On 14 May 2016, Cambridge Eat Up! (exclamation mark intended) held its first ever Pot Luck Lunch, a fringe event for Eat Cambridge. The lovely and talented Karen Harvey had the foresight to create the Cambridge Eat Up! group on Facebook (you can read about its origins in her blog post here) and it has grown organically since then. It’s become a great virtual “meeting point” for food enthusiasts of all types (not just bloggers) to share good foodie news and plan get-togethers.
Photo by Karen Harvey
Photo by Lisa Durbin
So when Eat Cambridge organiser Heidi White thought the group would be ideal for a fringe event, Karen and I jumped at the chance to create something. In the spirit of Cambridge Eat Up!, we wanted to hold an event that reflected foodies coming together, sharing and supporting each other. The result was a Pot Luck Lunch where everyone would bring a dish and we would gather around a table in an informal setting to enjoy each other’s company and good food/drink. We planned this back in December and the next thing we knew, the application was submitted, the entry fee paid (courtesy of Paulo at P A Safety Management Limited) and my home was confirmed as the location. Everyone jumped at the chance to be included and the places filled up very quickly, as soon as the Eat Cambridge programme was released. I even increased the numbers from 15 to 20 but there was still a long waiting list. However, this indicated that the pot luck format appealed to a great number of people, so the group is discussing hosting more of them.
Burwash Manor in Barton, Cambridge was the place for lovers of food and drink over Valentine’s weekend, 13 and 14 February 2016. Love Food, the annual fabulous festival of food, was hosted by Burwash Food Hall, which includes The Larder and Leech & Sons Master Butchers. It was a great way to showcase local independent producers, some of which were already firm favourites, but I also discovered new ones too. It was good to meet the people behind the products they are so dedicated to making. These independent producers really put their heart and soul into their food or drink products and it shows. The proof is in the taste!
I celebrated all weekend and enjoyed tastings and demonstrations by The Larder’s suppliers. They were held in The Secret Garden marquee, a lovely space with lots of room to explore the various stalls.
On 19 November 2015, I had the pleasure of attending a momentous occasion: the official launch of online gift box and hamper company Cambridge Artisan, held at the Bridge Street branch of Cambridge Wine Merchants. Cambridge Artisan is the brainchild of enterprising 15-year-old Amélise Burr who has been wanting to start her own business for years. Her goal is to not only earn money to fund her university education (she aims to be a naval architect), it’s also to showcase independent local produce right here at our doorstep in Cambridgeshire and East Anglia in general.
Photo courtesy of Cambridge Artisan
With the full support of her father Robert Burr, who runs the popular mobile street food trailer Churros Bar with his wife Charlotte, they set off to source the variety of excellent products from local artisan producers. The result? Some of the very best food and drink the region has to offer… all of it available in a one-stop online shop and delivered right to your door. There are 30 local producers gathered under Cambridge Artisan’s virtual roof and best of all, their products can be accessed even when the markets are closed. There is a choice of several themed gift hampers or boxes and you can also purchase particular products separately, thus ensuring you are stocking your cupboards and “keeping it local”.