The farmers, growers, chefs & producers behind the Taste East Devon Food Festival
The farmers, growers, chefs & producers behind the Taste East Devon Food Festival L to R: Sophie The PIG-at Combe, John Hammond Ebb Tides, George Dart Darts Farm, Phil David the Butchers at Darts Farm, Salar Brock Lympstone Manor, Michael Caines Lympstone Manor, Patrick McCaig Otter Brewery. [Photo credit:Becky Craven]

Taste East Devon Festival, one of the region's most popular food festivals, is returning in 2024 with an array of exciting new events! This year's festival promises to be more delicious than ever before, showcasing the finest local produce, talented chefs and unique dining experiences that East Devon has to offer.

The festival, which runs from the 14th to the 22nd of September, will feature a diverse range of events and activities that cater to all tastes and interests. From exclusive dining experiences, cooking courses, tasting evenings and family festival days, to getting hands-on in the apple orchards or getting knee deep harvesting seaweed, there is something for everyone to enjoy.

The collaboration of the local businesses involved is what sets this 9-day festival apart from other foodie events. It is kicking off at the ‘Ottery Food and Families Festival’ (14th September); with chefs from The PIG-at Combe and Lympstone Manor taking to the demo stage.

The ‘East Devon Food Heroes Dinner’ in The Farm Table at Darts Farm sees the region’s growers, farmers, winemakers, brewers & cidermakers whose ingredients make up the 4-course menu come together for an evening of producer stories, knowledge & feasting (18th September). Lyme Bay Winery join forces with Quicke’s Cheese for some seriously delicious tastings at the Cellar Door (multiple dates). Jack in the Green welcome Hanlons Brewery for their ‘Meet the Brewer’ evening; enjoy a 4-course menu paired with 4 half pints of Hanlons beer (19th September).

Tipples & tastings

For those wanting to get out amongst the vines in the region’s amazing vineyards, there is ample opportunity with tours at Pebblebed Vineyard (14th & 19th September), Lily Farm Vineyard (19th & 20th September), Heron Farm Vineyard (21st September) and Lympstone Manor (18th September) where you can sit back and relax with lunch in the pool house after your tour.
For those more into their beer, ‘Otter Brewery Tours’ are back by popular demand; join the team in the brewery for a plentiful amount of tasting and brewery education, and some food to soak up the beer (19th & 20th September)!

If spirits and cocktails are your tipple of choice, attend an evening at ‘Gin School’ with Sidmouth Distillery (multiple dates), where you will make your own bottle of gin to take home. Back by popular demand is Bar Buoy’s ‘Cocktail Compass’ evening (18th September), where you will be given a tour of the mixing lab before being introduced to the cocktail compass of flavours.
For the coffee lovers, discover freshly roasted, ethically sourced coffee as you take part in a guided tasting at The Coffee Factory’ (17th & 20th September) led by head-roaster Danny.
Fun for the family

As well as foodie demos, the ‘Ottery Food & Families Festival’ will be home to market stalls, street food & entertainment that is guaranteed to be fun for the whole family. Be sure to head
to the Taste East Devon tent to meet the producers who will be sampling their delicious food and drink.
Join the team at Darts Farm for their ‘Real Food Festival’ (16th September); in an increasingly ultra-processed world, this day of tastings is to help you rediscover real food and connect with the people who grow and produce it; with plenty on tastings from their in-house experts and local artisans!
Rounding off the 9-day festival is the renowned ‘Party at the Pig’ (22nd September), where you can expect live music, kitchen garden tours, mini treatments, Kitchen Garden cocktails, local ales, all while scoffing and troughing a delicious BBQ whilst taking in the beautiful location.

Hands-on experiences

There is also opportunity to get hands on with the producers. Join the team at Courtney’s of Whimple for their ‘Big Pick’, where the gates to their ancient Whiteways orchard will once again be opened for guests to explore, pick and press apples or simply relax and listen to live music with family and friends (21st September).

