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01/06/2018, Karelian Kalitka Festival 2018

The traditional annual tasty feast – Karelian Kalitka Festival – will be held on June 16, 2018 in the city of Sortavala. The event is devoted to the most popular symbol of the national Karelian cuisine – Karelian kalitka. The feast has been held since 2014 and this year it celebrates its first anniversary – 5 years. The Festival’s program and its geography are expanding every year and widening the borders. Every year Karelian Kalitka Festival welcomes guests from all parts of Karelia, from the North-West of Russia and neighbouring Finland. In 2017 more than 2500 guests have come the Festival.
Following traditions, the organizers don’t use pre-made food while cooking – Karelian kalitkas are hand-made and baked right at the Festival intentionally for this day to make guests happy with fresh and flavourous Karelian kalitkas. In 2017 during the Festival around 7500 kalitkas with various fillings were baked. This year we are planning to increase this number. Welcoming hosts of the feast offer guests to taste not only traditional kalitkas with potatoes, millet, cottage cheese, but also unusual ones – kalitkas with brynza (white cheese), ham, mushrooms, spinach, beet, with sweet fillings and traditional Sortavala kalitka with trout and potato.

The Festival’s guests will have an opportunity to participate in exciting master-classes in kalitkas’ baking, traditional and modern craft souvenirs making, to compete in the Karelian gorodki game – “Kyykkä” (Finnish skittles), to purchase hand-made gifts and learn how to make collections of Karelian herbs and berries.

The main part of the Festival’s program is cooking contest “Kalitka, kalitochka” which is held among the public catering service organizations and institutions of Sortavala district in the following nominations: “Signature recipe” and “The smallest Kalitka”. Competing teams will also take part in holding big open master-class in kalitkas’ baking according to the traditional recipe.

The special guest of the Festival and the main judge of the “Kalitka, kalitochka” contest is Tarmo Wasenius, the Vice-President of the Finnish and North Karelian Chefs’ Association, Chef of the “Karelskaya Gornitsa” restaurant.

At the end of the Festival’s program the cookers of the “Piipun Piha” restaurant will make a gift for all guests by baking the Russia’s biggest Kalitka. In 2017 its length amounted to 2,56 meters and width was 1,05 meters. In 2018 for the Festival’s anniversary the feast’s hosts will make a surprise for guests, baking kalitka of unusual form.

The program also includes performance of folk-group “Koleso” (“The Wheel”) from Saint Petersburg and the “Karelskaya Gornitsa” ensemble from Petrozavodsk, as well as the performance of Vepsian choir from Sheltozero and creative teams from the city and district of Sortavala.

The Festival’s aim and tasks are preservation and promotion of the Karelian culture and traditions, preservation of national self-awareness and mentality of citizens of the Republic of Karelia, making Festival’s guests familiar with the culture and traditions of the Karelians through gastronomic aspect of the Festival, as well as active lifestyle promotion.

The feast will be held on the territory of the “Piipun Piha” hotel (44 Promyshlennaya str., city of Sortavala), the Festival starts at 2 p.m.