Roll up for artisan potato waffles, sweet sugar dumplings and a lot of beer
You are spoilt for choice if you are looking for a carnival this month. Only, make sure you expect doughnuts over dodgems and big pizzas instead of big wheels. This summer the fair is strictly for foodies.
Until now there has been plenty of city centre action in this regard, less so out in the burbs. Now street food experts GRUB are throwing in their lot with Manchester City Council to bring their latest concept, "GRUB Carnival - The Travelling Food Festival", to the Garden City of Wythenshawe. The event is free (even if the food is not) and GRUB is looking to make it a real community affair.
We’ve got big hopes that this event is just the start of great things happening in Wythenshawe
But what the heck is a travelling food festival? Well, the folk behind GRUB have ventured out of their Red Bank home to bring their street-food expertise to South Manchester. Essentially it's a pop-up event with all the tip-top vendors that GRUB is known for, accompanied by brewery bars, produce stalls and live entertainment.
The foodie festival will have its first event on 23 July and will be held outside the Wythenshawe Civic Centre. Hopefully, the sun will be smiling down on the GRUB-bers but if not, there will be a large carnival-style tent pitched outside for shelter. As at the original GRUB in Red Bank, everyone (including dogs) is welcome and entertainment will be provided, with live music, lawn games and DJs. GRUB is already a favourite of ours for kids, so families should be well catered for.
What's to eat?
Let's get down to the business - which traders will be there? Desert Island Dumplings are making it over from Liverpool with their unconventional vegan dumplings in both sweet and savoury forms, ranging from "Cheezburger", Hoisin mock duck, salt and pepper chikn and lobster as well as dessert dumplings with lemon drizzle and Lotus banoffee; while local lads Rad Burger (last seen at Stalybridge Buffet Bar) are sure to be a popular option with their juicy Aberdeen Angus patties.
The Neighbourhood Coop will serve up fried chicken with a sweet difference (think signature fried chicken sandwiched between doughnuts and topped with agave nectar) while Thief Street Grill & Waffle specialises in artisan potato waffles adorned with globally-inspired toppings such as crispy fried salt n pepper prawns, chilli crisp oil, undang mayo, shredded scallions, fresh chilli and toasted sesame seeds. The Chaat Walas take care of spice cravings with their vegan street food offering, including samosas, bel puri and spicy chaat bombs.
For sugar lovers, Paradiso Authentic Italian - dons of the tiramisu - and Marzipan Mcr are the ones to seek out. GRUB hopes to add more names to the roster, especially from Wythenshawe food businesses who may be looking to gain experience at working a multi-trader event (if that sounds like you scroll to the box at the end of the article).
What about drinks?
Beer fans will not be disappointed as the GRUB Carnival bar will be supplied with the best of the North West, including Vocation Brewery, Squawk Brew Co. Rivington Brew Co and many more, plus the Runaway Brewery team will be there in person pouring and talking about their beers.
Beer may be the star but the supporting act is pretty decent too with a decent selection of cocktails, mocktails, wines and soft drinks including freshly canned pops produced by Steep Soda right here in Manchester. We are also looking forward to checking out the foodie market which will feature as many local businesses as possible.
Jason Bailey, Director of GRUB said: "It’s amazing to have the opportunity to bring this smashing new market to Wythenshawe and we can’t wait to bring folk together to have a great time. We’ve got big hopes that this event is just the start of great things happening in Wythenshawe”.
Wythenshawe is no stranger to fairs and festivals (as this weekend can attest) but this is the first event that puts the focus firmly on food. It's a welcome boost since the market closed down and will be the first in a monthly series that GRUB are looking to continue in as many locations as possible.
GRUB Carnival will launch on 23 July, 12-9pm. Entry is free. Visit the GRUB socials to keep an eye on which traders will be appearing and for further updates.
School of Grub
GRUB are also reaching out to the Wythenshawe community to collaborate and offer support to budding entrepreneurs through their School Of GRUB scheme. The School Of GRUB is a free-to-attend workshop presented by successful street food traders giving real life advice on how to get started in the business, the best prospects from those workshops then get free mentoring from GRUB and a leg up to get to their first street food gig.
Further details of this workshop which will take place in Wythenshawe will be forthcoming soon. GRUB also want to hear from local businesses, residents, artists, musicians and community groups who might want to support or get involved in the event. If that sounds like you then please drop GRUB an email using the address firstname.lastname@example.org.
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