Sunday, April 29th, the Taste of the Eastside returns to the beautiful Los Angeles River Center and Gardens at 4 PM. Taste of the Eastside is one of our favorite annual events. It may not have nationally renowned chefs or big dollops of caviar on everything, but it is a fun, hyperlocal community event. You can meet the restaurateurs and chefs from your neighborhood restaurants and get turned on to bakeries and specialty shops you never even knew were there. We also like that there is a large grassy area for picnicking–bring a blanket.
What began as a small, parent-driven fundraiser for Rose Scharlin Cooperative Nursery School has grown into a big family-friendly food fest showcasing a diverse selection of the best restaurants in the neighborhoods of Silverlake, Los Feliz, Atwater Village, Echo Park, Highland Park, and Eagle Rock. The fundraiser now donates to a number of causes, including Friends of the LA River.
This year there will be over 30 vendors, representing old favorites as well as exciting newcomers. We are especially eager to try the dishes served up this year by Little Dom’s, Diablo Tacos, Cliff’s Edge Malo, Eagle Rock Brewery Public House and Mohawk Bend. Two of our favorites, Jeni’s Splendid Ice Cream and McConnell’s Fine Ice Creams will be going head to head for frozen confection superiority. Let’s hope McConnells brings their Eureka Lemon and Marionberry ice cream!
On the beverage front, Silver Lake Wines will be pouring, and you can enjoy signature cocktails from Mohawk Bend and Greenbar Craft Distillery, plus beer pours from Eagle Rock Brewing, El Segundo Brewing Co. and Strand Brewing Co. I am maybe a little too excited about Boxed Water, to the point of Grateful Dead fandom. KCRW DJ favorites Raul Campos, Anthony Valadez and Garth Trinidad will be spinning tunes for all music lovers, in addition to live music from Cousin Junebug, The Morning Yells and more.
Tickets: Unlimited food tastes, with wine, beer and spirits available for purchase, $45 pre-sale and $55 day of event. I like that they have a reasonably-priced ticket option for non-drinkers, because liquor can really drive up the ticket prices. VIP Tickets include unlimited food tastes, 3 drink tickets, first priority for VIP demo signups, early entry to the event at 3 pm to beat the crowd, exclusive VIP gift bag, and priority parking (2:45-4 pm). VIP tickets go for $75 pre-sale and $85 the day of event Kids Under 2 – Free Ages 2 – 12: $15 Kids VIP early access – $30 (No Gift Bag included). There is a fun Kids space included.