Take more than 40 Bushwick food and drink vendors, give them a space on a private street off the Morgan Ave L train stop, and mix in 800 hungry people. The 3rd Annual Taste of Bushwick was all that, but more than it was the sum of its parts, it was the perfect start to the summer.
After last year’s success at 24 Rock street, the event returned to the same central location on the block within the Boar’s Head plant, which is normally closed to foot traffic.
Under a white tent strung with twinkling lights, vendors from across Bushwick served up bite-sized eats to an enthusiastic crowd of babies, restaurant industry insiders and everyone in between.
This was the third annual Taste of Bushwick, and ever-growing interest in the event was palpable. When ToB launched in 2014, 150 people attended its inaugural event. This year’s event, which drew about 800 guests, is nearly quadruple that figure.
Obie Award-winning local nonprofit theater company The Bushwick Starr organizes the annual event as a benefit to support its critically acclaimed, community-friendly programming. Sue Kessler, Co-founder and executive director of The Bushwick Starr, told Bushwick Daily that planning for ToB began back in November. Kessler and her team can sleep easy knowing they pulled off another wildly successful evening of bringing Bushwick’s diverse mix of eateries together under one “roof.”
Some of this year’s “tastes” included okonomiyaki from Okiway; “tongue and cheek” sandwiches from Montana’s Trail House, Pakistani-style burgers from BK Jani, tuna tartare tacos from Forrest Point, lamb sliders from Syndicated and duck liver mousse from Faro. Attendees sipped on margaritas from Yours Sincerely, Braven Brewery‘s Pilsner and IPA and kava from Brooklyn Kava, to name a few.
Some attendees struggled to hold multiple bites and drinks in two hands, but the mood was festive and fun.
The Bushwick food scene may be ever-changing (local foodies recently bid fond farewells to Northeast Kingdom, Dear Bushwick, Lorenzo’s and Sweet & Shiny), but it’s never without a dedicated and passionate group of professionals who work hard to bring the public innovative, delicious cuisine—which couldn’t be more perfectly illustrated than it is by Taste of Bushwick.