The theme for this year’s York Food Festival is Food Heroes and some of those heroes were on stage in the beautiful York Guildhall showing us their best seasonal dishes.
Shy Annie Prescott of the Red Lion at Knapton made some beautifully simple fish dishes. She was followed by Andrew Pern [pic] of the Star at Harome, totally relaxed, he’s done this thing a hundred times before. He casually threw together a risotto of partridge with braised chestnuts, black trumpet mushrooms, wilted curly kale and white truffle oil that we washer-uppers back stage managed to sneek taste. Oh lord, it’s easy to see why this guy has Michelin star, probably on his way to a second.
I was still backstage when James Mackenzie from the wonderful Pipe and Glass at South Dalton did his stuff, but he’s a banker too. Then it was Taste Tradition, farmers from Thirsk who butchered on stage a whole rare bread lamb showing us all the cuts and made into dishes by the chef from the new Carpenters Arms, Felixkirk (see post). Besides demos and lunch, food suppliers showcased their stuff. Stand-out producers: Lowna Dairy Goat’s cheese; Womersley jellies and vinegars and the charming Brother Rainer from Ampleforth Abbey on hand with crates of apples, cider and cider brandy made by the venerable monk from the Ampleforth’s terrific orchard.