Festival shall be in best possible taste

Sue Newland  from Coc Chocolatiers will be at the festival, which starts today with an international market
Sue Newland from Coc Chocolatiers will be at the festival, which starts today with an international market
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Do you fancy trying lemon meringue chocolate? Or is dark rose more suitable to your palate?

Maybe you prefer your bar to be flavoured with chilli or perhaps you’d rather having a go at lavender.

Trying new things is what Southsea Food Festival is all about and the owners of Coco Chocolatiers will be encouraging visitors to taste some new flavours.

Some of the chocolates already sell well in the shop in Marmion Road, Southsea and others are new but the benefit of the festival is they’re all being brought to a wider audience.

‘The festival is great for local food businesses,’ says Sue Newland, who runs Coco Chocolatiers with her daughter Holly. ‘It’s nice to introduce people to new products which we can do when we’re giving out free tasters.’

The chocolatiers will also be selling plenty of products, focusing this year on smaller chocolate bars.

‘I think people are strapped for cash so we’re going for smaller things,’ says Sue.

She adds: ‘It’s great for us because we’re out with other Southsea traders and really feel part of the community. And I think it’s good for the people who come because they get to talk to us. More and more, these days, people are interested in products that are made locally and want to find out all about them.

‘But apart from that, it’s a really good event, with cooking in the street and music.’

The fifth Southsea Food Festival is this weekend but the culinary theme kicks off today with the arrival of the international market in Palmerston Road precinct.

The festival gets under way at 10am on Saturday.

A diverse array of food grown and produced by farmers from the surrounding area will be on show, and available to buy.

Audiences will gather at the ‘Big Top’ kitchen theatre, hosted this year by Heart FM and their Angels, featuring culinary master classes and tasting sessions with Southsea restaurateurs and visiting chefs

Other businesses taking part in the festival include Kampan Thai, Bangkok Cafe, Kerri’s Catch (fish) and My Mum’s Cakes.

On Sunday, Hampshire Farmers’ Market will arrive and join in the mix.

The free event runs between 10am and 4pm on Saturday and Sunday. The International Market runs from today until Saturday.