STONE’S annual food and drink festival will take place earlier this year.
The town’s Westbridge Park will transform into a foodie haven over the weekend of Friday July 15 to Sunday, July 17.
Visitors can expect a mix of food, drink and entertainment throughout the weekend.
The festival, which previously used to be held in September/October, has become a major event, attracting thousands of visitors from both Staffordshire and beyond.
More street food traders than ever before are set to attend this year’s event, representing a diverse range of global flavours.
From local delicacy the Staffordshire oatcake and traditional hog roasts through Thai, Indian, Caribbean, Greek – and many more offerings – there’s sure to be something to tempt everyone’s tastebuds.
Staffordshire breweries will once again be out in force in the beer garden area, with artisan cider and mead also represented. Gin, fizz and wine are also on offer, alongside several stalls selling Barista-style coffees, teas and hot chocolates.
You can even build your own milkshake in the Little Foodies’ Zone, with the Oulton First School PTFA serving up fresh milkshakes using milk kindly donated by Tixall’s Wright Family Dairy to raise funds for the school.
This year’s Gourmet Marquee has almost doubled in size from the 2021 festival and will see artisan food stalls from the Midlands and beyond selling everything from cheese to cakes, condiments, coffee, cured meats, sweet treats, liqueurs, jams, kitchenware and more.
Whether visitors are looking to stock up on gourmet ingredients or find foodie gifts, there is likely to be plenty of inspiration and samples on offer too.
The festival is about far more than shopping and eating. It also dishes up the chance for keen cooks to pick up tips from top chefs and learn the stories behind some of the artisan foods on offer.
In the Granville’s of Stone Demonstration Kitchen talented chefs from some of Staffordshire’s most renowned eateries will take the stage, with a line-up that includes Allan Jones of A la Carte at Home, Matt Craen of The Dog & Doublet, Granville’s Tom Payne, Jake Lowndes of Little Seeds, Stuart Bruce from South Chase Golf Club, Amarpal Harrar of iCookIndian, Khris Renshaw from The Red Lion and Lee Lawson of No.26, Aston Marina.
The Joule’s Brewery Talks & Tastings Tent offers an equally packed programme. Sessions will cover everything from wine and cheese tasting to beer, coffee, butchery skills and more besides.
Live music is a big part of the festival and a number of local bands are lined up to entertain crowds on the Lexus Stoke Live Music Stage. Groups include The Dandy Lions, Lost the Plot, The House Jammerz, Stone Cold Sober(ish) and Cherry Groove.
Talented youngsters from the town’s Rooftop Studios Performing Arts Academy will showcase their skills.
Kids are also well catered for, with lots of family fun in the Little Foodies Zone.
A farming theme is new this year, with Penkridge Farm Park PLAY@ Lower Drayton Farm bringing lots of activities. There will also be an opportunity to get up close to the farm’s huge combine harvester, meet friendly animals and learn all about the farm-to-fork journey. Face painting, mini crazy golf and fairground rides are also on offer.
Tickets for the festival are on sale at www.stonefooddrink.org.uk. Save 10% on tickets bought online in advance using code SL10 at checkout.