Celebrity chefs will be getting the taste for rhubarb when the city’s annual food and drink festival returns next month.
Local, regional and nationally-renowned chefs will cook their favourite dishes as part of Wakefield’s eighth famous Festival of Food, Drink and Rhubarb.
But organisers are keeping their identity a secret - well at least until next week.
There will also be a special market, walks and entertainment taking place in the city centre.
Further afield, the annual Oldroyd’s Rhubarb Experience tours are happening inside the Yorkshire rhubarb forcing shed. But they’re booking up fast, said owner Janet Oldroyd-Hulme.
She added: “Pre-Christmas we had more enquiries than any year before. We have had to put on other dates outside of the festival to cope with demand.”
Mrs Oldroyd-Hulme’s family have run the farm E Oldroyd&Sons in Carlton, near Rothwell, for five generations.
Recently their Yorkshire forced rhubarb was classified as a protected food in the same way as Champagne and Parma ham.
Mrs Oldroyd-Hulme said: “In ancient times rhubarb was seen as a gift from God. So it’s quite apt that it thrives in God’s own county.”
Wakefield is part of the Wakefield - Morley - Rothwell - rhubarb growing triangle and the plant has played an important part in the life of the local economy for more than 150 years.
The festival runs from Friday February 21 until Sunday February 23, starting at 10am. For more information, visit www.experiencewakefield.co.uk
See Friday’s Express to see which celebrity chefs will be lining up behind the stoves.