By Dawn Richards
Summer, travel and food go together as few things do. And when you’re talking taking in the myriad food festivals that take place during this season, there never was a more perfect trifecta. I can attest that there is rarely a more authentic way to take in a destination — whether you have one day or one week to spare — than through its local food culture.
To get you going and plotting your next delicious foray, these top seasonal food festivals from around the country will leave you satiated in more ways than one.
The Atlanta Food & Wine Festival – When you’re seeking down-home, yet sophisticated, tastes of the South in food and drink, there’s no better place to be. This perennial favorite brings together the best chefs and food purveyors from the South for an unforgettable three-day indulgence that will remind you of all the right reasons that life below the Mason-Dixon line is grand. In addition to abundant tasting tents, chef demonstrations, and curated dinners, is the not-to-be-missed Sunday Brunch. If you make it to this year’s brunch, you can nosh on favorite regional breakfast bites like participating Chef Jennifer Booker’s Green Onion Hoe Cakes. If your curiosity is piqued about these hoe cakes, you can bring them to life in your kitchen long after the festival ends with the featured recipe.
(May 31- June 3, 2018; www.atlfoodandwinefestival.com.)
Austin Ice Cream Festival – If you scream for ice cream, then imagine a one-day food festival dedicated to ice cream and more ice cream! Test your ice cream eating skills with fun competitions, while feasting on confections from local creameries for the ultimate sweet indulgence. (June 23, 2018; austinicecreamfestival.com)
Seattle Street Food Festival – Coffee isn’t the only thing Seattle does well. Try a food festival boasting food trucks, pop-up picnics and more from local emerging chefs! (July 7-8, 2018; seattlestfoodfest.com)
Taste of Chicago – Arriving on the heels of the 4th of July, the Taste of Chicago offers one more delectable reason to celebrate. Food lovers convene on this long-standing Midwest favorite, hosted lakefront in Grant Park, and adorned by a magical skyline, to indulge in the best of classic Chicago eats (deep-dish pizza, anyone?) along with nightly live entertainment to keep the good vibes flowing. (July 11-15, 2018; tasteofchicago.us)
Wherever your foodie adventures lead this summer, you’re sure to find happy eating!
Green Onion Hoe Cakes
1 cup self-rising flour
1 cup cornmeal
1 tablespoon baking powder
1 teaspoon salt
2 large eggs
3/4 cup buttermilk
1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon water
1/4 cup bacon grease or vegetable oil
½ cup chopped green onions, green tops and white bottoms
Bacon grease or oil, for frying