Could it be happening? Could things be starting to return to normal just a little? Could the events we know and love be sliding back into our calendar?
It certainly looks like that might be the case, as one stalwart event of the foodie calendar, the Manchester Food and Drink Festival (MFDF), has announced it is returning to the city this autumn.
Set to take place from Thursday 16 to Monday 27 September, MFDF’s Festival Hub will once again take place in Cathedral Gardens, alongside other fringe events across Greater Manchester.
There had been hopes to open up the Festival Hub next month as part of the postponed 2020 festival, but that has not been possible due to the enduring restrictions.
The Festival Hub will be free to enter with a limited number of tables available to book. Visitors can guarantee a table and skip queues by reserving a table for a fee of £5.
This year, the Festival is once again sponsored by Just Eat.
The MFDF awards and Gala Dinner awards ceremony will also return for 2021, following a virtual ceremony last year. Each year, the awards are a celebration of the very best of Manchester’s food and drink scene and their achievements over the past year.
The event will take place on Monday 27 September at Manchester Hall where the winners of the awards will be announced – categories will be revealed soon.
Festival Director, Alexa Stratton-Powell, said:
“This year’s Festival is about celebration, reflection and recovery. It has been an extraordinarily difficult time for the hospitality industry, and so too for the Festival and all the events companies and professionals around the country. Postponing last year’s MFDF was a very difficult decision, but the right one.
“This year we’ll come together to do what Manchester does best – support each other and our city. We want to create the most exciting Festival yet; celebrate as many of our hospitality businesses as possible and make sure everyone has a brilliant time enjoying the region’s amazing food and drink.
“We’re particularly excited to be announcing the MFDF Gala Dinner and Awards are back! They give everyone a chance to recognise the achievements of our unrivalled hospitality community. We will be back soon to announce the award categories, nominees and how to vote- giving everyone the chance to get behind their food heroes.
To reserve a table at the Hub, click here.
The Festival programme will be available on the MFDF website and via their app which can be downloaded by searching ‘Mcr Food and Drink Festival’ in the App/Android store. And to keep up to date with updates, head to the MFDF Instagram page.