Food festivals can be overwhelming. With more than 60 vendors (that’s not even counting the “Ice Cream Social” folks), the L.A. Street Food Fest is no exception. To make the most of our money and our sacred stomach space, we’re going by contributor Jason Kessler’s food fest guidelines. His first rule? Identify your targets.
With that in mind, here are six L.A. Street Food Fest bites we think are worth waiting in line for:
WHAT: Porchetta (a savory, fatty and moist Italian roast pork) and salsa verde from Union’s Bruce Kalman.
WHY: This dish perfectly combines flavors from the two regions (Northern Italy and the California coast) that were the inspiration for Kalman’s buzzy new Italian restaurant in Pasadena.
WHAT: Mini truffle burgers from VaKa Burger.
WHY: Recently voted as the best burger in SoCal, we can attest this caramelized onion and provolone-topped slider lives up to the title. Its truck attracts long lines daily for a reason.
WHAT: A chorizo gravy and quail egg-topped biscuit from Picnik’s Eduardo Ruiz.
WHY: You probably skipped breakfast to save space for the big day. Make it up here—given Picnik’s sausage-centric menu, we’re sure Ruiz knows his way around chorizo.
WHAT: Cheesy Ranch “Wachos” (waffle fry nachos) from the Los Lobos Truck.
WHY: Do you really need another reason to eat cheesy fried potatoes in waffle form? Fine. They’ve even been trademarked.
WHAT: Alcoholic oysters by Matthew Biancaniello (representing Cliff’s Edge).
WHY: The mixologist’s signature passion fruit, mezcal and sriracha-infused mollusks are perfect for a post-Wacho—and pre-dessert—palate cleanser.
WHAT: And finally, for dessert: the internet-viral churro ice cream sandwich from Churro Borough.
WHY: We had thought cinnamon-sugar fried dough couldn’t get any better—turns out we just hadn’t stuffed it with panna cotta ice cream. This is easily the buzziest bite at the fest this year, so grab a plate or two to tide you over while waiting in line.
P.S. If you still have room (how?!), don’t fret: there are Korean BBQ brisket tostadas (Formosa Café), ceviche and aguachile (Coni’s Seafood), cheesy mac and ribs (Grilled Cheese Truck), sweet and sour rib-eye beef (Starry Kitchen) and lots, lots more to be had.