Northern California Food Festivals
Summer Is In Full Swing! (by Lisa Frank)
Go out and EXPLORE your own backyard w/ these fun & tasty July events in & around Sacramento:
Bonjour Bastille Day. If your vacation is now a “staycation” July is the time to get your French on and storm Midtown! The Sacramento Chapter of the Alliance Francaise will be celebrating Bastille Day, when the peasants stormed the Bastille Prison and started the French Revolution, with their Annual Waiters’ Race & Bastille Day Street Festival. July 13th 12 – 3pm at 18th & L Streets, Sacramento
Don’t lose your head at the 12th Annual “Let Them Eat Cake!” Fundraising Event.
Sample Sacramento’s finest French foods and outstanding local wines and coffees, enjoy live music, and feast your eyes on magnificent and mouth-watering cakes created by talented local bakeries and chefs. There will be a cake raffle and a silent auction as well. July 14th 5:00 pm until 9:00 pm at The Grand Ballroom 1215 J Street $40 in advance; $50 at door
Are the Islands calling? Grab a lei or make a grass skirt and head to the Summer Luau Beer & Wine Tasting at New Glory Brewing. Celebrate summer in Hawaiian style at this fun wine and beer sampling event! The evening will offer tours of the brewery, and playing beer and wine trivia for prizes. Food trucks will be on site selling delicious food. July 13th, 1 pm at New Glory Craft Brewing, 8251 Alpine Ave $20
Feeling more local? GATHER is a unique event that takes place in the Oak Park neighborhood. It is a social experiment based around the idea that a neighborhood that eats together, stays together and strengthens the community.
Outdoor communal tables encourage a sense of community while you enjoy the warm (hot?) summer nights. The event offers a craft beer area, artisanal food vendors, designers, food demos interactive are, live music and a modular kids park. July 10th 5 – 9pm or August 14th 5 – 9pm in Oak Park at Broadway & 3rd Avenue
Something edgier? SactoMoFo’s Food Truck Mania will be at McKinley Park. It’s great music, lots of kid fun, a beer garden, and all your favorite food trucks! July 11th or August 8th from 5 pm - 9 pm at McKinley Park on Alhambra Blvd.
This camp has more than s’mores! Mad Food Science Fun Camp makes food and science in fun and educational. Campers learn nutritional concepts and explore the scientific properties of food through a series of fun hands-on experiments, including magical floating eggs, color changing milk, ice cream making and more. The week of July 21 through July 25 1pm – 4pm at Fairytale Town, 3901 Land Park Drive $130 Click Here For More Events!
It's that time of the year where crisp air, the sound of crunching leaves below the feet and awesome food venues will keep you hopping along with your exploring calendars. It's time to bundle up and go enjoy what Northern California is very well known for - beautiful fall foliage, an abundance of fresh fruit and produce at local farms and events that will go down in your photo albums as PRICELESS! Here are a few of our recommendations for some fun and food-filled activities to go, see and do!
Sierra Oro Farm Trail Passport Weekend - October 12th & 13th, Butte County
Perfect for foodies, wine and beer enthusiast and travelers looking for a weekend getaway or a chance to explore off-the-beaten trail....this agri-tourism adventure provides trail goers with the once a year chance to savor the farm-fresh bounty of Butte County all weekend long. To purchase your passport and pick up your trail map visit www.sierraoro.org/passport-weekend
Sactoberfest - Saturday, October 19th
This one day celebration will involve beer, bratwurst, great oompah music and bretzels! Join proud German ancestors in Sacramento and embrace the traditions of Oktoberfest. Participate in traditional German games including keg rolling, stein holding, yodeling, and everyone’s favorite Chicken Dance dance-off. Traditional German dance performances will also take place throughout the day by The Schuhplatter Dancers.
