Browsing articles tagged with " food festivals"
Oct 29, 2014
Tina George

SW Florida food critics face judgment day – The News

Arvey Krise peered through panels of sheer black curtains as a team of volunteers delivered barbecue sandwiches from her Fort Myers restaurant, Reuben’s Smokehouse, to a panel of 14 judges.

“There they go,” she said, leaning onto her tiptoes for a better look. “Let’s hope they like them.”

Krise was one of more than a dozen local chefs and restaurateurs at the mercy of these 14 diners — community dignitaries, media personalities, former NFL running back Earnest Graham — who had gathered in a conference room at JetBlue Park in southeast Fort Myers last week to choose the Best of Taste award winners in advance of Sunday’s Taste of the Town.

If the chefs’ task — of perfectly preparing their chosen dish in a limited time frame and in a foreign kitchen — was formidable, then so too was the judges’.

“I skipped breakfast,” laughed Graham. “But this is one of those things you really just get to enjoy. I think everyone wants to be a food critic.”

With food festival season under way, a select group of local food lovers are getting that dream chance. Taste of Lee assembled a panel of three judges for its event at Centennial Park in downtown Fort Myers Saturday. Next month’s Taste of the Islands has five judges ready to sample upward of 35 dishes from restaurants on Sanibel and Captiva.

You’d think folks would be clamoring for these coveted spots, but judge recruitment can be a task of its own.

“I start a few months in advance,” said Diane Hertz, judges coordinator for Taste of the Islands. “It cannot be a chef on Sanibel, because they might be prejudice. So then you have to find a chef who’s not open on Sunday, or a restaurant owner who is willing to give up a chef on a Sunday, then you have family obligations and catering gigs and travel — it’s not as easy as you think.”

Hertz contacted 10 potential judges before landing on her team of five, a mix of three men and two women, of chefs and high-profile food enthusiasts. The one factor they, and all of the local festival judges, have in common (hearty appetites aside): no food allergies.

“That’s one of the first questions,” said Danielle Gates, managing partner of Businesses Supporting Communities, the company hosting Taste of Lee. “That’s a big one.”

While many of these festival judges are chosen more for name recognition than for their discerning palates, another level of judges builds such competitions into their everyday lives.

Vince Collier has more than six years of professional judging experience with the Florida Bar-B-Que Association. For Collier, a judge at the Big Swamp Smoke Off in Naples earlier this month, barbecue judging is about more than just shoveling in pulled pork and brisket.

“First of all, it’s tasting not eating,” Collier clarified, “small bites so you get the flavor and the texture, without stuffing yourself.”

Professional barbecue judges such as Collier go through hours of training. They learn about entry presentation, how to identify properly tender meats (be it ribs, chicken, pork or brisket), and how to rate taste using guidelines specific to the association.

Collier has judged 50 or so barbecue competitions throughout the state. In a single session of judging, he can face 2 full pounds of meat samples. It’s up to the judges to bring the same critical palate to the final plate as they did to the first.

“An awful lot of people put an awful lot of money into this hobby,” Collier said. “They just want to make sure they get consistent, fair judging when they compete.”

At Taste of the Town judging, the stakes weren’t quite so high. The competing chefs certainly wanted to win, but the promotional and charitable aspects of the event seemed to be bigger draws.

“It’s all for a good cause,” said Seminole Casino Immokalee chef Ozzy Acosta, whose Dynamite Prawns took first place for appetizer in the Best of Taste awards, “but winning never hurts.”

Connect with this reporter: @ATometich (Twitter)

‘Tis the season for food festivals

Saturday: Taste of Lee — 11 a.m.-6 p.m. at Centennial Park and along Edwards Drive, 2000 W. First St., downtown Fort Myers. Admission $5, kids 12 and younger free; tasteoflee.com.

Sunday: The 32nd annual Taste of the Town — 11 a.m.-5 p.m. at JetBlue Park, 11500 Fenway South Drive, southeast Fort Myers. Admission $5, kids 12 and younger free; limited VIP tickets available for $60 each or two for $100; jlfmtaste.com.

Nov. 7-8: Baconfest Naples — Festival is 10:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Nov. 8 at at Hodges University, 2655 Northbrooke Drive, Naples. Admission is $10 for adults, $5 for kids 6-12, kids 5 and younger are free.

