Last month I attended Bowhouse Food Weekend (which I had first heard of through Sarah’s blog). The previous day I had distilled my own gin at Darnley’s Distillery and staff there had also recommended popping along there. So before we headed out to a wedding at the beautiful Cambo estate, we made tracks over to Balcaskie Farm, just outside of St Monans.
We actually lived in Fife for just over a year from 2011-2012. Newly married, we explored the area and you can find lots of my early blog posts (aka rambles!) as i started blogging as a way to show our friends and family down south just where we had moved to from the hustle and bustle of London. But, from what I remember, there didn’t seem to be too much of a food and drink industry here. Fast forward to five years later, in 2016 I was lucky enough to attend a foodie weekend for bloggers (Part 1 | Part 2) in which there was a true showcase of food and drink.
Fast forward again to 2018 and we have a diverse and sustainable food and drink industry in Fife, and where better to find it than at a monthly Food Weekend? Bowhouse celebrates the best of local growers, producers and makers, and brings them all under one roof for one weekend every month. It seems to be a regularly changing line up, as the October list of traders varies quite a lot from the businesses we saw at the September event.
I was on a bit of a mission to catch up with some of the vendors who will also be at Spirit of North Hop (for which I am a brand ambassador – shameless plug!) just over the water in Dundee on the 24th November!
First up were Artisana Gourmet Brownies. I’ve followed Ailsa on Instagram for ages and her brownies are literally mouth watering. At the September Bowhouse weekend, some of the popular autumnal flavours including caramel apple were on offer, alongside the classic salted caramel, quirky blackcurrant and liquorice, and my favourite – peanut butter and jam! Needless to say that we snapped up a box of four brownies for sustaining us over the course of the weekend – so I’m naturally very excited that they will be at Spirit of North Hop!
Next up, I spied Kecia on the Never.25 stand. Maybe you remember my feature a few months back on the first Scottish eau de vie? It was great to catch up with Kecia, her enthusiasm is infectious, so make sure that you get a chat and a sample of her unique spirit!
Finally, Lundin Distilling were on hand to provide samples of their delicious gorse gin, and gave me a sneak peek of a serve coming up at North Hop, Gorse gin, with ginger ale completed with homemade honeycomb!
These guys are definitely one to watch and i’ll be making sure that i get myself a G&T from their stand!
Of course, there were many more traders at Bowhouse, and it was lovely to wander round leisurely. We were there early in order to get away for the wedding we were heading to, so it was quiet.
I noticed that there was plenty of room in the aisles between stalls which I can imagine would be valued when it gets busier over lunchtime/later in the day! One stall which must be extremely popular was Osso with their towers of sausage rolls. There must have been over 20 varieties there. Mr B loved his venison one while I raved about my lamb tagine choice!
There was also a strong showing for locally grown and baked produce. As our airbnb host had kindly given us a homemade loaf we didn’t need to stock up, but we were sorely tempted!
It was a bit too early for us to partake in the food being cooked on site by Fish & Frites and the very cute Fizz bar on wheels, if we had been staying longer than we definitely would have been partaking, while enjoying the live music programme running throughout the day!
It’s not just a market though, there’s different educational and environmental features which also make up a Bowhouse Food Weekend.
Scotland the Bread were running demos, and outside there was a kid friendly area, with sheep, pigs and also a gladiator duel area.
There were two features of the Food Weekend that i loved – firstly a huge chalkboard by the entrance/exit to get feedback and comments for future food weekends, and secondly huge boards which directed visitors to many other attractions in within 20 miles of Bowhouse. A great way of supporting other local businesses and signposting visitors to other places nearby.
I loved my (whistle-stop) visit to Bowhouse Food Weekend, and would highly recommend a visit for those based in Fife and those further afield if you fancy to make a day of it and combine your trip with a visit to the East Neuk of Fife!
This is not a sponsored post, I enjoyed my visit to Bowhouse Food Weekend and just like to spread the word! Bowhouse Food Weekends take place monthly and the next one is 13/14 October 2018.