Gloucestershire is incredibly lucky to have a wealth of local food and drink producers on its doorstep. Master gin distillers, locally grown and fermented wine and even delicious local gelato – there’s something to suit all tastes.
But many producers also offer experiences to complement their delicious offerings, providing the chance for foodie fans to learn more about how their favourite tipples and tastes are created, and even getting the chance to learn the skills needed to recreate flavours at home.
In this hotlist, we round up 15 of the most fabulous foodie experiences in Gloucestershire.
Cowley Manor near Cheltenham
Celebrate summer and enjoy an outdoor picnic in a bell tent in Cowley Manor’s stunning grounds. You’ll get blankets, cushions, deck chairs and games to ensure a comfortable sun soaked afternoon.
If you prefer more formal seating but want to enjoy an alfresco experience with a fantastic view, the hotel serves teas, coffees and meals on the expansive terrace with the chance to soak up views of the gardens, woodlands and lakes.
Woodchester Valley Vineyard near Stroud
Offering a selection of vineyard tours, wine-tasting events and overnight stays overlooking its spectacular Cotswold setting, Woodchester Valley Vineyard is a versatile destination for lovers of fine wine.
Enjoy afternoon tea with a sparkling wine tasting on the last Sunday of the month at 3pm, or make it a fabulous last Friday of the month with a portion of Simpsons fish and chips, washed down with a glass of fizz and a sparkling wine tasting.
Dog walkers can also enjoy a vineyard tour followed by a flight of wine tasting on the third Tuesday of the month at 10.30am – canine companions get dog biscuits too.
Woodland Afternoon Tea at Miserden Estate near Stroud
Savour a delicious afternoon tea served under the canopy of Miserden Estate’s wonderful woodland. A host will meet and guide you to your woodland sanctuary, where you can soak up the benefits of forest bathing ensconced with a fern covered carpet and leafy branches stretching overhead.
You’ll feast on dainty sandwiches, sausage rolls, homemade scones served with clotted cream and jam, colourful macaroons, a classic mini Victoria Sandwich, plus seasonal treats.
Vegan and Vegetarian Cooking classes at The Natural Cookery School in Nailsworth
If you’ve got a veggie or vegan in the family or are just looking to eat meat-free more regularly, The Natural Cookery School in Nailsworth offers a range of cookery classes to help enhance your recipe repertoire.
Known as The Natural Kitchen, the five-day vegetarian cookery retreat helps guests to improve their knife skills, learn how to create healthy brunch dishes and develop a range of tasty vegan sweet treats.
There are a range of cookery parties and evening classes of various specialisms to try too.
Wholly Cow Gelato in Elmore
Wholly Cow Gelato is a small-batch ice cream producer, with a shop on the Hobbs’ Family dairy farm in Elmore, in Gloucester.
Offering an ever-changing menu of delicious flavours, guests can enjoy a cone or tub of tasty gelato on site, while meeting the cows who produced the milk to make it – it’s a lovely experience to accompany a riverside walk or bike ride along the Sharpness Canal.
The venue also has a catering trailer for events and weddings, where you can pick the flavours for your guests to enjoy.
Tiger’s Eye in Gloucester
One of Gloucester’s best-known fusion restaurants provides hot rock dining in the city centre, where guests can cook their own steak, with exotic meats such as kangaroo, buffalo and zebra on offer, alongside Angus sirloin, duck and lamb.
This interactive dining experience sees diners use the heated lava rock to sear in the natural juices and flavours of each cut of meat, before cooking it to their own liking.
Based within The Old Bell, Tiger’s Eye is also home to a fantastic cocktail bar, boasting the ‘best Mojitos in town’.
Daylesford Cookery School near Moreton-in-Marsh
Set within a 2,350-acre organic farm in the Cotswolds, Daylesford offers an eclectic range of cookery courses from its own on-site school.
Equipped with state-of-the-art facilities, The Cookery School’s courses span full-day, half-day and evening courses, covering things like seasonal dinner parties, nose-to-tail butchery, artisan breadmaking and even children’s cookery.
