Eat Real Fest LA: For The Anti-Cool July 16 – 17

Some of us are really excited for the Eat Real event, so excited we might even brave the 405 closure debacle & cross from East to West side. Heck, some of us who think free labor is like running in public — the horror — might even volunteer.

Here’s the official blurb, interspaced with photos from the “Preview Event”, followed by further thoughts on the festivities inspired by the Eat Real Fest Oakland:

The Eat Real Festival, the urban food extravaganza that showcases food in all its tasty forms, has just announced highlights of the lineup for the jam-packed Los Angeles event taking place at the Helms Bakery District in Culver City, CA on July 16th and 17th, 2011. Offering an extraordinary opportunity for people to celebrate not only the very best of their regional foods, but also the people who grow it and make it. Attendees will get up close and personal with their food through two days of non-stop food skills and hands on DIY demos including a “flying knives” butchery contest, an eclectic array of local food producers in the marketplace and a curated selection of delicious street eats incorporating local and sustainable ingredients all priced at $5 or less. “Eat Real takes the idea of and old-time state fair and turns it on its head,” said Anya Fernald, founder of Eat Real Festival. “For two full days, attendees can dine and sip on delicious items that highlight local, healthy and sustainable ingredients. But eating and drinking is only part of the fun. We’ll also put people in touch with their food by showing how it’s made – from making jam, sauerkraut or bread, raising backyard chickens and bees, to seeing the artistry involved in butchering a steer or pig. We celebrate the very best southern California has to offer and will activate thousands of people to demand good food, all the time.”

There is no cost for entry into the Eat Real Festival. In fact, there is no cost for any of the festival activities that includes music, workshops, demonstrations and events like the canning and butchery contests. The only cost when attending the Eat Real Festival will come from shopping in the marketplace or purchasing food from the food vendors on site. By agreeing to take part in Eat Real, vendors commit to using 1-2 local or sustainable ingredients in their food, hormone free meat and ensure that all prepared food for sale on site will be priced $5 or less. There is also space devoted to local food craft folks (cheese, charcuterie, pickles, jams, and more) and urban homesteading where attendees can learn what it takes to get in touch with your inner backyard farmer.

For the first time in the HISTORY of Bigmista’s BBQ, the team will offer their retail wares west of so close to the 405. Hollah at Neil’s new dream smoke rig. Mothercluck, in addition to demo’ing new ice cream to be sold under Mother Moo, will be selling her jams, Creme Caramel LA has been battling carpal tunnel to offer their best custard French flan, and Lindy & Grundy will be grilling brats served to order. The Mother in Law Kimchi Company, is flying in from NYC to demo kimchi making. Not sure why Eat Real LA needs Korean New Yorkers, but this company is a bit of a rockstar, and we shall so graciously indulge them. Of note, the fava bean “dip” we sampled from Hollywood Farmers Kitchen were kinda.. good. With beer, or without beer. (Dr., If you’re reading, I’m really not drinking. Really. O_o)

If all of this still doesn’t make you feel better about your vapid degustatory life style dotted with frequent trips to El Taurino, Kogi, Barney’s Beanery and the Griddle, attend the anti-star studded Kickoff Party ($45) which benefits Rootdown L.A. along with the Social Justice Learning Institute. Eat for the good of others, instead for the good of an event planner — not that we don’t love event planners. Best of all, this isn’t a gluttonous,AYCE, bottom-less pit, cause that’s not real. Real is what Confucius (or some other wise old Chineser) taught us: “be seventy percent full”.

Eat Real Fest LA
July 16 – 17
Saturday 10:30 a.m. to 9 p.m.
Sunday 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.