Some people love to eat and a food tasting festival is a big high-light event for them. I have gone for several years to the food events like Beer Bash and Village Voice Choice eats. Here are my tips on how to survive and not go into a food coma.
Arrive hungry. Eat light the day of the festival. This is the day for the liquid lunch or salad for lunch. Go there a semi-empty stomach. You don’t want to go to a food festival with a totally empty stomach if they are serving alcohol.
Some of these festivals are expensive. A solution is to volunteer. You can do an early shifts or help with setting-up for the event the day before if you handy with tools. I did a volunteer shift for the Village Voice beer festival and for a four hour shift I got tickets to their Viillage Voice Choice Eats festival So email the organizer when you hear the first announcement of the festival or sign up the festival email list or Facebook page. Mark last year event on your new calendar in January. It is a risk of the festival selling out but you can wait for last minute discount codes if it doesn’t sell out. If you sign up for your food festival email lists sometimes the festival will send early bird discount codes to subscribers. Sometimes Craigslist has people selling tickets too. Be careful if you buy from a stranger and only buy hard copy tickets and not a email ticket. There are lots of ticket scammers out there. Also, organizer do release discounted tickets on group on too once in a while.
Go with a friend and share food. You can only eat so much before you are stuffed and then the food is wasted. Eat what you don’t get to eat that often or try some new foods. Also, expensive food like lobster rolls go fast. A lot of times there are new products showcased at these festivals too. Bring a container to bring home something you absolutely love the next day. Enjoy every morsel and don’t eat so much that you get sick. i did over-eat once and it an experience that you never forget.
Get there early if you do not want to pay extra for the VIP early entrance. Get there early and look at the map of the festival while you wait on line. Map out your favorite restaurants or places you would like to try. There will be a lot of lines for food so look to see where you should go first. Plus getting there early is a good way to sample more food because food samples do run out. Sometimes there are limited tables available so you can sit while eat when you balance anymore plates in your hands and you need to grab them fast.
Wear loose comfortable clothing. Do not wear clothes that you would not want to get dirty. Try to change from your work clothes before you get to the event. You do eat a lot of times standing up or while you are waiting on line and food does spill accidentally. If they have a coat do check your coat. Handling food in one hand and a heavy coat in the other can be hard to balance and quite a challenge.
Some festivals have music or a band playing. Get there early eat and then dance a little to burn off those calories. Sit with the alcohol and listen to the band and rest for a while. The alcohol is usually top shelf or some unique cocktails. I went to one festival that offered hard cider cocktails. I saw beers like maple pecan that I never seen before. Also, if you hang out till the end sometimes the vendors will let you take a bottle home if there are any left. So bring a extra tote-bags just in case. You may even get a complimentary tote-bag from one of the event sponsors which is another reason to get there early. You should find seats to rest two hours into the festival. Because after two some food stands will run out and people start to go home.
Just have fun at these festival and breathe and relax. It’s good to know that you are well fed and some festivals donate the money to charity. It sometimes a race to get the best food. I hope your tips help have a fun time. So Bon Appetit.