People sitting on a field surrounded by festival stalls, watching a stage

An afternoon at Beats and Eats Southampton

AD – ticket provided in exchange for a review

Festivals are finally back this summer, and just because (as I type) we’re in our final few days of the season, it doesn’t mean they’re over as well!

I was invited along to Beats and Eats Southampton, run by The Village Popup, who work to bring events like this to us lot in the south of the UK. It promised a day of great food accompanied by great music – a winning combination!

The event ran over two days – 18-19 September. I opted to stop by on the Sunday, which had rain forecast just the night before, but fortunately we were gifted with beautiful (if a little intermittent!) sunshine. Thank goodness!

I found the little festival nestled at the bottom of Hoglands Park – it was a little smaller than I had expected from the outside, but once inside it was like a little getaway in the middle of a busy city!

First things first: food*. I prowled the place for my lunch of choice, eyeing up the different street food stalls – from Mauritian cuisine to loaded fries, with burgers and crepes, plus rum cocktails and coffee, too. One of the stalls my friend, who attended on the Saturday, had recommended was no longer there, which was a shame! But there was plenty more to choose from. In the end, I went for a halloumi wrap from Bohemian Wrapsody (and not just because of their punny, Queen-based name, which I loved!), made with London-made halloumi, pomegranate and sriracha. They had truffle fries, too, which I decided to add to my order, and was very glad I did! The food was delicious and I was left feeling very, very full.

An afternoon in the sun with music and food is incomplete, in my view, without a glass of Pimms! I headed over to Pour Pony and their little mobile booze-bearing horse box for one, and enjoyed it as the sun reached its peak in the sky.

Along with the food stands, there were also a number of stalls dotted about for anyone fancying a browse, along with a mini golf area, and a vinyl tent which kept the beats coming between performances. I’ll admit, I didn’t spend much time browsing these parts, so keen was I on the food and music – but it was a great idea to have some different things to enjoy while people visited the festival!

I’d arrived just in time for the Spice Island chilli eating competition, too, which was hugely entertaining and not something you see in Hoglands Park every day! I also caught Maple Sky, whose jazz and funk music with sultry vocals gave the place the perfect chilled-out vibe, which I absolutely loved.

I had a great time at Beats and Eats Southampton; it was lovely to enjoy food and music in our city parks, at a small-scale event that welcomed all ages and all tastes! I only wish I had a little more stomach space in order to try more of the food. Hopefully this event will be back in the city soon.


*(While the ticket was gifted, all food and drink was purchased by me.)


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