Sunday, 28 August 2016

Street Food Circus 2016

It's rather unlikely but just in case you are not aware Street Food Circus (SFC) is back and after several visits already I can report they have nailed it! The cracking new location in Sophia Gardens gives it that true festival feel complete with mud, but in a good way. It's easy to get to with public transport and parking with in a short walk. Facilities are much improved, there is even a change table for the little ones, which for parents like me is good to know! Then there is the food, so much food!

There is something for everyone and over my few visits the following dishes are what I went for: 

Purple Poppadom

Keralan Fried Chicken and Chips (£8): moist pieces of perfectly cooked chicken with Anand George's expert use of spices is nothing short of sublime. Accompanied with spiced fries, pickles, chutney and thousand island sauce. Food this good needs to be applauded. It's pretty much a complete meal and I know it's a bold statement but probably my favourite dish at SFC so far!

Mighty Soft Shell Crab

Soft Shell Crab Tempura (£5): served in a wrap with some sweet chilli sauce. This although lovely to look at was a bit greasy (not in a good way) and bizarrely bland, the wrap also had more than a whiff of being straight out of a packet. 


Deep fried beef shin and mozzarella bites (£5): uber slow cooked shin of beef, encased and deep fried. Very rich and unctuous with much needed texture from the coating. Super delicious. Couldn't really taste any cheese though.

Seadog Foods

Sakana Burger (£6.50): crispy haddock fillet, perfectly cooked and topped with spicy mayo, sweet soy, pickled 'slaw and Cornish seaweed all nestled into a super soft bun. They really have nailed it with this dish, bursting with flavour and texture this is a must if you visit SFC. 

Sea Side Popcorn (£5): Crispy mussels, cockles and fish with chilli vinegar, seaweed salt and pickled 'slaw. This dish took them all the way to the British Street Food Awards Finals 2015 and they only went and won the whole thing! Each mouthful is a crunchy bite of the sea. Again bags of flavour, salty, spicy and perfect with a cold beer.

Brother Thai

Thai Roti (£5): We opted for the sticky spicy beef filling which came in  warm paratha wrap. The paratha crispy on the outside with a lovely flaky texture and the beef full of classic Thai flavours all lifted by a super fresh 'slaw and herbs. Very addictive and again perfect with a beer.

Talking of beer Singha have their own tent this year selling their super refreshing beers to the masses.

The Bearded Taco

Gin and tonic tempura avocado taco (£5): topped with honey and lemon 'slaw, chipotle aioli served with salsa and tacos. The taco reassuringly robust to hold everything together, the tempura avocado was lovely, crispy giving way to soft avocado the 'slaw and aioli providing the zing. Essentially summer in a taco.

I promise that's the last time I mention 'slaw in this blog post!

Early Bird Bakery

Mini Doughnut bites (£5):  We opted for  the Malt-ilda; espresso sugar, malt choc sauce, honey comb and fudge pieces. Warm doughnuts which are very good on their own but topped with the above combine to make a really rather perfect sweet treat. Great with a strong coffee.

And there is more! Feast Clwb is also new for this year. A supper club inspired dining experience set under canvas to create an intimate and celebratory culinary event. Each Feast Clwb will feature a different host the likes of Milgi, Lia's Kitchen, Dusty Knuckle and Anand George. I went to the Milgi Feast Clwb and had a fantastic time. Great atmosphere, company and the raw blackcurrant cheesecake with almond and date crust was probably the best version of cheescake I have tried. 

The beauty about SFC is that I haven't even scratched the surface! There is still so much to try. It's great to have SFC back, to see the now iconic big top up, people having a lovely time and enjoying food from vendors that love what they do. More space, more food and evidently more 'slaw!