You don’t have to travel to Munich to experience Oktoberfest, it’s right here in your own backyard! Sactoberfest is a 21 and over event. 12pm-10pm - West Sacramento www.sactoberfest.com
California Beer & Wine Festival - Saturday, October 19th
Beer, Wine, Food, Cigars, Live Music and fun Vendors....sounds like a great afternoon!! Advance ticketing $25 per person
Plus Street, Yuba City Town Center (Between Franklin and B Streets) 1:00pm-5:00pm www.californiabeerandwinefestival.com
Pomegranate Festival - Madera, CA - Saturday, November 2nd
A unique and fun festival where the celebration of the Spanish Conquistadores bringing the pomegranate to America by 1772 is done by fun activities, history lessons, recipe contests, amazing food, libations and live music!! You’ve seen the “punkin chunkin’’ contests - well how about witnessing the pomegranate fling contest?
Madera Municipal Airport - 4020 Aviation Drive, Madera, CA 93637 10:00am - 5:00pm Details: www.maderachamber.com
Big Reds Release Party & Redneck BBQ Bash - Saturday, November 2nd
Git yerselves on over to Andis Wines in Amador County for their 2nd Annual Redneck BBQ Bash! New BIG red wine releases. Make sure to wash your hands before dinner because no utensils will be allowed! A memorable evening by all who attend. Advance reservations required by Wed. Oct. 30th. Call 209-245-6177 or visit www.andiswines.com/events Click Here to Continue!
August Food Festivals in Northern California
I don’t know about you, but summer is my favorite time of year for many reasons: warm weather, late nights, cold swimming holes and (the best!) the FOOD! The following are our Top Ten Local Food Festivals and Events happening around Northern California during August we recommend you planning to explore and have fun!
Ribs on the River Event
Saturday, August 3, 2013
Location: Rio Ramaza Marina, Garden Highway, Sacramento
Pull your cowboy boots up and throw on your 10-gallon hat! It’s time for some good ol’ fashion country music and some delicious RIBS! Help decide who boasts the “best ribs on the river” at this fun, funky event! Event presenters ask you bring a lawn chair and an appetite! Tickets are $10 and worth EVERY PENNY (if you ask me!) Drinks, music and BBQ’ing are the highlights of this awesome event!
Woodland Tomato Festival
Saturday, August 10, 2013
Location: Heritage Plaza on Main Street, Woodland
The 6th Annual Woodland Tomato Festival is back! Celebrating the Yolo County tomato this fun and free event is open to the public! A salsa competition, tomato tosses, variety tasting and tomato clothing (yes, you read that right!) will be just some of the events at this years festival. What fun! This event is being put on by the Woodland’s Farmers Market and encourages both young and old to participate!
My favorite event is the “Iron Chef -like” competition at this year’s event! Top celebrity judges from all over Sacramento will be sharing their skills and opinions on ways to prepare all things tomato! What fun! For being known as “Sacra-tomato”, this event is the one to be at!
Sacramento Banana Festival
Saturday, August 10, 2013- 10am-7pm
Sunday, August 11, 2013- 10am-5pm
Location: William Land Park, Sacramento
A 5K Walk/Run, Miss Sacramento Banana Queen Beauty Pageant, a Carmen Miranda Hat contest and a banana bake off are just a FEW of the events scheduled for this August’s Banana Festival. Just based solely on the events, this looks like an event I cannot miss! The festival celebrates food, art, culture, music, diversity, health and wellness and going green by educating the public on composting!
Tickets are only $5 and proceeds are going to some wonderful local causes. I cannot think of a better way to enjoy a nice, warm summer weekend!
Hayward Zucchini Festival
Saturday, August 17, 2013- 10am-8pm
Sunday, August 18, 2013- 10am-8pm
Location: Kennedy Park, Hayward
Clear your calendar- it’s time to celebrate the zucchini! Sponsored by the South Hayward Lions Club, this 31st Annual event is ready to rock! Music, dancing, kids activities and a ‘zucchini-growing contest’ are just a few things this festival promises. Did you know the world’s largest zucchini on record was 69.5 inches long and weighed 65 pounds?! Insane!!! And a zucchini has more potassium than a banana! Delicious and healthy! We can’t wait for this festival! Continue for more event listings!
Summer Foodie Stay-cations!
