The Dorset Seafood Festival celebrates Dorset’s inseparable links with the sea and its fishing communities and takes place on Weymouth’s historic Waterfront over two days in July.
Opening with the Cross Harbour Oyster Challenge, up to 30 swimmers race across the cold waters of Weymouth Harbour, down an oyster and a then a welcome glass of Champagne.
A Seafood Village is created and many different species of fish and shellfish are prepared and cooked in the open for festival visitors.
Events include cooking demonstrations by local chefs, The Dorset Young Seafood MasterChef of the Year Competition, filleting demonstrations, fresh fish auctions, and stalls selling both seafood and a range of associated goods.
The festival aims to provide a better understanding of the sea, the fishermen and the difficulties they face. It also highlights the need for sustainable fishing.
The Dorset Seafood Festival is a charitable event, organised by the Weymouth Harbour Traders Association Ltd.
The Pommery Dorset Seafood Festival 2015 was on 11-12 July
Now in its 8th year, organisers are plannined ‘glam your clam’ sessions and plenty of crustacean creations, working even closer with local experts and regionally caught seafood – all of which were high on the menu.
Visitors could choose from around 100 stallholders offering a mouth-watering selection of tasty fish dishes, and with the new Sustainability Awards in place to reward exhibitors who use local seafood, it was easy to experience quality in the beautiful setting of Weymouth Harbour, including the opportunity to sit and dine in a new pop up restaurant.
The star of last year’s event was the humble whelk, thousands of which were served up. This year the team is focussed on cockles, clams and oysters with a warm ‘whelkcome’ back to the whelk, with support from top chefs including Nigel Bloxham, fresh from his appearance on BBC Two’s Food & Drink Programme, ‘Harbour Lives’ Pete Miles, Dorset’s award winning Russell Brown, Taher Jibet, Matthew Budden and the amazing Duncan Lucas of Passionate About Fish.
Sara Hicks, Commercial Director, Vranken Pommery UK said: “We believe that the Dorset Seafood Festival is the perfect event for our champagne, matching the quality of local seafood with the historical setting of Weymouth Harbour to provide an exceptional festival atmosphere. The Festival’s focus on local and regional seafood enables us to offer a lovely combination of champagne and fresh oysters as well as some exciting tapas dishes this year.”
A not for profit event, the organisers are looking to beat the £11,000 raised for The Fishermen’s Mission, the event’s chosen charity, in 2014.
For more information visit www.dorsetseafood.co.uk