Austin Food and Wine Feast-ival or Fest-EVIL?

I’m not a festival goer. In fact, the last festival I attended was Bonnaroo in the year 2006 BC (Before Children). I spent most of the weekend dehydrated, sweaty, and whining on my yoga mat. Being that I am a total extrovert and that I fill my metaphorical cup with social situations, you might think festivals would be my thing, right?  Answer: No Way. Actually, I tend to despise being trapped in hot places with overpriced, crappy food and blender vendors galore. That being said, when I got an opportunity to work with the Austin Food and Wine Festival this year, I jumped at the offer.  This makes absolutely no sense, right?

Let me expand.  The concept of being surrounded by people who can talk about high notes, deep flavors, and a hint of foodie gossip for an entire weekend, strums my food lovin’ heart strings. Really does it get any better? Let’s not forget, the chance to spend 3 days eating, drinking and talking about food leaves me deeply enthralled. I normally get a total of 3 minutes just to eat dinner. I do however, have one last little hurdle to climb over, the term “festival” still leaves a bad taste in my mouth (pun intended). I tend to think of it more as a…

Fest * EVIL- A diverse group of dirty hippies, sopping in marijuana sweat. All baked (literally) in the holy hell heat of the Tennessee sun with overpriced food and a hellava lot of vendors selling dank goo balls and hemp necklaces.  (Note: usage of the word Evil)

 

I’m really hoping Austin Food and Wine is more of a…

 

FEAST * ival – A diverse gathering of food lovers.  Each participant feasts on scrumptious eats and flirts with succulent libations.

 

I get it, there is a cost to hob-nob with the finest Chefs and foodie-winesters in the Nation. BUT…what better way to spend your money if you’ve saved up for a special weekend? Kiss my fine foodie-fingers if you judge me but I’m getting my white apron signed by Top Chef, Paul Qui.  Side Note: vendors, please stop trying to sell me SH** I don’t want. I haven’t been to the Austin Food and Wine Festival ever, so I cannot yet say that this event is surely worth every penny. What I can say is that it looks cooler than MC hammer pants in the early 90’s (check event schedules HERE). Personally, I  will be spending the entire weekend stalking looking for Gail Simmons – I adore her. And hopefully, getting my brain full of culinary factoids by Chef Marcus Samuelsson.  I’ll be full of duck confit a la rouge in the tasting tent regardless but the real question is will the Austin Food and Wine Feast-ival be worth the buck and duck? Or will it be just like Bonnaroo all hype and no substance.  Only time and a lot of wine will tell.  If this event is as good as it looks, you’re gonna know it.  If the organizers have sold their souls from the back of a Sysco truck you’re gonna know it too.

Some Insider Deets:

This event is NOT family friendly- you must be 21 to attend.

Dates: April 27, 28 and 29 in Austin, TX

Cost: A regular weekender ticket is $250 (remember it’s so worth it to avoid vendors).

Click HERE for Tickets sales information.

Location: Auditorium Shores (Disch Feild) in Downtown Austin. There are still some Hotels available within walking distance- but grab them fast.

 

Hope to toast with you at the event. Check back soon to see if I rated Austin Food and Wine a good time FEAST-ival or wont ever go back- Fest-EVIL?  I really hope no one is going to try to sell me magic mushrooms or a new blender (fingers crossed).

 

 

 

***Full Delishclosure: I am working with Austin Food and Wine As A Blogger/Insider Deets Giver. They are giving me a ticket. However, this in NO way shapes my opinions.  Regardless, I would be going to this great event. In fact, I am buying a ticket for a good friend to come along with me ($250), getting a hotel for the weekend (500$) and bringing a babysitter (200$).  No profit to be made but plenty of material to write about.

Not Too Late for Easter Brunch Reservations

Hoppy Easter Peeps!

If you’re like my family you’re just realizing this weekend is EASTER. The hottest (literally, in San Antonio) weekend to get out and egg hunt till your little love’s sugar-high wears off. Not to mention, the best time to wear a Royal Wedding inspired, vagina easter hat and go out for brunch. You all know how much I LOVE me some brunch.  If I could be in 5 places at one time, these foodie-family-approved-brunchey-brunch spots are where you would find me…


The Westin La Cantera This year they are featuring a toddler egg hunt and of course, the usual top-notch buffet items. Surely, the room will be filled with Happy Hoppy well-fed parents and kiddos. I love the Westin La Cantera. The food tickles my taste buds each time I have gone. This is where my little fam will be, come join us! (Menu HERE) call for reservations at (210) 558-6500

RoMo’s This little spot with a whole lotta love in the oven, got voted one of San Antonio’s top-ten new restaurants in the latest issue of SAmag. AND they just re-opened on Sunday’s to showcase their creatively-succulent brunch menu (let’s just say these lil deviled-smore’s might make an appearance). They are about as Family-Friendly as you can get (menu HERE). Call for reservations at 210) 521-7666

Sustenio If you haven’t ventured to Chef David Gilbert’s culinary wonderland yet, you are as crazy as a loon. Easter Brunch seems like a fine time to refine your palette and have some ceviche with your mimosa.  Or be uber brave and try some civet coffee, double-dog dare you. (Reservation info. HERE) Or call (210) 598-2950

Biga On The Banks I hope you got a chance to read my latest article in TASTE magazine.  It was all about the beautiful Debra Auden, wife to Chef/owner of Biga, Bruce Auden. Biga is one of the best places to eat in the entire Western part of the country (no joke). Also, Chef Auden is a James Beard nominee. So just go to say you have gone if you can’t come up with another reason.  Good news, I called today and they still have some Easter Sunday spots left.  Snag em’! If there’s a time to splurge it’s at Biga and it’s Easter Sunday Brunch. Believe it or not, they are well behaved kid-friendly.  The menu and prices are HERE or call for reservations at 210-225-0722

ZTejas I’ve heard a lot of buzz about this place and their brunch. It is supposed to be a Southwest foodie’s love affair atop-o-some tableside guac.  Check out the menu HERE and if you go, let me know if you liked it as much as the hype does. For more information call (210) 690-3334

Whether you are in San Antonio or Santa Fe, I say, go out and try something new or re-visit someplace you adore this Sunday. Let me know how it goes and please check back soon for more April EatVENTs.

Editors note: Thank you Apartment Therapy for the “peepin’- hot chocolate idea and photo. Also, thank you Chef Rob of RoMo’s for the s’mores pic. The rest of the photos and all opinions are Defining Delicious’ own