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Visit Ashford’s Food & Drink Festival in July

For some people, Ashford is still synonymous with the International Terminal built to accommodate the Eurostar, so it’s looked on as little more than a place you see out of the window en route to somewhere else.  However, this perception is changing.  One of my friends regularly spends a romantic weekend at a spa hotel in the town, and the council are keen to do all they can to promote events that showcase all that Ashford and the county of Kent have to offer.

The Annual Ashford Food and Drink Festival, is a month-long celebration of the fabulous food and drink experiences in and around Ashford town centre in Kent.  Throughout July, the town centre will be offering a menu full of wonderful food and drink activities, alongside some tempting offers. Experience a huge choice of mouth-watering tastes and flavours from around the world.  Whatever your taste, there’s bound to be something that appeals.

There are wine tastings, teddy bear picnics, markets, weekend festivals, pizza making teaching, competitions and more.

This year’s highlights include:

  • Launching with Ashfood! at Elwick Place on Saturday 29 and Sunday 30 June – a family friendly event featuring food stalls and entertainment, including (on 29th) live music from Whiskey & Wine, cocktails from World Margarita 2024 finalist, Lexi Palmer Brown from Hide Bar, and Oyster Buoys with seafood delicacies.
  • A Tasting Evening with The Wine Garden of England and Boys Hall at Revelations in St Mary’s Church is now joined by four Kent vineyards – Gusbourne, Squerryes, Biddenden and Yotes Court – where you can also purchase their wine and others. There will also be live jazz music from Jonny Hepbir.

  • Curious Brewery Summer BBQ Weekend – Saturday 20 July, noon until late, and Sunday 21 July noon until it’s gone! £4 pints all weekend plus summer cocktails and new wines.
  • Curious Pairings: Exclusive Food & Beer Pairing Evening – 3 July at 7pm. Embark on a culinary adventure at Curious Brewery’s Tasting Evening. Prepare your senses for an unforgettable journey through the realms of their premium beers and exquisite small plates, expertly curated to tantalise taste buds. There’ll be a five-course tasting menu including variations of their favourite small plates, priced at £35 per person. Each dish includes a paired beer. Audience numbers will be capped at 40 for a more intimate evening.

  • The Award Winning Comedian That Cooks – George Egg  – 11 July at Coachworks. George recently won the Fortnum and Mason 2024 content creator award. An evening of cooking-with-laughs, you can expect to learn how to make food on a train with a laptop, in a shed with power tools and in a hotel room with the appliances provided by the hotelier. Three plates of gourmet food prepared in most unconventional ways with the opportunity to taste the results at the end.
  • Four fantastic competitions from Kent Cookery School, Everest Inn, Curious Brewery and Gusbourne Winery and Vineyard.
  • Amazing offers – including Billy’s Pie and Mash deal with pie, mash, drink and pudding (jam roly poly anyone?) for under £10.

  • The Great Ashford Sandwich Competition – With Low Key Tap Room in Bank Street. Enter at www.loveashford.com to have your favourite sandwich filling put on the menu and become the first winner of the trophy.
  • What better way to celebrate the end of the Festival than with a wrap party? Round up your friends and head down to Coachworks to enjoy tasty street food, a wide range of drinks plus live music from Ashford-based band Whiskey & Wine. Entry is our favourite price – FREE – and the party runs from 4pm and 8pm on 31 July.

Keli Nolan-Lyons, Town Centre Regeneration Manager at Ashford Borough Council, said: “This is a fantastic opportunity to showcase the brilliant businesses and offers we have in Ashford town centre, combined with those slightly further afield. There really is something for everyone to enjoy throughout July.

“We hope residents and visitors enjoy discovering something new, as well as revisiting old favourites by raising a glass or savouring a dish as we celebrate the variety of food and drink offerings we have here in Ashford.

See the full schedule, book your tickets and enter competitions at:  www.loveashford.com/articles/ashford-food-and-drink-festival

 

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