Singha Beer handed out whimsical yellow visors which helped due to the bright sunshine.Since I’m constantly exposed to gourmet food trucks, I decided to focus on food that I haven’t experienced before. Due to the number of vendors present, that wasn’t difficult to do.
The first item I had was the spicy tuna hand roll from Sushi Roku. I’ve had their hand rolls before and I like the fact that they use ultra fresh nori (seaweed wrap). It has a certain snap when you bite into it. Others serve hand rolls that are often gummy.
At the booth, they served the Reuben Dog: pastrami sausage, white American cheese, haus slaw and haus sauce. I enjoyed the sweet and saltiness of the dog. The pastrami “wurst” topped with slaw and the haus dressing was a killer combination.
The country of Spain was featured at the Españolita Foods and Imports booth. Gazpacho is a tomato based soup and is perfect for hot weather as it is chilled when served. La pulgita de jamon, a Spanish tapas was served with delicious Serrano ham over a housemade cracker.
I saw the Mariscos Jalisco food truck and didn’t think anything of it. The gentleman in front of the truck asked me to go to the other side so that I could sample their food. What an amazing taste sensation. Shrimp tacos dorados! This Jalisco version is stuffed with shrimp and fried until the tortilla becomes crispy. I thought that the salsa roja and avocados both added to the presentation and the amazing taste. I later found out that the gentleman in front was the owner, Raul Ortega. In case you didn’t know, Mariscos Jalisco is listed on Jonathan Gold’s Top 101 Restaurants in LA.
Short Order is a brick and mortar located near the Farmers Market on Fairfax Ave. They were serving their Pork Belly BLT. It consisted of grilled pork belly, applewood bacon, avocado, bibb lettuce and toasted country white bread. I don’t recall seeing their tomato jam in the sandwich. It was, however, quite tasty.
World Empanadas featured ham and cheese, pulled pork, Santa Fe chicken and pork on fire empanadas. I can vouch for the fact that the pork was “on fire”.
My main focus was on food vs. wine, but I did manage to sample Cupcake Vineyards Pinot Grigio. While I’m normally not a fan of Pinot Grigio, I think it went very well with the food served at the event.
The dessert section followed and I was truly amazed at the variety. As you can imagine, I was pretty full by then, but I managed to sample a few things.
Cream’wich housemade vanilla ice cream surrounded by parbaked chocolate chip cookies. How heavenly is that? Because they are parbaked, the cookies are like cookie dough and don’t crumble to pieces as you bite into it. Follow this link for more details on Cream’wich. You can get them at Manhattan Beach Creamery!
The Churro Borough is a pop-up dessert company that handles special events. It was a bite sized ice cream sandwich. The warm churros surrounded the cold vanilla ice cream. I’d sure like to have them again and it’s unfortunate that they don’t have a storefront.
The Beignet Truck debuted at the festival. Original powdered sugar or cinnamon. When I spoke with them, they said that they will have other offerings like a maple drizzled version. To get the true Café de Monde experience, you can order your beignets with chicory coffee.
Hawaiian Springs provided cold bottled water. This was a welcome delight as I drank 3 bottles! They appear to have distributed water from several locations.
Considering the heat factor, the cold misters were welcome. In addition, there were plenty of restrooms and for a foodie event, porta potties really brings down the overall experience. Tables and chairs were also available, though; I think they could have used more.
If you attend this event, I strongly recommend that you pay for the VIP ticket. While it’s $75 vs. $50, you get into the event 2 hours before everyone else. As a result, lines are short and you have a chance to sample a lot of things in a short amount of time.