Argyll is renowned for its incredible produce, from fabulous seafood to world-class whisky. Argyll also has a reputation for being able to throw a good party, with a huge array of festivals and events taking place throughout the year. So it’s really something special when you combine the two! You’ll find a feast of great food and drink festivals and events in Argyll & The Isles, all celebrating the region’s wonderful produce and producers. There’s often some great music and entertainment thrown into the mix as well. Here are ten Argyll food and drink festivals that you can’t miss.
Campbeltown Malts Festival (21st to 24th May 2019)
Discover Campbeltown’s unique whisky heritage at the Campbeltown Malts Festival. During the four-day event, Springbank Distillery, Mitchell’s Glengyle Distillery, Glen Scotia Distillery, Beinn an Turic Distillery and Cadenhead’s will come together to host a wide range of events which will celebrate the quality spirits produced from each. Expect distillery tours, masterclasses, special bottlings and more in various venues around Campbeltown in beautiful Kintyre. There’s also a special screening of ‘Scotch: A Golden Dram’ at Campbeltown Picture House.
Find out more
Islay Festival of Music and Malt (24th May to 1st June 2019)
For more delicious drams, make your way to the Hebridean islands of Islay & Jura for Fèis Ìle. People travel from across the world for this week-long celebration of the island's unique culture, music and single malt whiskies. It’s a great way to discover the distilleries of Islay and neighbouring Isle of Jura, with each distillery holding an open day and special events. The week is full of ceilidhs, guided walks and more.
Kames Producers Market (25th May 2019)
Don’t miss the chance to visit the Kames Producers' Market on Argyll’s Secret Coast in Cowal. It’s a great way to meet the local producers and discover an array of local goodies, including saltmarsh lamb, local cheese, freshly roasted coffee, homemade goodies, local crafts, artisan breads, chutneys, jams and much more. There's also a fantastic pop-up cafe serving homemade cakes, coffees and teas.
Find out more
FyneFest (31st May to 2nd June)
Organised by the folks at Fyne Ales, FyneFest is a celebration of great beer, great food and great music! What’s more, it’s kid- and dog-friendly, so you can bring the whole family. Beer is the star of the show at FyneFest, with no less than five bars to choose from and cask and keg offerings from over 35 of the best breweries in the UK and Europe. There are also some great food stalls serving up tasty local food.
Makers & Producers Fair, Hill House (15th & 16th June 2019)
Support independent producers at this fair located inside the recently completed 'Box' at Hill House, the Charles Rennie MacKintosh masterpiece in Helensburgh. Enjoy lunch in the new café or from the independent street food truck. As well as the getting the opportunity to sample local produce, you’ll also get to see the house like never before from the walkways around and over the roof.
Tarbert Seafood Festival (6th & 7th July)
Celebrate the seaside at this weekend of seafood, parades, music and fun situated around Tarbert's stunning natural harbour. You’ll find stalls lining the harbour, as well as the fisherman's market where you can watch cookery demonstrations using the local seafood. Don’t miss the crowning of the Seafood Festival Queen and her princesses and the festival procession of floats led by the seafood queen and Mid Argyll Pipe Band.
Plant it! Grow it! Eat it! (6th & 7th July 2019)
Kids will love this event at beautiful Geilston Gardens near Helensburgh. Plant a seed, watch it grow over the summer and hopefully turn into something you can eat! You'll make a plant pot from old newspaper, then plant some vegetable seeds and take them home to nurture. There’s also the opportunity to visit the Kitchen Garden and identify the fruits and vegetables growing using a spotter trail sheet.
Cove & Kilcreggan Ale (28th September)
If you love real ales, then don’t miss this ale festival. It takes place in the Cove Burgh Hall. As well as lots of lovely real ales, food is served all day, there’s a family area and live music.
Colonsay Food and Drink Festival (9th to 23rd October)
Finish the year with a fabulous foodie event on the tiny island of Colonsay. Many events are on offer every day, including lots for children, craft workshops, guided walks, foraging, preserving/bottling and beer, wine and truffle tastings.
Taste Islay & Jura (20th to 22nd September)
This new food and drink festival on the islands of Islay & Jura promises to be a cracker! There are lots of events being planned, focusing on food, drink and foraging on these stunning Hebridean islands.
Many of the other Argyll festivals and events will feature local and food and drink too. Take a look at the events calendar for more inspiration.