If you live in a big city you can easily take the availability of foreign produce for granted. However, small specialist shops are popping up throughout the country, including in military town, Aldershot. The Worldwide Food Centre is a relatively large shop located on Station Road.
It stocks all manner of ingredients and goodies you could ever want from across the world but particularly boasts plenty of Polish, Turkish and Croatian food.
Here’s a snapshot of what you can find on the shelves
The Worldwide Food Centre, Station Road, Aldershot, Hampshire UK
With organisers promising new, fresh and innovative acts as well as established artists for the two-day music and multimedia event, the second Selector Festival is expected to kick-start a summer of festivals across the country and further afield. This year, UK act Faithless will headline the star-studded bill that also features Calvin Harris and Friendly Fires on the weekend of Friday 4 and Saturday 5 June.
The brainchild of Alter Art, the group behind the Gdynia Open’er Festival, the Krakow Selector Festival is now in its second year and hopes to build upon a success debut last summer. Held in green fields close to the centre of one of Poland’s most beautiful cities, the festival performances will take place in two huge tents that can hold 15,000 fans.
Tickets are on sale now for the event with prices starting at 135 PLN or just £30. To find out more visit www.selectorfestival.pl
This summer, Wroclaw Opera in a co-production with the Great Theatre in Pozna is preparing to stage Giacomo Puccini’s opera Turandot in the form of an open-air, super spectacle for an audience of thousands. The performance is going to be part of the Tauron 11th Summer Opera Festival on the Olympic Stadium in Wroclaw. To meet the needs of the staging, a huge 100 m by 150 m stage shall be constructed. The Director Micha Znaniecki is going to create an interactive performance with massive set design, a variety of multimedia effects, hundreds of artists and extras.
The title role of Turandot will be sung by Georgina Lukacs, world class soprano, in last season regulary performing at such theatres like Metropolitan Opera, Royal Opera House Covent Garden, Gran Teatre del Liceu in Barcelona, Staatstheater in Hamburg, Deutsche Oper in Berlin and La Scala.
Performances will take place on the 18th, 19th and 20th of June.
Last week I happened across the new Polish section in Tesco on Queensway. Tesco has always supplied some Polish goodies (depending on the store) but this was very much a new and improved section with all manner of sausages, hams, cheeses etc.! Now while I am a real advocate of real food rather than ready meals and ready-prepared food but I thought I’d try out a couple of packets of pierogi (Polish dumplings) and a small tub of Polish smetana (sour cream).
The pierogi is available with meat, cheese or cabbage fillings. My favourite has to be the cheese. The meat tastes a little too generic and I’m just not a fan of cabbage. Add the pierogi to boiling salted water, when the first pierogi begin to rise to the surface, cook for 1 minute and then serve. I like to put a little melted butter over the top. For non vegetarians a little crispy bacon could be added. Alternatively, top with a few breadcrumbs toasted in butter. Delicious, if not particularly healthy!
I have no idea why but East European smetana (sour cream) always tastes differently to the sour cream normally available in the UK so this little tub was a real treat!
One of Europe’s oldest festivals dedicated documentary, animation and short films the festival first took place back in 1961. It is the oldest event of its kind in Poland, and to celebrate the festival’s fiftieth edition, Israeli cinema will be the special guest.
The seven-day festival which gets underway on 31 May, is divided in to three sections:
• International documentaries will compete for the relatively new Golden Horn award
• International short films will battle it out for the famous Golden Dragon trophy, and
• The best Polish film will leave the festival with the Golden Hobby-Horse.
Alongside the festival competition, a number of films will be screened in the non-competitive element of the event. Highlights will include the classic Sound of Music, Rocksteady – the Roots of Reggae and Colombia’s La Casa. The festival will also host a special night dedicated to music videos.
This year the films on show will be screened in a number of the city’s cinemas including the Kijow.Centrum, the Mikro, Kino pod Baranami, and the Krakowskie Centrum Kinowe ARS. A number of worjkshops, conferences and other events will also be held at a number of venues across the Polish capital of culture.
This May the central Polish city of Lodz will welcome the International Photography Festival. Known in Poland as Fotofestiwal, the event has been on the city calendar since 2001 and attracts eminent artists, professional photographers, amateur enthusiasts and visitors from all over Europe. The 2010 edition of the festival starts on 5th May and runs until the end of the month.