With the soaring prices of gas, inflation and the housing crunch, many vacationers are holding back their grand vacation plans for the time being. Many would-be holiday makers are simply choosing a "stay-cation" instead. What's a "stay-cation" you ask? Simply put, a "stay-cation" is a vacation that is close to home. Many people are choosing locations that are with an hour or so from their homes, it's close enough to save on gas and just far enough to feel like a getaway. A stay-cation allows a family to save money while spending more quality time together and helping a local economy.
Everyone loves to eat on vacations so why not focus your family stay-cation around food? Here are 10 tips and ideas to get your stay-cation planner filled up and your bellies full!
First off: In order to enjoy your stay-cation we recommend you:
1. Put the World On Hold - Take time out—literally. Eliminating reminders of time helps wipe away the stress of the daily grind. Gather up all the clocks in your house and stash them in a dresser drawer. Throw your watch in next to them. Leave them there for the whole day (or two, or five).
2. Turn off the ringers on your phones and mute the answering machine. Check messages only when you want to, keeping in mind that "not at all" is always an option.
Do an “out of the office” message for your e-mail (even if your office is a corner of the playroom). Say you won't be checking your e-mail till you're back from vacation. Then power down the computer and throw a towel over it.
3. Skip the news—and maybe even stop the mail—for a week. When you banish the source of stress, the stress itself may follow. The earth will continue to turn even if you're not reading all about it every morning at 7:30 sharp, and sadly, the bills will still be there when your vacation is over.
So now let's get to the food portion of your stay-cation, shall we? Here's our top 7 ideas on how to create a foodie stay-cation.
1. Book a week long series of cooking classes in your local area. Sacramento offers several options for classes and cooking camps this summer. Check out these companies and see what might peak your palate: Lulu's Kitchen in Sacramento has a variety of day and evening cooking classes. The Learning Exchange in Sacramento offers food & wine classes. Whole Foods Market and Sacramento Co-op are both offering fun summer cooking demos and classes you surely can fit into your stay-cation. They even have summer kids cooking camps.....just in case you have more space to fill in your calendar.
2. The California State Fair - take a few days with your entire family and do the State Fair Fried Food Challenge - you haven't vacationed until you've experienced the deep fried mac -n -cheese on a stick, deep fried cheese curds and deep fried twinkies at the fair. State Fair Summer 2013 dates: July 12th-28th. Many local businesses offer discount fair tickets - check out Big O Tires - buy one get one free ticket offer before they run out!
3. Grab your bags and baskets and plan a Farmer's Market Week with your family. Lucky for you there is a market within a 20 mile radius of Sacramento each day of the week. Have fun and meet your local farmers and artisans.....there might even be some education involved! Searching for markets in the vicinity? Google: California Grown, Placer Grown, Davis Farmers Market, Ferry Building Market, Oxbow Market in Napa. Go to the market w/ a shopping list for the ingredients you will be needing for your brand new farm to fork recipes. We recommend coming on an empty stomach for the fun food truck vendors and samples you will run into. Try a different ethnic type of food at each market each day...making it an epicurean adventure.
4. Strap on your tennis shoes and sun had and participate in a culinary walking adventure in and around Sacramento. Eat your way thru your own city or explore the town next to you by going on a food or farm tour. These food tours are a half day event and give participants the opportunity to get up close and personal with local chefs, artisans, farmers and passionate mom and pop eatery owners. Kids will think you are the coolest parents when they have the chance for a local chef to sign their dirty napkin....Souvenir award for sure! 5 to 6 food stops along with history, culture and architecture just right out your back door. Check out Local Roots Food & Farm Tours for their different tour menu options and make it a foodie stay-cation must. Click to continue with our tips!
This could be my favorite time of year. The weather warming up, the trees starting to bloom and best of all... my mouth watering at the new, fresh produce. With that being said, I have compiled a list of some ‘foodie’ events happening in California in April. Get your calendars ready and put a bib on. If you love food, wine and fun- this list of events is for you. Enjoy! (Blogger- Bethany Woy)
Sacramento Turn Verein Bockbier Festival- April 5: 6pm-12am, April 6: 3pm-12am
Tickets: Adult $20, Children under 12 $5
Turn Verein Hall- 3349 J Street, Sacramento
A traditional bockbier is a strong dark beer usually brewed around Christmas or the Spring. Well, it’s that time of year ladies and gentlemen! The celebration kicks off the first week in April and will take place at the historic (and beautiful) Turn Verein hall here in Sacramento. The festival will showcase the authentic Bockbier from Germany, traditional German music from local bands and delicious, mouth-watering food. Special performances of traditional German dances will be performed during both days. An amazing, educational and best of all delicious way to spend the weekend!
