Food festival season is starting to get ramped up as the summer slowly comes to an end. On of the first festivals is the 7th annual Rockin’ Taco Street Fest on Saturday September 15th in downtown Chandler.
This years festival hosts 20 restaurants and food vendors making more tacos than one can eat. Restaurants such as Las Palmas, Taco Guild and Nando’s Mexican Cafe are just a few restaurants breaking out the recipe book to create unique tacos. Specialty Poke tacos, cactus and Korean chicken tacos are a few of the non-traditional tacos being served up at the family friendly event.
More than just tacos
You can’t eat tacos for all 9 hours of the festival so entertainment from Santana cover band Evil Waze will take the stage. Metalachi, the world’s first and only mariachi heavy metal band will headline the festival.
A custom low-rider car show with In the Streets magazine will show off over 60 cars, bikes and trucks. Lucha libre wrestling and food eating contest will be going on throughout the day.
Get your tickets here
General admission tickets on-line are $10, $15 at the door with kids 12 and under free. The 21 years old + VIP tickets are $100 and available on-line only. VIP ticket holders get a private area, 6 alcoholic beverage tickets, catered food and shaded area.
The Tequila Tavern tickets are $30 on-line get you 10 tequila samples and unlimited chips and salsa.
A portion of the proceeds from the festival will be donated to the Downtown Chandler Community Partnership. The non-profit DCCP mission is to use leadership and resources to promote the downtown Chandler area.
Chef Michael O’Dowd is making his way back to the valley’s restaurant scene running the kitchen of restaurateur Julian Wright’s(Pedal Haus Brewery and others) new restaurant Las Palmas Cantina in downtown Chandler. When the restaurant opens in May it will serve coastal cuisine with Yucatan inspiration that Wright found when traveling to Playa del Carmen and Tulum areas of Mexico.
O’Dowd returns to the valley after most recently working in Sedona at L’Auberge de Sedona as executive chef. When in Phoenix O’Dowd scored the coveted AAA Five Diamond and Forbes Five Star Award while executive chef at Kai at the Sheraton Wild Horse Pass Resort.
“I’m looking forward to being a part of downtown Chandler and to bringing one of my favorite regions of the world to this community,” said Wright. “ I love that Chandler is still very independent. Everyone is still very much your neighbor.”
Las Palmas Cantina menus
O’Dowd’s menu will highlight the “sand to table” concept with seafood from local fish monger Chula Seafood along with “high country” ingredients. Fish available will include Pompano, Triggerfish, Snapper and more for ceviche and other dishes.
Sweet & spice are tastes you’ll find at Las Palmas Cantina with your shared plates and lighter dishes that will include a jerk chicken Shaken Greens and Cochinta Pibil.
“I haven’t really seen anyone in Arizona exploring this type of cuisine or region,” said O’Dowd. “Being able to learn about the culture and history of the Mayans and create a way to pay homage to the past while creating new ideas, dishes and flavors is what I thrive on.”
Just in time for summer, Las Palmas Cantina’s beverage program will offer refreshing tropical specialty cocktails and Mexican inspired craft beers brewed exclusively for Las Palmas. A selection of tequilas, mezcals and agua frescas will be offered and used as ingredients in the cocktail program.
Need a job
The 5,000 square foot restaurant is currently hiring and those interested can apply in person at the restaurant at 95 W. Boston in downtown Chandler on online at their website.