After a very busy 2014 which included our first Slow Food Norwich food and drink Festival near Swaffham last summer our last two Slow Food Norwich events of the year were held at the historic Dragon Hall in Norwich in early December 2014 and Holme next the sea in late December. We took part of a large food and craft event at Dragon Hall, and at Holme we had a social and promotional evening featuring produce made by Slow Food members in north Norfolk and also other produce made by Slow Food members and producers in Italy and France. At the Holme event a talk was given to guests about the goals and ethos of the Slow Food movement in England Internationally and we also had several local members offer to carry on assisting with events, workshops and talks in Norfolk over the coming year.
Our first Slow Food Norwich event in 2015 was held in early February at the popular Cafe and Deli in the historic town of Holt in north Norfolk where we held a workshop and several talks about Slow Food Norwich and also to promote the new Slow Food Anglia regional structure which will come into place in the spring this spring. Wells Deli is one of the most well known and popular Cafes in north Norfolk and we were pleased to be part of one of the first events held there in their new premises in this beautiful historic market town.
We were pleased that several members of Slow food Norwich were able to attend the launch of the new Slow Food market in central London on Sunday 1st March. This is the first Slow Food weekly market to open in London since the last market which was located on the South Bank closed a few years ago due to the rising rental costs at the time. The new market is located in the central courtyard of the prestigious Rosewood Hotel in Holborn and the hotel has been very supportive of the whole project and worked closely with Shane Holland the Chair of Slow Food UK and leader of Slow Food London. There was a very continental feel to the market and over thirty producers were present on the first day which proved very popular with both the local population and many tourists visiting the area. We are planning to hold a similar but smaller market in Norwich and possibly Cambridge later in 2015 and this will be helped by the strong links we already have with the vibrant Slow Food London group.
Slow Food Norwich will be holding a joint social and promotional evening in Norwich on the 13th March in the St Giles area of the city. We are pleased to be having the event at the well known and very popular Louis' Deli which is famous in the city for its locally sourced produce and the quality the food available on the small but excellent menu. The event which we hope will be the first of many similar events to be held at Louis' and on this occasion it will be to promote the new Slow Food Anglia region and also the new Approved scheme which will both be launched in Norfolk in April. We will also have Slow Food members who are involved in organising the Forgotten Food Festival in Norfolk on the 6th June giving a talk about their plans for the first festival of this type to be held in England. Shane Holland from Slow Food London and Slow Food UK will be present to give a talk about the new Approved scheme will are launching in Norwich and Anglia this April and also about the current projects that Slow Food England are involved with.
This April we will be hosting a supper for Slow Food members and supporters at one of the lesser known but excellent fish restaurants in Wells next the Sea on the north Norfolk coast to promote the planned visit by members of Slow Food Norwich and Slow Food Anglia to the Slow Fish event in Genoa, Italy this May. Norfolk with its diverse and beautiful coastline and long fishing heritage has an important part to play in promoting sustainable fishing practices in the twenty first century, with Slow Food in East Anglia increasingly playing it's part in holding educational workshops and visits throughout the region in 2015 and beyond. The fish restaurants on the north Norfolk coast are famous for the quality and diversity of the fish on offer to the public and the Wells Crab House restaurant in Wells is well known in the area for the crab and other shell fish they offer.
We are looking forward to the visit by several members of Slow Food Norwich and Slow Food Anglia to the prestigious Slow Fish event held in Genoa between the 14th and 17th May. The event takes place every two years and is attended by up to 50,000 people over the three days and it is held in in the beautiful Italian coastal city of Genoa with its strong and historic links to the sea and local fishing communities. Slow Fish is the largest gathering of chefs and food businesses related to all aspects of the fishing industries throughout Europe and also several other countries throughout the world and exhibitors are located at many different venues in the centre of Genoa, while entry to these fantastic venues and shows is totally free of charge. During this years Slow Fish event we will be signing a protocol of co operation with the President and members of Slow Food Marche from the east of Italy, both areas having strong links to the sea and fishing their communities. The north Norfolk coast on the north sea has a wide variety of fish species which are not found in other areas of the UK and is also famous for it's shellfish, including the Cromer Crab, Brancaster Oysters, mussels, cockles and small lobsters.
