Thall ‘s a-Bhos – Food Festival at An Lanntair

  • Published on: 26th April 2018
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Media release – 26 April 2018

An Lanntair launches new Food Festival, celebrating traditional and worldwide cuisines from across the Outer Hebrides.

Fèill : Food Festival on Saturday 19th May at An Lanntair
Thall ‘s a-Bhos : Home and Away
An Lanntair’s new Fèill (Food Festival), with a theme of “Thall ‘s a-Bhos : Home and Away”, will feature local traditional cuisine as well as courses from the many other cultures now established on the islands. Taste Guga for the very first time, sample delicacies from India, and sit back and enjoy a banquet at An Lanntair’s very-own Hebridean Feast!

Tri Cùrsan: Three Courses:

Madainn: Morning: Thall (Here) Local cuisine.
Feasgar: Afternoon: a-Bhos (There) Far-flung food.
Oidhche: Evening: Fèisd: Traditional Hebridean Feast in An Lanntair’s Café Bar

Hosted by local ‘celebrity chef’ Alasdair Macleod, the day is in two main parts. The morning session will feature traditional fare from land and sea, liberally salted with banter and culinary craic. If you dare, sample a Guga-bite, sup a traditional soup made with mutton flank prepared the old way, taste the tangle of the Isles with seaweed and look and learn from a master butcher with mesmerising knife skills. Among other things, dab hands at duff are invited along for the Great Duff-Off. Rounding off the morning and taking us over lunch will be the culinary capers of the Cidsin Coves fresh from their second TV series on BBC Alba.

The afternoon menu takes us to Vietnam, Thailand, India and perhaps Syria for sweet, savoury and spicy samples of far-flung food prepared, delivered and presented by local experts. To finish, on Saturday evening, An Lanntair’s Head Chef, Kenny Mackay, and his team will set your taste buds tingling with a five-star feast of traditional Hebridean food featuring the best of local produce.

If you’re hungry, if you like food, if you’re just curious, take your place at An Lanntair on May 19 from 10am – 4pm for a culinary, cultural extravaganza.

Alasdair writes: –

“One of my earliest food memories is being with my grandfather in the byre singeing a sheep’s head in preparation for making soup. There were no electrical gadgets in these days so singeing the bristles round the head was done with a metal branding iron. A peat fire was lit and the iron put among the embers until it was glowing red-hot. It produced a distinctive, burnt smell that I can still recall to this day.

Another dish that was common in crofting cuisine, was chicken soup. The chicken or usually a young cockerel was killed in the morning by my granny, a wiry little women who had been a herring girl. She had no qualms about wringing the bird’s neck before plucking and prepping it for the big soup pot later that day. Every family in the village had this an enormous pot for these hearty traditional soups.

My granny also made ceann cropaig or fish liver pate which was a regular treat to go with boiled fish and potatoes. The kitchen was out of bounds for men and boys back then so the preparation and cooking of the ceann cropaig took on a magical and mysterious dimension. I often wondered how such a delicious dish could be prepared from fish livers, oatmeal and salt and pepper.”

An Lanntair’s shop will also be hosting a special ‘Meet the Makers’ event during the festival day. Come along and meet some of the incredibly talented local artists, creative practitioners and suppliers to our shop, who will be on site displaying their work and talking about their practice.

For more information on An Lanntair please contact Kathryn Lamont Smith, Head of Marketing at 01851708480 or


Notes to Editor:

• An Lanntair is a multi-disciplinary Arts Centre in Stornoway on the Isle of Lewis in The Outer Hebrides.
• An Lanntair welcomes over 200,000 visitors each year to celebrate the unique Gaelic culture of the Outer Hebrides.
• As part of the Year of Young People 2018 An Lanntair will deliver Las! / Ignite!, a week long arts festival from the Outer Hebrides – created by young people for young people.
• YoYP is a year-long programme of events and festivals are taking place across the whole of the country for all ages to enjoy, led by EventScotland part of VisitScotland’s Events Directorate. More information at