Another year, another five days of London’s foodies flocking to Regent’s Park to overindulge in their favourite past-time of wining and dining. Naturally, we were right at home at Taste of London. And we’ve been before so we knew the drill… over thirty of London’s top restaurants dishing up small plates of their finest food, over 200 exhibitors plying you with samples of their delectable goods, and a myriad of cooking demonstrations, masterclasses and entertainment! You can go in the afternoon or evening, (or both as I’m sure some greedy guts did), where each session gives you about four hours to stuff yourself silly with anything from sliders to ceviches, as well as all those little tasters from well known food companies and artisan producers.
Between bites, cooking skills could be sharpened at the AEG Taste Theatre where chefs such as Scott Hallsworth of Kurobuta or Thomasina Miers of Wahaca showed off some of their techniques or you could even stop into the Wild Kitchen and Mr Vine Wine Kitchen. Foodies who wanted to get their hands dirty could do so at the AEG Let’s Taste Live Cooking experience, learning how to whip up wontons and ribs with School of Wok, while those of us lazy gluttons just continued grazing, stopping every now and then for some music at the Bandstand, a spot of petanque at the Baranis Bar, or just continued weaving around the event to walk off some calories and make room for more!
Being the little greedy guts I am, a certain someone and I were lucky enough to go toTaste of Londonnot once, but twice this year. After a rather gluttonous evening on opening night, we went back a couple of days later for a lunch time session, though this was not just another ordinary walk in the gastronomical park, we were going to get a Korean feast cooked by Gizzi Erskine! I think Gizzi is a bit of a household name in the UK; she’s got a couple of tv shows, books, rocks up to a lot of foodie events, has a wicked sense of style, and she is a legitimately talented chef. Cue major excitement.
With the tagline- World’s Greatest Restaurant Festival, I had high hopes. Did Taste of London live up to those? Quite simply, yes. With its mix of mini restaurants, food stalls, and bars, whittling away the evening was really as easy as a walk in the park.
For five days a corner of Regent’s Park has been turned into a foodie wonderland, with over 200 exhibitors showing off their gastronomical delights and 41 restaurants creating pop ups serving up their signature dishes. The event has been running for 11 years with thousands of people crossing those gates so they must be doing something right. I’d heard great praise for the event from friends who had been in previous years so was looking forward to my first Taste of London experience. But to be honest, I didn’t take much convincing, it sounded like a perfect combination of two events I loved in Wellington- the Food Show and of course, Wellington on a Plate, all condensed into several hours.