Five Things to Do at The Cheltenham Food and Drink Festival

Wine tasting at Cheltenham Food and Drink FestivalCheltenham is a spa town steeped in history and culture. It plays host to some renowned events such as the Gold Cup, Cheltenham jazz festival, the literature festival and most importantly, Cheltenham food and drink festival.  Every year in June, people travel from across the nation to enjoy the finer things in life.

This year the event runs from the 10th – 12th June and will be held in the beautiful Montpellier Gardens. Cheltenham is easily accessible via train, bus or car.

If you are considering attending the festival, which we highly recommend, here are five things to do whilst you’re there:

  1. Watch a Top Chef at Work

A great opportunity the festival offers is to watch top chefs in action, try some of their food and even engage in the cooking! This year TV star chefs will be demonstrating, as well as top chefs from the local area.

Chefs to look out for:

Friday- Take the mystery out of oriental cookery with a workshop from Pamela at ChenMoore Chopsticks. If you’ve ever wanted to cook homemade oriental meals but haven’t had the skills to do so, this is one for you – starting at 4.30pm

Saturday- If you watched the great British Bake Off you might remember Cathryn Dresser, who narrowly missed the top spot, she will be showcasing her skills from 2.00pm

Sunday- Steve Lamb has been part of the River Cottage operation for a decade, he specialises in curing and smoking meat. He will be showing you how to make your own home cured bacon as well as demonstrating how to cook hot smoked mackerel, sound good? Catch him from 1.45pm


  1. Attend a Food Talk

Ranging from sampling whisky to food nutrition, come and talk with the experts, the talks are limited to 70 people to ensure a relaxed and personal environment so get in quick!

Talks to look out for:

Friday- Nose to tail butchery is hosted by Coombe Farm Organic and will run you through the lesser known parts of animals that are often wasted – if you’re conscious about the amount your spending on food, this talk could be one for you, the demonstration starts at 1.00pm

Saturday- Single malt tasting with the UK ambassador for Chivas Regal & the Glenlivet. Whiskey lovers should flock to this event, to discover why the Glenlivet is known as the “single malt which started it all” come and have a try starting at 3.00pm

Sunday- Perfect your sushi making skills with a masterclass from food giant YO! Sushi. Their expert chef will demonstrate the best way to handle and slice fish before inviting you to taste your own handmade sushi! Limited to 30 people starting at 11.30am

  1. Catch Some of the Entertainment

If you find that you’ve over indulged in the food and drink aspect of the festival, there is a whole host of entertainment running throughout the weekend.

Entertainment to look out for:

Friday- ‘5 Undercover’ a popular local band playing music from the 50’s to present day, catch them at 3.45pm

Saturday- Aria Dance Company, who will be performing a range of styles from Ballet to Hip-Hop. One not to be missed.

Sunday- ‘French Waiters’ A comedy act all the way from France, these waiters will ensure your festival dining experience is one you will never forget!

  1. Take The Kids

The festival will not only cater for their appetite but also keep them entertained with a range of events specifically for children – the best part is under 16’s with an adult go free!

Events to look out for:

Friday- The classic Punch and Judy will be playing at regular intervals across the whole weekend, take your kids to see your favourite childhood characters!

Saturday- Juggling Jim, guaranteed to provide laughs for all the kids, creative humour and superb dexterity make Jim’s show a hilarious mix of silliness and skill. Two 30 minute performances starting at 12.15pm and 3.15pm

Sunday- The Music Man combines audience participation with slapstick comedy and silly magic spells, keep an eye out for him!

  1. Wine Tasting

If you’re looking for a perfect weekend getaway with a friend or partner one of the highlights of the Cheltenham food and drinks festival is the wine tasting. The talks will allow you to develop an even greater appreciation of wine from across the world.

Tasting to look out for:

Friday – Discover wonderful wines from Portugal, under celebrated makers of wine. Quentin Sadler takes you on a Mediterranean tasting discovery starting at 5.30pm till 6.15pm

Saturday – Come and try some of the UK’s best sparkling wines, produced in vineyards in Kent and Sussex, Laura Rhys a qualified sommelier (wine expert) will taste these world class wines with you from 1.45pm-2.30pm

Sunday – Try the so called ‘Best Sauvignon Blanc in the world’ among other award winning wines from New Zealand’s wine producer of the year – Yealands Family Wines starting at 12.45pm through till 1.30pm

Where to Stay

Cheltenham festival is bound to be a great weekend for you and the family. We still have availability at Hilden Lodge a short distance from the festival however, we are filling up quick, call us on 01242 583242 or book one of our stylish rooms today!