The Food Channel celebrates local festivals! Here are a few of our top picks.
Celebrating local foods, regional cuisine, and seasonal specialties happens year-round at food festivals across the country. Discovering the delicious edible finds near your home or summer vacationing spot is a great way to experience new foods.
Festivals offer recipes for soups, relishes, entrees and beverages that may be foreign to your family’s cooking traditions – what a great way to shake up the flavor this summer!
Yarmouth Clam Festival, July 17-19
In the coastal town of Yarmouth, Maine, a peculiar little shellfish is the reason for serious celebration. At the annual Yarmouth’s Clam Festival, over 100,000 visitors flood the town to watch the Maine State Clam Shucking Contest and taste the famous clam specialties of New England. Whether you eat steamed, fried, battered, or chowdered, this festival gives you clams galore.
Gilroy Garlic Festival, July 24-26
Over 100,000 people are expected to attend the three day Gilroy Garlic Festival in Gilroy, California beginning July 24. The event will feature a Master Chef Challenge hosted by television’s Top Chef Fabio Viviani, plus hourly cooking demonstrations and live online video streams of festival cook-offs. If your taste buds get excited about French Fried Garlic Artichoke Hearts, Garlic Kettlekorn, Garlic Watermelon, or Garlic Ginger Chicken Stir-Fry, then this is the festival to visit.
Machias Blueberry Festival, August 14-16
Interested in seeing a Blueberry Musical Comedy? If so, the Machias Wild Blueberry Festival in Machias, Maine, is the event to attend. Every year locals handcraft the festival quilt, families attend the Pancake Breakfast, and the community band plays tunes, all in commemoration of the blueberry. The annual festival is an example of how food can bring communities together.
Vermont Cheesemakers Festival, August 23
On Sunday, August 23rd, dozens of cheesemakers and other artisan food producers will gather in Shelburne, VT, for the first annual Vermont Cheesemakers Festival. The one-day event, hosted by the Vermont Institute for Artisan Cheese, the Vermont Butter & Cheese Company, and the Vermont Cheese Council, will be held from 10:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. at the Coach Barn on picturesque Shelburne Farms.
Festival visitors can sample over 100 types of cheese from 40 different cheesemakers, a variety of locally produced wines and beers, and several other artisan foods, including maple syrup, honey, chocolates, baked goods, and more. The Festival will also feature four tasting seminars, where visitors will learn how to pair cheeses with wine, beer, and other foods.
To learn more about what foods are being celebrated in your area, check out local art boards, community boards, state fairs, and your local Chamber of Commerce. Or, visit FoodReference.com to search by month or location.
See the report of our visit to the Sorrento Cheese Italian Heritage Festival!.