Full programme line-up includes special events, guest chefs and one-off dining spectaculars
The 22nd Manchester Food and Drink Festival will take place 26th September - 7th October, with the Festival Hub relocating to Manchester’s Cathedral Gardens for 2019.
The full line up features a fantastic array of culinary talent from all aspects of the city’s wider food and drink industry and promises to be one of the most dynamic yet. Programme highlights include a spectacular Festival Finale Sunday lunch hosted by acclaimed Chef Tom Kerridge with specially paired drinks; a plant-based evening with John Robb, Shaun Ryder and Bundobust; and the Best in Town Dinner in aid of Action Against Hunger, featuring all six of the MFDF 2019 Chef of the Year nominees.
A main new feature for the Festival is the pledge to stage the most sustainable event yet
The brand-new Festival Hub location on Cathedral Gardens will bring a new focus the celebrations and house the Dining Dome - the futuristic igloo-shaped venue that made its first appearance last year. Open from noon until 11pm every day of the Festival, it’s completely free and will be home to a number of the best street food and drink stalls. What’s more, on 29th September, all the traders will be serving vegan and vegetarian food only as part of MFDF Vegan Takeover at the Hub.
The celebration of Manchester’s food and drink scene also includes the live cookery theatre, banquets, masterclasses, curry collectives, a communal feast and a very special Saturday Skills Kitchen.
Phil Jones, Festival Founding Director, commented: “The move to Cathedral Gardens for the Festival Hub gives the entire Festival a new focus and we are delighted that we are being joined by a fine selection of food and drink pop ups, producers and chefs to ensure it really is the best programme yet. The Dining Dome was a huge success last year so we’ve brought it back again and, of course, Gorton Monastery is returning for a second year to host the awards.”
Some of the most sought-after Festival events have already sold out including: An Evening with Simon Shaw; MFDF Curry Collective with Bundobust, Dishoom, Lily’s and Sanskruti; Comfort Food 'Sounds' Good with Adam Reid; The Art of Dining with Aiden Byrne at Manchester Art Gallery; Roots and Future: A Tasting Menu by Francisco Martinez
For the second time, Gorton Monastery will be home to the prestigious MFDF Awards. The shortlist for each of the categories reflects the talent currently operating across the Greater Manchester area.
A main new feature for the Festival is the pledge to stage the most sustainable event yet, following last year’s successful change from plastic cups to a deposit scheme at the Festival’s gigantic beer bar. The Festival estimates that this reduced overall waste at the event by 40%. Having moved to compostable and recyclable food containers a few years ago and now tackling the single use plastic cup issue, in 2019 MFDF aim to create the most sustainable food festival in the UK with more innovative solutions such as reward schemes for use of reusable vessels.
New partners for 2019 include Roomzzz Aparthotels, the official festival accommodation partner, and Montann Wines, who will be showcasing English wines at the Hub and JJ Whitley Cocktail Garden, also located at the Hub.
HIGHLIGHTS FOR 2019 INCLUDE:
26th September, The Dining Dome, 7.30pm
TICKETS - £45, book here
CULTUREPLEX is one of Manchester’s most anticipated 2019 arrivals. It is a new base for Bistrotheque, which has made its name in East London by serving uncomplicated food and drink delivered with good taste, charm and a dollop of fun.
Expect extra helpings of all this when Chef Director Blaine Duffy creates this special Bistrotheque Classique MFDF banquet menu, including arrival cocktails, three courses, a quality wine pairing and digestif. All served alongside pop playing pianist Xavior, sequin-clad satirical weirdos Bourgeois & Maurice and a game of pass the parcel.
LIVE COOKERY THEATRE
28th September, The Dining Dome
The programme includes:
1pm Brian Hughson - Head Chef, 20 Stories
2pm Sam Buckley – Chef/Patron, Where the Light Gets in (pictured above)
3pm Rachel Stockley – Head Chef, Levanter
4pm Andrew Green – Executive Chef, Mamucium
A PUNCH ABOVE - How to make the perfect party tipple
28th September, The Dining Dome, 6.30pm,
TICKETS - £15, book here
Join Jamie Rowe, JJ Whitley Gin & Vodka Ambassador, as he guides you through how to make the perfect party punch with the knowledge of how to balance readily available ingredients and, of course, the JJ Whitley range.
