The Woodbridge Shuck Shellfish Festival is back for a fifth year, from 29th September to 2nd October. The festival brings together an exciting programme of foodie offers and events to celebrate local shellfish and other local produce.
The festival’s organisers: Simpers Silver Harvest LLP, Somerleyton Private, The Crown at Woodbridge, The Tea Hut, The Bridge, The Anchor and Bubble & Squid bring together local produce, chefs, musicians and more to create a special celebration of the River Deben and the delicious produce found in and around it. Supported by sponsors, East of England Co-Op, Adnams, Gotelee and Infotex, this year’s event is set to be bigger and better than ever.
The festival begins with a new event for 2016, The Pub Trawl on Thursday 29th September. Pubs in the area will be serving up Shuck themed beer & bar food and fizz & nibbles. The popular Shuck Shack, a pop up restaurant at The Tide Mill will take place on the evenings of Friday 30th September and Saturday 1st October. Catered by Stephen David and Rebecca Mackenzie of Somerleyton Private, diners will enjoy a beautifully prepared locally-inspired menu in this unique riverside landmark.
For a more casual yet equally tasty foodie experience, The Shuck Weekender takes place in and around The Tea Hut on Saturday 1st and Sunday 2nd October from 11am until 6pm with live music all weekend by the Deben Collective and other artists. Visitors can feast on de-constructed moules frites, fresh fish from the Deben, Squid, Pasta and Paella while enjoying something cold from the bar. There will be ice creams and non-fishy options too such as Woodbridge 5th Sea Scouts who will be serving up burgers. For the kids there will be plenty of entertainment throughout the weekend as well as a kids’ menu.
New for this year, families can book children, aged 1 – 8 years old, onto one of the Splat Messy Play sessions (see website for details), visit Suffolk Wildlife Trust for a Marine talk and family quizzes and join in with games and giggles at the various stands.
In a new twist, throughout the Shuck Weekender at The Tea Hut, there is the opportunity to buy freshly caught fish from Simpers and take it to The Crown’s adjoining stall to have it cooked to your liking right then and there.
The celebration of local seafood spills from the river right through the historic market town, with Shuck Specials on the menus at the town’s many restaurants, pubs and cafes.
The Festival concludes with the highly anticipated annual ‘Safari Supper’ on Sunday 2nd October. Diners will meet at The Crown for drinks and canapes and go on to enjoy a three course meal. Moving between The Crown itself and the closely situated The Table and The Anchor.
Jonathan Simper, co-founder of the Woodbridge Shuck, said: “It’s the fifth year of The Shuck and it will be the best yet. We have fabulous shellfish and other local produce prepared by top local chefs. If you’ve not been before, come along and have a look. There’s plenty for people who aren’t so keen on fish and shellfish. We hope as many people as possible will come along and enjoy great local food with friends and family.”
Gotelee Senior Partner and Shuck Sponsor, Brian Morron, said: ‘Since our amalgamation with Margary and Miller in Woodbridge and Melton we have been keen to become involved with all aspects of the community. What better way to be involved than shucking shellfish!’
Michaela Woodley, from The Bridge – part of the organising team, added: “We are so excited about this event. It’s a whole weekend of foodie family fun right here in Woodbridge. There really is something for everyone. It’s a great opportunity to come down, chill out and appreciate everything that’s great about Woodbridge.”
The event continues to be supported fully by Choose Woodbridge, The Tide Mill Living Museum and this year has benefited from a grant from SCDC Economic Services through their Sustainable Town and Village Economies programme.
For the latest news, menus and events follow the festival on Twitter @ShuckFestival or on Facebook at www.facebook.com/ShuckFestival. For more information, please visit www.thewoodbridgeshuck.org.uk or text SHUCK to 66777.