Tom Flint: Celebrating Brighton and Hove's hospitality scene

Sussex and the World Weekend on Hove Lawns (Photograph: Julia Claxton)
Sussex and the World Weekend on Hove Lawns (Photograph: Julia Claxton)

May is a very busy month for Brighton and Hove. Not only do we have the Brighton Arts and Fringe festivals, but we also have the Brighton and Hove Spring Harvest Food Festival.

You will not be surprised to find that I am focusing on our wonderful food and drink festival. Many of you will already be aware of the superb free event over the bank holiday weekend on Hove Lawns. This, however, is just the tip of the iceberg. With two weeks of events, pop-ups, tours and tastings, I thought I would focus on some in this week’s column.

Everything kicked off last week (May 18) with the start of Brighton Cocktail Week. By now I hope you all have your wristbands and are already tucking into mojitos across the city.

One event that I attended is the Johannishof Riesling dinner at The Chilli Pickle (May 20). The event featured the award-winning food of head chef Alun Sperring, matched with Riesling wines from one of Germany’s noblest producing regions. Tickets were £65 for five courses with matched wines from The Chilli Pickle.

Perfect for walking off the night’s excesses was Brighton food trail on Sunday (May 21), with 10 different delights to sample for just £16.

Experience a taste of west Sweden when chef Linus Palm from Hvita Hjorten joins Brighton’s own Tom Griffiths of Flank for a one off pop-up on Tuesday (May 23). Taking place at the newly opened etch. restaurant in Hove, this will be a celebration of all things Scandinavian. Expect preserves, pickles, ferments and curing aplenty. Tickets cost £55.

Three Chefs Go to the Movies takes place on Wednesday (May 24) at 1847. This fun and creative event challenges the chefs to prepare dishes inspired by their favourite movies. Expect dishes inspired by The Big Lebowski, Point Break and Pulp Fiction. The vegetarian feast will include some surprises and interactive elements and is a snip at just £35.

If you are a fan of fizz, and let’s be honest who isn’t, then don’t miss the Pommery Champagne dinner at The Harbour Hotel on Thursday (May 25). Pommery is one of France’s oldest champagne houses and you will get to sample the range alongside matched dishes cooked by chef Alex Aitken. A truly decadent event and all for £65 a ticket.

Crowning the festival is the Taste of Guernsey event at Market in Hove next Monday (May 29). Reigning Guernsey chef of the Year, Simon Mckenzie, of Bella Luce hotel, will be preparing a fabulous brunch inspired by the tastes of Guernsey. Luke Wheadon, of Wheadon’s Gin, will be presenting a gin masterclass, distilling a gin during the meal to be served at the end. Tickets cost just £35.

These are just a few of the events taking place, so get out there and support your city’s hard-working hospitality scene while having a fantastic time.

For more on Brighton Food Festival, visit: www.brightonfoodfestival.com