21 February 2012

Gallivanting for Gourmands

Pancake day, Fat Tuesday, Bursting Day, Mardi Gras; the Tuesday preceding the first day of lent has many monikers the world over, but no matter the name, the game’s the same; gustatory gluttony of the highest order. Followed by a sustained period of abstinence from the luxuriously indulgent foods that inspired the line, ‘a moment on the lips, a lifetime on the hips.’

Pancake day certainly has global mass appeal, but it’s not the only foodstuff that has a day dedicated to it. There’s scarcely a day on the calendar that isn’t dedicated to some food or other, from Pineapple Upside-Down Cake Day (April 20th) to Quiche Lorraine Day (May 20th), and every Nana’s favourite, Corned Beef Hash Day (September 27th).  Food is somewhat of a universal language.

Like all you epicureans out there, we’re thinking past the fast, to the national food holidays the world over where we can gastronomically gourmandize til our hearts content and our bellies are fat and full. Forks at the ready…

OBIDOS INTERNATIONAL CHOCOLATE FESTIVAL, PORTUGAL, 2nd March- 25th March, 2012

This is a cheeky one, as it’s taking place smack, bang in the middle of lent when many chocoholics are trying to abstain from their one true love. But many a lent vow has been broken in the past and will be in the future. So best to break it in style, and there’s nowhere better than the Obidos International Chocolate Festival. The town plays host to chocolatiers from around the world in a three week chocolate extravaganza. There will be chocolate body painting, chocolate sculptures, a chocolate lounge, chocolate making courses and a Concourse of Chocolate. Chocolate, chocolate, chocolate.

NATIONAL BREAD WEEK, UK, 16th-22nd April, 2012

We’ve never come across, nor do we ever want to, someone who doesn’t like bread in all it’s glorious carb-filled forms. As if anybody needs an excuse to eat bread, but from the 16th-22nd April, National Bread Week grants you the liberty to make your ardent love of bread known and eat as much of it as possible. The purpose of the event is to celebrate the roll that bread plays in our daily diet’s, of which it has been a staple for over 5000 years. Hopefully during this week in April the smell of freshly baked bread will meander over the whole of the UK like a delicious, hunger inducing, yeasty cloak.

WOOLGOOLGA CURRYFEST, AUSTRALIA, 28th April, 2012

Woolgoolga Curryfest is not just about the curry, it’s also an opportunity to experience a day of authentic Australian culture; from arts, music, comedy and dance. The day is the perfect amalgamation of the three ‘c’s'; curries, culture and cuisine, and highlights the cultural diversity of this little seaside town.

SOUTH AFRICA CHEESE FESTIVAL, STELLENBOSCH, 27th to 30th April, 2012

There are few more enticing things in life than a wheel of cheese. The South Africa Cheese Festival is the premier event to view, and more importantly, taste the widest cheese selection currently available in South Africa. Whether you are a cheese connoisseur or someone who simply enjoys savouring new tastes, the SA Cheese Festival is an unmissable event in 2012′s foody calender. The 5,500 visitors that make their way to the festival everyday are proof of its calibre and of course, proof of humanities love of cheese.

NATIONAL HAMBURGER MONTH, USA, May, 2012

It could be argued that there isn’t a country in the world that could beat America when it comes to the art of hamburger eating, with a gut-busting 14 billion hamburgers eaten annually (that’s roughly 45 burgers per person each year). With such an ardent love of the humble hamburger a single day in its honour wasn’t enough, they had to dedicate a whole month to their favourite meat treat. If you’re a hamburger fan there’s probably no better place to be in May of this year.

ALBA TRUFFLE FESTIVAL, PIEMONTE, ITALY October 2012

Ahh, truffles, the earthy delicacy, beloved of foodies all over the globe, who’ll break the piggy bank for a sheer nibble of this wild fungi. October is white truffle month in Piemonte and the annual Alba truffle festival celebrating the famous ‘tartufo bianco’ truffles. The festival features a truffle market, product demonstrations, wine festival and a Worldwide truffle Auction.

If you’ve got a foody passion, no matter what it is, combine your love of food and travel on one of Black Tomato‘s bespoke holidays. From Quebec’s decadent cuisine to truffle hunting in Italy and the vineyards of Australia. Visit the website for more information and for booking.

Written By Lilee Cathcart

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