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Bay Area Cook-Offs & Food Festivals

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So my wife and I are looking for some places to visit for great food during the summer (or the whole year). We've obviously encountered the famous Gilroy Garlic Festival, and also came across Palo Alto's Chili Cook-Off. Do SF Chowhounds have any other suggestions for fun community Cook-Offs and Festivals to visit? Hopefully this post can be a good depository of listings for people.

-Randall

2008 Cook-Offs & Food Festivals

July 4th - Palo Alto Chili Cook Off, Mitchell Park, 12-5pm

July 25th-27th - Gilroy Garlic Festival

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  1. Here are a few others reported over the years ...
    http://www.chow.com/search?search%5Bq...

    1. Sorry, but you just missed the Isleton Crawdad Festival.

      http://www.crawdadfestival.org/

      1 Reply
      1. re: Xiao Yang

        No great loss IMHO... we went a couple of years ago and enjoyed it - a couple of different stages with lots of Zydeco. This year it seemed more about the arcade rides and lots of food stands (mostly forgettable). "Music" was primarily rock and roll - lots of Hell's Angels.

        Crawdads were $20 for a standard dinner size styrofoam take-out container, not heaped full either. Tasted a sample and decided that it was just not happening this year. Maybe I'm just getting too old to appreciate these things anymore...

      2. Brentwood Cornfest
        07/11 to 07/13 2008
        Second and Oak Street - Brentwood, CA

        Taylorsville Solar Cook-Off Craft Show
        07/12 to 07/12 2008
        Taylorsville Campgrounds - Taylorsville, CA

        Shake, Rattle and Smoke! BBQ Championships
        07/12 to 07/13 2008
        500 Second - San Juan Bautista, CA

        Mendocino Herb Fair
        07/26 to 07/26 2008
        45050 Little Lake Street - Mendocino, CA

        Fairfield Tomato Festival
        08/16 to 08/17 2008
        Texas Street Downtown - Fairfield, CA
        http://fairfielddowntown.com
        West Coast 5th Annual BBQ Championship
        The West Coast Barbeque joins the Tomato Festival again. The California BBQ Association will bring 30 cooking teams together for the BBQ cookoff at Jefferson and Texas Streets. Sampling booths available.

        Gravenstein Apple Fair
        08/09 to 08/10 2008
        Ragle Ranch Park - Sebastopol, CA

        Hayward Zucchini Festival
        08/16 to 08/17 2008
        Kennedy Park - Hayward, CA

        Corning Olive Festival
        08/22 to 08/23 2008
        Woodson City Park - Corning, CA

        Bodega Seafood, Art and Wine Festival
        08/23 to 08/24 2008
        Watts Ranch 16855 bodega Hwy - Bodega, CA

        Livermore Wine Harvest Festival
        08/31 to 09/03 2008
        Retzlaff Vineyards - Livermore, CA

        Kerman Harvest Festival
        09/11 to 09/14 2008
        Kerckhoff Park - Kerman, CA

        Great American Blues and Barbeque Festival
        09/13 to 09/13 2008
        Downtown - San Rafael, CA

        Tracy Dry Bean Festival
        09/13 to 09/14 2008
        Downtown - Tracy, CA

        Sacramento Rhythm and Ribs Festival
        09/19 to 09/21 2008
        Raley Field - Sacramento, CA

        Apple Smorgy Days
        09/19 to 11/09 2008
        El Dorado Orchards - Camino, CA

        49er Festival and Chili Cook-off
        09/20 to 09/20 2008
        Mary Laveroni Park - Groveland, CA

        Crayfish and Jazz Festival
        09/20 to 09/20 2008
        Downtown - Kingsburg, CA

        Oroville Salmon Festival
        09/22 to 09/22 2008
        Feather River Nature Center - Oroville, CA

        Taste of Morgan Hill
        09/27 to 09/28 2008
        Downtown - Morgan Hill, CA

        Clayton Oktoberfest
        09/27 to 09/28 2008
        Main & Marsh Creek Road - Clayton, CA

        Draft horse classic and Dutch Oven Cookoff
        September 21, 2008: Nevada County Fairgrounds, Grass Valley, California

        Russian River Beer Revival & BBQ Cookoff
        Date: Saturday - August 16th 2008
        Time: Gate Opens at Noon - Beer Tasting from 1 - 5 p.m
        Address: 15045 River Road
        City: Guerneville
        http://www.stumptown.com/revival/

        Fortuna Apple Harvest Festival and Dutch Oven Cook-Off
        October 4, 2008
        Rohner Park
        Fortuna, California

        Fairfield Candy Festival
        Saturday, October 11, 2008
        10am to 5pm

        Loomis Eggplant Festival
        October 4th, 2008
        WHERE: Loomis Station Plaza- Taylor Road between Horseshoe Bar Road and Webb Street.
        TIME 10am -5pm

        The San Rafael Food & Wine Festival
        Saturday, August 16, 2008
        Falkirk Cultural Center
        and on Mission Street E to D Streets
        San Rafael, CA
        11:00 AM to 5:00 PM

        The 13th Annual Ghirardelli Square Chocolate Festival
        Saturday & Sunday, September 6 & 7, 2008
        Ghirardelli Square and on Beach Street
        between Larkin & Polk Streets
        San Francisco, CA
        12:00 Noon to 5:00 PM

        The 6th Annual
        North Berkeley Spice of Life Festival
        Sunday, October 19, 2008
        10:00 AM to 6:00 PM
        North Shattuck Avenue ~ Virginia to Rose
        Berkeley, CA

        California Mid-State Fair Olive Oil Competition July 25 - Aug 3, 2008 San Luis Obispo county, Paso Robles.

        Paso Robles Olive Festival Saturday Aug 23rd 10am-3pm City Park, Paso Robles, California Olive Tasting, Cuisine, Entertainment, Art and Family Fun!

        11th Annual
        Arts & Olive Festival
        Sunday
        October 5, 2008
        10:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m
        Cañada College
        4200 Farm Hill Blvd.
        Redwood City, CA

        Slow Food Nation
        Aug 29-Sept 1, 2008
        San Francisco, California

        24th Annual Pittsburg Seafood Festival at the Marina in Old Town Pittsburg.
        Saturday, September 6, 2008: 10 AM to 7 PM
        Sunday, September 7, 2008: 10 AM to 6 PM

        1. Many good suggestions already. I've never been, but there's the Monterey Bay Strawberry Festival, in Watsonville.

          http://www.mbsf.com/

          1. AAA's Via Magazine has a monthly update on everything that's going on in the west.
            That's where I always find wonderful ideas for weekends-

            http://www.viamagazine.com/

            1. That's the Gilroy Parking and Budweiser festival. Basically the opposite of everything a chowhound is looking for.

              Same goes for the dreadful crawdad festival in Isleton.

              1 Reply
              1. re: Robert Lauriston

                Too true...

              2. The Berkeley International Food Festival is coming up next week on Sunday June 29th. If last year is any indication, I remember snacks served streetside from all the little restauarants and food stores on this drab commercial strip around the coners of San Pablo and University Avenues. Kabobs, samosas, jerk chicken, tacos and a raft of other tidbits at low prices. Free stuff included a paella tasting at Spanish Table, the food demo stage with lots of samples and music at Freight and Salvage. It was crowded but fun.