Published in The Herts Advertiser 22 June 2017
Do you have plans for Sunday? I hope you have time to head into St Albans city centre for the St Albans Street Festival, which will be taking over St Peter’s street with fab food, funky music and gorgeous sunshine (hopefully!).
The team behind the excellent Christmas Lights Switch-on are also behind this, so it looks to be a really good event. St Peter’s street will be closed and food stalls will line the road, along with pop-up restaurants and bars; tables will be set out so you can eat lunch, have a drink and catch up with friends. You will also be able to do some food shopping to take home – there will be bread, cakes, vegetables and preserves stalls.
Free to enter, the Festival is this Sunday (25th June) from 12-6. There is a lot of great food on offer, so you can take the day off cooking; the hog roast from Hog Heaven will be hugely popular, or maybe something from Thompson’s? For something lighter, Toastlicious will be at the event with their fab toasties, which were so popular at the Christmas market; there will be something for everyone.
Favourites from the regular St Albans markets will be there, including Comida Brasil, The Pancake Bar, Chrissie’s Cupcakes, Heaven is a cupcake, The Pudding Stop and The Weeping Chef.
Farr Brewery and The 3 Brewers of St Albans will be ready to serve locally brewed beers – look out for the 3 Brewers Special English Ale; this beer won best beer in the East Anglian CAMRA awards, beating beer from over 80 breweries! I’m also very keen to see the tiki bar hosted by PoppyCock, which is the brainchild of Jas and Shane who you will know from Mokoko.
I am always being asked about where to get decent Mexican food in St Albans, and this is your chance to find some! Cantina Carnitas have a great reputation from local festivals and events, and I love their veggie burrito bowl with black beans, avocado and salsa. Chaatit is another great veggie option: they make ‘finger-licking’ Indian vegetarian streetfood; you might know them from other streetfood events in Spitalfields, Wychwood and Paddington.
I love Moroccan food so I will definitely go and see what Marrakech Kitchen is selling. There will be real Belgian frites, Peruvian street food, South African food, falafel and hummus stalls as well as Carmen’s Caribbean food, which is always good.
If you want pud (of course) I really recommend Choux Stopper; we had pots of mini choux buns from this retro van at the Welwyn Food Festival recently. Simon Northcutt is an ex-Beaumont student and started this business just a few months ago in time for the busy festival season. La Flamenca churros is always a huge favourite at the St Albans events, with queues from when they open, so look for them too! Polar Pops are a pretty healthy option; their fruit juice lollies are great for kids and adults. A Bristol-based indie company, they are growing quickly and often appear at big music festivals, so try them while you can.
The music program should keep everyone entertained; it is spread across two stages and there will be country, jazz, pop, folk, barbershop singing, DJs and African drumming. There will be a communal ceilidh at 4pm so grab your partner for a dance in the street! Ahead of their big weekend festival event, Meraki will be hosting a pop-up mini festival; my family loved their silent disco at the Christmas street festival! See you there!