You’ll be greeted with a glass of punch on arrival, then Jamie will regale you with the wondrous history of this delightful drink while you prepare to make your own version to enjoy.
Capacity for 40 people, split into groups of four.
‘BEST IN TOWN DINNER’ in aid of Action Against Hunger
1st October, Tast Catala, 7pm
TICKETS - £120, book here
Join Action Against Hunger as they celebrate the six chefs nominated for MFDF Chef of the Year at a unique and exclusive dinner. Guests will enjoy a six-course bespoke tasting menu created by the region’s most renowned talents: Simon Martin (Mana), Aiden Byrne (restaurant MCR), Sam Buckley (Where The Light Gets In), Miquel Villacrosa (Tast Catala), Omar Rodriguez Marrero (Umezushi) and Adam Reid (Adam Reid at The French - pictured above).
There’s also the opportunity to bid on some money-can’t-buy foodie experiences, and all proceeds go to humanitarian organisation Action Against Hunger to combat hunger across the globe.
AN EVENING OF RUM DECADENCE with Diablesse
5th October, The Dining Dome, 6.30pm
TICKETS - £20, book here
Let Gethin Jones, Diablesse brand ambassador and general manager at Cottonopolis, take you through the wonderful history of rum, how it’s made and what makes their own unique, award-winning Diablesse Rum so special.
Learn how to taste with your nose and the art of creating your own Diablesse Rum cocktails in this special MFDF masterclass. Tickets include a bespoke cocktail on arrival and a full masterclass including cocktails to drink after.
THE MFDF WINE AND FIZZ FESTIVAL
Friday 4th and Saturday 5th October, Manchester Cathedral
TICKETS - £15 per ticket per session, book here
Taking place in Manchester Cathedral, this event packs lots of fizz and fun into celebrating the world’s best wines. Perfect for novices and passionate enthusiasts alike, it includes lighthearted sessions for all. It will be divided into four zones - English Wines, Wines of the World, the Fizz quarter and a Food Matching area providing the perfect accompaniment.
SATURDAY SKILLS KITCHEN
5th October, The Dining Dome
Free events include:
1pm - Pastry Workshop with Lee Wakeham from H.M. Pasties. H.M. Pasties in Droylsden is one of Manchester’s great culinary success stories, with a fascinating back story. Founder Lee’s entire staff consists of ex-prisoners. Staff earn a living wage while they develop cookery and customer service skills, as well as working towards food hygiene qualifications and a possible future in the catering trade.
2pm - Pasta Masterclass with Maurizio Cecco from Salvi’s. After more than two decades in Manchester, Neapolitan Maurizio is the city’s unofficial ambassador for all things tasty and Southern Italian.
3pm - Chocolate workshop with Masterchef finalist David Crichton. Long haul pilot and bespoke chocolatier, Crichton will be showing you how he makes his cocoa gardens. You can even expect a few free samples.
DINE WITH TOM KERRIDGE AT MFDF
6th October, The Dining Dome, 1pm and 6pm
TICKETS - £75, book here
Chef Tom Kerridge is a busy man this autumn. He has a cookbook and TV series in the pipeline and in November he’s launching a restaurant in Manchester's new boutique Stock Exchange Hotel. He will be cooking two four course Sunday lunch meals with specially paired wines in The Dining Dome. It should be one of the Festival highlights, not to be missed.
There’s a whole host of fringe events taking place across Greater Manchester including the Cracking Good Food Pasta Perfecto Cookery Class, Meat the Butcher at Alston Bar and Beef and The Ancoats Taster Walk.
There’s also the opportunity with the official festival booking partner, Bookatable, to enjoy a special series of one off menus across some of the city’s best restaurants via bookatable.co.uk.