The Top Tastes of Texas

We partnered with a host of talented bloggers from around the web to tell the stories behind this year’s festival. From profiles and interviews to recipes and on-site coverage, get the inside scoop on all things AFWF! We’re remembering the weekend with a few mouth-watering recaps from A Taste of Koko‘s Jane Ko – take a look and relive AFWF 2014! Check out her favorite tastes of Texas below…

Austin FOOD & WINE Festival kicked off with a Taste of Texas – a bash at Republic Square Park featuring an all-star lineup of top chefs from the Texas culinary scene. It was a night of mingling with chefs, tasting the best cuisine in Texas, and dancing to a live performance by Escort – the award-winning “disco orchestra.”

Alexis Chong of Sway presented twice cooked crispy pork with dehydrated gulf shrimp, toasted pecans, shallots, coconut and jasmine rice powder.

The soy-marinated egg topped with shiitake mushrooms and bacon from Tatsu Aikawa of Ramen Tatsu-ya was a crowd favorite.

Most creative goes to Diego Galicia and Rico Torres of Mixtli. The delicate blue corn macarons with a Mexican ricotta filling and topped with dehydrated serrano pepper powder and micro cilantro were addicting. I definitely stopped by the tent several times throughout the night.

Crispy lamb tongue from Lucy’s Fried Chicken.

Justin Yu of Oxheart featured a veggie fritter with mixed kale and root vegetables nestled in a table of root vegetables.

Unsurprisingly, Uchi had the longest line at Taste of Texas. I met up with Philip Speer and tasted the two featured desserts of the night: strawberry with lime and coriander and brioche with uzi and cucumber.

The night ended with a sweet tooth’s dream come true at Sips & Sweets at Mellow Johnny’s. Chocolate sundaes from Ghirardelli Chocolate, delectable truffles and tart tiny key lime pies by Erica Waksmunski of Congress Austin, macarons, salted caramel profiteroles and chocolate delice cups by Janina O’Leary of La V, and chocolate brownie bars and trifles from Angel Begaye of Trace.