Last weekend I had the pleasure of being a judge for the 2019 Tampa Bay's Tailgate Taste Fest!
The event was held at Tampa's Curtis Hixon Park and we had a beautiful day for it.
The entertainment consisted of a food competition with local restaurants serving up the most delicious tailgate foods Tampa Bay has to offer, live music from local/national bands, a competitive corn hole tournament and live action from the day’s most exciting college football games shown on huge LED video screens.
One of my favorite bands that played was the Soul Circus Cowboys! They have been at a few bars and events I have been at in the past and they were amazing, especially if you love country or classic rock.
Everyone was dressed in there sports attire and chowing down all of the amazing tailgate food. It was so fun seeing all of the different fans of all the teams getting along and having a great time with some beers, great music and fun times.
One of the best options for food samplings was the VIT wristband. The VIT wristband (Very Important Tailgater) included a dish from every restaurant at the event and unlimited drinks (beer, wine, cocktails and soft drinks) in a covered tent with comfy seating and tables. This ticket option was definitely a great bang for your buck! I highly recommend getting this option next year if you did not make it out this year. Other options for food tastings were the five sampler ticket and the ten sampler ticket.
We had three categories for judging: Meat Dish, Side Dish and Dessert. So many delicious restaurants were in our judging line-up: Brio, Winghouse, Fuzzy Tacos, Harpoon Harry's Crab House, Taste, American Social, The Local, Nothing Bundt Cakes, Splitsville, The Pub, Garrison Tavern, PDQ and Jeremiah's Ice.
We were able to vote on presentation, tailgate appeal, flavor and overall ranking.
Some of my favorites were the nachos from Fuzzy Taco Shop, the tasty ribs from Winghouse, juicy pulled pork slider from Garrison Tavern, Taste had the most amazing bacon brussel sprouts, oh and the bratwurst covered in queso on a pretzel bun from The Pub and don't get me started on the Nothing Bundt Cakes..so amazing!
The overall judges choice winners were Winghouse, Taste and Nothing Bundt Cakes. All were very well deserved.Later that night the Tampa Bay Rays playoff game was played on all the huge LED screens! This was so fun and got all of the local spirit together! Raymond even came out and made an appearance. Unfortunately the Rays lost the game but we all had so much fun watching.
Overall the event was a blast. I can not believe it was my first time attending and I am so excited for next years Tampa Bay's Tailgate Taste Fest. All of the dishes were so unique and different. They definitely gave a new outlook to the meaning of tailgate foods!
Don't worry if you missed this years event. Stay tuned to my feed for next years event date. You will definitely want to mark that on your calendar! Also give Tampa Bay's Tailgate Taste Fest instagram a follow and stay up to date on all of there upcoming news!
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