Calling all U.K. foodies: these six festivals are can't miss opportunities to eat, drink, taste and smell all that Manchester has to offer. If you love food and you love Manchester, then you'll want to bookmark these six dates on your calendar ASAP. Keep reading for my top six picks for the best foodie events happening in Manchester in 2018, and hopefully, I'll see you there.
Looking for a break from the same old celebrity chef-laden festivals in Manchester? In just a few days, from the 25th till the 28th of May, Sadler's Yard will host the first annual festival "A Good Feed," which aims to showcase the top independent food and drink producers in the North of England. From open fire cooking demonstrations to workshops in cheese making and kebab building, this local food fest honours a great cause without asking you to go hungry...just what I like to hear!
2. The Big Indie Wine Fest
Food is great and all, but let's not forget about the vino! The Big Indie Wine Fest is a fan favourite subfest of the Manchester Food and Drink Festival happening in Fall 2018. From 5th - 7th October, wrap your lips around the finest whites and reds that Manchester has to offer. So, get ready to warm up your wine vocab and spit into some buckets (or sneak a few swallows when no one is looking) this autumn at the Big Indie Wine Fest.
3. Manchester Eats
Heaton Park may have hosted the 2002 Commonwealth Games and The Stone Roses, but it's never seen a food festival - especially not one of such epic proportions as Manchester Eats. The two-day weekend from 7th - 8th July will feature both classic Northern favourites and experimental, Insta-worthy concoctions. My number one tip for the fabled event? Bring an extra camera battery and plenty of napkins. I promise you'll need them.
4. The King Street Cocktail Trail
Because what foodie doesn't love a good pub crawl? If you want to attend the exclusive King Street Cocktail Trail, you'll first need to win The King Street Festival. Then and only then can you gain your all-access pass (along with five other lucky winners) to a free taster meal catered by King Street favourites like El Gato Negro, Rosso, Mr. Thomas's Chop House and Chaophraya Manchester. Save the date for 2nd - 3rd June - and may the best foodie win!
5. Magic of Thailand
As much as I love the classic flavours of British food, a true foodie must be able to appreciate global cuisines. I promise the Thai food served at this two day festival from 30th June - 1st July is just as magical as promised. The best part? While munching on your favourite Thai cuisines, you can also enjoy all the sensations of the country - from Muay Thai demonstrations to Thai massage - close to home. Put me down for two tickets, please!
6. Festa Italiana
Mamma mia! How could I forget about Festa Italiana, Manchester's favourite weekend celebration of Italian cuisine and culture? From 3rd - 5th July, this free festival (held at the piazza on Cathedral Gardens) features two special banquets that foodies will love. The first night at the Festival Pavillion boasts an exclusive four-course meal from some of Manchester's finest Italian chefs, while the second - sponsored by Buca di Pizza - is a bottomless buffet of my two favourite things: pizza and booze. I recommend taking advantage of this special opportunity while you've got the chance, because when else is it acceptable for a grown adult to eat like a university student?
From Thai to Italian, and wine to pizza, Manchester's got an incredible lineup of foodie-friendly events ready to please this Summer 2018. I hope you'll pencil in some of your favourites and join me for some weekends of delicious eats, delectable drinks and even better company.