Autumn is upon us and Edinburgh has more than a few exciting food and drink events to sample over the next few weeks.
From a meat and music festival to wine tasting at the Balmoral there’s no shortage of fun food and drink-filled events to try out. Here Sean Murphy picks ten of the best . . .
Gin Festival Edinburgh 2017
Described as “the UK’s biggest gin festival”, this touring event is making its way back to Edinburgh for its annual visit, bringing over 100 different gins from all over the world to the Capital. This year, there’ll be even more exclusive gins and in line with Scotland’s reputation for being the biggest producer of gin in the UK, a dedicated Scottish gin bar. Hosted over four sessions, expect live music, food, cocktails and plenty of masterclasses. Drinks will be served using a token system (£5 per token for a gin and mixer). You’ll be given a Gin Festival Copa Balloon Glass and a gin brochure on entry.
Visit: The Corn Exchange. Open today and tomorrow.
Edinburgh Cocktail Weekend
The organisers believe this new festival will be Scotland’s biggest ever cocktail event, with 7000 people expected to attend. More than 50 cocktails have been specially curated for the weekend and all you need to do is purchase your wristband for £6 and gain access to all of the aforementioned cocktails for £4 across the cream of the crop of the capital’s best bars. You can also get access to free masterclasses and tastings, pop-up spaces (such as the incredible SKY bar) and free entry to some of the city’s best late night venues.
Visit: various bars and venues across the city. Runs today and tomorrow.
Oktoberfest Comes to Edinburgh
For the beer fans out there, Oktoberfest rolls into town for a day of German beers, bratwurst and lederhosen. Expect Oompah bands, authentic German food stalls, German beers in Steins and of course a Bavarian style beer hall.
Visit: ATIK, 3 W Tollcross, open today until 3am.
Cocktails in the City
It’s all go for cocktail fans this month with Cocktails in the City also making their annual return to the Capital. Celebrating their fifth anniversary in Edinburgh, CITC brings together some of the city’s best bars – including 56 North, Hoot the Redeemer and The Voyage of Buck – and the country’s best drinks brands – with the likes of Arbikie and Edinburgh Gin making an appearance – all together under one very picturesque roof. What you need to know: Tickets are £12 and include a cocktail on arrival. Additional cocktails are £6.50.
Visit: The Mansfield Traquair, Mansfield Place. Runs Thursday, October 12 & Friday, October 13
Edinburgh Coffee Festival
Bringing together 40 speciality coffee and tea exhibitors and some of the best coffee cocktails, street food and cakes around, the Coffee Festival, which is returning after a hugely successful past few years, will see 300 java lovers head for the Corn Exchange to celebrate their love for Edinburgh’s burgeoning coffee scene. Edinburgh-based Vegware will furnish all exhibitors with fully compostable cups, so there’s no need to worry about harming the planet while enjoying yourself at the festival.
Vistit: The Corn Exchange. Open Saturday October 14.
Scotland Food and Drink Show
The Scotland Food and Drink Show is a two day event showcasing a superb range of vendors from across Scotland. A great event for all foodies, you can sample products, meet the makers and learn more about where your food comes from. The show will also feature Cooking Demonstrations, talks from Scotland’s top chefs and influential people within the sector, Masterclasses, a Children’s Area, and a Careers’ area. All of that and more – and did we forget to mention that it’s free?
Visit: Royal Highland Centre, Lowland Hall. Open Saturday, October 14 & Sunday, October 15
Meats & Beats Festival
So unique, the organisers had to coin the term “meatylicious” to explain it. Think amazing meaty street food paired with music (from the past five decades) and you’re about half way there. Throw in sizzling steaks, sauce-dripping tower burgers, racks of sticky ribs, buckets of chicken wings and add a dash of disco, 90s dance and plenty of pop and you’ve got yourself a formula for a great day out.
Visit: Assembly Roxy, 2 Roxburgh Pl. Open Friday, October 20 to Sunday, October 22
Scottish Vegan Festival
Following a hugely successful event last year, the city that’s won more awards for being vegetarian and vegan friendly than we can count will once again play host to the Scottish Vegan Festival. A chance for vegans, vegetarians, flexitarians and omnivores to celebrate all things vegan, there will be thought-provoking talks, stalls, cooking demos and of course plenty of delicious plant-based food – both hot and cold.
Visit: The Corn Excange. Open Sunday, October 22
Edinburgh Festival of Wine
Wine expert Tom Cannavan has created an unmissable day for Auld Reekie’s wine lovers, with more than 300 brilliant wines on offer for tasting – all included in your ticket price. There’s also some fantastic discounts if you choose to buy some bottles to quaff at home, and a superb programme of masterclasses meaning you’ll have fun regardless of whether you are a novice or are closer to the sommelier side of the scale.
Visit: The Balmoral, Princes Street. Open: Saturday, November 4
Edinburgh Tequila Festival
Embark on a Tequila tasting journey with over 30 Tequilas to try out. The organisers have also promised a huge array of live entertainment including traditional Mexican dancers and a Mariarchi band and Mexican Street Food stalls. Tickets cost £20 and on arrival each guest will be handed a complimentary shot, and a Tequila Bible to guide them through their tasting experience.
Visit: ATIK, 3 W Tollcross. Open: Saturday, November 18