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Superflashy Newsflash!

Hear ye! Hear ye! Your favourite digital town crier has got all the goss. Clickety-click through for the lowdown on your locale.

*Foodie Klaxon*

street food marketPeckham Levels, Mercato Metropolitano, Pop Brixton… Outside-In Portsmouth. Yes, that’s right! A super trendy indoor food court is winging its way to the south coast and we are beyond excited. The brand new spot opens, near the Guildhall, on Easter weekend (Sat 20 Apr) and will be slinging trendy street food from some of the best purveyors in the region – and some from more further afield as well.

With Venezuelan offerings from Arepa2GO, Isle of Wight street food legends Dumpling Dumpling serving up “flavourbombs” and local hotspot, Hunter Gatherer Coffee bringing Vegan Daddy Macs to the masses (no idea, but it sounds awesome!) we think this is going to be a brilliant new addition to Hampshire’s foodie landscape.

SoCakeMeanwhile, over in Southampton, there’s a new opening this weekend with SO:CAKE on Marlands Road. This is a tearoom with pizazz. Think gourmet cakes, swishy cocktails and a counter made entirely of retro sweeties (sadly, its all sealed with resin so we can’t eat them all *sigh*). And, for all you Bake Off fans the fabulous Val Stones will be there for the grand opening this Sat 13 Apr.

Gunwharf street food awardsAnother date for your food-based diary is the weekend of Sat 25 – Mon 27 May, as the southern heats for the British Street Food Awards, are rocking up for the general public opinion at Gunwharf Quays, Portsmouth. Check out the best of the best with a whistlestop taste tour around the concourse.

And a bit of sad news now, Hancock’s American Kitchen Bar that opened recently in Whiteley, Eastleigh and Farnborough has shut down. The American themed chain had pretty snazzy interiors along with their US-larder menu, but if you didn’t get a chance to visit it’s now sadly gone. Such a shame.

Also, The Belle Isle in Southsea, a super popular bar and food spot seems to have unexpectedly closed its doors as of today. A sign has popped up in the window (Wed 10 Apr) thanking customers for their custom and its website has also come down. We’ll keep our ears to the ground and let you know as soon as we hear more.

Cheese Off

Motor racing legend, Jody Scheckter, now runs a biodynamic Laverstoke Park Farm near Overton. With its herd of water buffalo, Jody has made no secret about how he believes that the mozzarella manufactured by them is as good as – if not better – than Italian mozzarella. With all that fighting talk, Jody was invited to a Grand Prix of Cheese between Hampshire and a consortium of buffalo mozzarella producers from Campania, Italy, at the end of March.

Grand Prix of CheeseThe result? It was err… inconclusive, with no clear winner. Speaking on the event, Jody said “We went down with an aggressive competitive attitude but things changed quickly and they gave us such a valuable insight into their cheese making processes….It is no question that we learned a lot and came away very inspired to try different things to further improve our mozzarella.”

So all in all, it was more of a win for mozzarella eaters in general. We can’t argue with that!

New (old) openings

There’s been a flurry of activity across the region starting off with The Grosvenor in Stockbridge receiving a whirlwind refit following new ownership. Already the feedback is excellent – no more sticky carpets and the whole place apparently gleaming with new life. We’re expecting to hear good things about this new era.

All Good Things WickhamThis Saturday we’ll be getting all green and celebrating the arrival of Wickham’s very own eco shop. All Good Things of Wickham, opening this weekend at Shedfield Equestrian Centre, has been set up by local Nina Goodall and will be selling items that are zero waste, plastic free, reusable or vegan.

Over on the Island, there’s been another spot of grassroots entrepreneurship with Whistle & Hound opening its doors in Freshwater in the last week. This place brings together some of the best artisan makers from across the Island, plus space to meet and craft. To celebrate it’s even launched their very own Guernsey jumper with profits being donated to the local lifeboat charity later in the year.

Also on the Island is a brand new festival for August. Great Wonderfest, presented by the cheeky duo Dick & Dom will be rocking up in Newport to delight and entertain locals – and those from further afield – with acts such as The Vamps, Busted (remember them?), Example, and many, many more. Lots of local companies are getting involved with The Garlic Farm and local Wight Trash skating hosting their own sections. We cannot wait to find out more about this new event!

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