Festa di Vino- April 6: 6:30pm-10pm
Tickets: Adult $45
Scottish Rite Masonic Center-6151 H Street Sacramento
Music. Dancing. Live auction. And best of all... FOOD. A lot of food.
This tasty event and will be showcasing over 20 local restaurants and 20 local wineries. Some of our local favorites (Ambrosia Cafe, Blackbird Kitchen & Bar, Firestone Bar- truly the list goes on and on) will be contributing at the event. A true celebration of food and wine. Right up my alley.
Sacramento Beer and Chili Festival - April 6: 1pm-4pm
Tickets: Adult $35 pre-order, $40 day off
Fremont Park- 1515 Q Street, Sacramento
Sacramento Artists Council in partnership with the Grid Agency and Dad’s Kitchen is proud to announce the 2nd Annual Beer and Chili Festival. I don’t know about you but when I hear chili and beer as a combination my mouth instantly starts to water. The pair just seem to go so well: like peanut butter and jelly. The Festival is a fundraiser for The Sacramento Artists Council and raises money for art programs that help at-risk children, children of homeless families and fund adopt a school art programs for Sacramento schools. Not only will you have your fill of delicious beer and chili, the money for the event goes to an amazing cause. You can feel like you’ve helped the community while gorging yourself! My kind of event! The festival will begin with a chili cook off competition (industry and individual) and unlimited beer tastings provide by local breweries. (Mad River Brewing, Lost Coast and Speakeasy Ales--- just to name a few!)
Sierra Foothills Food and Wine Bus Tour- April 14: 10:30am- 2:30pm
Tickets: Adult $69,
Wouldn’t you love to take the back roads through the beautiful California olives trees, vineyards and fruit farms? Want to know how vineyards can tell when it’s time to pick their grapes or how to grow the best tomatoes? We are so fortunate to live in the “Farm to Fork Capital of America”. Now is time to jump on board the Local Roots Food Tours Culinary Passport bus and explore the cornucopia of agriculture. Tickets include: transportation in a 14 passenger executive bus, a 4 hour bus ride with stops at independent farms, local vineyards and a local produce market. A trained local guide ready to showcase their knowledge of the area. Hands-on, one on one access, from owners of the farms, orchards and vineyards. A catered 4 COURSE GOURMET LUNCH (what a deal!) and a reusable Local Roots Food Tours shopping bag. Can you say amazing weekend?! Don’t you want to be able to get to know this area of California a little better? This is the way to do it! Click for more events!
Get your mobile calendars out.....March is just around the corner with many opportunities to explore your palates in and around Northern California. Take the time to savor each moment by planning ahead and mapping out every weekend’s foodie adventure for the month of March. No reason to get up and dig in!
March Foodie Events
Capital Beerfest - Sacramento, CA
Saturday, March 2nd - 9am - 5pm - Cal Expo
The 3rd annual Capital Beerfest is expected to attract almost 90 breweries, including every Sacramento-area brewery. Celebrate the close of Sacramento Beer Week with one of the largest beer festivals in Northern California. The generosity of brewers, attendees and partners benefits the Runnin’ for Rhett Scholarship and the Runnin’ for Rhett Youth Fitness Program. Tickets: www.capitalbeerfest.com
Pig Out at Pig Day - Davis, CA
Saturday, March 2nd - 8am - 1pm - Central Park
Come celebrate National Pig Day at the Davis Farmers Market. This is a Piggie themed event for the whole family. Lots of fun filled food, activities and entertainment all celebrating the plump pink and fabulous pig! We encourage you to come in pig attire. Davis Farmers Market is one of the top markets in Northern California - bring your market bags and baskets to fill up on all your local fresh produce, fruits and meats. www.davisfarmersmarket.org
Spring Obsession Art & Wine Show 2013 - Murphys, CA
Sat & Sunday, March 2nd &3rd - 10am - 5pm - Ironstone Vineyards
16th Annual Art Show, Wine Tasting and Food. There will be art in action, art demonstrations and cooking demos by chefs. Live music and daffodil flowers exhibit on the ground level. Ironstone Vineyards is a beautiful place set in the Sierras Foothills north of Sonora and south of Lake Tahoe. www.ironstonevineyards.com
Sierra Foothills Farm & Wine Bus Tour - Placer County, CA Click for more event listings!
