Taste of Philadelphia — the official kick-off to Wawa Welcome America! — returns for its fifth year, and this year is going to bigger and better than ever before. Enjoy three days of restaurant samples, live music, food trucks, cooking demos and much more.
(Photos by J. Smith for GPTMC)
Taste of Philadelphia is Philadelphia’s official summer food festival and each year it kicks off the 11-day Wawa Welcome America July 4th celebration in Philadelphia with three days of awesome food at Penn’s Landing.
Once again, the festival will kick off Wawa Welcome America again this year. But for 2011, it’s going to be bigger and better than ever before: the festival is going to have more restaurants participating than ever before; this year is the first year that Taste will feature food trucks; there will also be cooking demos from notable local chefs; and this year Taste is adding a musical component to give the festival an even bigger draw.
Best part: admission to the festival is free! You just buy tickets for the food you want to sample as you go.
Here’s the complete rundown on the three-day festival celebrating all things food in Philadelphia:
First and foremost, Taste of Philadelphia is all about the food. From restaurants to food trucks to chef demos, the festival will provide you with plenty of opportunities to enjoy, ahem, a taste of Philadelphia.
Attendees will have a chance to try smaller, sample-sized dishes from more than 25 outstanding local restaurants. Admission to the Festival is free, you just need to buy tickets redeemable for food. Each restaurant is offering their favorite dishes at a fraction of the regular entree price. Try an old favorite or discover a new “taste” just by walking a few feet from one station to the next.
New participants this year include Chenango, Marabella Meatball Company, Sampan, Jamaican Jerk Hut, Tiffin, Feast Your Eyes, Gigi Restaurant and Darlings Diner.
This year’s festival is even bigger than ever before — the footprint will expand two blocks over the Chestnut Street bridge to Front Street. This additional space makes room for even more food and entertainment, including several food trucks, a brand new addition to Taste. Participating food trucks include La Marqueza, Insomnia, Dapper Dog, Call Me Cupcakes and Sweet Box.
Also new this year: look out for cooking demos, performed on the Old City Stage on the corner of Chestnut and Front Streets, from notable Philadelphia chefs from restaurants like Cuba Libre and Sampan.
Below, we have the details on the festival’s new musical component, a songwriting contest, the festival schedule and a few more photos.
To complement all the food, Taste of Philadelphia is adding an exciting musical component this year.
Throughout the weekend, Taste of Philadelphia will also offer a taste in music with live performances by jazz, R&B, soul and gospel acts, including acclaimed jazz musician and bassist Gerald Veasley on Friday, June 24; singer and songwriter Somi opening for headliner Aaron Neville on Saturday, June 25 (stick around for the first of three Wawa Welcome America free fireworks shows after the concert!); and James “JJ” Hairston and Youthful Praise on Sunday, June 26.
Singer/songwriter contest: Make sure to also check out the Front Stage to catch performances by the finalists of Wawa Welcome America!’s singer/songwriter contest. Want to be one of those stars? To enter, create a two-minute YouTube video of yourself or your group performing, upload it to www.welcomeamerica.com. If you’re selected you’ll win a four-hour studio session with Grammy-award winning producers and songwriters Carvin and Ivan and the chance to perform at Taste of Philadelphia and the July 4th Party on the Parkway.
Taste of Philadelphia Festival Schedule
Friday, June 24: 5-9 p.m.
Saturday, June 25: 11 a.m.-10 p.m.
Sunday, June 26: 11 a.m.-7 p.m.
So mark your calendar, bring your appetite and dancing shoes, and head down to Penn’s Landing to taste what our city has to offer.
For good measure, we’ve included some more tastebud-teasing photos below.
Wawa Welcome America! Presents The Taste of Philadelphia
When: Friday, June 24-Sunday, June 26
Where: Penn’s Landing, 201 S. Columbus Boulevard
Cost: Free admission, food costs vary
More Info: www.welcomeamerica.com
This is a food festival to end all other food festivals, your chance to sample some of the city's top cuisine at a fraction of each dish's standard price. (Photo by J. Smith for GPTMC)
Cheesesteaks aplenty will be on offer, of course, in addition to cupcakes, pizza, ice cream, hoagies, burgers, hot dogs and more.
(Photo by J. Smith for GPTMC)