Taste of Austin is held every year in January to showcase Austin’s restaurants and give diners a chance to perhaps try something new. I actually kind of like the challenge of negotiating the crowds and I have my own system for making the most of these foodie events.
Rule # 1- Always bring a swag bag. They usually hand ones out there but that is just another line to stand in. Come prepared.
Rule # 2- First priority is finding a table. The extra $5 is well worth it to get reserved seating and your table will be home base for this foodie mission. You want a table near an entrance for quickly ducking in and out of the crowds.
Rule # 3- Get a map. Most years they have them but they are not always easy to find. Ask for one as you come in, ususally the volunteers know where to get one from.
Rule # 4- Plan your attack from home base. Note which restaurants you really want to try. The more popular restaurants usually have long lines but those ebb and flow, so if the line is really long, do a sweep back later.
Rule # 5- There is no rule saying that you have to start at table one and follow the crowd in clockwise order between booths. In fact, that is a great way to spend your time in lines instead of sampling.
Rule # 6- Try to load up as much as possible and carry it back to the table where you can relax and sample at a more leisurely pace.
Rule #7- The good booths will run out of food, probably about an hour before the end of the event, so get a good nosh to nibble on and brave the line if you have to.
Rule #8- Have a blast!!! Toss all rules out the window as needed to make sure you enjoy hanging out with a few thousand of your fellow foodies.