Monday, February 15, 2010

LA Street Food Fest

We gazed longingly through the gates that held us out. We were envious of those who'd made it through into the 1st Annual LA Street Food Fest. We were hopeful as we endured the heat, the sun beating down upon us. The line moved, slowly. My husband and I had been in line for nearly an hour and a half, and it looked like we had at least another 45 minutes before we made it to the front. I looked back and couldn't see the end of the line. It was too far away.

I texted back and forth with my friends who were among the fortunate to have made it into the event. More of the same on the other side. Waiting. And then, for those of us waiting outside, a voice echoed through a bull-horn: "We're sorry everyone. We've reached capacity and will probably remain at capacity for the rest of the day...we're not letting anymore people in. We're so sorry...Thank you so much for your support..."

It was 2:30. The crowd slowly started to disperse, disappointment on our faces. We were starving. What to do now? Chinatown's New Year festival was happening, but that would be packed and crowded. Little Tokyo was nearby, but it sounded like many others had the same idea.

We hopped the Red Line from downtown back to North Hollywood, and there at the top of the station was a tamale cart. No lines or huge crowds. It was almost as if he was there waiting for us, knowing what we had just gone through. We purchased a couple of tamales, and sat and enjoyed our lunch peacefully and immediately.

A text from my friend. He was still in line waiting for his first food truck sample. He had been in line waiting for his food almost as long as we had waited outside just to get in. His wife also in line at another food truck. They had decided to split up. In the end, they spent the entire day at LA Street Food Fest, only to sample 3-4 trucks out of 35.

While many complained, we all know we'll be back next year. Why? Because this is LA. Believe it or not, we do have a sense of community and want to support it. And we're proud of our food truck culture. The turnout for this year's LA Street Food Fest demonstrated that. The organizers will learn from their mistakes, and I'm sure next year's will be better. That said, I still plan to arrive early, and will probably come with an entourage so we can hit as many trucks as possible. See you next year at the 2nd Annual LA Street Food Fest!


1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Come join us for our new and improved summer street food tasting event July 24th at the Rose Bowl.