Is it too early to start getting just a little bit excited for the Summer? Dare I say things are starting to look up? The last time I suggested we we’re expecting a bumper year of food and drink events, a global pandemic hit, so I’m saying nothing on the record. Nada.
What I will say though, the calendar is starting to look ever so slight more lively in 2021 for food and drink lovers in Utah. Here’s all the event confirmations and cancellations we know about so far.
SLC Farmers Market – it’s on
According to Alison Einerson of the Downtown Alliance, the 2021 edition of the downtown market will be much grander than the muted affair that was 2020. While the Pioneer Park market will still not return to pre-pandemic heights, expect to find a total of 113 farmer, rancher, and food stalls as well as 59 arts and crafts options at this years market.
Especially noteworthy for 2021 is the Food Fairway, a globe trotting tour de force of flavors to sample. Chefs pitching up in 2021 include:
- Amal Wa Salaam
- Argentina’s Best
- Cinder Pig
- Sweet Lake Limeade
- Am Bor Sudanese
- Thai Chef To Go
- Bona Parte
- Uinta Coffee
Einerson explained to me that the Fairway is largely off limits to existing bricks and mortar businesses and food trucks – except for one off exceptions such as those businesses that built their foundations at the market (ala Sweet Lake Limeade). The Fairway is a way for up and coming businesses to really shine and get a foot in the door.
You’ll be able to try your hand at everything from Sudanese to Haitian at this year’s fairway, not least one of my favorites – Cinder Pig (pictured top) – you might recall I fanboyed over them here in March. Well, now you can try em first hand too, every Saturday 8 a.m. through 1 p.m. starting June 5th.
City Weekly Beer Festival – it’s on
2021 will be the 11th installment of the yearly beery knees up. This years event will move to The Gateway in downtown SLC and function as a two day drinking session; August 21st and 22nd respectively. Tickets start from $25 and I guarantee they will be long sold out come those two days. Purchase tickets here.
Greek Festival – it’s on
Mark September 10th in your diary. That’s when the three day Greek fun fest starts. The event always brings big crowds, so 2020 was nixed entirely. Not this year though, bring some cash money and get ready to sample gyros, dolmathes, spanakopita, baklava and much more. Further details over on ABC4.
SLC Veg Fest – it’s on
Also back this September, Utah’s biggest meat free celebration. 2019 saw 6,000+ attendees and given SLC’s ever increasing love of the plant-based expect to see that exceeded on the 11th at Library Square. More info.
Park City Food and Wine Festival – it’s on
The multi-day wine celebration heads back to Park City for 2021, and according to organizers, events such as the Grand Tasting are already close to sell out. You can check out a full itinerary for the Fall food and wine event here.
Living Traditions – it’s back with changes
I’ve been a fan of this multi-cultural weekend bash ever since I moved to Utah some two decades ago; I’m not gonna lie, for me, it was all about sampling a variety of cuisines from around the world. I learn through my belly you see. 2021 will see the event come back in completely new fashion flitting between a variety locations, May through June, one day only at each.
Locations span the likes of Liberty Park and the International Peace Gardens and yes, yes there will be food, Basque through Bolivian. Read more here.
Eat Drink SLC – cancelled, but wait…
Updated May 19th: News just in from the organizers on their plans for 2021. In effect there will be a series of small events through the year culminating in a trio of Petite EDLSC events in September – shrunk down versions of the regular tasting event – limited to 100 guests. See the full press release on our sister site Utah Now.
These days EDSLC is inarguably the biggest and best food event in Utah. Last year didn’t happen though, and as we wrote here, this year won’t go ahead for the most part either. Eat Drink SLC have promised a “slightly downsized” something later in the year though, but no details as to what that might be at the time of writing. Watch this space though.
Tastemakers – cancelled it seems
Sadly, it looks like this event might yet again be taking a furlough year. The traditionally yearly event took 2020 off from their new home of The Gateway; and with organizers SL Mag tragically losing the force of nature that was Mary Malouf – you’d expect they’re taking a year to reset and reconfigure.
Savor The Summit – cancelled
Officially canned for 2021 as of March this year, read more here. Instead, we might see a Savor The Summit promo campaign of sorts, for restaurants to showcase the best of their summer menus and outdoor dining options, and
Oktoberfest @ Snowbird – it’s back
Update May 22nd: A couple of readers have contacted us to say Snowbird have indeed confirmed the 2021 knees up. Utah’s biggest Oktoberfest comes back on August 14th and runs every week until October 17th. Here’s the full details.
This one is currently TBA but we’ve got our fingers crossed that the teutonic delights of the Bird’s biggest yearly bash will make a sudsy 2021 return.
SLC Taco Fest – no word yet
This one was starting to build some buzz before 2020 upended life as we knew it. Event organizers confirmed the event was off as of June 2020, writing at the time of a 2021 bounce back. That said the slctacofest.com domain name has now expired which doesn’t point to terribly good things.
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Hi, I’m Stuart, nice to meet you! I’m the founder, writer and wrangler at Gastronomic SLC and The Utah Review; I’m also a former restaurant critic of more than five years, working for the Salt Lake Tribune. I’ve worked extensively with other local publications from Utah Stories through to Salt Lake Magazine and Visit Salt Lake. I’m a multiple-award winning journalist and have covered the Utah dining scene for more than a decade. I’m largely fueled by a critical obsession with rice, alliteration and the use of too many big words I don’t understand. What they’re saying about me: “Not inaccurate”, “I thought he was older”, “I don’t share his feelings”.
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