Nov. 9: The 33rd annual Taste of the Islands — 11 a.m.-4 p.m. at The Dunes Golf Tennis Club, 949 Sand Castle Road, Sanibel. Admission $5, kids 12 and younger free; tastesanibelcaptiva.com.

Nov. 22-23: The 21st annual Taste of Bonita — Riverside Park, 10450 Reynolds St., Bonita Springs; tasteofbonita.com.

March 1: Taste of the Cape — Four Freedoms Park, 4818 Tarpon Court, Cape Coral; tasteofcapecoral.com.

May 3: The 20th annual Taste of the Beach — 11 a.m.-6 p.m. on Old San Carlos Boulevard, Fort Myers Beach. Admission is $5, kids 12 and younger free; chamber.fortmyersbeach.org.

Also

Taste of Collier: April 26 pending City Council approval

Taste of North Fort Myers: Target date is April 12

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Oct 29, 2014
Tina George

Thousands descend on food festivals in Fairfield and Abbotsbury as Costa …

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Oct 28, 2014
Tina George

Fall food festivals worth leaving NYC for

New York City may be the dining capital of the world, but that doesn’t mean you can’t seek culinary pleasures elsewhere. Over the next few weeks, your stomach may compel you to hop on Metro-North for Hudson Valley’s own restaurant week, head out to the North Fork to experience all that the wineries have to offer, saddle up next to celebrity chefs in Atlantic City or head south to South Carolina for not one but two food festivals. Dig in!

Hudson Valley Restaurant Week | Nov. 3-16 | Hudson Valley region

Here?s some incentive to explore the Hudson Valley
Here?s some incentive to explore the Hudson Valley
Here’s some incentive to explore the Hudson Valley culinary scene. The two-week dining deal features around 200 restaurants, spread out across 114 miles and seven counties — a majority near Metro-North stations, too — offering three-course dinners for $29.95 and lunches for $20.95. Many prix fixe menus will feature local produce, too, such as Mill House Brewing Company’s roasted butternut squash soup with candied pecans and pomegranate molasses. Hudsonvalleyrestaurantweek.com. (Credit: Hudson Valley Restaurant Week)

Here’s some incentive to explore the Hudson Valley culinary scene. The two-week dining deal features around 200 restaurants, spread out across 114 miles and seven counties — a majority near Metro-North stations, too — offering three-course dinners for $29.95 and lunches for $20.95. Many prix fixe menus will feature local produce, too, such as Mill House Brewing Company’s roasted butternut squash soup with candied pecans and pomegranate molasses. Hudsonvalleyrestaurantweek.com. (Credit: Hudson Valley Restaurant Week)

Street Eats | Nov. 8 | Atlantic City, New Jersey

At this star-studded culinary affair at the Borgata
At this star-studded culinary affair at the Borgata
At this star-studded culinary affair at the Borgata Hotel Casino and Spa, Geoffrey Zakarian, Michael Schulson, Bobby Flay, Wolfgang Puck, Thaddeus DuBois and more will serve up eats at more than 20 stations. The food fest will also feature music, games and cooking demos from Flay and Puck. (Make a trip out of it with Savor Borgata Weekend, featuring chef-prepared dinners, culinary demonstrations, classes and more from Nov. 7-8, leading up to Street Eats.) $89; 8-10 p.m., TheBorgata.com. (Credit: Borgata Hotel Casino Spa)

At this star-studded culinary affair at the Borgata Hotel Casino and Spa, Geoffrey Zakarian, Michael Schulson, Bobby Flay, Wolfgang Puck, Thaddeus DuBois and more will serve up eats at more than 20 stations. The food fest will also feature music, games and cooking demos from Flay and Puck. (Make a trip out of it with Savor Borgata Weekend, featuring chef-prepared dinners, culinary demonstrations, classes and more from Nov. 7-8, leading up to Street Eats.) $89; 8-10 p.m., TheBorgata.com. (Credit: Borgata Hotel Casino Spa)

Taste North Fork | Nov. 8-9 | North Fork, Long Island

Hop around the East End with this Veteran?s
Hop around the East End with this Veteran?s
Hop around the East End with this Veteran’s Day weekend promotion, featuring tastings, events, live music and discounts at wineries on the North Fork. To make it easy to get from one vineyard to the next, there’ll even be a free shuttle service connecting wineries and the region’s hamlets, as well as the Long Island Rail Road station in Mattituck, running from noon-5:30 p.m. You can also take advantage of special offers at hotels, bed-and-breakfasts, restaurants and shops. Liwines.com (Credit: Randee Daddona)

