The Cultural Agenda: June EditBy Alicia Grimshaw
London has gone bonkers for food-themed festivals this month. There’s everything from the Evening Standard’s epic London Food Month to a two day gin filled festival and not forgetting, Taste of London. Here’s the best events taking place in London in June. Time to plan:
Cultural Agenda: Festivals
What: Poetry & Lyrics is an annual festival curated and produced by Poet in the City, an artistic associate at Kings Place. The festival will highlight how poetry, literature, music and song have been interwoven throughout history, and how they continue to interact in contemporary culture.
Why: Over two days (9th and 10th June), Poetry & Lyrics will bring together music and poetry lovers alike in a celebration of the interplay between these art forms. The festival offers a blend of voices, from poets and spoken-word artists to talented proponents of folk, roots and experimental music. Expect everyone from PJ Harvey and Don Paterson to iconic folk singer Jackie Oates, fiddle player Scott William Albert Hartley and stone mason Will Noble.
Price: Tickets available here
Where: Kings Place, 90 York Way, London
What: Kelvedon Bash, a brand new Essex-based music, arts and culture festival will debut this summer taking place during the weekend of 30th June, 1st and 2nd July within the surroundings of Kelvedon Hall, Brentwood. More than just a festival, Kelvedon Bash is a multi layered event experience, offering an intimate feel within a Grade I-listed building and impeccable surroundings.
Why: World renowned DJ and record producer, Sister Bliss of Faithless will take to the main stage. Other iconic names include dance music legend A Guy Called Gerald and Massive Attack’s Daddy G. They will be joined by Norman Jay MBE, Brandon Block, RIVRS, Melon Bomb, Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry, DJ Mary Charteris, The Egg and Radio 1’s David Rodigan, with many more to be announced including a secret special guest performance. For art lovers, the legendary pioneers of the ‘Young British Artists Movement’ the Chapman Brothers, will host drawing masterclasses. Paul Saunders, owner of ‘Westbank Art Gallery’ and ‘Urban in Ibiza’ will curate some of the UK’s leading street artists, adding their stamp of creativity through graffiti walls, live art and interactive workshops.
Price: Tickets here.
Where: Brentwood, Essex
What: Calling all gin lovers! Junipalooza is back at Tobacco Dock for World Gin Day (10th and 11th June) What’s Junipalooza you ask? Let’s break it down, Juni: an abbreviation of gin’s signature botanical, juniper, and Palooza: a party, celebration or festival. It’s the only gin show where gin fans can meet makers and sample unique gins from all over the world.
Why: Junipalooza returns to London along with 50 distillers flying in from 14 countries including Australia, Thailand, Sri Lanka and beyond. Now in its fourth year, the fun and inclusive event shines a light on the huge variety of gins in the category, many of which are debuted in the UK at the show. There’s category-wide masterclasses, music, food, a cocktail bar hosted by the team at Beefeater Gin and of course, hundreds of tasty gins to sample in what promises to be a fun-fuelled experience for gin-thirsty fans.
Price: Tickets here
Where: Tobacco Quay, West Pennington Street, Wapping Ln, St Katharine’s & Wapping, London E1W2SF
Cultural Agenda: Food
What: From super clubs and high-end lunches, to a touring cheese bus and masterclasses in a dungeon; London Food Month will see all four corners of the capital take part in the month-long celebration of food. The Food Month will be centred around the incredible Night Market at Perks Field, Kensington – a 12-night festival of food featuring celebrity chef Angela Hartnett alongside street food traders including The Cheese Truck, Mama’s Jerk Station, Zoe’s Ghana Kitchen, Muffin Man & Co, The Duck Truck and Naughty Roti.
Why: Other highlights throughout the month include a candle lit, three-course dinner at Fortnum & Mason’s Midnight Food Hall Feast, as well as a dinner with three generations of the Roux family at Le Gavroche, where Chefs Michael and Albert will host the table while Emily prepares the dinner. On Regent Street, Hotel Cafe Royal invites guests to bring their own ingredients for chef de cuisine Armand Sablon, who will use them to create a unique, four course meal. Hawker House offers a world-class line-up of London’s best bars and bartenders to mark World Gin Day. But while there’s plenty of mouthwatering offerings throughout June, London Food Month is not just about eating – there’ll be the opportunity to learn from some of the biggest names in London’s food scene. Michelin-starred chef Daniel Galmiche will be taking groups on guided tours of Borough Market to meet the traders and discover how to find the best-quality, freshest food around, before heading to The Gore Hotel where he’ll create lunch from the spoils of his shopping trip. At the Biscuiteers Icing Cafe, guests will be able to sip Prosecco while learning the tricks of the icing trade.
Price: Tickets here.
Photo Credit: @mattthelist
What: Taste of London is set to transform Regent’s Park (14th-18th June) into a foodie wonderland this June with 40 of London’s most exciting restaurants, the world’s greatest chefs, brand new exclusive features, interactive masterclasses, delectable drinks and live entertainment for five days of gastronomical greatness.
Why: Food enthusiasts are encouraged to taste their way around the festival, with a mouth-watering menu of more than 160 taster-sized portions of signature dishes on offer from 40 of London’s latest, greatest and most exciting restaurants. Brand new to the Taste of London programme and popping up for the first time in Regent’s Park are Neil Rankin’s BBQ sensation Temper, Turkish Meyhane, Yosma, with its modern twist on a traditional Turkish tavern, Soho-based Peruvian BBQ Señor Ceviche and Duck & Waffle Local, a new fast casual chef-curated restaurant concept brought to you by the people of Duck & Waffle. There will be fine Indian dining from Mayfair’s Jamavar, Nordic-French cuisine from Aster, seasonal European from Oldroyd, and serving up dishes with a unique twist on modern and classic French cuisine will be the beautiful French Brasserie, Les 110 de Taillevent.
