Preparations are well underway for this year’s Ipswich Food & Drink Festival being staged at the town’s Waterfront next month.
The Orwell Quay event, being held from Friday, May 16th to Sunday, May 18th, has already attracted bookings from a wide variety of businesses and the international line-up of mouth-watering delights includes cheese, Moroccan specialities, curry, cupcakes, sausages and paella.
In addition, organiser Market Square Group, is creating an exciting and varied entertainment programme.
Already signed to perform on the Friday and Saturday are CoCo and the Butterfields, with their own unique fusion of folk, pop and hip hop.
Ipswich lad and acoustic guitarist George Edwards, who proved extremely popular at last year’s inaugural event, will be making a welcome return – joined by Cajon player Sam Washington. The duo will be performing on Saturday, with original material influenced by flamenco, blues, funk, jazz and folk.
Also on Saturday, comedy cooking act The King Elvises are back in town delivering their own style of culinary entertainment and Ipswich artisan butcher Jamie Willows, from Rose House Butchery, will be demonstrating his skills.
The highlight of Sunday’s entertainment will be three cooking demonstrations by 5 out of 5 AA Rosette and Michelin award-winning French chef Jean-Christophe Novelli.
‘The Nation’s Favourite French Chef’ will be in the kitchen theatre cooking one of his favourite classic dishes at 11am, a Mediterranean meal at 1pm and, at 3pm, a culinary creation focusing on locally-sourced produce.
He will also be chatting to festival visitors during the day and signing copies of his latest book, Simply Novelli.
Ipswich Food & Drink Festival is a celebration of some of the best regional, national and international hot and cold foods and drink available in the UK alongside high-quality kitchen products and crafts.
Other attractions will include a beer festival, children’s activities and, as well as Mr Novelli’s demonstrations, local chefs will be taking to the stage in the cooking theatre.
Paul Kennedy, Market Square Group event co-ordinator, said, “Preparations for the festival are taking shape and we are delighted with the quality of stalls and entertainment already lined-up.
“Working with our partners Ipswich Borough Council and Visit Suffolk, we are building on the success of last year’s inaugural festival.
“We are privileged to have Jean-Christophe Novelli, who is hugely popular with the public, as our headline chef.
“The most remarkable thing about Jean-Christophe is his enthusiasm and passion – you don’t have to be a foodie to fall under his spell.”
The festival, part of Ipswich’s Food and Drink Forknight, is supported by Novotel, Easton and Otley College, First Eastern Counties and John Banks Group.