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World street food festival returns – with Euro football optional
World street food festival returns – with Euro football optional
17 June, 2024

Independent food and drink businesses from across the region will be aiming to tap into the football frenzy this week with the return of Hull Street Food Nights.

Among the street food vendors assembled by organisers HullBID are city centre start-ups who see the event on Thursday as an opportunity to build their customer base, and more established operators who have tasted success and are coming back for more.

Kathryn Shillito, HullBID Executive Director, said: “Our first Hull Street Food Night coincides with a big match at Euro 2024, with England playing Denmark at 5pm. We’re looking forward to welcoming football fans before and after the match, which will be shown in pubs and café bars around the city centre as well as in the Princes Quay fan zone.

“And for people who aren’t interested in international football, we’ve got the ultimate array of international food with more than 30 vendors serving up dishes from around the world. We’ve also got a great package of entertainment, and we’ll be doing it all again later in the summer!”

A new participant this year will be Everything Toastie, which was launched last year as a restaurant in Carr Lane, Hull.

Owner Judith Meza and her family are from the Congo and came up with the idea of tasking standard toastie fillings and spicing them up with their favourite seasoning including various West African ingredients and their own special sauce.

Judith said: “We haven’t done Hull Street Food Nights before but we are regulars as customers and we’re really looking forward to selling our food there.

“We don’t really know what to expect and we’re a bit nervous but hopefully people will like what we do and come and see us in our restaurant. We’ll be offering a selection of our regular fillings – jerk chicken, pepperoni, cheesy beans and the classics cheese and ham and cheese. All with the special sauce.

“We could see last year that Hull Street Food Nights is a great opportunity but as a brand new business we had to focus on our restaurant. Now we’re a bit more established and we’re looking forward to taking part and all the family will be coming along to help us.”

Ben Liang, who opened Salt & Pepper Club in Paragon Arcade in November 2022, took a stall at Hull Street Food nights last year and is looking forward to making a return.

He said: “We did the event last year and it was really good for us. We’ll be serving some of the favourites from our menu in Paragon Arcade and we hope for the same outcome as last year – Zebedee’s Yard is a big venue and a lot of people from all over the city were trying our food for the first time and that helped us attract some new customers.”

Lee Chapman of main event sponsor 40Twenty Events ran Oscars Bar in Hull for 10 years before moving into mobile catering and has worked with HullBID in the past. Lee will be bringing the outdoor bar which has proved a big hit at Craven Str-eat – the street food offer at Hull Kingston Rovers.

Lee said: “We do draught beer and cocktails. People told us we couldn’t sell cocktails to a rugby league crowd but they’re a big seller, especially the mega-pint – a two-pint serving of daiquiri, mojito, pina colada and more including mocktails.

“We’ve sponsored the HullBID Trinity Festival in the past and been involved in Hull Street Food Nights as well and we approached HullBID about this opportunity.”

Lee is also putting the finishing touches to a new city centre bar, The Bucket, which will open in a converted barber’s shop opposite the old Oscars Bar in the coming weeks.

Lee said: “That’s completely separate from 40Twenty but it will be another great addition to the city centre.”

Hull Street Food Nights will take place from 4pm until 9pm on Thursday and entertainment will be provided by Atlantic 45, who will be playing disco, R&B and funk classics.

Future dates for Hull Street Food Nights are Thursday July 11, Thursday August 15 August and Thursday September 19.