Abandoned Victorian arches in the Old Town are set to be transformed into the Capital’s first festival celebrating Belgium food, music and art.
Four of the disused New Waverley arches, that run along East Market Street will be home to a beer garden and pop-up street food market, selling Belgian-inspired classics such as waffles, moules-frites, steak-frites, and traditional Belgium beef stew carbonade flamande.
The three-day festival, which begins on July 21, Belgium National Day, will be free to attend.
Organised by beer sellers Heverlee, the Belgium Micro Festival will feature sets by popular electronic DJs, including Edinburgh’s Linkwood, Charlie Bones of London’s underground radio station NTS and LuckyMe Record’s Éclair Fifi, a Scottish DJ who has previously held slots on BBC Radio 1.
And in a nod to Belgium’s worldwide reputation for contemporary street art, artist Fraser Gray, who runs arts organisation LeithLate’s successful Shutter Project and Mural Projects, will be inviting a range of street artists to create one-off murals, taking cues from Belgian life.
A previous festival in Glasgow proved a huge hit with patrons.
Vendors from street food market The Pitt in Leith will venture to the Old Town for the festival.
“The Pitt are delighted to be part of this pop-up in an unused part of the city centre and look forward to making a few tasty Belgium dishes with Heverlee,” said director of The Pitt Hal Prescot.
Heverlee’s senior brand manager, Wendy Espie, said: “When it comes to creating the ultimate summer beer garden atmosphere, there are fewer countries in the world that do it better than Belgium.
“We’re really excited to bring together a host of amazing talent to celebrate some of our favourite aspects of contemporary Belgian culture right here in Scotland.
“The New Waverley arches is a really unique space and we can’t wait to let people see what we’ve got planned there.
“If Glasgow’s Heverlee at Tontine was anything to go by, we’re sure this is going to be an amazing three days.”
Guests will have the chance to enjoy Heverlee pilsner-style lager, the recipe of which was inspired by master brewer, Joris Brams who found descriptions of a historical beer brewed by monks at the Abbey of the Order of Premontre, Leuven in 1129.
Guests will also get to try two limited Heverlee brews, created in Belgium especially for the event and revealed on the opening night.
Cans will also be available at New Waverley, before they hit the shelves of shops and bars later this year.
Following their appearance at this year’s Hidden Door festival, Edinburgh’s projection specialists KinoKlub will also be installing an immersive art installation in one of the arches, filling the space with Belgian themed animations and scenes from classic Belgian cinema.
The final day of the festival will also see a Picture House pop-up take over one of the arches for an exclusive screening of two feature-length films.