A key annual festival hosted by the Bahrain Authority for Culture and Antiquities, Food is Culture is back for its sixth consecutive year between March 6 and April 3, 2021. Audiences can anticipate a number of activities and events that bridge the culinary arts with other creative and artistic forms. These events include joint presentations by the artists and chefs, along with workshops and food tours to discover the flavors of the Kingdom of Bahrain.
This year, registration is required via the Authority’s website www.culture.gov.bh for those interested in attending the events, and this falls in line with the precautionary and preventive measures in place to limit the spread of the coronavirus (Covid-19).
As with every year, Food is Culture aims to create a point of intersection between various fields of art, bringing chefs from different backgrounds together with a number of artists, ultimately presenting their creative works that reflect their cooperation.
This year, the chefs lined up are Chef Irvin Martinez from Cantina Kahlo, founder of Mt. Fuji Kakigori and Dessert House Abdullah Bindayna, creator of Isolated Eats Tabea Lutz, sourdough baker Layal Dana, as well as the duo behind Alabaster & Cannoli Lara Al Abbasi and Maria Knowles.
The artists this year are the celebrated multimedia artist Ghada Khunji, psychedelic pop band Do You Really Like It?, the two rising fine artists Salman Najem and May Hejiri, and eco-conscious fashion designer Amal Rafie.
Audiences will interactively engage with the topics each pair has explored on their presentation day, as spectators will be able to taste the recipes the chefs have created while marveling at a showcase of original artworks, sounds and more by their partners. Unlike previous years, each pair will present their work at different cultural locations across Bahrain, namely the Bahrain National Museum, The Pearling Path Visitors Center, Jasra Handicraft Center, Riffa Fort and the Archaeologies of Green Pavilion. The aim is to showcase these exquisite cultural sites, and breathe a new life into them by allowing these locations to become the centers of such an experimental project.
Beyond weekly presentations at the various cultural locations across the Kingdom of Bahrain, the entire process will be documented in the form of an e-book and documentary. In addition, there are a number of activities and events adjacent to the Food is Culture festival.
The local learning platform Maximize will be offering a range of virtual cooking workshops in celebration of Food is Culture. Two previous Food is Culture participants, Hessa Al Khalifa will be hosting her workshop on February 27, 2021, while Lulwa Suwailah will be hosting her workshop on March 15, 2021. Furthermore, Zahraa Alherz will host her virtual cooking workshop on March 20, 2021.
One of Bahrain’s most prominent food bloggers, Zainab Akbar, will lead food tours, taking those who join these events, all which require registration, a trip into the local flavors that make up the nation’s culinary palate. Founder of TheFoodMenu, Akbar, has scheduled two tours adjacent to this year’s Food is Culture — the first if a food tour of Muharraq on March 13, the second is a food tour of Manama on March 19.
Peninsula Farms, a sponsor for this year’s edition, Perfectly Pressed, a previous Food is Culture participant, and local artisanal café Karmah will all be offering a selection of seasonal products for the duration of the festival, a celebration of the flavors that characterize Bahrain’s culture.
For more information regarding the festivals and its activities, please visit the Authority ’s website www.culture.gov.bh or follow the Authority’s social media accounts @CultureBah.