Taste

At the recent Harborfest, Bayside Park was the place to be for all day family fun. It was also the location for the Tacos & Spirits Revoultion from 11-2pm. So who makes the best tacos in San Diego? We came out to sample tacos and vote for our favorite! At a reduced price of $15 for food and an additional $5 to add spirits, this was a steal of a deal! Dennis wasn't available this time so I invited a good friend of mine to join me. We also checked out the rest of the Harborfest activities afterwards.

Tacos & Spirits Revolution:

My friend and I checked in and put on the bright purple event wristbands.

A quick look around showed a circle of tents surrounding tables for eating and drinking. A lovely blue ocean and skyline were visible to the west.

We were both ravenous. That morning I taught her some Tasting Events 101 such as "Don't eat right before an event."

The first booth we visited had the Spicy Grilled Fish from the Mariscos German Beyer Food Truck (pictured above).

Last month I attended the Lemon Zest and Garlic Fest because Faye's Fork had an extra ticket (actually there were two tickets, but Dennis couldn't go). Food festival? Yea, I'm there! Little did I know how fun the weather would be that day...

I woke to some rumbling, thinking the neighbors were moving around their trash cans loudly but quickly realized it was a thunderstorm... what?! That's not typical San Diego weather! As luck would have it, that day's weather report showed rain at 8am (when I woke up), between 11-4 (when the festival was going on) and nothing the rest of the day. The timing was crazy! I packed an umbrella and headed out, ready to face the world. And eat lots of food.

The festival was held at San Diego Waterfront Park, which I've never been to before. It's about a block away from the SD Trolley station so I took public transportation that day. It was a little drippy when I arrived but nothing I couldn't handle! After picking up my ticket, I headed inside!

If you think Taste of Hillcrest is spread out, then you haven't been to Taste of Adams Avenue! Luckily, this event includes complimentary trolleys to get you around. We had media passes for this year's event but the usual price is $35/person or $40 the day of. There's four hours to sample and you get one taste per location. More official event info is here. I'd consider this taste to have three main areas, west of the 805, east of the 15, and the big section in between! Let's explore!

This year we attended our first Taste of Little Italy via media passes. With all of our 'Taste of' experiences, it's a wonder how we've missed it! Technically, we attended Taste of Downtown 2007 (when downtown and Little Italy were in a single event). Since then, Little Italy has grown WAY too prominent as its own community to share the spotlight! In fact, they now split Little Italy into two routes, north or south ($30 each), or a combined route ($45) for the ambitious! And ambitious San Diegans must be as the combined route tickets sold out first! Or perhaps... it was too difficult to choose just one route!

In case you missed out on all of the fun, or even just a few stops of your map, we're here to give you the scoop on all the samples from this year's event!

We often attend the Taste of North Park around October so I was surprised to stumble upon a less publicized event called "Tuesday" Taste of North Park. This was a special 'mini' taste held Tuesday June 9, 2015 from 5-8pm in celebration of the HomeBrewers Conference that week! Curious, I picked up tickets for Dennis and me to check it out!

Will-call was available between 3-6pm in front of the North Park Main Street building located at 3076 University Ave. The sweet Dani and Alli were at the table helping me and other event-goers get our tickets! This smaller event was only $20 pre-sale or $25 day of and had 19 participating locations, 15 with food and 4 with beer.

Our first sample of the evening was a Mini Mini Corndog from Coin Op. Yes, mini is repeated twice, according to the server! It was served with a IPA mustard for a sharp kick of contrast to the pillowy dough and meat inside.

It's Taste 'N' Tinis recap time! I love this event because it has the kind of booze I enjoy most AND the price is right. Seriously, $20 is way too good to pass up! Even if you buy last minute, it's only $25 on the day of! I lucked out and used points to redeem free tickets from a local tv station website. It was meant to be!

The event was held Thursday December 11 between 5 and 10 pm, an extra hour longer than previous years. More time to sober up or booze up? That's your choice! We also got these cute little martini glasses for sampling!

And the Latin Food Festival tasting continues from part 1...

We hit all the food stands in the main area so headed to the back for even more!

Fogo de Chao was a popular tent with a huge line waiting for the food. Can you guess why? Look at this "sample" of steak, chicken, and sausage plus sides! I think that's half a dinner right there!

It was a HOT weekend but luckily this year's Latin Food Festival (LFF) was within reach of the ocean breezes and a gorgeous view! Embarcadero Marina Park North provided a great spot for LFF, which was held on September 13 between 11-3pm. We purchased our second ticket and invited readers and friends to join us!

After picking up wristbands at the entrance, we headed into the event. The main area had two rows of tents, one with food vendors and the other with drink vendors. Since we hadn't eaten any breakfast, we decided to start with food first! Drinking on an empty stomach is *risky* business!

Our first stop was the Smoke Fusion Catering booth. What's a Latin festival without some tacos, right? These carnitas tacos were only the beginning of that trend...

Saturday May 31 was the 1st Bacon and Bacons event in San Diego. I've never volunteered for an event before but decided to sign up myself. A group of us helped during the morning shift which started at 8am!

Once our shift was over, we were set free to raid the event! Early bird admission allowed us to get into the event at noon and regular admission started at 1pm. Since I was starving by this time, I decided to visit all the food booths first! At the entrance we were given environmentally friendly dining tools: a compostable plate, biodegradeable plastic cup, and the wrapped utensils we made earlier. The event is a zero waste event so all trash was divided into compost, waste, and recycle bags.

My first stop and closest to the front was the Duck Dive booth. They were serving their Three Little Piggies sandwich from their menu. I thought it was a little dry, maybe because the applewood smoked bacon, roasted pork loin, and pork belly were overpowered by the ciabatta bread. Cooked spinach and white cheddar rounded out the rest of the sandwich.

The Pork Belly and Waffles from West Coast Tavern immediately caught my eye! It even contained a dollop of BACON BUTTER! The combination of fatty pork, batter, butter and sweet syrup together was heaven to me and one of my favorite samples that day. I wish I had gotten a second helping later but was too busy exploring all the other tents!

I've heard of the Bite San Diego walking tours before and was finally able to check one out last week. The El Cajon Boulevard tour we signed up for is a new tour held on Wednesday during dinner between 6-9pm, compared to the rest of the tours held on the weekend's early afternoons. This particular one was right around the corner from trendy North Park area, which has so many good eateries as is!

The starting point was the beautiful and historical Lafayette Hotel and validated parking was available if needed. We easily found close parking on the side street though. Our tour guide Eddie was at the entrance, keeping a lookout for us and making it oh so simple to join with the rest of the group.