Taste North

Sunday 30th September 2018 - 11.00 to 4.30pm. Natural Retreats John O'Groats

Taste North

Taste North 2018 - Sunday 30th September 2018. 11am to 4.30pm. at Natural Retreats John O'Groats



All details of the full schedule of events for the day feature below at the bottom of this page!

Taste North 2018 will feature many foodie and family activities throughout the day including chef's demonstrations, cocktail masterclasses and workshops. Our incredible guest of honour this year will be the renowned chef, Tony Singh - veteran of tv and radio programmes, and helmer to multiple award winning eateries around the country.

Our Exhibitor's Market will offer everyone the opportunity to sample food from local eateries and producers, taste our local tipples and see an array of artisan crafts from right here in Caithness & Sutherland. For families there will be plenty of children’s entertainment and various opportunities for them to get their hands sticky and learn where their food comes from.

Taste North would not be possible this year without the support of our generous sponsors of both the event and the Taste North Challenge - 

 NDA, Natural Retreats, Caithness Chamber through their Developing the Young Workforce initiative, Dunnet Bay Distillers, Mackays Hotel, Reids of Caithness and programme sponsor Ashley Ann.





Our Special Guest for 2018 -  Mr Tony Singh MBE.




Leith-born chef, Tony Singh, is a leading personality in the Scottish restaurant industry. As chef director of a string of award-wining restaurants in Edinburgh – including Tony’s Table,Roti and more recently Oloroso– Tony has pushed the boundaries of culinary innovation for over 16 years. Always open to new ideas, his approach to food is to ‘keep it real and fun’. 

​Tony will be Master of Ceremonies throughout the day, sharing his wealth of expertise in several Taste North masterclasses and will serve as Head Judge for the adjudication panel in the annual Taste North Challenge!












In conjunction with Baxters and The Gordon & Ena Baxter Foundation, we launched the Taste North Challenge competition in 2015. The competition began as a means to inspiring our local students to come up with new recipe ideas that reflect the abundance of incredible ingredients right here on our doorstep.





Kristin Main, of Thurso, is our current 2017 Challenge winner with 2018 looking to have more entrants than ever before!

Pictured: Judges Panel - Nick Nairn; Ellie Lamont (Mackays Hotel), Trudy Morris (Caithness Chamber, Developing the Young Workforce), George McIntyre (The Gordon & Ena Baxter Foundation)

With thanks to Jill Innes, Storyboard Films for the images.




This year the competition is back and we can't wait to see what all our passionate young culinary talent comes up with and we are even opening the competition up further for 2018! We will be running both a Youth section, sponsored by Developing the Young Work Force, alongside an Open competition for all ages, sponsored by Mackays Hotel. The overall winner will be chosen from the section winners and presented with the Gordon & Ena Baxter Foundation Challenge Cup.

This year our challenge will feature all things BAKING! Consider it the Great North Bake-Off!

If you know you're expert at a local delicacy, can create a baked delight using traditional north coast recipes or can think of a reinvention of a classic dish using a "hero" Caithness & Sutherland ingredient then this is for you! More details to follow but email tastenorthchallenge@gmail.com for an application form and guidelines.

The judging process will select a shortlist of winners from each section in advance and all the finalists will all be present on the day to showcase their creations. Winners from each section will be announced live, followed by the overall Challenge winner. The Judging Panel will comprise Head Judge Tony Singh, and representatives of our sponsors Gordon & Ena Baxter Foundation, DYW & The Caithness Chamber of Commerce and Mackays Hotel, Wick.


If you are interested in participating in the Taste North Challenge this year, you can download the application form and competition details below:


Taste North Challenge 2018 - Application Form





Events and Demonstrations

Taste North

Now in our fourth year, Taste North will be back on September 30th! Join us for a one-day celebration that will showcase some of the best food, drink, arts, craft and artisan produce the north has to offer. Browse the Exhibitors Tent and pick up some local delicacies before enjoying the foodie fun with our celebrity chef presenter, masterclasses, cookery demonstrations, family and kids activities and live entertainment! Taste North promises to be a great day out for families and foodies alike, make sure you don’t miss out!

Taste North 2018: Prehistoric Produce with the Caithness Broch Project!

No food, drink and artisan craft festival is complete without a range of prehistoric activities to entertain the whole family! Join us and our friends at the Caithness Broch Project for face painting, stone carving, pot sculpting and a range of archaeological fun! CPB will be with us all afternoon from 11am to 4pm so make sure you stop by to see them!

Taste North 2018/ Tony Singh: Caithness Beef Masterclass

Join Taste North MC and special guest Tony Singh for the first of his culinary masterclasses!

Taste North 2018: Live Music from Caithness Big Band

Live Music from Caithness Big Band at Taste North 2018!

Taste North 2018/ Tony Singh: North Coast Fish Masterclass

Join us for our second Taste North Masterclass of the day, where special guest and MC Tony Singh will show us all his top tips and hot tricks for preparing our North Coast Catch!

Taste North 2018: Taste North Challenge Prizegiving

Taste North 2018/ Tony Singh: Desserts Masterclass

Your last chance to get your culinary education and inspiration from Mr Tony Singh. Third time's a charm with this delicious dessert masterclass - don't miss it!