The days are getting longer and ever-so-slightly warmer, which means that festival season will soon be upon us.

With this in mind, we take a look at some of the top food and drink festivals and markets that are making a return to Scotland, starting from this month.

Pastaval

(4 & 26 May, Various location in Glasgow city centre and southside)

Picture: Pastaval

Tickets: £10

Fans of mac and cheese rejoice, as Glasgow’s Pastaval is back and bigger than before. The cheesy festival will be held in the Southside as before but will also be popping up in venues across the city centre.

Glasgow-based food and travel blog, Foodie Explorers have once again teamed up with McIntosh to bring mac and cheese to all in the city centre on Saturday 4 May and with My Shawlands on 26 May.

The day will begin with participants picking up their Mac and Cheese appreciation pack from the Pastaval base at Pie and Brew on Bath Street in the city centre and if attending the Southside festival, The Butterfly and The Pig South on Kilmarnock Road in Shawlands.

Then, using the provided map, attendees visit the participating venues tasting some delicious mac and cheese. Scorecards are provided so that notes can be made on their opinion of each mac and cheese. Then they return the scorecards at the end of their journey to pick a winner.

The winning venue will be presented with a suitably cheesy trophy to proudly display that they have been awarded the accolade of the best mac and cheese of Pastaval.

Emma Mykytyn, blogger of Foodie Explorers said:  “I didn’t think we could top last year’s Mac and cheese themed wedding but this year we have two Pastavals!  We know that others love macaroni as much as we do and the demand for a city centre Pastaval was huge.

“We need the help of other foodies to pick the best mac and cheese in the City Centre and Southside this year. Can you handle both?”

North Hop at Haddo House

(4 & 5 May, Methlick, Ellon AB41 7EQ)

Food festivals Scotland

Picture: North Hop

Tickets: £5

This weekend (4th and 5th May) Scottish food and drink festival specialists North Hop are bringing something a little bit different to Aberdeenshire. They have teamed up with National Trust for Scotland to use historical Haddo House as the backdrop to a special weekend market, with the theme ‘Celebrating Aberdeenshire’.

The market, running over May Day Bank Holiday Weekend is pulling together a number of local street food vendors, drink brands, market traders and makers to create a unique event that’s suitable for all the family, and dogs too!

Taste of Grampian

(1 June, Thainstone Centre, Inverurie, Aberdeenshire, AB51 5XZ)

festivals

Picture: John Torode

Tickets: £10

This year’s Taste of Grampian is set to play host to a few famous faces.

Chef and co-host of MasterChef, John Torode will be joined by Spencer Matthews who was a surprise finalist in Celebrity MasterChef last year.

Taste of Grampian is the ultimate foodie experience with demonstrations, tips, expert advice, school competitions and the chance to find independent artisan food producers selling fresh produce.

Visitors can enjoy cookery demonstrations throughout the day, head-to-head school competitions and more than 180 stands, while local musicians entertain the crowds all day.

Mhor Festival

(24-26 May, Monachyle Mhor Farm, Balquhidder, Perthshire,  FK19 8PQ)

Tickets: Day tickets from £15

Taking place over the spring bank holiday weekend, this foodie festival has grown to become a much-loved addition to the spring/summer lineup in Scotland.

Hosted by the owners of Monachyle Mhor Hotel (who also own cool motel Mhor 84), this festival is fun for all the family with a great selection of food and drink, and events such as the annual raft race.

This year held in honour of the festival’s great friend and champion chef Andrew Fairlie, the annual feast will raise funds for the Cornhill Macmillan Centre, Perth. 

 Fantastic food will be a recurring theme throughout the weekend with the festival introducing its Food Hall for the very first time.
Packed with sweet and savoury delights from the likes of Mhor Bread, Mhor Fish, Chick and Pea, Babu Kitchen and Nomad Pizza, guests can sample the goods of some of the UK’s finest food on the go. From coffee to kombucha, churros to charcuterie, there’s something for every taste.

Edinburgh Craft Beer Festival

(24-25 May, The Biscuit Factory, 4-6 Anderson Pl, Edinburgh EH6 5NP)

Tickets: from £40

Scotland’s premier craft beer festival returns to the capital this May with a whole host of brewers, plus street food and live music.

Confirmed brewers so far include Cloudwater, Fierce Beer, The Kernal and Tempest Brew Co.

Tickets include entry, all beer, access all areas and a free tasting glass and programme.

Glasgow Coffee Festival

(4-5 May, The Briggait, 141 Bridgegate, G1 5HZ)

festivals

Picture: Glasgow Coffee Festival Facebook

Tickets: from £14.98

This caffeine fulled festival is back for a two-day celebration of speciality coffee culture in Scotland.

The weekend will feature coffee exhibitors, cafes, roasters, baristas, masterclasses, workshops, presentations and demonstrations.

As well as this coffee lovers can watch national coffee competitions, enjoy a ‘cupping’ experience, upgrade home barista brewing and espresso kit.

Crail Food Festival

(June, Crail Harbour, Fife, KY10)

festivals

Picture: Crail Food Festival

Tickets: TBC

This popular food festival will return to the Fife village for its ninth year, and although details are set to be announced it is sure to be another seafood spectacular.

Last year the festival announced a new format and festival hub.

