Everyone is familiar in one form or another with whiskeys, whether it be blended, single-malt, or single barrel. But how many of us have really been familiarized with the cuisine from the 8 Celtic nations? Those nations are Scotland, Ireland, Brittany France, Manx, Wales, Cornwall, Galacia & Asturies France. Even though they have a similar potato-based diets, each region has it’s own unique twist to their local cuisines. Thanks to Chef Eric McBride and many other Historical Chefs like him, there has been a rise in Scottish/Celtic food popularity with Americans in the past years. Not only is he helping bring back to light the traditional fare of the Great Clans, but he is pioneering a renaissance with the cuisine by modernizing ancestral roots-grounded recipes in his own unique interpretations. As it is unfortunate that there really are no Scottish restaurants to try in California, I hope the Chef McBride and the rest of the Chefs inspire an influx for communities to delve into the rich cultures of the Celtic 8.
For all those that get to attend this weekend, we will be lucky enough to sample Chef McBride’s (whom originally started his career off as a Historian and found his calling as a Celtic Chef) dishes at the 23rd Annual ScotsFestival which will also be showcasing the International Highland Games, all at The Queen Mary. And of course, yes, there WILL be a special area for adults to do whiskey and beer tastings. I, for one, will make sure to get there as early as possible to take in as much of the culture as I can. From the live bands/pipers, to the games throughout the day, to the various forms of haggis/neeps & tatties/and blood pudding.
The festival will run this weekend, Saturday and Sunday from 9am-6pm; with a special Robert Burns Supper on Saturday night that starts at 6:30pm. I hope to run into many of you there. And if I can find me a proper kilt, I shall be rocking it at the festival! Feel free to follow me as I eat and drink my way through the festival on Instagram and Twitter.