The British Street Food Awards is the toughest street food competition in the world. Five regional heats – culiminating in a live, national cook-off, judged by the general public and Michelin-starred chefs. But in 2017 it’s going to get a whole lot tougher. The British winners will head off to Berlin to represent their country against the very best of Europe. Now that’s what we call pressure.
The finest traders in Britain have been cooking up a storm to win the British Street Food Awards since 2010 – and we’ve invited the top European talent to compete in Best Overseas Trader since the beginning. But street food has exploded. So we are exploding with it. Raising the stakes. Ladies and gentlemen — we give you the inaugural European Street Food Awards. In Berlin.
Each country in Europe will be submitting its own champion. But only the best will be invited to compete. In Britain, the process begins with regional heats in Edinburgh, Leeds, Brighton, Belfast and Birmingham, where the public will be able to buy sharing plates from each competitor and vote for their favourites. The winners, plus a few wild cards chosen by industry experts, will then compete at the finals for the British title. Before going to the Euros.
12-14 May – The Scottish Street Food Awards in The Pitt, Edinburgh
24-25 June – The Northern heats of The British Street Food Awards on Leeds Dock
30 June-1 July – The Central heats of the British Street Food Awards at Digbeth Dining Club in Birmingham
30 July – The London and the South heats of the British Street Food Awards on Brighton Beach
August tbc – The Northern Irish heats of the British Street Food Awards in Belfast
September tbc – The Finals of the British Street Food Awards
September 30/October 1 — The Finals of the European Street Food Awards in Berlin
It’s the right time. Across Europe, traders are taking traditional street foods – whether it’s banitsa in Bulgaria, herring in Estonia, gelato in Italy or churros in Spain – and repurposing them for a new generation. The streets are becoming a laboratory for new food ideas. And the very best of them will be competing in Berlin.
“Street food is taking over” says Richard Johnson, founder of the BSFAs. “It’s interesting that in the midst of troubled times, we are choosing to eat in different ways. We just don’t want that fixed starter-main course-dessert menu any more. We want a bit of this and a bit of that — flirty, low-commitment dining. It’s why pop-ups and street food have become so popular. This stuff really does have the capacity to make the world a nicer, more relaxed place.”
The end-of-season bash comes at an exciting time for BSF, the team behind the British Street Food Awards. They are still curating the craziest, most exciting street food scheme ever – to LIFT vans, trucks and trailers onto the first floor of the upmarket Trinity Leeds, the new retail destination in Leeds. Plus they are developing street food ‘brands’ for Euston station. And putting traders into pubs with their Pub Takeover.
And, in an effort to future-proof the street food revolution, BSF are about to launch the European Street Food app, which will showcase the best street food on the continent. With live GPS maps showing who’s trading where and when, it will also continue the latest news stories, and allow punters to vote for their winners at the European Street Food Awards.
“The next step is to form a European team to take on the Americans” says Johnson. “Take a container ship to New York, full of our very best traders, and compete on the streets of Manhattan. Then it’s the Far East. Although not sure how well we’d do on a floating market. This way of eating is all about coming together and sharing food – in a world like ours, that’s a positive message right now.”
View our Awards Archive below