Hop around the East End with this Veteran’s Day weekend promotion, featuring tastings, events, live music and discounts at wineries on the North Fork. To make it easy to get from one vineyard to the next, there’ll even be a free shuttle service connecting wineries and the region’s hamlets, as well as the Long Island Rail Road station in Mattituck, running from noon-5:30 p.m. You can also take advantage of special offers at hotels, bed-and-breakfasts, restaurants and shops. Liwines.com (Credit: Randee Daddona)

Music to Your Mouth | Nov. 18-23 | Palmetto, South Carolina

Celebrate Lowcountry at this Southern food extravaganza that
Celebrate Lowcountry at this Southern food extravaganza that
Celebrate Lowcountry at this Southern food extravaganza that celebrates chefs, vintners, brewers, farmers and artisans. There’ll be bourbon tastings on a boat, a Hair of the Dog 5K — culminating with a well-earned Bloody Mary — cooking classes exploring the foods of Tennessee and Louisiana, an oyster roast, culinary festival, tailgating party and dinner prepared by James Beard award winners. Various prices, Musictoyourmouth.com (Credit: Music to Your Mouth)

Celebrate Lowcountry at this Southern food extravaganza that celebrates chefs, vintners, brewers, farmers and artisans. There’ll be bourbon tastings on a boat, a Hair of the Dog 5K — culminating with a well-earned Bloody Mary — cooking classes exploring the foods of Tennessee and Louisiana, an oyster roast, culinary festival, tailgating party and dinner prepared by James Beard award winners. Various prices, Musictoyourmouth.com (Credit: Music to Your Mouth)

Garden Gun Jubilee | Dec. 5-7 | Charleston, South Carolina

Here?s another Southern-style bash in South Carolina ?
Here?s another Southern-style bash in South Carolina ?
Here’s another Southern-style bash in South Carolina — this time in Charleston. Thrown by “Garden Gun,” the magazine that specializes in all things Southern, the charming, outdoor festival will feature three days of food, as well as music, art, shopping and sporting at the Charles Towne Landing state park. This includes plenty of food trucks, an oyster roast, biscuit breakfast, book signings and even an afternoon quail hunt. $85 day pass-$250 3-day pass; Gardenandgunjubilee.com (Credit: Scott’s Bar-B-Que)

Here’s another Southern-style bash in South Carolina — this time in Charleston. Thrown by “Garden Gun,” the magazine that specializes in all things Southern, the charming, outdoor festival will feature three days of food, as well as music, art, shopping and sporting at the Charles Towne Landing state park. This includes plenty of food trucks, an oyster roast, biscuit breakfast, book signings and even an afternoon quail hunt. $85 day pass-$250 3-day pass; Gardenandgunjubilee.com (Credit: Scott’s Bar-B-Que)

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Oct 27, 2014
Tina George

Texas food festivals, from Brady to Oatmeal

Brady Goat Cook-Off judges Kim King, Chet Garner and Daniel Vaughn discuss the judging before the 41st annual competition. Addie Broyles/AUSTIN AMERICAN-STATESMAN

Brady Goat Cook-Off judges Kim King, Chet Garner and Daniel Vaughn discuss the judging before the 41st annual competition. Addie Broyles/AUSTIN AMERICAN-STATESMAN

You might remember that over Labor Day weekend, I judged an epic goat cook-off in Brady, which has been hosting this unique cooking competition for 41 years.

In Sunday’s travel section, I wrote about why the festival is so beloved among both the 40 judges and 200 or so competitors, and with that story, I compiled this list of the other eccentric food festivals around the state. (You can also check out this goat cook-off photo gallery.)

Sure, there are countless barbecue and chili competitions that feed into the various regional and national contests, but these are, for the most part, the small town festivals that started out as a way to celebrate and promote a local crop or meat, including alligator or oysters.

Some of these festivals are going on stronger than others, and they all rely on weekend warriors like yourself coming into town and dropping a few extra dollars while you are there. From where I sit, the cultural and community value of their existence is even more important than the economic impact, but one can’t continue without the other.

