Monday, August 15, 2011

In a Golden State 5: Street Food!

If you're as starved for street food as we are, and you happen to be in the San Francisco Bay Area on or around August 20, by all means, make you way to the extraordinary San Francisco Street Food Festival. The second annual edition was really one of our favorite food occasions of 2010. The third annual edition looks to be just as exciting, if not more. And it's all for a great cause.

Need further convincing? This is what it looked like last year:

The SF Street Food Festival had a full range of street food temptations, both high and low.

grilled corn fig. a: on the grill

The grilled corn looked great to begin with, but it was even better all-dressed.

yum! fig. b: all-dressed

Ritual Roasters had their mobile unit out for the occasion, in case you happened to be under-caffeinated. Philz was also just around the corner for those in search of a seat and a Philharmonic experience.

ritual mobile unit fig. c: Ritual in da house

There were so many options, so many different avenues of street food delight, that Michelle found herself at a crossroads.

lost in a crowd fig. d: standing at the crossroads

We tasted a whole lot of tasty treates, but our favorite street food delicacy of the day was this totally outrageous Japanese fried chicken.

super yum! fig. e: oishii!

When we'd had our fill, we started to head back into the heart of the Mission when we saw an Aztec ride by on a Razor Scooter. We couldn't let that pass us by. So we turned back around and headed back into the heart of the Street Food Festival and came across this:

sacred smoke fig. f: sacred smoke

And the next thing we knew, the scene erupted into a full-on pre-Columbian frenzy.

street dance fig. g: Montezuma's revenge

The performance was riveting, creating something akin to a time portal in the urban landscape.

our lady fig. h: our lady

So if you happen to be in the San Francisco Bay Area this coming Saturday, if you're even remotely within striking distance, please do check out the SF Street Food Festival. We were warned that it would be "swarmed," "overrun" with "foodies," that the lines would be "a mile long," but we showed up early and found the whole experience positively convivial. And we had absolutely no problems scoring each and every delicacy we desired.

The moral of this story: don't believe the hype. Or, rather: the early birds get the street food.


Postscript: The San Francisco Street Food Festival is much more than just a one-day street food extravaganza. The 2010 edition also featured a stimulating and highly inspiring two-day street food conference featuring practitioners, activists, public officials, urban planners, and academics. And there were brother and sister events all over town all weekend long, like Humphry Slocombe hosting NYC's Big Gay Ice Cream Truck for a special edition of Tranny Smackdown.

tranny smackdown fig. i: un zoo la nuit

Jane Wiedlin (of the Go-Go's) performed, John T. Edge was fêted, a special sundae was concocted, and Humphry Slocombe was even more of a zoo (a wonderful one) than usual. We thought about trying the Tranny Smackdown Sundae, but ended up sticking with our very favorite Humphry Slocombe jam.

secret breakfast fig. j: shhh...


Anonymous said...

mmm. good to know that all-dressed = delicious, no matter where you are in the world :)

Karina said...

Bummed that I was out of of town last weekend, but at least I have the Eat Real Festival to look forward to:

aj kinik said...

Hi, PS,

Hi, Karina,
How was Eat Real? Did you forget to tell me all about it?