Along with cooler weather, fall ushers in a smorgasbord of food festivals. Local barbecue restaurants and competitive ‘cue cooks descend on Atlantic Station for the fifth annual Atlanta Bar-B-Q Festival (Sept. 13-14, $6-$10, www.atlbbqfest.com). New this year is a BBQ & Bourbon Experience for $85. Marietta also hosts a pig-centric party with the Whole Hawg Happenin’ BBQ and Music Fest (Sept. 29, free, www.wholehawgbbqfest.com), a family-friendly event with food demonstrations and a beer garden.
For those more partial to baklava, pastitsio and souvlaki, the Atlanta Greek Festival (Oct. 3-6, $5, www.atlantagreekfestival.org) has you covered. The Annunciation Cathedral and the Atlanta Greek community host the event, which includes live music, dance performances and food vendors, at the Greek Orthodox Cathedral.
Beer is food, right? Tickets go on sale at noon Sept. 16 for the Decatur Craft Beer Festival (Oct. 19, $40, www.decaturbeerfestival.com), which sells out every year. More than 100 beers will be available for sample on the Decatur Square. There will be live music and food vendors, too.
Variety is the spice of life at Taste of Atlanta (Oct. 25-27, $30-$40, $75-$85 VIP, www.tasteofatlanta.com). More than 90 restaurants, including Chai Pani, Bhojanic and Lure, will serve samples from their menu along Technology Square in Midtown. Live music, kids’ activities and vendors round out the event.
As fall rounds the bend toward winter, there’s nothing like chili to heat up a frosty day. Early birds can get their fill of the stuff when more than 100 individuals and restaurants dish it up and vie for prizes at Chomp and Stomp (Nov. 2, free, www.chompandstomp.com) in Cabbagetown Park. Festivities include three stages of bluegrass music, kids’ activities and a 5K run.
It’s not a festival per se, but Midtown Restaurant Week (Sept. 7-15, http://mrwatlanta.com) offers discounted three-course menus for one week only at nearly 50 restaurants. Be sure to make reservations early, because many of the popular restaurants book up quickly.
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