Lucky for us, there’s no shortage of Atlanta food festivals and events! At any given time throughout the year, there are opportunities to learn, taste and explore the food and drinks scene through events in the city. Below is a list of events organized by season. I’ve included a short description and a link to previous blog posts if we’ve written about it in the past. Happy eating!
Andrews Wine Festival – Hosted in the East Andrews Entertainment District, this festival grants you access to all of the wine you can stand. Formerly known as the Buckhead Wine Festival, it’s a great place for newbies and wine snobs to taste wines from across the globe. Though VIP tickets allow you to try more wines and enter an hour early, this festival has gotten so popular that general admission just may be enough.
Inman Park Restaurant Week – For one week only, select Inman Park restaurants offer pre-fixe menus at $15, $25 and $35. If you’ve never tried a restaurant in this neighborhood before, this is a great way to get introduced to new restaurants.
Taste of the Nation – Held at The Georgia Aquarium, this charitable gala is for all of the fancy foodies who like to get dolled up, eat and drink well while donating to a good cause. Proceeds from this event go to Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry campaign, which helps ensure that no child in America goes hungry. The food is on point, the drinks are fantastic and the cause is worth it.
Atlanta Food and Wine Festival – For an entire weekend, indulge and imbibe in food and drinks made by local and visiting chefs and mixologists through classes, special events and Tasting Tents. This festival is for any foodie who likes to learn about food across the region and globe. There’s no shortage of drinks here at this event; expect lots of bourbon, lots of small-batch liquor and lots of reasons to make you want to come back for another year. Of note, this is a rain or shine event, and at this time of the year, Atlanta weather is very unpredictable.
Atlanta Street Food Festival – Looking for a chance to check out all of the food trucks in Atlanta? This event, held at Piedmont Park, does the job. You must buy a wristband for admission, but this does not include the cost for food.
Attack of the Killer Tomato Festival – If you love all things tomato, the Attack of the Killer Tomato Festival has you covered. Chefs and bartenders from across the city come together at The Goat Farm to produce tomato-inspired dishes and drinks. I had an amazing cherry tomato hand pie from Gunshow last year and a lot of other favorites, too! Come early because the lines get long, take an Uber or taxi as parking gets tough and be prepared for a rain-or-shine event.
Downtown Restaurant Week – For one week only, select Downtown-area restaurants offer pre-fixe menus at $15, $25 and $35. If you’ve never tried a restaurant in this neighborhood before, this is a great way to get introduced to new restaurants.
Midtown Restaurant Week – For one week only, select Midtown restaurants offer pre-fixe menus at $15, $25 and $35. If you’ve never tried a restaurant in this neighborhood before, this is a great way to get introduced to new restaurants.
Atlanta Cheese Festival – If you love cheese, this is the festival for you. Held at the Atlanta Botanical Garden, cheese vendors from across the country showcase their goods. There’s a grilled cheese meltdown that’s not to be missed; I had a hard time choosing from the restaurants battling for the title of best grilled cheese. The crowds can get dense under the tent, but there’s space all around the gardens to enjoy music and cheese.
Decatur Beer Festival – Decatur is greater for beer festivals. Check out the Square, where you’ll be able to hop from tent to tent in search of beer made locally, statewide and regionally. We had a blast, but felt left out because we came without a nifty pretzel necklace that we could snack on in between beers.
Atlanta Eats Live – Held at the Verizon Amphitheater in Alpharetta, restaurants and foodmakers alike gather to feed the masses. Though the drive is long, the food options are pretty varied, ranging from seafood to Italian to American cuisine.
Taste of Atlanta – One of my favorite festivals of the year, Taste of Atlanta showcases restaurants from both in the city and around the Perimeter. A Friday night party kicks off the weekend with special bites and libations, while Saturday and Sunday are festival days. Come hungry and ready to learn; there’s food, classes and seminars throughout the weekend. Of note, for this festival, you will need to purchase tickets to taste the food; each bite is worth 1-3 tickets. In my opinion, it beats out other festivals like Taste of Chicago (which I attended in 2012).
Best of Atlanta Party – Hosted by Atlanta Magazine, this party features the best restaurants, food and drinks of the city. Many of the vendors at this party have been honored with the “Best of Atlanta” award in the past. In 2015, it was hosted inside at the Cobb Galleria, allowing for tons of space and not many tight crowds. Of note, vendors starting shutting down at 9:30 p.m. this year, though the party ended at 10 p.m.
Hops in the Hangar – Enjoy local craft beer in the Delta Flight Museum while exploring the Delta Flight Museum. Though the economy tickets scored you a ticket to try out local craft beers, first-class ticketholders are granted a private space along with guaranteed food to soak up the beer.
Beer, Bourbon and BBQ – Hosted at Atlantic Station, this festival gives you access to all of the bourbon and beer you could possibly want. However, if you don’t have VIP access, you’ll have to pay for the BBQ, some of which is sold at the food trucks and tents lining the perimeter of the festival. Get there early; otherwise, you’ll be waiting in line for a very long time.