Abergavenny Food Festival Awarded Visit Wales' 'Best Event' Award
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When you think of Wales, one of the first things to spring to mind is the food. Locally sourced quality products, acres and acres of beautiful lush agricultural land and of course the Welsh lambs. The Welsh take their food extremely seriously and are leaps and bounds ahead of the rest of the UK when it comes to food and drink events. They take real pride in their traditional recipes – and who can blame them, nothing beats a bit of Welsh rarebit or a Welsh cake with a traditional steaming cup of tea. Visit Wales have awarded Abergavenny Food Festival with the title of ‘Best Event’ in 2013, which considering the competition, is quite the achievement! It is for that reasons that we’ve written this literary standing ovation to commend their fantastic achievement.
Growing up in rural Britain, I can remember vividly the sheer horror of the BSE crisis and the tales of horror still echo around any farming community. After taking a further hit just a few years later from the foot and mouth crisis, I commend everyone in the agricultural industry for getting through those dark years and resolutely carrying on. Two Welsh farmers in particular stand out as real rocks in a time of crisis. Abergavenny Food Festival is the brainchild of Chris Wardle and Orbach who, back in 1999, put their heads together and found a silver lining in the giant storm cloud of events.
Since that time, Abergavenny Food Festival has grown from strength to strength. It is the ‘must-attend’ event for anybody in the food or agricultural sector, and draws foodies from far and wide. That’s another fantastic result of this festival, and one worth noting. The festival’s popularity brings tourism to a sometimes overlooked – but fantastically stunning – part of the country. It encourages foodies back time and time again to explore Monmouthshire and Herefordshire countryside and stay awhile in one of the many picturesque villages.
But the absolute best part of this festival, and one that really sets the Abergavenny Food Festival apart from the crowd for me, is its continual diversification. Embracing new food trends and encouraging faces on the scene is what it’s all about, and yet it remains continually humble and unassuming. Every top chef and trader from miles around would give their last penny to be there, yet its run by local people, decorated with taste and rustic charm and never will it succumb to commercialisation. It’s these elements that forge its class make it and appeal to all.
The Abergavenny Food Festival should be an event in everyone’s calendar.