Main Festival

Chocolate Festival

Yorkshire’s Largest Food Festival returns for its 26th year
The Festival Programme is now live

Visitors can enjoy 10 days of demonstrations and hands-on participation, taste trails and wine tastings, markets and street food. Centred in Parliament St and St Sampson’s Square with marquees and live music until 9pm, other events extend city-wide and into some of York’s most iconic & historic buildings.

This year’s program extends across the historic city centre with hands on opportunities for visitors to take free cookery classes (the Food Factory) in the Museum Gardens and the Coppergate Centre. There are 2 trails which take the adventurous from beside the Minster to beside the Castle and through the doors of dozens of artisan food producers, delis and restaurants. Perhaps you will need a second day to take in the markets, street food and demonstrations, and finish with live music at one of the two live music venues in the early evening.

Entry to the Festival is free and only the trails and a small number of events are ticketed. Director Michael Hjort said “We are very conscious of limited budgets and have been keen to keep many of the activities, like the Food Factory, without charge.” The free events extend to places for over a thousand Key Stage 2 school children. In addition, Avocado Events come to the event on Saturday 1st October with a range of free children activities.

The vast majority of activities within the demonstration marquee are also free and you can see some of York and Yorkshire’s best chefs there. The Program features: Great British Bake Off winner David Atherton, Great British Menu contestant Bobby Geetha, James Mackenzie from Michelin-Starred Pipe and Glass, Steph Moon, Syrian pop-up restaurant Yahala Mataam and many more. Only a series of late afternoon drinks tastings are ticketed and these feature, among others, Ambiente, York Gin, Brew York and 2ManyWines.

The traditional evening venue (the entertainment marquee in Parliament St) is again run in conjunction local hospice St Leonard’s. It offers lots of street food and a large real ale bar. It will be supplemented by our new venue (St Sampson’s Square) and an enclosure run by York Gin featuring a more acoustic and folk line up.

If live music is not your thing, you can visit City Screen to see a special screening of Chef. Or enjoy a Malbec tasting at the Chopping Block or a Sherry tasting at Ambiente. There is a range of special menus in hotels and restaurants and historic venues are also getting in on the act. Beautiful Bedern Hall will crown York’s finest pork pie at its York Pork Pie competition and the Mansion House will host a tea exhibition and tasting.

Having ranged across the city through the day and into the evening, visitors may wish to come back to the over 80 of the region’s best produce and street food traders in Parliament Street. Or watch a one off competition as BBC Radio York faces off on stage against YorkMix Radio in a Radio Cook Off.

The demonstration area also doubles as an informal tapas bar. The Festival has teamed up with traders in the local Shambles Market to produce a range of tasty platters to eat inside, with a glass from the neighbouring Fizz bar if you like. Alternatively, York Gin’s marquee also hosts Millers Fish & Chips, perfect to grab a drink or a snack to take into our Demonstration Theatre.





Join our Mailing List