Top chefs ‘Smashed It’ at First Ever Old Down Estate Food Festival

Bristol Foodies ignored the August drizzle (Monday 31st August) and headed to a fabulous, first ever Old Down Estate Food Festival.

The cookery demos and world food stands went down a storm with festival goers and their overwhelmingly positive feedback means that this will now become a regular event at the stunning Manor house set among the rolling hills of the Gloucestershire countryside, overlooking the Severn Vale.

The Food Festival saw a plethora of top chefs take to The Chefs’ Forum demonstration stage to showcase the very latest culinary techniques using local ingredients.

Old Down Manor Ping and ChrisAmong the stars sharing their expertise on the stage was the delightful winner of BBC’s Master Chef 2014 Ping Coombes opening the show with her dish of Hainanese Chicken Chop Rice with baby pak choi. Next up was Bristol Food Ambassador and City of Bristol College Chef Lecturer Adrian Kirikmaa with his summer dish of heritage tomato and mozzarella salad then rump of local Saltmarsh lamb with Swiss chard and smoked onion puree.  All vegetables used in the demo were grown in the beautiful Victorian walled garden at Old Down Manor. The mouth-watering morning demos gave festival-goers a real appetite so they took a quick break to explore the various food stands and select their lunch:Old Down Manor Adrian

From Tacos to Spring Rolls, pizzas to pulled pork and Gin to Jerk Chicken, everyone found something to take their foodie fancy!
The demos recommenced a in the afternoon with Made In Bristol TV’s Pat Hart and Sherrie Eugene-Hart from the popular ‘CaribAsian’ cookery show where the audience were treated to a demo and tasters of a chicken biryani and mango wrap with pineapple and spring onion flash-fried salad.

Old Down Manor RomyIndian chef Romy Gill demonstrated roasted, spiced butternut squash and pakora from her menu at local restaurant Romy’s Kitchen and the day was rounded off by a second demo from Master Chef Winner Ping Coombes showcasing Cha Keow Teow – Delicious Malaysian stir-fried flat rice noodles with prawns and garlic chives.  She then finished with Cucur Udang – Malaysian prawn fritters with Garlic chives.Old Down Manor Pat and Sherrie

Event organiser and Demo Stage compere Chris Wicks said: “The day was a resounding success and we were honoured to have had so many talented chefs on board to demonstrate such a range of food styles and techniques”.

“Bristol’s food scene is so vibrant and culturally diverse and I think the chefs who appeared really represented that variety.”

Old Down Manor Food BBQOld Down Manor Food PorkOld Down Estate Food Festival hosted a plethora of world food and artisan stalls including CaribAsain food from Sherrie and Pat, Fabulous Filipino Food from Tita Ana’s Kusina, Jamaican Jerk Chicken from Sister Gee’s, Tacos from the little Taqueria, Falafel  Stuffed beer breads  from Muddy Roots, Wood fired pizzas from Pizza Monkey, 13-hour smoked pulled pork in the Monolith Kamado from Eat The Smoke BBQ, Local Bramley & Gage 6 o’clock Gin, Ethical Addictions Coffee and sweet delights from Hilary’s House of Cakes.

Old Down Manor AnaAs well as watching demonstrations visitors were also able to enjoy a fabulous would music sound track from the DJ’s at BCFM Radio, the event’s headline media sponsor.

Old Down Manor 6 GinChris concluded: “This year’s Old Down Estate Food Festival was a truly fantastic event.  Bristol’s global food scene is stronger than ever before, and I hope that this festival will be a regular fixture  of a celebration of everyone coming together to showcase everything that that the area has to offer.”

There are plans afoot for a festive Old Down Estate Food Festival this Christmas with Santa’s Grotto and Reindeers so watch this space as details will follow!