Grillstock BBQ & Blues festival steals the show
This weekend saw the return of Grillstock, the American style BBQ and blues festival, and what a weekend it was. This festival, held in the Lloyds amphitheatre on Bristol’s harbourside was everything that we had hoped for and more.
Grillstock is still in it’s infancy and this was only its second year but it’s popularity has undoubtedly grown from last year. Despite sharing the weekend with the St Paul’s carnival, people still turned out in force to sample the many barbecued delights. The array of food on offer was amazing and the smell of slow cooked pork filled the air. This really did put our barbecue attempts to shame. Not a burnt sausage or anaemic burger in sight!
There seem to be food festivals popping up all over the place in recent years, but Grillstock stands out from the crowd. It is so much more than just a food festival and we were kept entertained for the entire weekend with an impressive musical line-up and appearances from The Invisible Circus. Hayseed Dixie, The Martin Harley Band and Sarah Savoy and the Francadians were all a part of the musical offering.
There were deckchairs available in front of the stage and Fatboy beanbags dotted around the steps. This all helped to create a relaxed atmosphere and was a perfect place to enjoy a cider from the Orchard Pig bar.
18 teams battled it out over the weekend for the Weber sponsored “King of the Grill” competition and thoughtfully they had installed a tasting tent so that everybody could queue up to sample some of the entries. We spoke to many people who thought that his was a great idea, especially after watching some of these amazing dishes being cooked.
On Saturday afternoon there was a chilli eating competition on the main stage, where members of the public battled it out to win a BBQ. The crowds were cheering as one-by-one the red faced entrants surrendered to the scovilles!
There were so many highlights from this 2-day festival that it would be impossible to list them all. It is, in our opinion the best food festival in the UK (and we have been to many). The friendly atmosphere, fantastic food and great family entertainment of Grillstock has warmed our hearts and we would go back every weekend if it was possible. Roll on Grillstock 2012!