Did we leave off your favorite funky food festival? Email abroyles@statesman.com and we’ll update the list.

The Jalapeño Festival, now in its 37th year, takes place during the Washington’s Birthday Celebration Festival in Laredo in February. jalapenofest.org

Oysterfest takes place the first weekend in March in Fulton and will celebrate 36 years in 2015. fultonoysterfest.org

In March, the town of Granbury hosts General Granbury’s Birthday Celebration, which includes a number of bean eating and cooking contests. granburysquare.com

Texas Onion Festival takes place every March in Weslaco, where the famed 1015 Onion was developed by Dr. Leonard Pike. weslaco.com/onionfest

The 18th annual Goldthwaite State Championship BBQ Goat Cook-Off will take place in April. millscountychamber.com/goat-cook-off

The Poteet Strawberry Festival returns to the small town south of San Antonio every April. strawberryfestival.com

Spring hosts the annual Texas Crawfish and Music Festival, which started in 1986, over two weeks in late April and early May. texascrawfishfestival.com

The Texas Steak Cook-off will return to Hico on May 16 next year for the 13th annual contest. texassteakcookoff.com

Texas Blueberry Festival passed the quarter century mark this summer in Nacogdoches, and it will take place the second weekend of June next year. texasblueberryfestival.com

Jacksonville, home of hundreds of concrete tomatoes and the Tomato Bowl stadium, celebrates tomatoes unlike anywhere else in Texas. Its 31st annual Tomato Fest will return June 13, 2015. jacksonvilletexas.com

The Luling Watermelon Thump has been taking place every June for more than 60 years. watermelonthump.com

The town of Holland celebrated the 40th Holland Corn Festival this summer, and it will return in late June next year. hollandcornfest.org

Every Labor Day weekend, the town of Brady hosts its annual Brady Goat Cook-Off, which draws more than 200 competitors from across the country. bradytx.com

In September, Doug Moreland hosts the Cattlelacs Calfry, a celebration of Rocky Mountain oysters. dougmoreland.com/calfry

The Oatmeal Festival, which takes place in Oatmeal and nearby Bertram, is held on Labor Day weekend and is in its 38th year. oatmealfestival.org

Texas Gator Fest takes place every September in Anahuac and features a barbecue and gator cook-off. texasgatorfest.com

For more than 30 years, the Caldwell Kolache Festival has been taking place in September. burlesoncountytx.com

The last weekend of September, Lufkin hosts the Southern Hushpuppy Championships, now in its 43rd year. texasstateforestfestival.com

Winnie’s 45th annual Texas Rice Festival took place in early October (preceded by a rice cook-off at the end of September) to help celebrate the harvest of the local rice crop. texasricefestival.com

Conroe Cajun Catfish Festival, which passed the quarter-century mark this year, happens every October in the city north of Houston. conroecajuncatfishfestival.com

Bacon Bash is a relatively new event in Cranfills Gap, and it takes place in mid-October. baconbashtexas.com

The East Texas Yamboree in Gilmer started back in 1935, making it one of the longest-running food festivals in Texas. It takes place in mid-October. yamboree.com

Texas Mushroom Festival, now in its 13th year, just took place in Madisonville. Look for it again next October. texasmushroomfestival.com

Flatonia’s Czhilispiel ( “that’s chili with a ‘z’!”) took place over the weekend, the 42nd year for this celebration. flatoniachamber.wix.com/czhilispiel

Wurstfest is New Braunfel’s beloved sausage celebration that takes place over 10 days in November, starting this year on Nov. 7. wurstfest.com

 

 

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Oct 26, 2014
Tina George

Top 3 Fall Food Festivals in the United States Revealed by Global Vacation …

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Global Vacation Ventures markets and sells Concierge Rewards International

Global Vacation Ventures markets and sells Concierge Rewards International

West Palm Beach, Florida (PRWEB) September 18, 2014

Fall brings with it some truly incredible events that vacationers can attend around the world, including some of the leading food and drink festivals that happen in the United States. Food lovers of all types will appreciate this top list of food festivals to attend in the U.S. compiled by Global Vacation Ventures.

1. Grand American Beer Festival, Denver, Colorado

In celebration of Oktoberfest, Denver holds an annual event, known as the Great American Beer Festival. Celebrated each year since it was founded in 1982, upwards of 700 different breweries from around the United States travel to the Mile High City to show off their best brews and compete for prizes. Food tastings will also be held throughout this three-day event running from October 2-4, 2014.

