We have friends visiting from out of town this week so we decided to give them a real taste of Key West and take them to The Taste of Key West even that was held last night from 6:00PM to 9:00PM. The event benefits AIDS Help and is a huge draw to local and visiting foodies.
Forty restaurants from Abbondanza to Thai Life had booths set up serving a tapas sized serving of one of two house specialties for attendees to taste and enjoy. On top of that, over 150 beer and wine vendors were serving up tastes of their nectar to those 21 and older.
Held at the Truman Waterfront, you could either drive to the location or take the Old Town Trolley from one of the several resorts that they had set up as stops so that you did not have to fight for parking.
Entrance to the event was free, but if you wanted to taste anything you had to buy tickets, with each tasting costing a different amount of tickets. We went in with 75 tickets for six of us and we did not use them all. Partly because by the time we got to the event at 7pm several of the booths were already closing because they ran out of food. Partly because we did not want to wait in ultra long lines that some of the booths like Santiago’s Bodega had. And partly because there were just some things that we flat out did not want, like alcoholic beverages which seemed to be a majority of what was there. (Not that I am against drinking, but we had a child with us and we did have to drive home.)
We sampled the meatballs and sausage from Abbondanza, the duck liver pate from Pisces, barbecue from Roostica, cupcakes from Key West Cakes, mac and cheese from Firefly, and seafood from Pinchers. I think we may have tried a few other things too, but I started to lose track. The barbecue was my favorite of the samplings, but Abbondanza did inspire me to make my famous sauce with meatballs and sausage for dinner tonight.
I am glad that I did not bring Indiana Bones as the crowds were a bit overwhelming in some areas. At one point my husband and I were separated from the rest of our group and we were texting each other to see where we all were. And speaking of the crowd, our friends really got to see some of the local color. Everyone from local business people to drag queens were there to volunteer or enjoy.
Anyway, if you are here for next year’s Taste, you now know what to expect. I think it is a great way for visitors to check out several restaurants that they would not normally have time to do on a shortened stay on the island.
Before deciding where you are going to eat while visiting Key West or any of the Florida Keys, be sure to read my restaurant reviews; check out our restaurant review section of this blog.
To see what is happening on Key West during your visit, check out our Key West Events Calendar to see other upcoming special events. For more information about the fun side of Key West… things to do and see in our island city, go to our Key West Web Site.
Feel free to Email Me if you have any questions about Key West!!
Island Genn – Your Key West Concierge