Cake making and decorating lessons at Cake and Sugarcraft Boutique in Cheltenham
Cake and Sugarcraft Boutique in Cheltenham offers a range of bake, make and create classes.
Described as ‘start to finish baking and decorating courses’, the classes are ideal for people just starting to learn basic piping skills, or those looking to create beautiful sugar paste flowers to decorate their bakes.
Classes include bake and decorate an eight-inch cake, vintage cupcakes, ice and decorate a two-tiered cake, beginners sugar roses, and ganache decoration for tall cakes, to name a few.
Foraging with Rob Gould, Cotswold Forager
Join Gould on one of his varied workshops to find out the best gems to forage across the Cotswolds. He runs classes on fermentation in Stroud and leads walks across the Cotswolds to find your supper in the glorious countryside.
He runs a preserving course and will also take one-to-one walk bookings, so you can ask him questions to your heart’s content while he leads the way through scenic strolls.
Circus Sauce by Giffords Circus
Roaming scenic spots across Gloucestershire and beyond, the popular circus serves up three courses on Emma Bridgewater serving platters, with each dish showcasing local and seasonal ingredients carefully crafted by a team of talented chefs.
Popular dishes include pressed courgette terrine, stuffed squid and pork belly with watercress sauce, stuffed globe artichoke and Eton mess. A new licenced bar ensures there are plenty of refreshing drinks to enjoy too.
For a snack, the café wagon offers lighter bites of loaded fries, veg tempura, pulled pork burgers with rhubarb and hot dogs. New for 2022 is the welcome arrival of a Mexican cantina overflowing with tasty tacos, nachos and churros.
Foraging trips at Tudor Farmhouse in Clearwell
Boutique Cotswold Farmhouse, Tudor Farmhouse offers group foraging trips, led by naturalist, broadcaster and wildlife detective Ed Drewitt and foodie expert Liz Knight as well as a range of selected guests.
Guests can learn how to spot edible mushrooms, wild garlic and sorrel, wimberries and wild strawberries, amongst others.
The trips differ depending on the season and the crop available, so no two experiences will be the same. Courses can be booked online, with overnight packages available for those wanting to experience a farmhouse stay too.
Harts Barn Cookery School in Longhope
Indulge your inner foodie with a cookery experience at Harts Barn Cookery School. Overlooking the stunning countryside in Longhope, the venue can offer different cooking themes to suit its guests.
Themes include bread making, exotic meats, outdoor cooking, chocolate making, and cheese and wine tasting.
Gin distilling at Brennen and Brown in Cheltenham
Become a distiller with local gin producer, Brennen and Brown at the company’s laboratory in Cheltenham.
The experience begins by exploring the botanicals used within gin, before you create, measure and mix your own recipe for a 70cl bottle of gin to take home.
While your gin is distilling, guests are taken on a guided tour of the flavour nurseries, before taking your own blend of gin home to enjoy.
Tivoli Wines Wine Library in Cheltenham
Tivoli Wines in Cheltenham is home to The Wine Library, where guests can enjoy a range of fine wines by the glass thanks to its enomatic wine dispensing machines, or take in a class at Grape School to learn more about wine in a relaxing atmosphere.
The venue is just a short walk from the centre of Cheltenham, and offers regular tasting events for wines and spirits. Private tasting sessions are also available for groups, with delicious cheese and charcuterie boards to accompany your session.
The Pudding Club at Three Ways House Hotel near Chipping Campden
Enjoy an evening at the home of the world-famous Pudding Club, at Three Ways House.
Every Friday evening, and sometimes on Saturdays, this Cotswold hotel in Mickleton near Chipping Campden is renowned for offering a plethora of delightful desserts to its guests across seven courses.
Classic dishes include syrup sponge, spotted dick and custard, Eton mess and sticky toffee pudding. Those who complete each of the courses also get to go home with a certificate!