2. National Apple Harvest Festival, Arendtsville, Pennsylvania

For the past 50 years, the National Apple Harvest Festival has been celebrating the start of the apple harvest in Pennsylvania. Jellies, jams, baked goods, candies and much more can all be purchased, with fresh apples being one of the main ingredients. A petting zoo, antique car displays, and many more events will make for a memorable family outing shares Global Vacation Ventures. The event runs from October 4-5 and October 11-12, 2014.

3. Food Network New York City Wine Food Festival, New York City, New York

Some of the country’s best chefs will be making an appearance at this year’s Food Network Wine Food Festival for a good cause. Throughout the event, celebrity chefs will be giving demonstrations on a wide variety of topics including butchering, and how to prepare delicious raw and vegan dinners. While this is one of the more expensive food festivals to attend, Global Vacation Ventures knows that this is a one-of-a-kind culinary experience that travelers are not going to want to miss that runs from October 16-19, 2014.

4. Kona Coffee Cultural Festival, Kailua-Kona, Hawaii

Coffee has long been one of the most important parts of Hawaii’s culture, as it has been grown on the Big Island for almost 200 years. Every year, this world-famous crop is celebrated at the Kona Coffee Cultural Festival, which is being held from November 7-16, 2014. Some of the events at the festival include the crowning of Miss Kona Coffee, coffee-picking contests, coffee tasting, coffee-themed foods and cooking demonstrations and much more.

For additional information about these festivals and the locations that they are hosted at, contact the concierge country club travel agency of Global Vacation Ventures today.

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Oct 24, 2014
Tina George

America’s 10 Best Fall Food Festivals

Fall is a time for loosing pant strings and gearing up for the most American form of celebration: eating and drinking. Travel around the country feasting on an abundance of seasonal eats like apple pies and pumpkin brews, while sampling the local flavors of each state and region. Here are ten food festivals across America to keep you nice and full, just in time for Thanksgiving.
National Apple Harvest:October 4-5 and 11-12
Celebrating its 50th Anniversary, the National Apple Harvest Festival has something for all ages. Strolling musicians and entertainers set the tone of the day, while activities like petting zoos, chainsaw carving, and Native American dancers ensure constant fun. Dont forget to experience the main reason you attended: the apples. Choose your favorite way to enjoy this seasonal treat, whether its bobbing for candied apples, enjoying a warm slice of homemade pie, or visiting the apple pancake patio.
Welfleet Oysterfest:October 18-19
The end of summer doesnt mean an end to seafood. Head to Welfleet, Massachusetts for some of the Capes finest oysters. Originally founded to spread awareness for the towns fishery industry, Oysterfest is a delicious way to support a local economy. Whet your appetite with the annual shucking contest and then gather your friends to see who can make their own record.
New York City Wine and Food Festival:October 16-19
Now in its seventh year, the annual Food Network hosted culinary event returns to New York City, bringing together famed chefs from around the world. Armed with their goal of ending child hunger, the New York City Wine and Food Festival donates all of its profits towards this end. Visitors will have the opportunity to see some of the greatest talents in the culinary and spirits industries through dinners, tastings, and panels.
Harvest on the Harbor:October 22-25
Portland, Maines Harvest on the Harbor event is a push to promote Maine as a culinary destination. With picturesque harbor views, lobster as fresh as it comes, and over 160 culinary vendors, the harbor festival makes its mark on the food festival scene. For a special experience, sign up for the Harvest Dinner, a tasting accompanied by the Kotzschmar Organ as you sample the best of Maines local flavor.
Santa Fe Wine and Chile Fiesta:September 24-28
Get a taste of the west with Santa Fes five day Wine and Chile Fiesta. Enjoy chef demonstrations, wine seminars, luncheons, and dinners, followed by the Gran Fondo 50 mile bike ride to get back into fighting shape. With options from over 90 wineries and 75 Santa Fe based restaurants, youll have no trouble filling five days of endless tasting.
Great American Beer Festival:October 2-4
Youd be hard pressed to find a beer not represented at the Great American Beer Festival. Come with your tank empty and be prepared to enjoy one of Americas favorite pastimes. Worried about your resilience? Stop for a snack at the Farm to Table Pavilion, try a new flavor from the American Cheese Society, or join one of the many pairings of the day, like hot dogs ales.
Sonoma County Harvest Fair:October 3-5
Now in its 40th year, the Sonoma County Harvest Fair offers wine connoisseurs the chance to experience the best of the annual harvest. Sample vintages from over 150 wineries around the Sonoma region and purchase your favorites in the wine country marketplace. Sweet toothed visitors can enjoy the port and chocolate pairing, while live demonstrations, grape stomping, and harvest workshops ensure there is something for everyone.
 
