DTLA: LA Weekly’s The Essentials Returns Saturday, February 20




pig's head from Wolfgang Puck Catering

pig’s head from Spago


LA Weekly’s food festival, The Essentials, returns to the California Market Center (Cal Mart) on Saturday, February 20th. General admission tickets are $70 each but if you buy this week, it’s only $45. VIP tickets are $105 and you get a gift bag and one hour early entrance.

Last year I had VIP entrance but the line was pretty nutty to get inside. So by the time I got inside, general admission started and the line grew even longer. Once inside, you still have to go through ID check and then you’re allowed to go upstairs to get all your unlimited bites! Pro tip, get there early to line up no matter what time your entrance is– this is true of any food festival.

Lines can be long for all the popular vendors. Some prefer eating only for those but you might want to split your party up to gather food from shorter lines and meet up to share bites.

Beverly Soon Tofu

Beverly Soon Tofu


Some of my faves last year included bites from Beverly Soon Tofu, Szechaun Impression, El Hurache Azteca and Kogi BBQ. This year I predict the crowds will go nuts for Baroo, Guerrilla Tacos, Animal, Button Mash, Maude, Bestia, Broken Spanish, Cassia, Luv2eat Thai and Trois Mec. But don’t forget to check out Le Comptoir, the Hungry Cat, Coni’ Seafood, Mariscos Jalisco, Little Sister, Union, Wexler’s Deli, Burrito La Palma and a ton more. LA Weekly announced over 50 vendors. Here’s the line up so far:


  • A.O.C.
  • Animal
  • Aqui es Texcoco
  • Baroo
  • Belcampo Meat Co.
  • Bestia
  • Beverly Soon Tofu
  • Bludso’s BBQ
  • Broken Spanish
  • Button Mash
  • Burritos La Palma
  • Cacao Mexicatessen
  • Cassia
  • Chengdu Taste
  • Chichen Itza
  • Coni’ Seafood
  • Connie and Ted’s
  • Corazon y Miel
  • Crossroads
  • Dune
  • El Huarache Azteca
  • Guelaguetza
  • Guerrilla Tacos
  • Guisados
  • ink.
  • Jitlada Southern Thai
  • Jon & Vinny’s
  • Kiriko Sushi
  • Kogi BBQ
  • La Casita Mexicana
  • Le Comptoir
  • Little Sister
  • Lucques
  • Lukshon
  • Luv2eat Thai Bistro
  • Mariscos Jalisco
  • Maude
  • Mélisse
  • Night + Market
  • Osteria Mozza
  • Papilles Bistro
  • Park’s BBQ
  • Philippe the Original
  • Pine & Crane
  • POT
  • Providence
  • Racion
  • RedBird
  • Republique
  • RiceBar
  • Rustic Canyon
  • Sotto
  • Spago
  • Sqirl
  • Szechuan Impression
  • Terrine
  • the hungry cat
  • Trois Mec
  • Union
  • Wexler’s Deli
Szechuan Impression

Szechuan Impression



Check out more pics from last year’s event.

LA Weekly’s The Essentials

  • Saturday, February 20
  • 6-10 PM
  • General admission $70
  • VIP admission $105 (doors open 1 hour early at 5 p.m.)

Buy Tickets

California Market Center

110 East Ninth Street, Los Angeles, CA 90079


© The Minty 2016