Thanksgiving, Easter… sometimes the best meals only come around once a year—and the Annual Festival of Flavor is one of them! Held in Foley, northern neighbor to Gulf Shores, this is when chefs show off the pinnacle of their skills, whether they specialize in sandwiches, sauces, beer, ice cream, or some other delectable! The festival happens in October. This year, a kick-off dinner is happening on October 5th, with the festival itself falling on Saturday the 7th.
To kick off the cookoff, The Wolf Bay Lodge holds this year’s dinner. It will be prepared by Ira Gallon, who has made a name for himself by placing in several food competitions and heading several different restaurants throughout his career. It’s a five-course meal with international wines to go with it; the dinner costs $75 per person.
On Saturday, vendors ranging from food trucks to head chefs are out with their delicious creations, trying to impress not only potential customers but also the critics, who may award them with a chance at the World Food Championships!
Try a little, try a lot—it just depends on your appetite! Attendees buy a ticket that corresponds to how many samples they can try. The affordable $5 ticket gets you five samples of beer, wine, or food. You can get up to $25 tastings for $15. Or, if you’re looking for a nice souvenir (food doesn’t keep well in a curio cabinet!), a $60 VIP ticket will get you 25 tastings plus three adult drinks, plus access to the VIP lounge, and (while supplies last) a commemorative mug or wine glass.
Whatever you choose, you’re sure to head home with a smile on your face and a few extra pounds around your satisfied stomach!
The town of Foley is just a half-hour drive north from Gulf Shores—head straight up Highway 59, and you’re there! The intersection of Alston Street and Orange Avenue, right by Highway 59, is the heart of the Alabama event.