North Hop festival-goers are in for a treat this Easter, as Scotland’s leading food and drink destination festival descends on the Granite City.
Dubbed “The Final Fling”, because it is the last North Hop festival in its current form, this year’s North Hop Aberdeen will be held at Aberdeen Exhibition and Conference Centre on 30 and 31 March.
Treats for food and drink lovers include; a fully-loaded beer hall, cocktail lounge, food vendors serving up a wide range of delights, live music from Scotland’s new and upcoming musicians and bands, and a special pop-up market place featuring hand-crafted goods from local creative curated by the Aberdeen Etsy team.
North Hop Festival Director, Michelle Russell, said: “This is our 4th Aberdeen festival and it will be our 12th festival since North Hop began in Inverness in 2014. It has been an amazing journey so far and we have worked with some awesome producers and folk from across Scotland and beyond. But the time has come to take a step back and some time out to come up with fresh ideas for the future of the North Hop brand.”
Michelle continued: “ We have always been at the forefront of new trends and like to keep things fresh and unique. Aberdeen has always massively supported North Hop and we love running festivals in the city and that is exactly why we have chosen Aberdeen for our final fling to send the current festivals out in style!”
As is the North Hop festival way, distillers, brewers and makers are on site, working behind their own bars and stands to offer festival-goers the best festival-experience possible.
For North Hop Aberdeen, over half the vendors are new faces to the North Hop scene and have some exciting products to showcase.
New-to-market Never 25 have created Scotland’s first eau de vie spirit using grain and fruit local to their distillery in Dundee. Both Brew Toon and Beer Story are new breweries to Aberdeenshire. The Liberty Kitchen from Bridge of Don, is one of the newest street food vendors on the block. They will be at AEEC in a bespoke converted horsebox specialising in vegetarian and vegan offerings.
Nikki Makaronas from The Liberty Kitchen says: “I was absolutely delighted when North Hop approached me with the offer of a space at the festival. I attended the festival as a visitor last year and loved it! It was such an easy-going atmosphere and was a great way to discover new products and chat to the actual people behind the brands. Having launched in January this year this is a great opportunity to showcase what we do to a wide audience, whilst enjoying the festival buzz!”
North Hop Aberdeen is more than just a beer festival, and this Easter the marketplace will offer something slightly different, alongside MINE with their beautiful hand-crafted jewellery, the Aberdeen Etsy Team will be hosting a pop-up market in the Cocktail Lounge showcasing six local creatives.
On the music front, the line-up very much echoes the “support local” message with all acoustic acts and bands linked to Aberdeenshire.
Sweet White headline the Friday evening session, The 101 will top the bill for the Saturday afternoon session and North Hop favourites The Harmonica Movement headline and close the festival on the Saturday evening session.
As this is The Final Fling, famous bagpiper Spud the Piper has been invited to the AECC to accompany Festival MC Nicola McAlley from STV News to open and close the festival sessions.
Michelle Russell has also organised a “North Hop Bar” as a treat for festival-goers, designed and styled by local artist Laura Bremner from Juniper Press, featuring five spirits from Berry Bros & Rudd (including a newly-launched London Dry Gin), natural mixers from Lamb & Watt, and the finest ice from Edinburgh Ice Co. Local mixologists Adrian Forde-Beggs and Connor Knowles will be behind the bar creating special cocktails for the festival.
Over 2500 people are expected to descend on the AECC across the three sessions for ‘The Final Fling’ with nearly half the tickets already sold. Tickets available here.