Price: Tickets are on sale now.
Where: Regents Park, London NW1 4NR
What: Everyone loved ice cream, but then they discovered gelato – but do you know how it originated, and more importantly the difference between ice cream and gelato? To discover all of this in one amazing event, whilst tasting some of the best gelato you can buy, visit The Gelato Festival when it returns to London for its 3rd year at Old Spitalfields Market between 16-18th June.
Why: The London Gelato Festival combines eating gelato with a competition where the top two flavours will compete in September to be crowned the European Gelato Champion (think Eurovision, for the tastebuds!). The sixteen competitors have their secret recipes, only revealing them on Friday 16th June, Saturday 17th and Sunday 18th June, from 11am to 7pm (12pm to 7pm on the Friday), at Old Spitalfields Market in London.
Price: Tickets here.
Where: 91 Brick Lan, London E1 6QR
What: From Friday 16th – 18th and 23rd – 24th June, restaurants from each side of the square will be joining forces with their neighbours for a celebration of Hoxton Square. The celebration will bring together restaurants from across the square for a weekend of feasting, music and cinema. The Hoxton Square Picnic will see Radio Alice, 8 Hoxton Square, Petit Pois, Smokey Tails and Rossopomodoro showcase the best that Hoxton has to offer with proceeds from the weekend re-invested into the square.
Why: The garden, at the heart of the square will play host to flavours from around the world with food stands and stalls lining the square’s picturesque centre. Flying the flag for Italy will be Radio Alice, plying guests with slices of their organic sourdough pizzas topped with Italian sausage, fiordilatte and aubergine and Rossopomodoro serving a selection of its authentic Neopolitan pizza from their mobile wood fired oven. BBQ experts Smokey Tails will be on hand with their signature chicken wings and traditional style halloumi flat breads enjoyed straight from the grill for a taste of authentic BBQ. Completing the line-up are 8 Hoxton Square, who will treat guests to fried baby squid with aioli and charcuterie by the plate load and Petit Pois who will bring a touch of the classic French bistro with their duck confit served with dauphinoise.
Price: The Hoxton Square Picnic runs from Friday 16th to Sunday 18th and Saturday 23rd – Sunday 24th June, entry will be free across the weekend, with food served from noon – 9pm.
Where: Hoxton Square, London N1 6PB
Cultural Agenda: Events
What: The Luna Cinema has revealed its summer programme, running from this month to October at some of the most stunning locations in the UK, including Warwick Castle, Hampton Court Palace, Lulworth Castle in Dorset and Royal Botanic Garden Edinburgh.
Why: Other season highlights include screenings of Cocktail at One New Change, overlooking St. Paul’s Cathedral in the heart of The City, Breakfast at Tiffany’s at Kenwood House, Hacksaw Ridge at the National Memorial Arboretum, Ghostbusters at Kew Gardens, The Goonies at Kensington Palace, Top Gun at Blenheim Palace, Groundhog Day at Greenwich Park, and Grease at Cardiff Castle. As always, The Luna Cinema audiences are welcome to bring along picnics and drinks to screenings. However, all events will also have fantastic hot food for sale and a full bar on site, in partnership with headline bar sponsors, Estrella Damm.
Price: Tickets here
Where: Locations across the UK. Check their website for more details.
What: This summer, Mexico’s iconic masked superheroes will be coming to the UK to take part in “The Greatest Spectacle of Lucha Libre”, an electrifying extravaganza taking place in London’s York Hall on 23rd and 24th June. Featuring some of the sport’s most exciting names and colourful characters, The Greatest Spectacle of Lucha Libre will invite spectators to experience the acrobatic, mythical, and often dangerous world of Mexico’s masked wrestlers.
Why: Presenting a stellar line-up of Mexican and British names, ‘The Greatest Spectacle Of Lucha Libre’ will feature some of the biggest stars of Lucha Libre. Mexico is currently celebrating 100 years since the birth of one of its greatest Luchadores, El Santo. El Santo was Mexico’s first and biggest Lucha Libre star in the ring and has appeared in films, comic books and is now part of Mexico’s popular culture. This year, the UK welcome’s back his son and one of Mexico’s successful luchadores, El Hijo del Santo to the ring, and his Grandson and the new heir to the iconic mask, Santo Jr. Other Luchadores entering the ring include Nacho Libre star Silver King, the Liberace of Lucha Libre Cassandro, the high- flying luchador Laredo Kid, WWE mini wrestler Mascarita Dorada and the original Octagoncito.
Price: Tickets here
Where: York Hall, 5 Old Ford Road, London E2 9PJ
Photo Credit: Daniel Berehulak
What: For the first time, The View from the Shard, at the top of London’s tallest building, will be opening its doors at dawn to welcome the summer solstice. Hosted in conjunction with Morning Gloryville, the immersive morning dance movement, the attraction will open at 4:15am on the 21st June for Sky High Solstice. Visitors will be able to gather above the capital and witness the first new rays of light in a sacred ceremony of celebration.
Why: Events will kick off at the crack of dawn with a gong orchestra and chants followed by a full summer solstice ceremony led by an Energy Priestess and four ceremonalists, each one representing one of the four elements (earth, wind, fire and water). Blessings, live music, and a morning rave will follow with an impressive line-up of some of the UK’s best DJ’s and live musicians. Morning Gloryville are renowned for featuring the hottest DJ’s around. Sky High Solstice will be no different, with the names of those performing a closely guarded secret until the day. Sky High Solstice is a unique chance to connect with the urban community, in one of the world’s most historical cities, in one of its most iconic buildings.
Price: Tickets here
Where: The Shard, 32 London Bridge St, London SE1 9SG