Feast Portland: September 18-21

Now in its third year, Feast Portlandbrings a taste of the Pacific Northwest to the public, hosted by Bon Appetite Magazine. Mixing local talent with worldwide culinary masters, visitors can imbibe and indulge while supporting a good cause; all profits go towards feeding hungry children throughout Oregon.
Music City Food + Wine Festival:September 20-21
Now in its second year, Nashvilles Music City Food and Wine Festival shares a taste of the south through culinary bites and music selections, curated by festival co-founders and Kings of Leon band mates Caleb and Nathan Followill. Learn the art of burning food, discover the proper way to shuck an oyster, and gain tips on turning a culinary disaster into a success.
Columbus Oktoberfest:September 26-28
Cant make it to Munich? Columbus, Ohio has you covered with their recreation of the annual Oktoberfest. Don your dirndl and lederhosen as you sip foamy beers, enjoy warm pretzels and sausages, and walk among the strolling musicians. Prost!
This article has been posted with permission and originally appeared as America’s 10 Best Fall Food Festivals on Honest Cooking.
This article originally appeared as America’s 10 Best Fall Food Festivals on Relish

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Oct 24, 2014
Tina George

Tasty street food festivals and events in London this weekend and beyond

Indeed, in coming weeks there are crateloads of street food events to glove up for. This Sunday Borough Market – which incidentally turns 1000 this year – hosts its annual Apple Day celebration between midday and 4pm (boroughmarket.org.uk). Traders will serve special appley dishes – Greek kebabs with a Spartan apple piccalilli from Gourmet Goat, apple and cinnamon pancakes from Khanhom Krok, British apple tarts from Artisan Foods plus chocolate coated toffee apples from So Chocolicious.

Have you ever tried a stack of meatballs from The Bowler’s famous grass-covered van? Well Street Food Kitchen is the new residency from Bowler Jez Felwick who as now expanded into bricks and mortar. Head down tonight from 6.30-9.3pm or Saturday 6.30-9.30pm to the refurbished Horse Groom Pub (28 Curtain Road, EC2A, thebowler.info) for Thai green curry ball boxes.

There is a brilliant selection of traders coming up at the new weekly street food and produce market which launches in Peckham on November 1 (10am-2pm behind Peckham Academy, peckhammarket.com). Expect Original Fry up Matierial, Mamas Jerk Station, Club Mexicana, sweet things from Kooky Bakes, and local juice from Ali Baba. Anyone who tweets what they’re eating to @peckham_market and @onefeedstwo will be providing a school meal to a child in poverty.

On November 12, new street food festival Magic Feast comes to Bermondsey, with music from MEATtransMISSION, a raffle and a live auction, with all proceeds going towards the local children’s charity Magic Breakfast. Held in the cafeteria of Surrey Square Primary School, you’ll be able to buy Dead Hippie Sliders from MEATliquor and Columbia Road’s 1235 doughnuts (£50 a pop, 6.30-11pm, magicfeast.eventbrite.co.uk).

New to Golborne Road in Portobello is the Penny Market which combines locally made artisan products and giving – for every penny made, two pennies are given away to local charities. Saturday’s food line-up includes beautiful smoked salmon from Hansen and Lyderson, cured meats from Cannon and Cannon, handmade tablet fudge from Cupcakes and Shhht (9am-5pm, saturdaythepennymarket.co.uk)

Now get those gloves, get outside and eat the streets.

