The weather is slowly and reluctantly warming up as summer approaches, which means that New Bedford’s festival season is nearly upon us. For food lovers, no New Bedford festival is more exciting than the annual Taste of South Coast. Over twenty of the South Coast’s best restaurants and eateries will be gathering on Pier 3 of New Bedford’s historic waterfront to compete for the People’s Choice awards. Sunday, May 19th will mark the 7th annual Taste of South Coast and yet again it promises to be one of the best deals of the year thanks to the incredible quantity and quality of food, as well as the fun that is bound to be had.
Every year this event gathers a great crowd of eager foodies, so be sure to get your tickets in advance. The tasting starts at noon on May 19th and ends at 3:30 p.m., but the music will go on until 5 p.m. This year’s musical performers include “Butch and Dori” and “Johnny Edwards and the Power of Soul.” Butch McCarthy and Dori Legge are a popular local act, which I’m sure many of you have heard perform before. “Johnny Edwards and the Power of Soul” are a New England based band that performs many rhythm and blues favorites such as Hendrix, Clapton, Stevie Ray Vaughn, B.B. King and the Allman Brothers. Every year I find that Taste of South Coast has great music to accompany its incredible food; music that sets a fun, block party type of atmosphere.
As always, the list of culinary delights that will be sampled are varied. This year’s participating restaurants include; Cork Wine & Tapas, Freestones City Grill, Inner Bay Cafe & Grill, Mike’s Restaurant, Morton’s Fork Catering, No Problemo, Olive Garden, Pub 6 at the Sixth Bristol, Ten Cousin’s Brick Oven, Trio Cafe & Lounge, Urban Grille and Ying Dynasty, Celtic Coffee House and Bar, Cotali Mar, Fun in a Bun, Olive Garden, Panera Bread Catering and Texas Roadhouse. For those of you with a sweet tooth there are also many desserts to be had and a few booths you should definitely check out include; Flour Girls Baking Company, Artisan Bake Shop (last year’s 1st place winner for best dessert!), Dorothy Cox’s Chocolates and Pink Box Desserts.
Of course, for many of us who are 21+, no food event is complete without a good beer or wine to wash it down with. New England craft beers will be available for purchase, as well as locally grown and bottled wines. For those of you who don’t drink, there will also be water and soft drinks for sale.
This is the first year that Taste of South Coast will not be taking place at Custom House Square, so be aware of the change in location. The GPS location of Pier 3 is 228 MacArthur Drive. Parking is free in the downtown at meters, at the Whale’s Tooth Parking lot, Elm Street Parking Garage, and the YMCA, with free shuttle service to the Pier.
Taste of South Coast always delivers a great time for the ticket price. Take it from someone who goes every year; you will be stuffed by the time you make a full circuit of the sample tables! Normally, tickets are $15 (plus $1 fee) if bought in advance and $18 for day of the event. For children ages 6-12 tickets are $6 and they are free for children 5 and younger. Tickets can be purchased here: http://www.downtownnb.org/tasteofsouthcoast.html