I’m ashamed to say that I don’t always go to the local festivals and events that I so regularly post about on Facebook and Twitter, but I’m glad I made the effort to go to the Autumn Market at the Bond in Digbeth on Saturday…
Somehow the Spring and Summer Markets passed us by, but this time we were keen to pop along. The thought of street food, a bar on a vintage red bus and an unseasonably sunny Halloween afternoon meant that instead of slumping in front of Jeff and Co on Sky Sports, Mr Fletche and I found ourselves disembarking from the no 37 bus in Digbeth and following the trickle of people through the Custard Factory to the Bond Company on Fazeley Street. For those that don’t know, the Bond is a canal-side complex of cobbled courtyards, Victorian architecture and conference/event facilities. I suggest to Mr Fletche that should we ever decide to re-marry (to each other of course) this is where we should do it. But only if we can have the bar/bus too.
It’s £1.50 entrance (or £1 for Independent Birmingham card holders…get yours here) and for that you get the most amazing choice of food, drink, music, arts & crafts stalls, and activities (pumpkin carving anyone?). Kids go free and are more than welcome, making this a family-friendly event…there are even plenty of doggies too!
I may have missed someone off the food list but I recall seeing:
- Original Patty Man
- La Grande Viande
- Open Sesame
- Bournville Waffle Company
- Becky’s Bhajis
- Buddha Belly
- Fire & Slice Pizza
- Meet Frank Gourmet Hotdogs
- Colonel Toms
- Andy’s Low & Slow
- The Cake Doctor
We walk around salivating for a while before deciding a drink or two or three in the sunshine will help us make a food decision. We purchase our pints from the bus (did I mention the bus?) and find a precious vacant table. Mr Fletche is loving the funky tunes and thanks to modern technology now has a list of “Shazam’d” music to plough through. Our table mates appear with a box of Persian goodies from Open Sesame, and a dough-nut burger from Original Patty Man. We’d like to keep our arteries unclogged at least until 5pm, so we opt for a Bedouin Box to share. Oh my – who knew couscous and hummus could be so amazing?
As scarce as empty tables are, we can’t stay here all afternoon so we go for another wander. In and out of the craft & artisan food stalls, we try and work out whether it is possible to do all our Christmas shopping here in one fell swoop. However, with two pints each inside of us we think the chances of us and Christmas goodies safely making it home together are slim so we’ll save it for next time. We’re entertained by the fab Bostin’ Brass Band (who sound like there are about a dozen of them, but there’s only four of them!) who roam around the market creating spontaneous dancing opportunities.
It’s definitely gin o’clock so we make our way over to the Little Gin Company – another bar on wheels, but this time it’s a converted horsebox! I’m a recent gin convert (have discovered it’s actually the “T” in G&T that I don’t like…bring on the “G”) and my Ginger Tom goes down very well. Mr Fletche equally enjoys his Martin Millers. We’re lucky enough to have an insider who procures us a freebie waffle from the Bournville Waffle Company. This in no way influences our opinion of what was a divine waffle with a salted caramel and chocolate button topping. We would have paid good money for this waffle.
As much as an afternoon spent drinking and eating is tempting, we decide that for the sake of our internal organs we should leave this wonderful spectacle. With sweet smells of food we didn’t get to try in our noses, and a funky brass version of Mr Big Stuff ringing in our ears, we leave the Autumn Market and the Bond Company behind.
Next one is 5th December. We will be back. Save us a waffle.