From the first moment many years ago when I heard about the Gilroy Garlic Festival – a festival designed to celebrate garlic in all of its many uses – I knew I had to go at least once in my life. I am a garlic-lover after all, even though you may recall that my recent visit to a world famous garlic-centric restaurant in San Francisco ended with disastrous results. But, I figured if any place could redeem the concept of garlic worship, the annual Gilroy Garlic Festival would be it. My move this year to San Francisco put me in close enough proximity to this Winston Wanders bucket list destination and provided the perfect opportunity to make my much-awaited garlicky pilgrimage to the Garlic Capital of the World.
This year I had the pleasure of experiencing two of the many events being held for New York City Wine & Food Festival. This is a massive three-day festival with with well over 50 different events taking place in a variety of locations around the city. Over the weekend, my girlfriend Amy and I attended two of the events, first on Friday night up near Columbus Circle for Thrillist's Barbecue & The Blues hosted by Robert Irvine followed by Sunday in Astoria, Queens for Oktoberfest presented by Pat LaFrieda Meats and hosted by Andrew Zimmern. To say I was excited about attending each of these events would be an understatement.
I know you all usually come here to read about food, but every now and then I want to share something with you that I think is really cool that's not directly related to eating. I just returned from a week in Texas, and started in Austin for a 3-day music festival called Austin City Limits. They have 8 large stages playing a wide variety of music all-day, for all three days. That is, usually for three days.
One week a year (well really 10 days but who's counting), Mulberry street transforms into a perpetual street fair to celebrate Italian culture and cuisine at The Feast of San Gennaro. I usually stumble my way over there to check out the madness and this year is no different. With a number of coworkers in tow, I head over on a leisurely Thursday, lunchtime stroll. The fair runs the entire seven block span from Canal Street to Houston Street up Mulberry. The usually vehicle-friendly street is turned into a pedestrian-only walkway with most of the restaurants installing al fresco dining areas in the street in front of their shops.