Bournville is a ridiculously pretty suburb (village?) ten minutes train journey out of the city centre. I associate it with Cadbury of course and have spent quite a lot of time teaching the kids about how the area was set up for the workers. Of course, Cadbury is barely a factory anymore so their staff aren't really living in the area. The walk from the train station took me past rows of perfectly painted terrace houses so I had fun picking out the one I would live in if I earned £££.
Anyway, this post isn't about how pretty Bournville is and how I wish I was rich. It's about the very lovely Bournville Food and Drink festival. I missed last years but it's back for 2016 with events in April, July and November. I'm not a time traveller so this one is about the April event.
It is held at Rowheath Pavilion, a community hub with a large grassy area behind it. It's free to enter and has music, children's entertainment, food and drink stalls and a bar.
Drinks were purchased through a slightly odd system. You queued up to buy a special glass and some tokens. Once you have your glass, you can swap your tokens at the bars for beer, cocktails, wine or spirits. As it was a lovely sunny day, I chose a refreshing cider.
Here I am looking serene, even though a small human is apparently about to kick me.
We squeezed our way round, said hello to some friends from Yelp and tried to decide what to eat. The street food vans were squashed into rather a small space a la Digbeth Dining Club- it would have been nice to have a little more room.
There were many of the big hitters from the Midlands street food scene- Low 'n' Slow, Baked In Brick, Pietanic and Bournville Waffle Co to name a few.
Edd instantly wanted a venison toastie from Jabberwocky. Jabberwocky were one of the first street foods Edd and I ever had so they hold a special place in our hearts.
Jabberwocky toasties aren't just any toastie- the fillings are rather special and they even have sweet sandwiches- see the rocky road below. They change their fillings frequently. I once spotted a pigeon breast toastie.
That was one delicious toastie to eat in the sun with a cider. The fillings were generous, the cheese was gooey and the bread was golden. What more do you need?
I decided to go for Cafe Horchata because I wanted tacos and I haven't tried this vendor before. Naturally, I'd managed to choose the longest queue.
I waited a long time to get my tacos. Once I've waited twenty minutes or so I start to get a bit panicky but also don't want to move because I've committed!
Never mind, look how cheerful I was when I got to the front- plus Edd had gone on a mission for more alcohol while I waited. The owners of Cafe Horchata were very sweet but rather flustered. I don't think they were fully prepared for how busy they would be. "Definitely three people next time!" they promised.
Cafe Horchata serve up Mexican street food i.e. tacos. Tacos are my favourite street food at the moment and after trying super ones from Low 'n' Slow and Muy Loco Tacos, how would these match up?
I very much liked that you could mix and match and that there was an interesting non-meat option.
I chose the baja cauliflower, crumbled chorizo and shredded ancho chilli pork.
I loved the texture of the crumbled chorizo and the baja caulifower had a great texture- I think this may even have been my favourite. The pickles on top added the crunch I love in a taco.
Worth the wait? This time yes, but I hope they will be a little quicker next time! I'd love to try the other flavours they come up with.
We always stock up when we see Kneals. This time we sampled some fantastic new bars such as the 41% cocoa with vanilla and another which contained cacao nibs. I love the way Kneals are playing with flavours, textures and cocoa percentages. I'm booked in to do a chocolate workshop with them at The Plough next month so there will be a full post soon.
I also picked up some Fuego Del Verde (green) sauce from Pip's, which is the mildest one. I'm getting more into hot sauce but I need to be able to share it with Edd! I figured I'd work us up the scale. I also succumbed to cheese and purchased some award winning Manchego from Curds and Whey.
A beautiful afternoon in the sun, with excellent music, top quality produce and a lovely setting.
If you like the look of the festival, you can go along to the next one 1st-2nd July.
Bournville Food and Drink Festival, Rowheath Pavillion.
Photos by myself and Edd.
All food and drink paid for ourselves. We sampled a LOT of free chocolate but he's just nice like that.