Crail Food Festival is back for its second year


p>Time does indeed fly. It’s hard to believe that a year has passed since the inaugural Crail Food Festival, where we basked in the sun and ate delicious, fresh, local produce. But what happened behind the scenes to make the event so successful, and what do the masters behind this ceremony have in store for us this year? I spoke to Susan McNaughton, so maybe lets get some food now, dont we ? :)

Successful Launch Night for 2012 Crail Food Festival

On Saturday 7th April around 100 resident and visitors applauded Crail Food Festival
Event Manager Graham Anderson of The Honeypot Guest House and Tearoom as
he announced the plans for the summer programme of Crail Food Festival 2012. The
Saturday night launch event was used to raise funds and was supported by 35 food
businesses operating within The Kingdom of Fife. Julien Poix of local Anstruther
delicatessen La Petite Epicerie prepared a tasting preview of some of the quality food
and drink that will feature in June and beers from Innis & Gunn and St Andrews
Brewing Company helped keep everyone in good spirits.

The summer event which will take place between 15th and 17th June is a follow up
to last years outstanding success which received over 2,000 visitors and generated a
£15,000 visitor spend. The three day programme starts on Friday evening 15th June
with some entertainment and will be followed with a Saturday Fife food producers
market, cookery demonstrations, tasting classes, kids competitions and bake off. A
traditional Scottish evening of music and food will be held on Saturday night with
a Fife supper prepared by local caterers and producers. Everything then moves to
the iconic setting of Crail harbour on Sunday for an afternoon extravaganza of food
tasting, music and fun for all the family.

This stuff is just... awesome!

No milk today – Crail Food History

While having a chat on Twitter about food supplies in Crail yesterday morning, this photograph was sent to our Crail Food Festival twitter account by Tom Orr (who goes by the Twitter name of @cyclingmollie). He supplied us with further detail that the milk “Proudly claimed to be from a Brucelosis and Tuberclin tested herd.  Unpasteurised, it tasted strongly of turnips in winter.”

Do you know anything of the history of the Ribbonfield Dairy, or the farmer D. Morris?

Tom also suggested that we read a book called “Footsteps in the Furrows” by Andrew Arbuckle.

When researching ideas for the 2012 Crail Food Festival by visiting the Berwick Food Festival in September, we saw an interesting exhibition there about their food history. Could this milk bottle be the beginning of a historical strand for our next event?  We’re on the look out for ideas and volunteers to put them into action. Can you help?

Keeping the ideas flowing – Crail Food Festival 2012

As soon as we’d packed away the stalls and had a little celebration after the first Crail Food Festival in June 2011, the thinking caps were on and we were considering what the format and vision would be for the second Crail Food Festival in June 2012.

One of the great things we have in our favour in planning for 2012 is that we now have photographs; people’s stories about the fun they had last year; and a track record to prove that we can bring an event together.

We’ve also got ambassadors: the people who supported and believed in us in the first year, are out there telling others what a good event it was. This is encouraging more people to sign up to take a stall for our 2012 Festival.

The other thing we’ve been doing is travelling the length and breadth of the country to visit foodie events and see what others are doing to promote their local food producers, chefs and foodies.

So Finlay’s been up to the Cawdor Food Festival, and Susan’s been to the Berwick Food Festival, Borough Market in London, Elmwood College and the East of Scotland Food and Drink Network Dinner. Graham, Susan and Ian have also been talking to other Fife Festivals about collaboration.

To find out more about these journeys, you can follow us on Facebook or tap into our Tweets.

We’re working away over the winter months, keeping in touch with the friends of the Festival and thinking about the events for our three day Festival which will be on 15th, 16th and 17th June 2012. If you’d like to make a suggestion or find out more by emailing:

The Unforgettable Taste of Success

Anybody who visited Crail on the weekend of the 17th-19th of June this year will no doubt know that the Crail Food Festival was a massive success. Organising something of this scale doesn’t happen overnight. It takes time, commitment and enthusiasm, all of which Finlay Kerr of the Caiplie Guest House has by the bucket load. I had a chat with him after the festival madness had died down.

What made you come up with the idea to start a food festival?

It was really a combination of things, a love of food, a love of events such as The Big Tent Festival and a desire to bring new and old visitors to our lovely town of Crail.

What challenges did you face in organising the Crail Food Festival?

We had big dreams and high standards so to achieve these from a standing start was hard. Our event at Crail Harbour on Sunday was particularly challenging to manage, but we did it. Sunday was so popular that we actually completely sold out of food. A victory for the Crail Food Festival and all of its wonderful producers!

What message do you think the Crail Food Festival sent out to the local community?

We’ve been successful in creating a strong brand in the name of local produce. We live in a great place that people love to visit, and where community values lie at the heart of what we do. With this sort of support in place, anything is possible.

Why do you think people should shop more locally?

There are so many reasons why people should shop locally. Not only is it better for your health, whilst supporting the local community, it’s also better for the planet. Local shops are so well resourced, but unfortunately if we don’t use them we run the risk of them disappearing.

What do you think made the festival so successful?

Lots of hard work and perseverance brought the festival to life. Our vision of people enjoying themselves at Crail Harbour in the presence of freshly caught lobster and hog roasting was realised. Seeing people fascinated as fish was smoked in front of their eyes, and smoothies were made by peddling on a bike was truly something to behold. We were also lucky to have such a number of skilled people work with us and bring their expertise to the event. And as if by magic the sun was shining!

What makes Fife produce so special?