Learn about the benefits of seaweed and how you can incorporate it into your everyday life as you go ‘Seaweed Harvesting’ with Ebb Tides (19th September). There is also opportunity to forage with the team at River Cottage, whose ‘Seasonal Nutrition for a Healthy Gut’ (22nd September) event takes you around the beautiful grounds foraging, as you learn fermentation techniques and how to include 30 plants into your diet every week.

For the budding bakers, master the art of sourdough before tucking into a farmhouse lunch at the award-winning Glebe House (18th September). Mina’s Cookery School in Kilmington will also be sharing their sourdough secrets in a half-day workshop (19th September). Or join the team for ‘A Day at Otterton Mill’ (15th September), and celebrate the 1,000-year history of milling with a day of tasting & baking.
Brush up on your barbecue skills with the team at High Grange with a full day at ‘Fire School’, come prepared to learn, eat and laugh!

Dining experiences

For those looking for a unique dining experience, with local produce at the heart, there are some exciting new events in the mix this year. Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s River Cottage is embracing seasonal, local bounties at their ‘Long Table Feast’ (14th September) with dishes
made up of local, organic & wild food. Gather round for a long-table supper at High Grange as you tuck into their ‘5-Mile Menu’ (21st September). The Salty Monk are pairing their 6-course ‘Devon Plate Menu’ with an English wine flight for another evening of local feasting (18th September).
Also new to the festival this year is the Farm2Fork ‘Taste of Devon’ BBQ (21st September). Enjoy an informative tour of their organic and regenerative farm before tucking into a delicious BBQ, prepared by guest chefs Sam White, of Fortnum & Mason, and James Whetlor, barbecue chef and author.
For something a little different, join the team at The Donkey Sanctuary for their Nourishment & Nature evening (17th September); spend some time with the donkeys before tucking into a nutritional 2-course meal at The Kitchen.

There is of course chance to try the local catch. Enjoy the bounties of the beautiful coast at The Salutation Inn's Devon Seafood Supper (19th September) when you can expect to find locally landed mussels, crab and lobster on your plate. New to the itinerary this year is the ‘Exmouth Mussel Hustle’ at Bumble and Bee (20th September), where you will celebrate the seaside in style with Moules Mariniere, crusty bread and steamed samphire. Dukes Seaside Inn adds to the fishy theme with their Devon Seafood Supper (20th September).

Throughout the whole festival, some of the region’s most iconic restaurants will be running exclusive menus and specials made up of East Devon produce; tuck in at The Jack in the Green, Mickey’s Beach Bar and Restaurant, Rockfish Exmouth and Topsham’s South West Pizza Co. Head to the Taste East Devon Festival website for dates, times and menus!

"We are delighted to be launching the fourth year of the Taste East Devon Food Festival with our most diverse range of events to date," said Michael Dart, founder of Darts Farm "This year, the festival continues to provide an array of truly unforgettable culinary experiences for our visitors, showcasing the world-class food and drink here on our door step and the amazing people behind the produce. Whether you're a food lover, a cooking enthusiast, or simply looking for a great day out, we invite everyone to join us and celebrate the delights of our region."

Geri Panteva, Senior Economic Development Officer, Lead on the delivery of East Devon District Council’s tourism strategy, said:
“As part of our tourism strategy we are delighted to support the annual Taste East Devon festival to highlight East Devon as a top foodie destination. The festival puts the spotlight on the outstanding producers, growers and creators of the first-class food and drink offer in East Devon. The range of events create opportunities for both local residents and visitors to experience East Devon’s local, seasonal and sustainable produce and hospitality. From showcasing award-winning wines to the freshest seafood, we hope the festival will help to boost this important part of the East Devon economy.”

The 9-day celebration is kindly supported by founder members Darts Farm, Lympstone Manor, The PIG-at Combe, Otter Brewery, The Donkey Sanctuary, Mazzard Farm and East Devon National Landscape, and participating businesses Lyme Bay Winery & Ebb Tides. With great thanks to sponsors East Devon District Council, Ashfords, NFU Mutual Tiverton & Honiton Agencies, SunGift Solar and Goosemoor Foodservice.

To find the full programme of events visit the official Taste East Devon Food Festival website at Details of how to book each event and accommodation providers can be found on the website. To stay up-to-date follow @tasteeastedevon on Instagram and Facebook.