Festival food: the line-ups that really matter

Festival food: the line-ups that really matter

by Great British Chefs 9 June 2017

Forget lukewarm beans cooked over a campfire – these days music festivals are offering an increasingly impressive range of food options to sustain revellers across the weekend. Check out some of the best for 2017.

Great British Chefs is a team of passionate food lovers dedicated to bringing you the latest food stories, news and reviews.

Great British Chefs is a team of passionate food lovers dedicated to bringing you the latest food stories, news and reviews as well as access to some of Britain’s greatest chefs. Our posts cover everything we are excited about from the latest openings and hottest food trends to brilliant new producers and exclusive chef interviews.

Music festivals are the highlight of many people’s summer calendar, but in between digging out your tent and trying desperately to locate a matching pair of wellies, there can be little time in the preparation process to think about food. Before you relent and buy two bags of apples and a family pack of baked beans, it’s worth remembering that music festivals these days are offering an increasingly impressive range of food and drink to sustain you across the weekend. From global street food stalls to full fine dining experiences, take a look at our round-up of the most interesting culinary options to be found at summer festivals around the UK.

Glastonbury, 21–25 June, Worthy Farm, Somerset

It’s the big one! Glasto has a vast array of food stalls to keep energy up as you wade through the mud. Notable outlets include Wholefood Heaven, which won the People’s Choice award for their signature Buddha Bowls, and Le Café Crêpe, which serves an array of locally produced handmade food and was awarded the Gold Prize for being the most sustainable food stall last year. From mac and cheese to vegan sushi, there’s something to satisfy everyone’s taste. Missing from this year’s line-up, however, will be the infamous Pauline Fowler’s Growler from The Meal Machine. The bacon burger stuffed with chips and melted cheese became something of an institution but sadly won’t be making an appearance this year.

Bestival, 7–10 September, Lulworth Estate, Dorset

Historically held at Robin Hood Country Park on the Isle of Wight, Bestival is moving homes to Lulworth Estate in Dorset this year. Joining The XX, Dizzee Rascal and the Pet Shop Boys on the line-up will be the infamous Feast Collective, to satisfy all your foodie needs. Head there at any time of the day or night and you’ll find a delightful selection of delicacies; just make sure you don’t over-indulge before having a go on the world’s largest bouncy castle!

For even more foodie fun, Bestival’s little sister Camp Bestival runs from 27–30 July, so if you can’t wait until September go along to this family-orientated festival which includes food as one of its headline acts. You can sample the Isle of Wight-brewed BestivAle, fresh oysters from Jeff the Oyster Man, or traditional Ghanaian cuisine from Zoe’s Ghana Kitchen.

Latitude, 13–16 July, Henham Park, Southwold, Suffolk

With headline acts such as Mumford & Sons and Two-Door Cinema Club combined with cabaret theatre, live comedy, lake swimming and bright pink sheep (apparently painted in a completely safe and harmless way), Latitude truly is a festival of variety. This is certainly replicated in the food on offer, which ranges from spicy burritos to locally sourced pies and vegetarian Thai curries. Or there’s always the option to stock up on local produce at the Village Shop or the Tuck Shop in the family campsite – barbecues are welcome so you can cook up some treats the whole family will enjoy.

Secret Garden Party, 20–23 July, Mill Hill Field, Cambridgeshire

If it’s a bit of luxury you’re after, this year’s Secret Garden Party won’t disappoint. Once you’ve settled into your Royal Safari Tent or been pampered at the Sanctuary Spa, you can also treat yourself to a full sit-down meal. For the final year of Secret Garden Party, they have introduced The SpRitz, their new à la carte restaurant with a full lunch, brunch and evening menu. Whether you’re in the mood for a medicinal Bloody Mary or a full Sunday roast, you can book at table in advance for £10 per head. If you’re not sure yet, The Old Crown will be hosting ‘Secret Sundays’ tasters in advance to whet your appetite.

WOMAD Festival, 27–30 July, Charlton Park, Wiltshire

WOMAD Festival welcomes acts from across the globe, such as The Orchestra of Syrian Musicians and Amsterdam Klezmer Band, as well as a few from closer to home like Nick Mulvey. You’ll find a wide range of international street food stands as well as the unique Taste the World Stage, which infuses cultures, cuisines and music styles, with artists cooking traditional dishes from around the world. A huge variety of dishes, from Egyptian bambouti fish to Columbian frijoles cabecita negra, are served and shared with the audience alongside spontaneous musical performances and fascinating discussions about the origins of the dishes.