We're got our food festivals here, sure, and they're usually pretty cool events. I spent last Sunday afternoon very happily and gluttonously stuffing my face with pork and craft cocktails, and there's always the Taste of OC and the various city tasting events. There's Patchwork and Secret Fork, where you go for the people who make the good stuff... but there's nothing in OC like the Los Angeles Food and Wine Festival. It's enormous, and it's this weekend.
It's spread out through the city: there are events in Santa Monica, Beverly Hills, downtown L.A., and Hollywood, so it's important to choose what you want to do and plan for that God-awful Los Angeles traffic. (Hey, L.A.: we thought of sales tax-funded freeway improvements forty years before you did--and it shows!)
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It certainly isn't just restaurants; though there are still tickets left for dinner with Giada De Laurentiis (Thursday at 7), several lunches, and wine-pairing meals, there are also cooking demonstrations, including a class with Laura Werlin, who's probably the foremost American authority on cheese, cooking demos with Andrew Zimmern, Ming Tsai and Voltaggio frères. There are massive grand tastings and and bloody huge river of wine. There's a concert by Third Eye Blind at L.A. Live. The proceeds go to the St. Vincent Meals on Wheels program (which, if you've ever had a distant, home-bound relative, is a godsend).
It's enough to make us feel kind of, well... suburban.
All the information you need, including ticket sales, is available at the event's website.