Taste of Laguna a success in 2018 - PHOTOS
Taste of Laguna
The 2018 Taste of Laguna was a mega success for Meredith Dowling, Executive Director of Laguna Beach Chamber of Commerce, and the Chamber of Commerce Taste Committee. Thursday, October 18, 2018, was an evening filled with tantalizing food and cocktails from local restaurants and businesses at the Festival of Arts Grounds.
Over 1000 eager food connoisseurs lined up to taste the delectable offerings created or mixed from over 30 restaurants and bars. Close to every Chef in town were at the venue to show off their fare. Music by the Ken Garcia Band was on stage entertaining the masses as they roamed from table to table.
More than 35 area companies donated raffle prizes worth over $10,000. Lucky winners went home with either two-day leases from Jaguar; weekend stays at local resorts, local restaurant gift certificates, or a basket full of goodies from various restaurants and establishments.
Chefs were on hand to meet and answer any questions from attendees. Nirvana Grille's very own Lindsay Smith-Rosales delighted the crowd with her famous Goat-Cheese Ice Cream made from sustainable sources. Chef Darrell Bellamy of Tommy Bahamas was excited to be at his first Taste of Laguna and shared, "I’m overwhelmed to see so many of the local people out supporting this event."
Carolyn Smile, Catmosphere Laguna, was thrilled to show what Catmosphere has to offer, and ecstatic to see so many people in attendance. All Chefs believed this was an excellent opportunity to showcase what each of their restaurants has to offer.
The festive Royal Hawaiian booth, sponsors of the after party, may have been one of the oldest restaurants at the event, established in 1947.
10 Foodie Awards from the Most Creative Dish to the Best Vegan Dish were awarded by three guest judges: Lana Sills, author and Executive Producer of a nationally syndicated food and wine radio show, she is a 30-year veteran in the food industry; Jamie Gwen, Celebrity Chef, and National Syndicated Radio Host also conversed with enthusiastic foodies; plus our own, Patrick DiGiacomo, a former student of Laguna Beach Culinary Arts and past Owner/Chef of the Kitchen in the Canyon. He not only was able to critique food but exchange best business practices of restaurant management.
Local Public Safety employees were on hand to meet and greet the public. Fire Department, Police Department, and the Life Guard Department had representatives on the scene. These men and women work hard for our city each day and like getting to know the people they serve.
Overall, this year’s Taste of Laguna had something special for those with a great interest in food and fun.
Marlo Jackson is a freelance writer based in Laguna Beach. She loves to write about interesting people, events, and places of business.