect gelato. Favourite flavours were the coconut & chocolate, rocher (think NUTELLA and CRUMPY!) and classic nocciola.
Let’s not forget the cheese! I can’t even tell you how cheesy the day got (#notbeingcryptic!). Cheeses from local English farms, France, Switzerland and Belgium! I had the stringiest melted provolone, the most to-die-ten-times over raclette, the boldest mozzarella, the creamiest blue cheese and the yummiest gouda ever. EVER! I had a go at a nice pimiento cheddar from La Cave a Fromage
matched with a very smoky chorizo. Aaaaah! Brought me back to my childhood!
Cupcakes were out and about! I tried the Banoffee Pie cupcakes: mini ones from Blueberry Hill Cakes
and a standard sized one from The Little Round Cake Company
. Verdict? Let’s quote Geel Piet
(Morgan Freeman’s character in The Power of One
) “little beats big when little is smart” 😉 The big one had so much buttercream frosting that it overpowered the supposedly banana cupcake. I couldn’t even taste the banana =( The mini cupcakes were so much better – sweet enough but not as sickly and small enough to be moreish! Yum.
Best booth has got to be *drumrolls* the Hendrick’s booth! Not because it’s alcohol based, okay? But because of the super cool vintage stuff they had – an tub filled with hendricks, rose petals and cucumber strips, a dress form patterned with old school looking newspaper, an elephant foot stool, an old gramophone player and other bits and bobs you get to see in antique shops! Quite an eccentric but interesting!
In all honesty, the festival had more of a market-feel to it unlike the Taste Festival which felt like a proper eatfest. Nonetheless, give me a place with heaps of free-tasting and a cocktail of grills, sizzles and steam – you know I’m there. With no reservations 😉