It seems like every major city has a dozens food and wine festivals every year. San Francisco, compared to many urban centers, tends to be more selective in what it puts on, however. And that's a good thing, because I've certainly been to enough food and wine events with crappy food and lousy wine (and too little of either).
Honestly, the first time I attended FallFest in San Francisco, that was what I expected. But I was pleasantly surprised, and have continued to be impressed each time the event has been put on. The organizers (San Francisco Magazine, among others) have consistently produced an event with excellent food, fantastic wine, great logistics, and an excellent atmosphere.
You can see my coverage of 2005's event to get an idea of what I'm talking about. The short story is that if you enjoy food and wine, and have an afternoon to kill on Saturday, October 6th, FallFest is a nice way to spend a few hours, and certainly worth the $80 in my opinion, especially if you arrive early and hungry.
The event includes the typical wine and food fair setup -- lots of booths handing out free wine and free food, along with cooking demonstrations, and for some extra money, a wine seminar. Some of the folks cooking at the event include The Ritz Carlton, Bocadillos, Della Fattoria, Bistro Jeanty, and Rubicon. Those pouring will include JC Cellars, Grgich Hills, Medlock Ames, Saddleback Cellars, Iron Horse, and more.
And like all good events of this type, the proceeds benefit charity. In this case, Meals on Wheels San Francisco.
San Francisco FallFest 2007
Saturday October 06, 2007
12:00 pm - 4:00 pm
Justin Herman Plaza, Embarcadero Center
Market Street @ The Embarcadero
San Francisco, CA
Tickets cost $80 for the Main Event; $150 for VIP access (early admission plus a wine seminar); they can be ordered online at the event web site. The event will likely sell out, as it is limited to 1400 attendees.
Some advice for those attending: when it's sunny it gets quite hot in the plaza. Bring sunscreen and a hat and drink lots of water. Or, of course, it could be foggy and cold as hell. But that has actually never happened at this event, so if we all cross our collective fingers....
Embarcadero Center can be easily reached by all Bay Area public transportation options, including Bay Area Rapid Transit (BART), Muni bus, underground Muni, ferry, cable car or the F-Line streetcar. For those who want to drive, underground garages are located in One, Two, Three, and Four Embarcadero Center.
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