Wondering where to go to explore Northern California’s excellent food and wine scene? Get out your maps and chart your foodie course.....October is filled with some delicious venues and fun adventures!
It’s a Hoes Down Festival!! Full Belly Farm, Yolo County, CA
October 6 & 7, 2012 MAIN FESTIVAL: Saturday, October 6, 2012 11am - 11 pm Admission Prices: Adults: $20 each when purchased online; $25 when purchased at the gate, Children (2-12): $5 each anytime! Under 2: Free
Saturday Night Camping: $25 per car- no reservations are needed!
No dogs allowed - service animals are welcome!
Sunday Celebration, October 7, 2012
Please note: The main festival day and a majority of the activities occur on Saturday, October 6. Specialized Hands-On Seminars on a variety of subjects. Pre-registration is required. www.hoesdown.org
Sonoma County Harvest Fair
October 5-7, 2012 A celebration of the local harvest featuring three full days of wine tasting with 150+ wineries, wine sales, marketplace, chef demonstrations and workshops, farm and harvest agricultural activities for children and adults, the World Championship Grape Stomp, live music, an art show and sale, crafters pavilion, farm animals to meet, and much more. Make plans to join us and taste the best of Sonoma County! 12-7pm Friday, 10-7pm Sat & Sunday www.harvestfair.org
19th Annual Calaveras Grape Stomp, Murphys, CA
October 6th, 2012 9:30am - 5:00pm Murphys Community Park.
25 pounds of wine grapes freshly picked, a half wine barrel fitted with a spout, a partner and you. More than 100 teams throughout the state and beyond compete each year to vie for the prestigious 1st, 2nd and 3rd place awards. Click to continue!
Summer time is about EXPLORING....getting out and about and attending as many foodie events as possible in Northern California. Want to know where? We have compiled a listing of a few food related events for the month of July. Get our your GPS, your fork, bib and appetite and come along as we journey thru some of Northern California's foodie adventures!
July 14, 2012 - 5th ANNUAL CAPAY TOMATO FESTIVAL - Farm Fresh To You and Capay Organic invite the public to the 5th Annual Capay Tomato, the farm’s festival that celebrates the great taste of organic heirloom and cherry tomatoes. The event will offer activities for all ages, including tomato tastings, farm tours, tractor tram rides, crafts and live music (3 bands) throughout the afternoon and into the evening. Farm fresh tacos and sandwiches, Pop Nation popsicles and local wine and beer will be sold. Attendees are invited to camp overnight in the farm orchards.
Buy tickets online until July 9th. $20 online; $25 at door; kids 12 and under are free. 1-800-796-6009 during business hours.
