Manchester’s Italian Festival brings feasts and banquets to celebrate Italy’s Food, Drink and Culture

Festa Italiana Manchester, the city’s festival of Italian food, drink and culture, has announced a brand-new highlight of this year’s Festival programme – the Festa Feasts.

These huge Italian banquets will bring something new to the Festival, and to the city, as the special collaborative occasions are being produced for the very first time and especially for the Festa.

Festa Italiana is a free, weekend-long celebration of all things Italian, taking place from 13 to 15 July in Cathedral Gardens.

This year, in addition to the producers market, live cookery theatre, bars, street food and live music, there’ll be two Festa Feasts, both taking place on Cathedral Gardens in the Festa Pavilion, featuring some of the finest Italian brands that Manchester has to offer.

The first Festa Feast, ‘The Italian Adventure’ – on Friday 13 July – will see the city’s finest Italian food brands collaborating for the first time to create the ultimate Italian dining experience.

Manchester restaurants Salvi’s, San Carlo and Lupo Caffè Italiano will join forces to create a course each of an extraordinary feast. Guests will be welcomed with an Aperol Spritz drinks reception, followed by a four-course dinner showcasing the very best Italian ingredients, dishes and the cuisine style for which each brand is known.

Guests can expect beautiful, simple Italian dishes where exceptional Campanian ingredients are allowed to shine from Salvi’s; masterful, classic dishes from Italian icon, San Carlo and Lupo Caffè Italiano’s acclaimed, rustic home cooking in the form of their famous Tiramisu for dessert. Plus, an after-dinner digestif of either Limoncello di Capri or Molinari Sambuca and live Italian music throughout from a magnificent, four- piece band coming especially from Naples for the occasion.

Tickets for the feasts are £45 – with a donation included to the Cure for Florence campaign. Florence, four years old, from Stalybridge, is a family friend of the Salvi’s team, and was diagnosed with GM1 in December 2016. The condition is life limiting and this diagnosis has turned the family’s life upside down. The donations will go towards funding further research into finding a cure for GM1, increasing awareness about this condition and giving Florence the best quality of life possible.

The second Festa Feast will take place on Saturday 14 July. Buca’s Bottomless Banquet with Buca di Pizza is to be a non-stop gourmet pizza feast with bottomless prosecco to boot. A range of Buca’s gorgeous pizzas, modern twists on Italian classics will be brought to the long banqueting tables, offering guests the chance to eat as much as they like. There’ll be a huge host of Buca’s most popular pizzas including Frestosa, Spring Chicken, Cousin Vinnay, Hickory Pig, Quattro Stage and Wing Commander. The pizza feast will be paired with bottomless bubbles as unlimited prosecco will be served to complement the feast. Beer or soft drinks will also be an option.

Buca’s Bottomless Banquet will run over two, 90 minute sessions in the Festa Pavilion starting at 6:30 and 8:30pm. Tickets are £25 and include all food and selected drinks.

Marcello Distefano, Managing Director of San Carlo group, said: “For us the banquet is a great way to support and showcase the best in real Italian ingredients and cooking, something our family and restaurants have always been passionate about.

“It’s great to see the Italian community and people of Manchester and beyond come together at Festa Italiana to celebrate our wonderful food and culture.”

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