According to organiser, visitors to Lodz during May will get the chance to see exhibitions and slide shows, watch film shows, join workshops, attend lectures, and meet with prominent experts and curators.
The Lodz Art Centre will be the focal point of the month-long event, although many exhibitions will be held in the city’s numerous 19th century factories, and prizes will be awarded to the best photographic entrants in the festival’s Grand Prix programme.
Baltic restaurant in London have announced that they are re-starting their regular Sunday Jazz evenings in association with Zhenya Strigalev and t Wo music who have gained a well earned reputation for working with some of the most innovative muscians currently on the music scene.
The restaurant will also be participating in the London Jazz festival again this year with three evenings featuring some of the best international musicians. Dates and line-up are yet to be confirmed.
The Sunday sessions will start at 7pm with three sets during the evening. The bar is open all day serving cocktails, draft beer and a great bar food menu while the restaurant opens at 5.30 with an all day brunch menu, a la carte and a set menu at £19.50 for two courses with a cocktail included. Tables can be booked in the bar or the restaurant.
Baltic May Schedule:
2nd May – Strigalev/ Ramm Duo – Leading London alto-saxophonist, Zhenya Strigalev (seen with Robert Mitchell, Foley, Chris “Daddy” Dave) and top UK pianist Nick Ramm (Cinematic Orchestra, Matthew Herbert) present a program of originals and jazz standard’s RE-arrangements. Their last album “Off the Cut” came out on The Baltic label.
9th May – Ivo Neame Duo – leading UK pianist. Has recorded and performed throughout the world with diverse artists such as Matthew Herbert, Seb Rochford, Tim Garland, Jim Mullen. His trio has performed as part of the recent F-ire Festival at Pizza Express Dean Street, Ronnie Scott’s, the Devizes Music Festival and at many other London venues.
16th May – Tom Cawley Duo – His band “Curious” was described by Mojo as “the most formidable piano trio in the UK”. Now with two acclaimed records already behind them, extensive touring throughout UK and Europe including the North Sea and London Jazz Festivals as well as winner of ‘Best Band’ at the BBC Jazz Awards in 2008, Curios are now poised to be launched to a worldwide audience.
23rd May – Brigitte Beraha Duo – Beautiful set of arranged jazz standards & originals including some exciting vocals and scat. “Brigitte is someone who concentrates on the music’s core values: imagination, individuality, improvisation.” – Jazz Review.
30th May – Heidi Vogel Duo – Being one of the most original voices in UK she has performed, recorded and toured with artists/groups, such as: Isaac Hayes, Cinematic Orchestra, The Brand New heavies, Afro Elements, ZeroDB to name a few.
This week Poland’s capital of culture will welcome the second edition of its Tango festival. This year, the Krakow Tango Festival will celebrate the Argentine dance with a series of threes: three nights of dancing, three days of workshops and three master pairs from Buenos Aires. The dance originated from the slums and docks in Argentina’s capital in the second half of the nineteenth century.
Getting underway on 30 April and running until 2 May, the Krakowski Festiwal Tanga will take place in Krakow’s beautiful Old Town. Tickets for the festival are on sale now and you can find out more at www.festiwal.tangokrakow.com/index_en.php
This year Poland and classical music fans are celebrating the bicentenary of Chopin’s birth. So there is no better time to visit his grave, which is regularly adorned with flowers left by among other, hordes of Polish scouts.
Located in Pere-Lachaise cemetery, in eastern Paris, Chopin’s grave can be found in the 11th division and is relatively easy to spot. A little like its very own small village, boasting cobbled streets and dainty signposts, one can spend hour after hour spotting the resting places of famous names from the past.
The ninth Krakow marathon gets underway in five weeks time, as the Polish city welcomes competitors from around the world. The 26.2 mile race gets underway on 25 April and takes in the Polish capital of culture’s beautiful old town, as well as the banks of the Vistula River beneath the gaze of the Wawel Castle.
A fixture in the city since 2002, the Cracovia Marathon attracts more runners and spectators every year. And participants who successfully complete the course, along with four other qualifying Polish marathons in two calendar years, will also receive a Crown of Polish Marathons badge.