It set over three key venues – the harbour, the cookery theatre and the Beech Walk Park – where festival-goers enjoyed chefs’ workshops, live music, cookery demonstrations and hands-on activities.

Edinburgh Foodies Festival

(2-4 August, Inverleith Park, Arboretum Road, Edinburgh, EH3 5NZ)

Tickets: from £29

Returning to Inverleith Park, this year’s popular Foodies Festival will include live music, workshops, masterclasses and top chefs.

With a chef’s theatre, kids cookery school and a luxury VIP tent there’s fun for all the family including the dog, who can come along on a short lead.

Fyne Fest

(31 May-3 June, Fyne Ales, Achadunan, Cairndow, Argyll, PA26 8BJ)

festivals

Picture: Fyne Ales Facebook

Tickets: from £19.50

Set up in 2010 by the Fyne Ales team as a small beer, music and local food festival, Fynefest has celebrating its tenth anniversary this summer.

Celebrating Scottish produce, the award-winning festival takes place in the Fyne Ales brewery estate and this year will play host many fine producers such as Loch Fyne Oysters, Truckle and Loaf, Highland Hog Roast and Fox Hat.

The festival will also serve over 200 different beers, a range of ciders at mini bars and cocktails in the Brewer’s Bar and Cocktail Lounge.

Live music is also a big part of the festival, and a range of bands playing an eclectic mix of music will be on stage from the Friday night.

Platform at The Arches

(25 and 26 April, 253 Argyle St, Glasgow G2 8DL)

This month sees the return of the popular bi-monthly food and makers market in this licensed city centre venue. Taking place throughout the whole building, the markets will run alongside the usual independent street food market – Platform.

New to markets for this year, sees the introduction of the food quarter. Here visitors can pick up produce from the specialist farmers and food market traders and producers who offer quality products for customers to enjoy at home.

Foodies can look forward to stalls that will include breads, cheeses and dairy, charcuterie, local rare breed sausages and smoked meats, salads, and handmade pies and puddings.

Visitors can also celebrate the weekend at the fully licensed bar, which offers craft beers, cocktails, spirits and soft drinks.

The Pitt

(125-137 Pitt St, Edinburgh EH6 4DE)

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Entry: £2

Established in 2015, the Pitt Market is Edinburgh’s pioneering street food venue with a stunning array of the best street food around Scotland, craft beer, cocktails, wine and live music on offer.

Based at 125 Pitt Street between Leith and Newhaven, the Pitt runs most Saturdays’ from 12pm-10pm and showcases vendors like Crema Caravan, Barnacles & bones, Ròst Eats and Pitt Steak alongside drinks from Barney’s Beer, Smith & Gertrude and Solid Liquids.

Dog, child and wallet/purse friendly it’s the place to go in the capital for some lovely street food.

The Big Feed

(27 and 28 April and 4 and 5 May, 249-325 Govan Rd, Cessnock, Glasgow G51 2SE)

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Back by popular demand… Bow Wow Buns @bigfeedgla 27-28th April SAT 12-10pm SUN 12-7pm 249 Govan Road NO EXPENSIVE TICKET NEEDED NO BOOKING REQUIRED FREE PARKING Still only £2 entry (under 10’s free) NHS staff (with ID card) FREE • INCREDIBLE STREET FOOD • LIVE MUSIC • COLD BEER AND COCKTAILS • DJ’s • RETRO GAMES ARCADE • FACE PAINTERS • BALLOON TWISTERS • OUTDOOR SEATED AREA • CLASSIC BOARD GAMES • AND SO MUCH MORE #bigfeed #bigfeedglasgow🍴 #bigfeedglasgow #streetfood #streetfoodglasgow #nhs #nhsscotland #supportindependanttraders #peoplemakeglasgow #streetfoodfestival #streetfoodscotland #foodporn #glasgowlife #glasgowevents #glasgowsouthside #govan #independanttraders #familyfriendly #dogfriendly #freeparking #foodporn #visitglasgow #ilovegla #iloveglasgow #dogsofinstagram #cutepuppies #dogstagram #dogfriendly #glasgowsfavouriteweekend

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Entry: £2

Based in Govan in the south side of Glasgow, Big Feed is a brand new venture set up by a number of the city’s street food vendors and the industrial indoor venue will once again play host to some of the best street food concepts and local brewers, set against a backdrop of live music.

On the menu at the next market will be a diverse selection of high quality street food. From authentic Scottish cuisine, fresh seafood and Asian inspired gastronomy to delicious burgers, hot dogs, wood fired pizzas and vegan fare there will be something for everyone to choose from.

Bowhouse Market Weekends

(Bowhouse Farm, St Monans, Anstruther, Fife, KY10 2DB)

markets

Picture: Bowhouse Market Facebook

Entry: Free

Bowhouse opened as a hub for artisan food and drink producers in the East Neuk of Fife in summer 2017.

Since then the space has grown and it is now home to eight food businesses permanently based there.

The popular Market Weekends are free to attend and give visitors the opportunity to see, discuss, taste and buy the best food and drink from Fife and beyond; providing the missing link between farm and fork.

About The Author

Rosalind Erskine

Known for cake making, experimental jam recipes, Champagne and gin drinking (and the inability to cook Gnocchi), Rosalind writes for The Scotsman on all things food and drink related.

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