We like eating and drinking, and you like eating and drinking. There are plenty of opportunities to do both at Austin's best spring food festivals. Go and get your fill.
Austin Oyster Festival
The fifth annual Austin Oyster Festival is set to take over the French Legation Museum in late February. The fest is, of course, all about oysters, with three specific bars to make sure you get a little bit of everything. There’s a Raw Bar with the likes of Gulf and East Coast oysters on the half shell with preserved lemon mignonette, a Grill Bar with items such as grilled oysters with roasted garlic anchovy butter, and a Fry Bar with New Orleans-style oyster po'boys. There’s also booze and music! Go and indulge.
Ticket details: $45 for a general admission pass, which includes live entertainment and five vouchers; $100 for a VIP pass, which includes two more vouches and access to oyster tastings by talented local chefs, a Deep Eddy Vodka craft bar, a perk-filled VIP lounge, and automatic entry into prize raffles.
TX German Bier Festival presents Starkbierfest with Dai Due
TX German Bier Festival presents Starkbierfest with Dai Due is a real mouthful, both literally and figuratively. The 1700s-themed German feast features a six-course dinner from Dai Due chef Jesse Griffiths plus snacks from Easy Tiger and select choices from Traubenhaus Wines and strong Texas beers. Toss on your best semi-formal attire and live it up at Austin Saengerrunde.
Ticket details: $100 for a general admission pass, which includes a commemorative stein, dinner, beverages, live talks from chefs and brewers, and performances from One Ounce Opera.
If you looked at Starkbierfest and felt like it wasn’t quite for you, then the sixth annual Texas VegFest at Fiesta Gardens, which is also taking place on April 1, may be more your speed. First of all, it’s free! Secondly, while there's a lot of great food and craft beers that will be available, you’ll also have a chance to get educated on the benefits of a plant-based lifestyle.
Gluten Free Food Allergy Fest
It’s quite possible that the Gluten Free Food Allergy Fest is the least sexy sounding festival of all time. Still , there are plenty of people that will benefit from the expo's gluten-free veterans that make up the selection of over 75 exhibitors at the Austin Convention Center.
Ticket details: One-day passes are $15 each and two-day passes are $25; both get you inside and grant you access to any of the seminars and cooking demonstrations.
Austin Food + Wine Festival
If you're looking to splurge on something this spring, consider going all-in on the Austin Food + Wine Festival. The "gourmet celebration like no other" features a ton of the country's top wine, spirits, and culinary exhibitors. Expect to never want to leave The Grand Taste Pavilion, which takes over Auditorium Shores.
Ticket details: There are a couple of price points ($250 and $650); get all the details here.
Hot Luck is a new food and music fest created by Aaron Franklin (Franklin Barbecue), James Moody (owner of The Mohawk), and Mike Thelin (Feast Portland). Full details have yet to be announced, but food events and shows are expected to take place around the city with a live-fire cooking event as the centerpiece of it all. Tickets coming soon.