Top 5 Houston Food Festivals

Dancers at the 2009 Turkish Festival
Dancers at the 2009 Turkish Festival
Photo by kinjotx

Houston may not put on festivals on the scale of Taste of Chicago or even Taste of Buffalo (no, seriously; it's the nation's second largest food festival), but the festivals that we do put on each year offer some fine and fantastic foods. And with fall upon us, several of the best festivals this year are coming right up. Lucky you.

Here are our five favorite festivals for getting our grub on (even if they're not specifically geared toward food). If we missed your favorite, let us know in the comments section below.

5. Turkish Festival, October 16 and 17

This year marks the 20th annual Turkish Festival, held this year in Jones Plaza. Not only is the food offered delicious -- from doner kebab to baklava -- two of our favorite restaurants provide that deliciousness to the masses: Turquoise Grille and Cafe Pita +. Turkish coffee is also available, all the better to get highly caffeinated so you can keep up with the blindingly fast Whirling Dervishes.

4. Festa Italiana, October 15 to 17

What's not to love about a festival that offers a grape-stomping contest and a pasta-eating contest? Indulge your inner Lucy at the 32nd annual Festa Italiana this year (and get in free before 4 p.m. on Friday, October 15, early birds) while enjoying a bounty of freshly made Italian food on the campus of St. Thomas University. Wash all that Faccia de Vecchia and Sfingi down with some Italian wine or beer -- your call, they've got plenty of both.

Souvlaki at the Greek Festival
Souvlaki at the Greek Festival
Photo by photine

3. Greek Festival, October 7 to 10

Easily one of Houston's most enduringly popular festivals, the Greek Festival is celebrating its 46th year this weekend. Held fittingly at the beautiful Annunciation Greek Orthodox Cathedral, the festival draws more than 30,000 visitors each year, most of whom are there for the food. And this isn't any old Greek food; these are recipes passed down through generations and prepared by the cathedral's parishioners themselves. Looking to take a break from all the pastitsio and tiropita? We recommend the wonderful and informative cathedral tours that take place nearly ever hour.

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