Scottish Food News – October 2014

Spirits, genetically-modified meat, the power of cinema and some famous folk off the telly - it's all kicking off in October's Food News

Feature by Peter Simpson | 30 Sep 2014
  • Mugaritz

We’ll get started this month with gin. Not just ‘a’ gin either – an entire gin festival. Glasgow GinFest brings together some of Scotland’s finest distillers for an evening of music, food and botanical shenanigans. Learn a bit about gin from the experts, try a whole host of gins, and use the word ‘gin’ so much that it loses all meaning. Trust us, it’ll happen. 4 Oct, 5pm, Barras Art and Design, 54 Calton Entry, £6.50,

Next this month, good news for fans of televised cooking competitions. While the BBC Good Food Show at Glasgow’s SECC is effectively a giant farmer’s market in a huge soulless shed, the Show does offer the opportunity to bask in the glory of the judges from both the Great British Bake Off and Masterchef as they demonstrate their magnificence. If you’ve ever wanted to make snarky remarks within earshot of John Torode and Gregg Wallace, or berate Paul Hollywood and Mary Berry with some crème pâtissière-based heckling, now’s your chance. 17-19 Oct, 10am, Glasgow SECC, tickets from £19.25.

From baking to brewing, and the chance to stick your nose in some tasty, tasty beer. From our recollection, beer production is all about putting large amounts of grain into larger amounts of water, but luckily Bruce Smith of Edinburgh’s own Stewart Brewing will be on hand during Hop Lab with actual, genuine facts to help you understand the process. Part of Midlothian Science Festival, the event will explain the how, what and why of the hoppy witchcraft behind beer-making, as well as clarifying the order in which to put your grains into your water. 15 Oct, 7.30pm, The Papermill, nr Lasswade, Edinburgh, free, tickets from

If you prefer your food science to be of a more meaty nature, then check out Glasgow Skeptics’ provocatively-titled event Would You Eat a GM Chicken? Professor Helen Sang leads a discussion on the role of genetically-modified food in feeding a growing population, and the ethics and hazards of – and we believe this is the correct scientific term – ‘fiddling with poultry.’ 13 Oct, 7pm, Admiral Bar, 72a Waterloo St, free.

Finally this month, a chance to stare in wide-eyed wonder, as The Edinburgh Spanish Film Festival plays host to the debut Scottish screening of Mugaritz BSO. Mugaritz, near San Sebastian, is among the world’s top restaurants, and the film charts the journey of a group of musicians working alongside head chef Luis Andoni Aduriz to create music to accompany his crazy, avant-garde grub.

The film comes across like a foodie version of Fantasia, but with Mickey Mouse and his dancing elephant chums replaced by a Michelin star chef trotting around the world armed with bizarre and exciting ingredients. Aduriz will be in attendance on the day to answer your dumbfounded questions, and there’s a host of rum cocktails thrown into the bargain. You’ll laugh, you’ll cry, and you’ll sit agog as a man eats an entire walnut, shell and all. Like we said, wide-eyed wonder. 10 Oct, 3.30pm. George Square Lecture Theatre. £20, tickets from