One of the biggest food events of the year for the greater Los Angeles area, the 7th annual Los Angeles Food & Wine Festival is taking place in a little under two weeks, from August 24th through August 27th. Following the same format as last year, the festival consists of three evening events on Grand Avenue in Downtown Los Angeles, on red carpet, and under the stars and both the Broad Museum and the Disney Concert Hall:
On Thursday Night, chef Curtis Stone (Maude, Gwen) will host the Ultimate Bites of L.A., featuring chefs like Vartan Abgaryan (71 Above), Brian Dunsmoor (Hatchet Hall), Michael Fiorelli & Rebecca Merhej (Love & Salt), Walter Manzke (Republique) and more! Tickets are $175 for GA, or $225 for VIP with early access.
The Friday Night Market takes place on, you guessed it, Friday! Chefs such as Alvin Cailan (Eggslut, Unit 120), Perry Cheung (Phorage), David Kuo (Little Fatty), Pawan Mahendro (Badmaash), Yoya Takahashi (Hamasaku), Jet Tila, Tin Vuong (Little Sister) and more will showcase the flavors across Asia. Tickets are $150 for GA, or $195 for VIP with early access.
On Saturday, Live on Grand is hosted by none other than chef Tyler Florence (Wayfare Tavern) and musician Wyclef Jean, with chefs Barb Batiste (B Sweet), Carlos Enriquez (Bakers Kneaded), Michael Ginor (Hudson Valley Foie Gras), Ted Hopson (The Bellwether), Jason Neroni (The Rose Cafe), Nguyen & Thi Tran (Starry Kitchen, Button Mash), and Ricardo Zarate (Rosaline), and more! Tickets are $195 for GA, or $275 for VIP with early access.
LAFW doesn’t leave the daylight hours out either. On Friday the 25th, seven different Power Lunches are taking place across the city at restaurants such as Craft, Ivory on Sunset, and The Church Key, with chef collaborations galore! The two I’m most excited about, and I wish I could be at two places at once (but hope the event lets me cover at least one of these lunches) are at Redbird in DLTA and Michael’s in Santa Monica:
The first brings chef Trey Foshee (George’s at the Cove) up from La Jolla, to partner with Rory Hermann of the Sprout Restaurant Group, and Neal Fraser (Redbird, Vibiana, Fritzi) to Redbird. There are many exciting chefs doing these Power Lunches, but I’ve interacted with these three chefs, separately, in the past, and not only are they talented, they are incredibly kind and generous. Chef Hermann was a mentor to one of my favorite chefs in town, Johnny Zone of Howlin’ Ray’s. Anyway, tickets are $125 for this, and all (but one) of the Power Lunches.
The second one I’m interested in will feature an incredible line-up of past Michael’s chefs including Brooke Williamson (Playa Provisions, Top Chef), Sang Yoon (Father’s Office, Lukson), Jonathan Waxman (Barbuto, Adele’s), Nancy Silverton (Mozza), and current chef Miles Thompson (Alumette). Can’t even imagine what this collection of chefs can do together for one meal! Tickets are $150 for this one!
Speaking of Santa Monica, the Westside isn’t left out of the festival-style events either, though they do take place in the afternoons rather than the evenings. On Saturday and Sunday, the Lexus Grand Tastings are taking place at Barker Hangar in Santa Monica. Saturday‘s line-up includes Evan Funke (Felix), Holly Jivin (The Bazaar by Jose Andres), Joel Miller (The Wallace), Jon Shook & Vinny Dotolo (Animal, Son of a Gun, Trois Mec), and more! Sunday‘s line-up includes Andre Bienvenu (Joe’s Stone Crab), Yousef Galani (FIG), Andrew Gruel (Slapfish), Nick Shipp (The Upper West), John Tesar (Knife at the Highlands), and Dakota Weiss (Sweetfin Poke). Tickets are $175 for GA, $225 for VIP.
LAFW definitely puts on a grandiose display on Grand Ave (and at Barker Hangar, but no red carpet), and puts the spotlight definitively on the chefs. It’s one of the biggest food events of the year. I’m very much looking forward to it, and if you can swing the tickets, it’s definitely worth checking out!