Following the success of last year's Slow Food Norwich, food and drink Festival at the Fire Pit Camp at the village of Wendling near Swaffham in Norfolk we are now planning the first dedicated Forgotten Food Festival in England, to be held on Saturday 6th June as part of the annual Slow Food week which takes place throughout the UK. The Forgotten Food programme plays a very important part in the work that Slow Food does throughout both the UK and internationally, and we in Norfolk and the East Anglian region are passionate about helping to find and promote foods, drinks and recipes of the region before they disappear for good. In the east of England there is a long tradition of agriculture and of fishing along the long north sea coastline and we at Slow Food have been instrumental in finding some foods such as the Thornham Oyster and Norfolk Grey chicken and promoting their continued existence to the general public.
The Forgotten Food Festival will then be moving the following day, Sunday 7th June to the Slow Food Market at the prestigious Rosewood Hotel in central London. The Hotel is a passionate supporter of the Slow Food ethos they have set up the new Slow Food and Living Market to promote small artisan food producers in London. Slow food Norwich and Anglia are now working closely with the Rosewood and we expect to have at least ten of our Forgotten Foods at the Hotel on the Sunday as part of the annual Slow Food week throughout the UK. We will also be showcasing our new collection of forgotten recipes which we have put together both from East Anglia, London and also other counties such as Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire in England.
On Sunday July 5th we will have a stand at the popular Norwich Lanes Fayre, we will be in the Upper St Giles area and just near Slow Food Approved member Louis' Deli. The Lanes Fayre is held each year and over one hundred stands are located in the small streets, lanes and alleys throughout central Norwich, they are all filled with many artisan food and drink producers and many also a wide variety of other small businesses.
We have been invited along with Slow Food Anglia to attend a special two day event held by Slow Food Sicilia at the Italian Cultural Institute in Belgravia London on July 14th. Slow Food Sicilia will be hosting talks, food workshops and meetings at the Institute on the Tuesday followed by a lunch showcasing fine Sicilian food together with an olive oil tasting.Then there will be a special Sicilian evening meal for 50 at the Sicily restaurant in Epsom on the Wednesday evening. Dermott from Slow Food Anglia will be signing a Protocol of agreement with the President of Slow Food Sicilia and both groups will now be twinned and work on joint educational and cultural ventures.
In early 2016 we will be organising tours of Slow Food Sicilia producers in Sicily, this will include visits to small artisan olive oil, pasta, salami and wine producers in the south east and east of the Island. Slow Food Sicilia members will also be visiting the UK and we hope to host several events in Norwich and Cambridge in early 2016.
Friday 21st August will see our next event in Norwich, to be held at Louis' Deli in Upper St Giles in the centre of the city, the event will be from 7 until 9.30 and will be an Italian themed evening with Slow Food members and other guests. There will be talks about the Slow Food organisation in both East Anglia and in Italy, with a tasting of food and wine from the Le Marche region of eastern Italy, we have recently signed a protocol, a letter of understanding to co operate with Slow Food Marche on educational and cultural projects.
Silvia Venturini, the co ordinator of Slow Food Anglia who is originally from Le Marche will be giving a talk about both the region and its food and wine, together with a series of tastings of olive oils, cheeses, smoked meats, salami and wines this this still beautiful and undiscovered region of Italy. There will also be a chance to hear about the projects that Slow Food Anglia and Slow Food Norwich are planning for 2016 in Italy and Sicily with both Slow Food Marche and Slow Food Sicilia, including visits by the Italian groups to Norwich and other parts of East Anglia.
Old Hunstanton Beach
Gurneys Fish Shop, Burnham Market
Dragon Hall, Norwich
Trinity Guild Hall, Kings Lynn
Norwich Fixed Market
Burnham Overy Staithe
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