July 13-15, 2012 - BRENTWOOD CORNFEST! Celebrating our agricultural heritage in a three-day weekend of fun, food and entertainment. Plenty of local grown corn and fun filled corn activities; kid's zone, live music, lots of food with corn of course, local brews and wine. Tickets available: 925-634-3344 ? Brentwood, California
July 14, 2012 - Wine Country Big Q Join us at the second annual Kansas City Barbecue Society sanctioned competition at Sonoma Academy in Santa Rosa. Some of the best Pit Masters will be here to serve you up a slice. Sample great barbecued meats, world class wines, and award-winning brews while enjoying great country and blues music. ? Santa Rosa, CA
July 19-21, 2012 - California Wine Festival 2012 - The 'Biggest Wine Festival Under the Sun.' Over 200 of California's finest wines from every wine region in the state – showcasing a total of over 350 fine wines. Over 2,500 wine fans will grab their glass and start swirling and sipping, while live music on stage keeps the party going. Santa Barbara, CA
July 20-21, 2012 - Marysville Peach Fest - The 12th Annual Marysville Peach Festival is going to be an exciting event with a wide variety of new and returning craft vendors, food vendors cooking for every taste bud, several delicious choices of peach related foods, and great entertainment for all ages. Details call: (530) 749-3954, Marysville, CA
July 21, 2012 - 11th Annual Taste of the Delta - ?A great foodie event where you can come either by car or boat! Held at the Village West Marina, the event showcases wineries and restaurants in the California Delta region. Guests sample wines and foods, enjoy vendor booths, live music, and silent and live auctions. Stockton, CA 916-777-4041 Click for more event listings!
June 2, 2012 Raley's Grape Escape - Sacramento, California
http://www.raleysgrapeescape.com 4:00pm-7:00pm; rain or shine. More than 200 award-winning California wines come to the cosmopolitan, urban setting of downtown Sacramento. Pair that with some of the region’s best local cuisine and you have an amazing culinary experience. Raley's Grape Escape features wineries from 8 regional counties
June 2, 2012 Davis Beer Fest 2012 - Davis, California
Tasting over 100 handcrafted beers from over 40 breweries. Touring the Sudwerk Brewery. Learn the secrets from area brewmasters. Receive a commemorative tasting glass just for attending. Live music. Fantastic Food. Where: Sudwerk Brewery, 2001 Second Street, Davis, Admission: $35 in advance or $40 at the door. All proceeds support the programs of Citizens Who Care.Admission for designated drivers is $10 at the door. This includes food and a non-alcoholic soda. Must be 21 to enter the tasting area. Advanced tickets available - First Northern Bank & Sudwerk Restaurant - at the Citizens Who Care office (530-758-3704)
June 2-3, 2012 Sequoia Foodie Fest - Exeter, California
The Sequoia Foodie Fest promotes the diversity of California's agricultural commodities. Local celebrity chef cooking demonstrations and contests, Iron Chef competitions. Life-sized citrus sculptures, Farmers Market, food samples, live music, kids entertainment. Proceeds benefit the Boys & Girls Club of the Sequoias Click to continue!
Out and About Food Festivals and Local Food, Beer & Wine Events in California
May is the time of year where everyone is out and about looking for that fun foodie event to whet their palates. Spring produce is abundant along with some amazing wines and entertainment. California offers a huge variety of food events, nothing short of foodtastic! Climb aboard and get ready to plan out your May foodie excursions as we share a listing of delicious events!
May 5, 2012 Cinco de Drinko - Bishop, California
A craft beer and Mexican beer tasting event with unlimited tastings, street tacos, live homebrew demo and homebrew contest judging.
May 6, 2012 Taste of the Town - Santa Clarita, California
Join us for the 24th annual Taste of the Town! Voted Santa Clarita's Best Charity event two years in a row, over 2,000 attendees will enjoy tasty offerings from over 40 of Santa Clarita's best restaurants, caterers, and wine and beer purveyors, all in the beautiful garden setting of Mann Biomedical Park. All proceeds benefit Child & Family Center.
May 11-12 , 2012 7th Annual Paradise Chocolate Festival - Paradise, California
Experience a chocolate paradise on the Paradise/Magalia ridge in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada Mountains and overlooking the Sacramento Valley. Chocolate Queen pageant, Chocolate Chase fun run, Chocolate Cuisine Challenge and more. A benefit for non-profit youth organizations on the ridge.
May 12, 2012 15th Annual Great Petaluma Chili Cookoff, Salsa & Beer Tasting, Petaluma, California
Feel the heat as restaurants, businesses, clubs and individuals compete for the top chili and beer honors in Northern California. Sample gourmet, homemade, and veggie chili recipes, and stay for outdoor music, dancing and world class beers. This event benefits Cinnabar Theater Youth Program. Click Here to Continue Event Listing!