Restaurant and artisan food gathering at OC Tastefest in Costa Mesa, CA

On May 4 and 5, 2012, the inaugural OC Tastefest celebrated food and music at the OC Fair and Event Center in Costa Mesa. They sold tickets in sheets of 10 for $5. In the long run, you’ll probably spend about $25-30 per person if you plan on making a meal out of it. The good thing is that you get to sample a number of restaurants – get to know their food and hopefully, go to their restaurants to try the full-size entrees. The event was a little small, but expected as it is the inaugural event. Hopefully, it will catch on and more restaurants and artisan food vendors will join next year. I must say, Pretzel Logic, A Steely Dan Revue, was great musical entertainment. I was rocking out in my seat while munching on my food.

Let’s take a look at some of the food:

MARO Wood Grill (Laguna Beach, CA) offered a 12-ticket platter of Mesquite Skirt Steak Skewers (Grass-fed Paso prime steak topped with housemade chimichurri), MARO Edamame (Mesquite-fired soy beans sprinkled with Sonoma sea salt), and Organic Chocolate Chip Cookies (Royal organic vanilla bean, Valrhona chocolate chips, organic flour, organic eggs, and cane sugar). The skirt steak was cooked to a perfect medium rare. The mesquite smoke permeated and complemented the beef. You’ll definitely have an OMG moment or two. This was my first time having edamame grilled and it was pretty good. But the Sonoma sea salt was a little too chunky for this causing it to be too salty at times. I would use a kosher salt or a finer sea salt sparingly instead. The Organic Chocolate Chip Cookies were okay. Their flavor was very subtle. But I’m definitely going to visit this restaurant for the full order of skirt steak! For more information, please visit their website:

To read more and see photo slideshow, please visit:

Mahalo and if you went to OC Tastefest, let me know what you thought of it!

OC Food Diva