Have a bellissima bank holiday packed with pizza, pasta and Poretti
Imagine Liam Gallagher on a Vespa sipping an Aperol. That kind of Italian-Mancunian fusion is pretty hard to come by. However, Festa Italiana is back for the fifth year on the bounce, and Cathedral Gardens is prepping for another weekend of Italian food, drink and culture, so we're getting pretty close.
Although Cathedral Gardens is already pretty reminiscent of Capri with its fountains and fair climate, Festa Italiana is pushing things that extra miglio
Running from Friday 26 August - Sunday 28 August, the festival is run by the family-oriented team from Salvi's, and the programme promises some familiar faces, new surprises and an authentic Italian experience.
If you're into Mediterranean gin, secret photography exhibitions from the continent, and pizzas with proper crusts, keep your August bank holiday free for the Festa.
Turning Manchester into Milan
Although Cathedral Gardens is already pretty reminiscent of Capri with its fountains and fair climate, Festa Italiana is pushing things that extra miglio. The Salvi's fam are aiming to celebrate Manchester's Italian community and create a vibe that matches that of traditional Italian festivals via a combination of food, drink, music, performance and art.
Last year's Festa Italiana also attracted a record-breaking 38,000 visitors, so we've got our fingers crossed that the August bank holiday comes hand in hand with some Mediterranean temperatures (as it usually does).
It's all about the pasta and Poretti
Let's be honest, what we really wanna indulge in is some cacio e pepe and a couple of limoncellos. Salvi's know best when it comes to food and booze, so the line-up is pretty lovable.
If we're talking chefs, expect to see the UK rep for Parmigiano Reggiano (and Jamie Oliver's mate), Gennaro Contaldo, the celeb chef Aldo Zilli fresh from This Morning and Celebrity Masterchef, and Great British Bake Off 2021 winner Giuseppe Dell'Anno. The list wouldn't be complete without the Salvi's mastermind Maurizio Cecco as well, of course.
Some of Manchester's top Italian street-food vendors and restaurants (details tbc) will also make sure the nosh is never disappointing. Booze comes courtesy of brands like Gin Mare, Luxardo and Poretti. Saluti.
Because all that pizza and pasta has to be matched with big party vibes, Festa Italiana will also have live music, art, and a host of workshops, demonstrations, banquets and author chats.
Queen of pasta in all its forms, Carmela Sereno Hayes, will be making a return with pasta workshops and chats all weekend long, there's an exciting mystery photography exhibition that "cannot yet be talked about in detail", and if you're bringing the bambinos, there's loads of family-friendly fun to be had in the gardens too.
Final Festa fine print
Festa Italiana is free to enter, so that's us sold, and it runs from Friday - Sunday on August Bank Holiday weekend (26 - 28 August). Promising to serve up "something to suit all palates and quench every thirst", it's hard not to get excited about everything.
For updates on vendors, announcements, and family-run fun, follow Festa Italiana on social media and find your best House of Gucci-esque sunnies - there are only seven weeks to go.
Read next: Things to do in and around Leeds: July 2022
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