By Caroline Gentile ’17
As summer draws to a close at the end of September, so too does the season of food festivals. The month of September boasts at least one food festival in Boston every weekend in an effort to make the most of the nice weather while it lasts. In fact, there are two this coming weekend: the Phantom Gourmet Food Festival will be held this Saturday, September 19th, and the 6th annual Boston Local Food Festival (our personal favorite) will be Sunday, September 20th.
While food festivals can be a great way to spend the afternoon and sample lots of great food from a variety of different vendors, there are definitely some tricks to the trade that will make your food festival experience that much more enjoyable! Here are our tips for making the most of this month’s local food events:
- Purchase your tickets ahead of the event. Not only is purchasing tickets ahead of time sometimes cheaper, but it also guarantees that you will be able to get into the festival whenever you decide to arrive without having to worry about tickets selling out.
- Show up on time, at the latest. The events can run out of food if you get there too late! Also, the crowds can get pretty big,. If you get there early, you won’t have to wait in the long line for entrance AND you’ll get first dibs on all the food you want to try.
- Bring a bag for pamphlets and free swag. Many of the vendors will have freebies, and you want to keep your hands free so that you can take as many samples of food as you can.
- Bring water. Eating all those samples can make you thirsty, and nothing is more thirst-quenching than water! Also, while some festivals will have vendors that offer beverages, don’t count it.
- Walk through the whole food festival first to see what’s out there, then get food. It’s good to have an idea of what the festival has to offer so that you can prioritize going to the vendors that have the yummiest-looking food.
- Don’t show up starving; eat something small before you go. Then, you won’t ravenously descend upon the first vendor you see, and fill up on food that may not have been your first priority. Which brings us to our last point..
- Pace yourself!! There is seemingly unlimited food at these events, but trust us, your stomach does in fact have a limit as to how much food it can hold. To ensure that you get to eat everything you want without getting too full, limit yourself to one sample from each vendor. If you’re still hungry after making your rounds, though, then definitely go back for seconds!