The good people at Switchedon Communications invited me back to Taste of London in Regent’s Park for the second year running to see what the country’s top foodie brands had to offer. A Taste of London Session is four hours and the plethora of foodie activations can mean getting around the event in this time is a struggle, however doing my research prior to the event enabled me to squeeze in as many as possible. My top five brand activations at this year’s Taste of London are as follows:
When I arrived on the Thursday evening the weather couldn’t decide if it was miserable and raining or miserable and not raining. One snack brand, Hippeas, who had only launched the week before, had taken full advantage of the bad weather by handing out bright yellow ponchos to everyone and anyone around the site. In times of rain, the festival was a sea of bright yellow ponchos which stood out fantastically against the grey and gloomy London backdrop. A large team of very enthusiastic Hippeas brand ambassadors, wearing the signature yellow wellies, were handing out samples of the product along with tote bags, fans and badges and encouraging us to give peas a chance. A DJ Spun tunes out of a bright yellow VW campervan, while BAs encouraged everyone to have their picture taken in the Instagram cardboard cut-out.
Prosecco DOC and Grana Padano partnered again this year to bring a taste of Italy to the capital.
Head chef of the Italian Embassy in London Danilo Cortellini and wine expert Neil Philips offered masterclasses throughout the five days with Prosecco and Grana Padano to try as well as a range of carefully created dishes.
I attended a Masterclass with my photographer and we were given generous samples of both the cheese and the prosecco whilst we watched Neil Philips cook for us. The compere spoke to us about the history of the cheese and the drink and how prosecco can work paired with food and not just as an Apéritif.
Sharp’s brewery were behind two of the most immersive brand experiences at Taste of London
The first of which, a very popular confession booth, where willing confessors were putting their names on the waiting list and waiting their turn in the branded bar next door.
In the middle of the VIP area stood a large wooden crate which held groups of eight at a time. We entered as part of a group of six and were treated to an intimate blind beer tasting with food. No one was told what to expect before entering the experience which built up excitement amongst the group as we waited in the pitch black holding area. On entering, we took seats around the bar and the bartender/ dynamic beer expert, Ed encouraged us to discuss the tastes and smells of the beer we were sampling. The crate was low lit and simply decked out and created an intimate contrast to the hustle and bustle of the festival surrounding us.
Food Delivery providers, Deliveroo were demonstrating their services by offering food delivery on site free of charge. They had created a restaurant decorated in their trademark baby blue colour. Diners could order from a menu of selected restaurants from around the site, sit back, relax and have a Deliveroo courier fetch it for them, particularly popular when I was in attendance as the rain meant people were more than happy to shelter.
Pic’s, a brand of Peanut Butter from New Zealand were holding a peanut butter amnesty.
On offering up my jar to the Pic’s team, it was met with enthusiastic boos and put in a Sinbin with other offenders to be donated to pest control companies. I was then ceremoniously given a new jar of Pic’s as a reward.
Although by no means a new concept, it was executed well, and I was more than happy to boo my jar of peanut butter along with the rest of them. Pic’s have only been in the UK market for eight months, and this was an endearing way to show themselves as a fun and light-hearted brand.