Weekender: Chow Down returns for winter

After hosting a hugely successful summer series hosted at Temple Arches’ 22,000 sq ft outdoor space, as well as two sell-out themed autumn events for Oktoberfest and Halloween, th organisers, Chow Down, has revealed Winter Arches which will run from 12 November to 1 January.

Winter Arches is set to once again transform Temple Arches into an outdoor dining experience and serve up an incredible range of drinks, featuring a variety of food vendors, and plenty of entertainment, all with a wintery, festive feel. Following the success of previous events the winter themed series includes four expanded socially distanced seating areas, including a brand new covered hall space, the premium Winter Snugs, the fresh air of the great outdoors under cover in the Winter Pergola, and a cosy Stretch Tent.

The team has looked to design an event that combined both a traditional Christmas market and a food event, to offer guests treats including boozy hot chocolate and winter cocktails and mulled wine, alongside five diverse food traders, a weekly roster of DJs, brass bands, Chow Downs Christmas House Band and choir to keep you entertained.

Simon Fogal, who runs Chapter 81, Leeds Indie Food and is a co-founder of Chow Down said: “Chow Down became a safe haven for people after the initial lockdown, with its huge outdoor area being the first place many people visited. 99.8% of the summer Chow Down visitors surveyed voted the site super safe, and we prioritise visitor and staff safety throughout, from food ordering to designated spaces, sanatiser stations, cleaning patrols and tables having more space.

Matt Long, who runs New Citizens, and co-founder of Chow Down said: “It has been a rollercoaster of a ride with ever changing rules and regulations but we are proud to reveal the Winter Arches concept. We have invested heavily in the site to allow for further restrictions (if and when) but also to allow us to further adapt should restrictions be lifted. We want to make it the best we can, whilst supporting as many people as we can.”

Following the announcement West Yorkshire and Leeds will move into Tier 3 lockdown from Monday 2 November, Fogal added: “It’s no surprise we have moved to Tier 3 and sad that hospitality is being punished so hard still. Been a tough year for so many friends and the Leeds indie community.

ConfirmingWinter Arches still looked to go ahead, he said: “Chow Down will always aim to adapt accordingly and support as many local businesses as we can through these dark times. We always wanted to be that beacon of hope”

He also offered support to help bars and pubs to meet the rule that requires them to offer a “substantial meal” in order to be allowed to open by connecting them to independent food operators: “Leeds Indie Food will offer to help connect any bars with substantial street food operators too.”

Bookings for Winter Arches open next week on 5th November via: chowdownevents.co.uk