Oh my. We’ve come out the other end of the Rye Bay Scallop Festival. Epic is all we can say. I think in the space of a few days we ate more scallops than in the last 5 years put together.
Some highlights: we had over 80 people in our ballroom for our annual Scallop Gourmet dinner. We went to town on the decor front and dressed the table with seagrasses, coastal plants and tealights in scallop shells. You can also see from the picture below that the table was rather full of wineglasses – we always have a different wine with each course and there are quite a few courses…always makes for an enjoyable evening.
Earlier in the festival the infamous Hairy Bikers arrived in Rye (mode of transport: as you would expect) and went out to catch scallops with one of our local fisherman. Check back the number of scallops they brought back!
Festivals such as this one are so important. Yes the Rye Scallop Festival is rather focused in subject-matter, but by shining the light strongly on one local treasure, you’re reminding people that it’s little things that make life enjoyable. Why else is the Isle of Wight’s rip-roaring garlic festival so popular other than giving people the chance to get really, obsessively into a flavour for a weekend? Bring on next year, and in the meantime, what other ingredients deserve their own festivities?