Feast of Fife a 48 hour event for bloggers showcasing everything the region has to offer in both food and drink over a 2 day period.
We are just home after spending a fantastic weekend attending the “48hrs Feast of Fife” conference. This 2 day event, exclusive to food bloggers, was organised and run by Fife Council through welcometoFife.com. Throughout the 2 days the Council played host to food bloggers from around Scotland and Northern Ireland at the event held at Eden Mansion. Thereafter there were various events at other venues throughout the region. Here we spent a fun packed two days meeting other bloggers and like-minded foodies. In short, sampling everything good that the County of Fife had to offer in terms of food and drink.
On arrival at Eden Mansion we were welcomed by Christopher Trotter, Chef and Fife Food Ambassador. Christopher said “Here in Fife we are blessed with a rich larder of produce covering all aspects of food from vegetables and fruits to seafood and both wild and farmed animals. Above all, we can eat a calendar of Fife and enjoy new foods as the season’s progress”. Thereafter followed a series of talks from Fife born William Curley MCA, Patissier Chocolatier. Clearly sharing his passion for all things chocolate. Whilst providing a delicious sampling of chocolates telling the story of his success. However pinning down our favourite chocolate proving to be a rather difficult task!
A brief rest and an award winning ice-cream from Jannettas Gelateria it was back indoors. This time a talk from Drew and Helen McKenzie-Smith. The couple shared their ambitious plans for their development of a distillery and visitor centre at Lindores Abbey. The afternoon wound down with afternoon tea at Eden Mansion.
The highlight of Friday night, and the entire conference, was the drinks reception at The Newport. A 5-course Kingdom of Fife tasting menu held at The Newport Restaurant, run by Jamie Scott, 2014 winner of Masterchef: The Professionals. The Newport Restaurant boasts an art gallery on the ground floor where cocktails were served from Eden Mill and Kingsbarns Distillery.
We were treated to a cookery demonstration with Jamie. He talked with us about foraging and ideas for preserving some of the foods available locally. Then came the highlight of the two days, The Newport’s 5 course tasting menu! Jamie focuses on top quality local seasonal produce, using the best of what the county has to offer. Every plate scraped clean! What appeared to be simple food constructed with such cleverness and lightness of touch. The stand out course for many there was the Autumn salad. Salad with complexity of flavour, texture and one of the most interesting and surprising plates I’ve ever eaten. The restaurant is located on the banks of the River Tay and boasts stunning views across the river. A wonderful and highly memorable end to a fantastic day.
Saturday morning saw us visiting St Andrews Farmhouse Cheese Company to sample their award winning cheese. Served with homemade cheese scones, cheese biscuits, oatcakes and chutney. So good in fact that we returned the following day to purchase some cheese for taking home with us.
The group then headed back to St Andrews for lunch at the popular Balgrove Larder Steak Barn. Here we sampled all their grill had to offer.
At that point the large group was then split for the afternoon. Whilst one group headed to Eden Mill for a tour of their gin distillery and more chocolate sampling with the Highland Chocolatier, Iain Burnett. Meanwhile with the promise of lobster we decided to opt instead for a tour and whisky tasting at Kingsbarns Distillery. Finally a visit to Riley’s Lobster Shack at picturesque Crail Harbour to sample lobster and crab.
We met a number of Fife Food Ambassadors, both chefs and food producers alike. Indeed their enthusiasm was infectious, they talked with great passion about the area and what it had to offer. In short we spent 2 days celebrating what is good about the region of Fife.
Finally, we would like to see something like this brought to Aberdeenshire, sponsored by Aberdeenshire Council. For example delivering an event that showcases the regions amazing produce. However we will always promote what is local first and foremost. Indeed we support local and also buy local where possible. For example, locally we have some of the best soft fruits, vegetables, meat and poultry, game and seafood. In addition we have whisky, gin and craft beer on our doorstep. See our article in the Inverurie Advertiser.
Further we would emphasise that we did pay a nominal booking fee of £25 to Fife Council to attend this event. Fife Council sponsored the remainder of the event through welcometoFife.com. However the views expressed within this post are our own.