It’s Harvest Time!
Waterford Harvest Festival is back for 12-14 September 2014 with tons to tempt your tastebuds!
I find that Waterford City always throws a good festival, and this year’s Harvest should be no different. Two years ago I had the good fortune to be invited along on a Harvest tour which showcased some of Waterford’s local food producers, and I was mighty impressed with both the taste of the products and the passion of the producers.
One of them is pictured below; Grainne Walsh, owner of Irish craft beer brewery, Metalman. Even if you are like me & aren’t the biggest beer fan, see can you try a sample or two. Craft beer is miles away from mass produced beer, and there are many fantastic flavour combinations. Alternator was my favorite, with a slight hint of banana. Yum, really!
We also met Dermot of M&D Bakery, had a tour of the bakery, and Dermot cooked us up some breakfast baps! Some welcome! M & D Bakery was founded in 1985 by brothers Dermot and Michael Walsh. Continuing on three generations of bakers in the Walsh family the two brothers made the decision to continue on this legacy by combining their decades of personal experience in baking and so securing the centuries old tradition of “the blaa”, and what has now become a trademark taste of Waterford and known the world over.
The Waterford Blaa is an indigenous food here, one of Ireland’s most traditional baked items. The blaa recently won a prestigious Eurotoque “Taste” award for uniqueness and quality. M &D are rightfully proud of their own unique version, and I can promise you it is very tasty with a nice rasher in the middle 😀
This year’s Harvest Festival will showcase the best of what Waterford and the South East food producers have to offer, from the smallest food businesses working from home kitchens to international market leaders of the food industry.Visitors can expect a variety of succulent street food from festival favourites, and a smorgasbord of celebrity chefs such as Darina Allen in the Grow HQ Kitchen event.
Since pagan times, the harvest festival has been a time to celebrate the crop, where family and community to relax and enjoy the fruits of their labour, and this year’s festival intends to do just that. New events to the programme include The Big Taste in John Robert’s Square, The New Street Garden Party and Wyse Weekend, along with the welcome return of the Enterprising Food Village, Picnic & Play in the Park and The Viking Rocks Craft Beerfest.
Chair, Paul Nolan looks forward to this year’s Festival, “We want to make it a city wide festival that encompasses city centre retail, the historic Viking triangle and amenities such as New Street Gardens, Wyse Park and the People’s Park. We hope everyone supports their local food producers and enjoys what will be a wonderful weekend.”
A Taster of Waterford Harvest Festival Events
In New Street Gardens there will be cookery demonstrations, bee-keeping classes, GIY workshops, puppet making, live music and plenty of family fun!
Wyse Park kicks off with a Hoedown on Friday thanks to St Brigid’s Family & Community Centre and Inner City Youth Project, so don’t forget to swing your ‘pardner do-si so’.
There will also be herbal remedy stalls, storytelling, food craft, not to mention Building -a- Bed led by Waterford Civic Trust St John Priory Project and the GROW Project.
Keep an eye out for The Grow Project’s latest creative outdoor installation- a colourful makeover for the gardener’s humble friend, the wheelbarrow!
Follow the ‘Green Trail’ and discover guerrilla gardens and pop up planting, all adding a Harvest feel to the Waterford landscape. The ‘Green Team’- GIY Waterford, Ballybeg Greens and Ucasadh – has been busy planting and plotting to lay a living carpet under the Viking Long Boat
People’s Park is all about Picnics and Play with giant Jenga, boules and chess, not to mention the muddy mayhem, games, science and foodie fun activities all Saturday afternoon proudly brought to you by Caulfield’s SuperValu.
Let the kids’ creativity and imaginations run wild as they make their own cupcakes, pasta art, noodle doodles or paper gardens in the City Square Shopping Centre.
The City Library will be transformed by the mad cap antics of clowns, acrobats and all things circus! City POP is brought to Harvest by an eclectic mix of skilled local people and artistic innovators. It aims to bring an exciting and eye-catching visual element to the streets of Waterford
Stroll along Scarecrow Street, watch out for frying pans and watering cans overhead and check out the giant veg patch in John Roberts Square, or spot the amazing signposts built with skill and care from Traditional Craft by Waterford.
Art on the Railings is another colourful addition to the festival on Saturday, September 13th from 11am to 4pm. With over 35 artists showcasing their talents on the railings around Bishop’s Palace and Christ Church Cathedral you can be sure to pick up a quirky, affordable and original piece of work.
The Harvest Festival’s full programme of events is available on http://www.waterfordharvestfestival.ie/