Join the Perfect Picnic as the festival celebrates Scotland’s Year of Food and Drink

Book your place for guided walks, workshops and talks now!

Festival-goers are in for a tasty treat at this year’s Perthshire Amber which takes place 30 October – 8 November.  In addition to the fantastic musical line up featuring 17 concerts, the festival has an extended fringe programme ‘Amber Discoveries’, which is packed with foodie delights to celebrate the Year of Food and Drink.

Perthshire Amber Decorated Wheelbarrow Parade & Amber Autumn Picnic - Sunday 1 November 2015 at 12.30pm
Described as a “brilliant fun and an amazing spectacle”(Perthshire Advertiser) the decorated wheelbarrows, created by local businesses, community groups and families, are led by the pipe band through the streets of Dunkeld.  The barrows weave their way to Stanley Hill in the north of the village for judging followed by some wonderful live music from Buddy MacDonald, Dallahan and Dougie MacLean.  Local business will have special Amber Picnics for sale so that visitors can enjoy their perfect picnic while enjoying the free concert.

The Tattie Talk with John Marshall -  Saturday 31 October 4.30pm
TattieTalk is a fast moving photo talk with stories of John Marshall’s ‘travels with potatoes’ across the globe. He was brought up on a Perthshire Farm near Dunning in the 1950’s early 60’s enjoying the country life of the time and has spent his entire working life in the potato industry.
John will be tracking the source of the potato plant from Lake Titicaca in Peru , the introduction of this new food to Europe and the over-dependence which resulted in the Irish potato famine.  His talk reveals the pioneering work of Auchtermuchty’s Archibald Findlay and the proliferation of potato breeding which has led to the 4,000 varieties of potato that are being produced today!  

The Berry Talk with Dougie MacLean and Ewen Sutherland -  Saturday 7 November 10.00am
Perthshire has been the centre of the UK soft fruit industry for around 100 years.  As a result of that a unique culture has grown up around the picking of berries in this area.  There was not a family that wasn’t involved, or a child that didn’t participate, in the berry picking every summer. Ewen Sutherland and Dougie MacLean will share their personal stories of thorns and red stained fingers during their years at the harvest of this most important crop.  From ‘cleeks’ to ‘luggies’ from ‘dreels’ to ‘big pails’ - they will inform and delight you with their perspective on the berry fields of Blair and surrounds and there might be a song or two as well..

Wicked Chocolate Workshop with Elaine Forrest - Saturday 7 November 11.15am
The very popular chocolate workshop returns for 2015.  This is a chocolate event where the history, growing and manufacture of chocolate will be discussed in a light-hearted way. There will be many samples to taste and chocolate to take home courtesy of Perthshire’s own Wicked Chocolate who specialise in creating the most delicious chocolate drawn from sources around the world.

To complete the delicious offering at Perthshire Amber, the team from Tennent’s will be holding tastings of their Caledonia Best beer at many of our evening concerts.
And that’s not all, the ever popular music workshops and walks will be running again this year, with photography and archaeology walks as well as new storytelling walks around Dunkeld.  The music workshops will include handbells, penny whistle and the ever popular bodhran.

Dougie MacLean explains more about the Discoveries Programme:
“We love curating the Amber Discoveries; it’s such a vital part of the festival experience.  We know people travel from all over the world to enjoy our concerts, however it’s often the walks, talks and workshops that help visitors feel a part of the festival.  Discoveries gives people the chance to learn something new, either by trying a new instrument or improving their photography or learning about Perthshire’s fascinating history and culture.  This part of the world is so important to me, so much of my music is inspired by the landscape, the history and the people and I enjoy being able to share some of that with our audiences.”   

Paul Bush OBE, Director of Events at VisitScotland, said:
“We are delighted to be supporting Perthshire Amber through our Beacon programme. The additional food and drink offering as part of the Amber Discoveries Fringe programme will provide festival-goers with the opportunity to enjoy talks and workshops while sampling the very best local produce. The festival is a fantastic celebration of the music of Dougie Maclean and of the region’s culture and history, which contributes toward making Scotland the perfect stage for events.”

For a full listing of all the Amber Discoveries and to book your tickets click on the links in drop-down boxes from the top bar of the website.
The festival takes place from 30 October – 8 November in venues across Perthshire.  The festival hub is the charming village of Dunkeld, where festival goers will find the box office, Cabaret Amber, Open Mic Sessions and pub sessions throughout the festival.