Follow Me Foodie to the best international food & drink festivals of the summer!
I’m a bit late since summer has already started and travel plans might be already made, but better late than never!
Oh man. You know how I feel about the words “the best”… I hate it. I haven’t been to all of them around the world and “best” is all relative, but for stupid SEO purposes and because I want you to be able to find this article, I’m using it. I caved.
I’ve spent months researching food and drink festivals around the world and I’d feel selfish keeping results to myself. I really want people to go to them because they sound amazing, and these festivals need support to continue and grow. I also hope to meet some of you there if I happen to go too… which some of them I will be at!
Food is personal, the culinary scene is huge and it just depends on preferences and tastes. Every palate is different, but one thing we all have in common is we all have to eat. So why eat (and drink) poorly?
Here are food festivals I’d fly for…
Food Cart Festival
Where: Vancouver, British Columbia
When: Every Sunday starting June 22
Vancouver has the largest street food scene in Canada. As a local I’m incredibly proud of our food cart/truck scene and some of my favourite quick eats are from these vendors. It’s nice to have them all in one place so you can hit up a bunch at once. The vendors rotate and change weekly, so there’s always something new to try. See my posts for food cart/truck posts here.
Street food in Vancouver comes with high quality (mostly local) ingredients, a sense of social responsibility, community, sustainability and health. However it’s not all healthy and you can find some guilty indulgences (part of the fun), but it beats fast food. It’s “slow food” – fast. Options are diverse, representing multiculturalism and it’s great for all ages.
Greek Day – Greek Festival
Where: Vancouver, British Columbia
When: June 22
Vancouver has a significant Greek community and The Greek Festival is a great family event open to the public. It’s an all day event on Broadway in Kitsilano taking over 5 blocks. There’s Greek cooking demonstrations, traditional food, music and entertainment.
It’s a small taste of night markets in Hong Kong, although there are food vendors outside of Chinese food. If you enjoy street food, then come check out the Richmond Night Market. It’s not-to-be-missed if you’re a tourist or even a local who has never been.
Find street eats including Stinky Tofu, takoyaki and even German pork hocks and pretzels. See “What to Eat at the Richmond Night Market“.
Truffles in Australia! The Italian ones don’t happen until Autumn, so look to Australia!
It’s an 8 week celebration of the local Black Perigord Truffle harvest. Over 45 participating venues across the region offer truffle events ranging from degustation dinners, truffle dishes at cafes, pastries, cooking classes and demonstrations, wine tastings and matchings, farmers markets, truffle hunts and more.
The Calgary Stampede
Where: Calgary, Alberta
When: July 4 – 13
It’s not necessarily a food festival, but food, bbq, and beer will be heavily involved.
You’ll find “love it, hate it” carnival food like Deep Fried Donut Bacon Cheeseburgers, bacon wrapped “Cowboy corn”, and Deep Fried Cheesies, but the restaurants in town are more sophisticated and worth checking out. It’s grown up from “meat and potatoes”.
It’s a dirty/messy week long party, but you should go at least once! Join the fun, or be left out. See – Follow Me Foodie to Calgary.
Photo credit: Kevin Gray
Tales of a Cocktail
Where: New Orleans, Louisiana
When: July 16 – 20
I love this city and don’t even need a festival to re-visit. It walks to the beat of it’s own drum, but different from Austin, Texas or Portland, Oregon. It’s full of history, culture, and indulgent food… and booze. See – Follow Me Foodie to NOLA.
Tales of a Cocktail is the world’s premier cocktail festival largely attended by the top bartenders and cocktail connoisseurs. It’s 5 days of competitions, seminars, dinners are more. Learn about cocktail trends, techniques and party with some of the biggest cocktail nerds in the industry.
Lauren Mote and Jonathan Chovancek of Bittered Sling Extracts along with The Donnelly Group’s Trevor Kallies – the only Canadian in the manager level of CAP – are only a few of Vancouver’s bartenders who will be attending.
Photo credit The Silver Chef
Singapore Food Festival
When: July 11 – 20
Singapore is one of the leading food cities in Asia. This festival shows how Singaporean food has been shaped by diverse cultures. The festival offers culinary workshops, competitions, and traditional and international themed dinners.
Los Angeles Food & WineFestival
Where: Los Angeles, California
When: Aug. 21 – 24
It’s another city where I don’t need an excuse to visit. There’s always something delicious in LA.
This is a 4 day event featuring world class wineries, live entertainment, exclusive lunches, book signings and celebrity chefs such as Iron Chef Morimoto, Thomas Keller and Curtis Stone.
Where: Montreal, Quebec
When: Aug. 22–25
Come! I’ll be here this year.
This festival celebrates Montreal’s young and creative chefs. Local rising talents host cooking demos and guest chefs from Paris and New York come for seminars and chef collaboration dinners and more.
Canada’s Largest RibFest
Where: Burlington, Ontario
When: Aug. 29 – Sept 1
Need I say more?
It’s the 19th anniversary of Canada’s Largest Ribfest, an event that the National Post has dubbed “the Superbowl of Ribfests.”
Copenhagen Cooking Festival
Where: Copenhagen, Denmark
When: Aug. 22 – 31
It’s one of the leading food festivals in Northern Europe. It showcases Copenhagen as a world-class gastronomic destination through 100+ unique culinary events.
This year’s main theme Taste of Emotions has the following 8 categories: Nordic Summer, Gourmet Experiences, Hidden Places, Organic & Sustainable, Glass & Bottle, Knowledgeable Cooking, Outside Copenhagen, and Cooking for Kids.
Vegas. You love it or hate it. I love it… for 3-4 days max.
This festival is hosted at the Red Rock Casino & Resort.
It features a chocolate festival, wine and food festival, beer festival, champagne and celebrity chef dinners and an exclusive 9 Course Chef Dinner at Joël Robuchon.
When: Sept. 6 – 10
!!!! I’m going!!!! So excited. I’m looking forward to attending this festival most because I have limited knowledge in Peruvian cuisine, AND it’s Peru… PERU!
All eyes on Peru as an “up and coming” food city. I’m not keen on saying it’s “up and coming” because it’s not like the city was just created, but it’s finally getting attention it deserves. Chefs come here to get inspired.
Mistura is Latin America’s largest food festival. It’s a culinary mega-event held in Lima, Peru to celebrate Peruvian cuisine. It’s a 10 day festival and this year’s theme is water and Peru’s marine resources. Seafood and small scale fishing take pride at Mistura, so seafood lovers rejoice!
Memories! I lives here for a short while, so The Netherlands has a soft spot in my heart. I wouldn’t need reason to revisit, but this certainly catches my attention.
It is the second edition of ‘CHEFS®EVOLUTION’, the Dutch avant-garde cuisine festival. It features top international chefs, including René Redzepi of Noma and Grant Achatz, and each day five chefs will take the stage with interactive demonstrations.
A leader in food on the West Coast. I don’t need an excuse to visit, but this would be the perfect occasion for a first time visit or re-visit.
Feast Portland is a world-class food and drink festival in the Pacific Northwest celebrating Oregon’s bounty. It’s in its 3rd year and it showcases local culinary talent and Pacific Northwest ingredients alongside internationally recognized chefs, culinary professionals and industry leaders.
My summer travel savings tips:
- Use promo code TAKE50CA to get $50.00 off a $300.00 hotel bookings on Travelocity.CA
- Download the Travelocity.Ca new mobile app and use promo code MOBILECA25 to save an EXTRA $25 off your mobile hotel booking of $100 or more.
- Tag #SeizeTheSummer for your chance to win Travelocity.Ca travel dollars throughout the summer.