Yorkshire Times
Weekend Edition
4:00 AM 16th September 2021

Syrian Refugees Star At York Food Festival

Syrian chefs will be cooking as part of York Food & Drink Festival. They will be in the demonstration kitchen on St. Sampson's Square at 12pm Wednesday 22nd September sharing recipes handed down through many generations.

They are part of “Yahala Mataam” which means “Welcome Restaurant” in Arabic. It is a partnership project between the Refugee Council, York City Church and a group of gifted chefs from Syria. The restaurant is re-launching their monthly pop-up evening in York this Autumn after having to stop them due to the pandemic.

Yahala Mataam is delighted to be able to be part of the Food Festival and share the native cuisine that our refugee chefs have brought to the city of York.

They will also be selling classic Syrian hummus and fresh falafel on the final weekend of the festival on Friday 24th and Saturday 25th September in St. Sampson’s Square.

These can be boxed up to enjoy later or eaten straight away as Falafel wraps made with Arabic bread.

“We are really thrilled to welcome Yahala Mataam to festival for the first time” said Festival organiser, Sarah Hjort

“The ongoing crisis in Afghanistan has really put refugees back in the forefront of people’s minds. Supporting Yahala and giving them a space at the festival really feels like the least we could do. We hope others come to support them too.”

For more details about York Food & Drink Festival visit