THOUSANDS of food lovers got a taste of the Welsh language at a popular festival – as well as the international language of coffee.

Organisers of the Llangollen Food Festival were thrilled with the turn-out over two bustling days at the popular event which has been hailed as one of the highlights in the UK’s culinary calendar. Visitors were also given the opportunity to sample the delights of the Welsh language as they browsed more than 100 stalls at the famous International Pavilion.

The festival teamed up with Menter Iaith Sir Ddinbych, one of a network of organisations established across Wales to promote the language, and pupils from the nearby high school, Ysgol Dinas Bran and Ysgol Brynhyfryd, in Rhtin.

One exhibitor invented his own language to promote his Rhyl-based Mug Run coffee roasting business. Tim Parry had postcards printed for distribution to customers, teaching them the novelty sign language.

He said: “I’m really proud of it. I formulated it as a result of years of experience. I realised that when customers talk about coffee brewing machines and methods, they use different hand signals.

“A flat hand pressing downwards, for instance, means a cafetiere, a clenched fist is a stove top method, a finger pointing down indicates a drip pour machine. I became so expert at interpreting them that I eventually decided to catalogue the different signs by hand-drawing small sketches of them to print on my postcards.”

Tim has exhibited at Llangollen for five years but for the first time he delivered a workshop for people to taste different coffee flavours and have a go at making their own. He also produced a blend of roasted coffee, called Hamper, in celebration of the 2019 food festival.

“It’s a great event I always enjoy so I wanted to create a blend especially for it.” said Tim who was helped on his stall by his mum Meryl Bowker.

Neil Moffat and wife, Claire Hemingway-Moffat, who launched Hemingway’s pesto in Churton, near Farndon, cooking up their special recipe in their home kitchen, were also having a great time.

Neil said: “We’ve got four children who all went off to university, but none were very good cooks.

“When they would come home Claire would make up a giant jar of her delicious pesto sauce for them to take back to their digs.

“We used to call it Red Cross pesto because it was designed to give them something healthy and nutritious to eat. It was so well liked by their student friends that we began making more and more of it and now it’s really taken off and become a mini-business.”

Organiser Phil Davies said: “We’re absolutely delighted. It went very, very well. Our exhibition stands were full and included some newcomers to the festival which is always nice to see, and everyone had positive feedback on both the trade stands and the interactive workshops and demonstrations.”