Woodlands annual Taste of the Town set for Jan. 17
Local residents and foodies from around the region will descend on The Woodlands next week when the annual Taste of the Town returns to The Woodlands Waterway Marriott.
The Woodlands Area Chamber of Commerce’s 33rd annual event will bring more than 40 local restaurants, bakeries, bars and caterers to an evening of sampling fare from community staples like Kirby’s Prime Steakhouse, Black Walnut Café, Robard’s Steakhouse and the soon-to-be-opened Sorriso Modern Italian Kitchen.
“It’s almost overwhelming how many restaurants are represented and how much food is offered for one low price,” said Lauren Joerg, the chamber’s director of marketing. “You’re bound to leave stuffed and with a list of restaurants to visit.”
Four celebrity judges — Houston Restaurant Weeks founder Cleverly Stone, Hot Line Pepper Products founder Kerry Stessel, Houston Food Finder Editor and Publisher Phaedra Cook and Houston media personality Greg Onofrio — will decide who wins the night’s grand prizes, Best of Taste’s Best Appetizer, Best Entrée and Best Dessert.
But, Joerg said, the people will have a voice, too. For the price of admission, visitors can try unlimited offerings at the event and will be able to vote for the People’s Choice award and an award for Best Decorated Booth.
“It’s a free-range thing,” Joerg said. “We’ll open the doors to the public at 4 p.m. and attendees are welcome to make their rounds sampling from vendor booths until we shut it down at 9 p.m.”
Defending champions for Best Appetizer, Broken Barrel and Best Entrée, Avenida Brazil Churrascaria Steakhouse, are returning to the event this year. Broken Barrell’s teriyaki taco with habanero cream and trinity slaw and Avenida Brazil Churrascaria Steakhouse’s 21-day aged bottom sirloin steak with creamy Parmesan au gratin potatoes and KICPOPS’ Best Dessert, blackberry lavender ice pops, charmed the judges and beat out the competition in 2018.
“We have a good mix of places…from the counter order places in town, to the nicer places,” Jennifer Coyle, the Chamber’s interim director of special events, told The Villager in November. “You might grab a slider at one booth and a filet (mignon) with crab on top at the next booth.”
Taste of the Town has established itself as a tradition in the community in its more than three decades in The Woodlands — each restaurant is required to be a member of the Chamber, whose reach stretches around Montgomery County. The variety, Coyle said in November, is emblematic of the food diversity in the region.
The proceeds from ticket sales go toward Chamber programs and business expansion and retention programs in the township. This year’s event is sponsored by Randall Reed’s Planet Ford and Visit The Woodlands.