Sure, there are fests for music and writers and poetry, but here in New Orleans, we have fests just for food as well as fests that kicks festival food up several notches from the usual corn dog and funnel cake offerings. Plan your schedule and adjust your belts accordingly. Here are the best food fests coming your way through May.
Location: Civic Theater
Details: In addition to the fancy $1,000/plate dinners of the John Besh Foundation fundraiser Fete des Chefs, this year, there's a party at the Civic Theater with food, an open bar, and music, for $80.
Date: March 18
[Photo: John Besh Foundation]
Hogs For The Cause
Location: City Park
Details: This pork-packed fundraiser for children with brain cancer is one of New Orleans’ most highly anticipated events of the year. Two days of BBQ (including some very unique food items you wouldn’t think would be improved with pork), music, beer, and pig-related shenanigans.
Date: April 1-2
Location: 821 General Pershing Street
Details: Get your moules frites and crepes on at this annual fundraiser for the Uptown bilingual school, Ecole Bilingue De La Nouvelle-Orléans. There will also be food from Lillette, Cochon, Cafe Degas, to name a few, as well as French (one would assume) cheese from St. James Cheese Company.
Date: March 19
Location: Spanish Plaza
Details: Celebrating "America’s Hometown Eats," this free festival features regional favorites from all over the U.S., like New Haven pizza, Cajun meats, and Memphis BBQ.
Date: April 2
Location: City Park
Details: The LaSPCA’s newest fundraiser in City Park, this dress up (fancy brunch style) or dress down (pajamas) ode to the loveliest meal of the week includes food from Brown Butter, Ruby Slipper, and Wakin’ Bakin’, as well as a Bloody Mary competition because of course it does.
Date: April 3
[Photo: Nora McGunnigle]
French Quarter Fest
Location: Various locations in the French Quarter
Details: This widespread extravaganza of New Orleans and Louisiana bands was created once upon a time as a Jazz Fest for locals, including the presence of great food from local restaurants.
Date: April 7-10
Location: Deanie's Seafood Bucktown, 1713 Lake Avenue
Details: Check out this music and crawfish festival at Deanie’s in Bucktownwith a crawfish eating contest (of course) and a zillion different ways to consume the mudbug. Punk, blues, and Cajun style music will accompany all the head sucking.
Date: April 17
Details: The king of Fest Mountain not only with a crazy amount of music but also with festival food. People come from miles around for their fix of crawfish bread, pheasant-quail-andouille gumbo, and so much more.
Date: April 22-May 1
Location: University of New Orleans
Details: All you can eat crawfish made by teams competing to make the best crawfish? Yes please. Music by Rockin’ Dopsie and the Zydeco Twisters, Bucktown All-Stars, Big Sam’s Funky Nation, and the New Breed Brass Band. $20-25, kids under 7 free, on the UNO campus.
Date: May 7
Local Food Festival
Location: Cafe Hope, Marrero
Details: This Cafe Hope fundraiser has a roundup of local food vendors and musicians on the West Bank.
Date: May 7
[Photo: Bond Public Relations]
New Orleans Wine and Food Experience (NOWFE)
Location: Convention Center
Details: The annual New Orleans Wine and Food Experience's Grand Tasting event has plenty of delicious food from local restaurants like August, Restaurant R’evolution, Galatoire’s and Bourbon House. Also, lots of wine.
Date: May 26-29
[Photo: Chris Granger]
Location: 1200 Robert E. Lee Boulevard
Details: Seriously, some of the best food that hits New Orleans all year. Lamb, souvlaki, spanakopita, baklava, dolma, and so much more. Plus some ouzo to wash it all down with. Hellenic dancing and Greek musicians complete the vibe.
Date: May 27-29
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