Chefs announced for 2020 ‘Virtual’ Stone Food & Drink Festival online demos

Chefs announced for 2020 ‘Virtual’ Stone Food & Drink Festival online demos

The 2020 Stone Food & Drink Festival will be moving online in the wake of COVID-19 restrictions – but it’s still set to showcase some of Staffordshire’s best gastronomic talent.

Lexus Stoke has stepped forward to sponsor the ‘virtual’ cookery demonstration kitchen, following its successful sponsorship of the live event back in 2019, with lead sponsor Joule’s Brewery providing a stunning location in the form of its Crown Wharf development in Stone.

Filming took place in early September, with the five resulting cookery demonstration films to be released over the weekend of Saturday 3rd and Sunday 4th October, via the festival website and social media channels. Local culinary luminary Matt Davies, Vice President of the British Culinary Foundation and star of numerous Stone Food & Drink Festival cookery theatre performances, made a welcome return to the stage; sharing compere duties with Collin Taylor.

Chefs demonstrating include Jake Lowndes of Little Seeds – showcasing the fresh, seasonal food for which his Stone eatery has become renowned. Allan Jones – previously Head Chef at Keele Hall and now heading up his private chef venture ‘A la carte at home’ – will display the type of dishes he can recreate for diners in the comfort of their own home, while James Sherwin of Whitchurch’s Wild Shropshire restaurant cooks up a storm using locally sourced and foraged seasonal ingredients. Creative duo Cris Cohen of Feasted and Emma Cronin of Wild Pickle have teamed up to deliver ‘flavour bombs’ in a dish that will be easy to recreate at home; and veteran chef Mike Hughes shares skills honed during a career working in top hotels and venues around the country, including Lords Cricket Ground and the 5* Imperial in Torquay.

Festival chairman, Richard Stevens, says:
“We are so grateful to both Joule’s Brewery and Lexus Stoke for their support in delivering the virtual cookery demonstration programme. We were keen to give our loyal visitors at least a flavour of the festival experience this year while providing some great local chefs with a platform to showcase what they do. We’d like to thank all the chefs who joined us on this journey and the quality of dishes they created is superb – we hope people have a lot of fun ‘cooking along’ with them at home but equally that this inspires people to get out and support local restaurants, pubs, shops and producers. We can’t wait to be back with the live event in 2021 and are already planning some exciting new additions to the festival.”

The ‘Virtual’ Stone Food & Drink Festival cookery Demonstrations will be released via the festival Facebook page and YouTube channel on Saturday 3rd and Sunday 4th October 2020.

For the full programme and details of other food festival-related events – including the Festival Farmers’ Market on Saturday 3rd October and FEAST Stone Street Food Takeaway on Sunday 4th October -both taking place on Westbridge Park with strict COVID safety measures in place – head to stonefooddrink.org.uk

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