On the 21st of this month Adam and I went to the Bishop Auckland Food Festival for the second year running in hope to see our favourite pizza van as well as sample food from other local traders. We were praying for the freakish warm weather we’ve been having to stick around for us as we all know the sun makes a day out 100% better! The Bishop Auckland Food Festival is such a fun annual event especially if you’re a foodie like me so I thought I’d share my day with you from how we travelled there from Middlesbrough, what we ate and what we bought to take home with us.
Last year we struggled to get parked so this time we decided to get the train from Middlesbrough to Bishop Auckland so we could enjoy a few cans on the train and not have to worry about getting parked. The train journey took just under an hour and was a great way to see the North East from a different point of view. The train was around £13 return which I think is very reasonable.
We were lucky enough to have glorious sunshine for the whole day which resulted in Adam having to run into Halfords for some sunglasses as he forgot to bring his. As we came out of Halfords the Scream for Pizza van came around the corner and parked up by the train station. As we were expecting to see them at the food festival we went over to ask if they will be going back but due to other pizza suppliers being at the festival they decided to park up at the train station for the day instead. They said they’d be sticking around until later so we decided to pop back later and grab a pizza for tea before our train home.
We arrived in Bishop Auckland around lunch time so by this point we were pretty hungry. Our first purchase was made at the Sghetti Monster where Adam ordered the Short Rib Tickler. This was a portion of spaghetti with slow cooked tomato ragu with beef short rib and pork shoulder topped with parmasan, herbs and croutons (£6). I had a mouthful and it was really tasty, it was like a restaurant quality pasta dish that you could walk along with! I wasn’t really in the mood for pasta and decided to keep wandering around for something else, that’s when I spotted Albion Gourmet Grilled Cheese.
Specialising in gourmet grilled cheese sandwiches, I couldn’t resist trying one. I went for the Don’t Go Bacon My Heart sandwich (£5) which was two thick slices of toasted bread filled with Durham Camembert, smoked bacon, rocket and spicy tomato chutney. This was the first time I had tried Camembert and it tasted like the smell of smelly feet but bizarrely I still enjoyed it, especially the runny texture. I would have liked the bacon to be crispier but other than that is was a lovely sandwich and a great change to the usual food suppliers you see at these food festivals.
Whilst I was waiting for my sandwich to be made and grilled, Adam went on the hunt for some drinks and came back with some plastic flutes of prosecco garnished with strawberry slices from The Petit Prosecco Company. We also got some lovely cocktails from another stall which unfortunately I didn’t catch the name of! I got a cherry coke sour stacked up with lots of ice which was really refreshing in the sunshine.
I was practically jumping for joy when I seen the Brown & Blond sign amongst the bustling crowd. They are absolutely up there as being the best brownies I have ever tasted and what I love most about them is that they offer such a huge range of flavours to choose from. My all time favourite is chocolate orange which you can taste so well throughout the brownie however I couldn’t settle at just getting one this time so we got a six. Two to give to Adam’s niece and nephew and two each for us. We picked chocolate orange, triple chocolate, Oreo blondie, Kinder Bueno, butterscotch and cookie dough. They are so dense, moist and such a generous portion size that you could share a slice with a friend and still feel satisfied. The Oreo blondie is to die for and is possibly my new favourite!
After we filled our tums for a few hours, we wandered round the other stalls for things we could take home with us. Adam bought some organic peanut and almond butters from The Nut Roaster, some Weeper Reaper hot chilli sauce from Farradays Tasty where he also got a small taster of some paste which blew his head off (and that takes some doing!). We also bought a bottle of champagne from The Perfect Tipple with gold flakes in that we’re going to drink next weekend to celebrate Adam’s new job.
We also bought some pies from Pie Jacker‘s to have for our tea on Sunday, we got the chicken and leek pie and the steak, Guinness and black pudding pie. I LOVE steak pies but was hesitant about the flavour of this one so Adam and I decided to have half of each pie. They were both quite nice but unfortunately despite the hype of Pie Jacker’s I’ve got to admit that I’ve tasted bester pies. I found the steak pie quite dry and the chicken one quite bland.
After a considerable amount of drinks in the Whetherspoon beer garden, we headed off back to the train station around an hour before our train was due so we could get a pizza from our favourite pizza truck. We went for a classic with Our Margaret (£5) which was a margarita and a Mr Blue Spice (£6) which was a combination of tomato sauce, mozzarella, pecconno, spicy nduja sausage, gorgonzola, basil and a drizzle of chilli honey. We shared the pizzas outside the train station whilst chatting to some other people and enjoying the rest of the sunshine – the perfect end to a great day.
1000 words later and I’m done. I didn’t even plan to write this post either! Thanks for sticking with me if you made it to the end, I hope you enjoyed reading this post. I’ve been away a little while but I have a lot of content to come over the next few weeks so keep an eye out.