 

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Oct 21, 2014
Tina George

Taste of Atlanta

Tags: Food Festivals and Events, CL Recommends, Taste of atlanta, food network, beer tasting, wine tasting, kevin rathbun, drew belline, Nick Leahy, The Iberian pig, the optimist, seven lamps, big green egg

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Oct 21, 2014
Tina George

America’s 10 Best Fall Food Festivals

Fall is a time for loosing pant strings and gearing up for the most American form of celebration: eating and drinking. Travel around the country feasting on an abundance of seasonal eats like apple pies and pumpkin brews, while sampling the local flavors of each state and region. Here are ten food festivals across America to keep you nice and full, just in time for Thanksgiving.
National Apple Harvest:October 4-5 and 11-12
Celebrating its 50th Anniversary, the National Apple Harvest Festival has something for all ages. Strolling musicians and entertainers set the tone of the day, while activities like petting zoos, chainsaw carving, and Native American dancers ensure constant fun. Dont forget to experience the main reason you attended: the apples. Choose your favorite way to enjoy this seasonal treat, whether its bobbing for candied apples, enjoying a warm slice of homemade pie, or visiting the apple pancake patio.
Welfleet Oysterfest:October 18-19
The end of summer doesnt mean an end to seafood. Head to Welfleet, Massachusetts for some of the Capes finest oysters. Originally founded to spread awareness for the towns fishery industry, Oysterfest is a delicious way to support a local economy. Whet your appetite with the annual shucking contest and then gather your friends to see who can make their own record.
New York City Wine and Food Festival:October 16-19
Now in its seventh year, the annual Food Network hosted culinary event returns to New York City, bringing together famed chefs from around the world. Armed with their goal of ending child hunger, the New York City Wine and Food Festival donates all of its profits towards this end. Visitors will have the opportunity to see some of the greatest talents in the culinary and spirits industries through dinners, tastings, and panels.
Harvest on the Harbor:October 22-25
Portland, Maines Harvest on the Harbor event is a push to promote Maine as a culinary destination. With picturesque harbor views, lobster as fresh as it comes, and over 160 culinary vendors, the harbor festival makes its mark on the food festival scene. For a special experience, sign up for the Harvest Dinner, a tasting accompanied by the Kotzschmar Organ as you sample the best of Maines local flavor.
Santa Fe Wine and Chile Fiesta:September 24-28
Get a taste of the west with Santa Fes five day Wine and Chile Fiesta. Enjoy chef demonstrations, wine seminars, luncheons, and dinners, followed by the Gran Fondo 50 mile bike ride to get back into fighting shape. With options from over 90 wineries and 75 Santa Fe based restaurants, youll have no trouble filling five days of endless tasting.
Great American Beer Festival:October 2-4
Youd be hard pressed to find a beer not represented at the Great American Beer Festival. Come with your tank empty and be prepared to enjoy one of Americas favorite pastimes. Worried about your resilience? Stop for a snack at the Farm to Table Pavilion, try a new flavor from the American Cheese Society, or join one of the many pairings of the day, like hot dogs ales.
Sonoma County Harvest Fair:October 3-5
Now in its 40th year, the Sonoma County Harvest Fair offers wine connoisseurs the chance to experience the best of the annual harvest. Sample vintages from over 150 wineries around the Sonoma region and purchase your favorites in the wine country marketplace. Sweet toothed visitors can enjoy the port and chocolate pairing, while live demonstrations, grape stomping, and harvest workshops ensure there is something for everyone.
 
Feast Portland: September 18-21

Now in its third year, Feast Portlandbrings a taste of the Pacific Northwest to the public, hosted by Bon Appetite Magazine. Mixing local talent with worldwide culinary masters, visitors can imbibe and indulge while supporting a good cause; all profits go towards feeding hungry children throughout Oregon.
Music City Food + Wine Festival:September 20-21
Now in its second year, Nashvilles Music City Food and Wine Festival shares a taste of the south through culinary bites and music selections, curated by festival co-founders and Kings of Leon band mates Caleb and Nathan Followill. Learn the art of burning food, discover the proper way to shuck an oyster, and gain tips on turning a culinary disaster into a success.
Columbus Oktoberfest:September 26-28
Cant make it to Munich? Columbus, Ohio has you covered with their recreation of the annual Oktoberfest. Don your dirndl and lederhosen as you sip foamy beers, enjoy warm pretzels and sausages, and walk among the strolling musicians. Prost!
This article has been posted with permission and originally appeared as America’s 10 Best Fall Food Festivals on Honest Cooking.
This article originally appeared as America’s 10 Best Fall Food Festivals on Relish

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