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2024 Tampa Bay Food & Wine Festival

I had an amazing time at the 2024 Tampa Bay Wine and Food Festival! Here's what I spent, what we packed to go and of course the food we devoured! 

I love food festivals so here's the list of everything I packed to be prepared: 

  • Sunscreen, toiletries/cleaning wipes and bug repellant wipes
  • Re-usable water bottle 
  • Camping chair - these are a MUST for food events, so you have seating where you want to sit, like in the shade and with a great view of the venue  
  • Allergy stickers/tags to alert vendors so we didn't eat shellfish or nuts on accident

Getting a good seat and the lay of the land is key for a food event. When we arrived we did a quick loop to review vendors and find the restrooms, then parked our camping chairs. We wanted nice seats in the shade near the celebrity food demonstrations, so we got those before getting food. 


ProTip: I love to try to arrive early for events but NOT when they are outside in the sun. Arriving too early ensures you sit and wait in line, in the sun, before they open the doors. This can completely drain you even before you get to enjoy the event. We arrived on time, at ~1:10pm for a 1PM to 5PM event. 

Overall Review

Overall, this was a great food festival. I feel it was well planned and there was a ton of food and drink options. There was about a 50/50 split between food and drink vendors. 

Most food samples were a good size and hearty, mostly meat options, so not many vegetarian options. I always believe allergen could be labeled better, there were many shellfish and nut-ingredient options that I couldn't have. 

My biggest shout out to the event planners is the abundance of FREE water!! Mountain Valley Spring Water sponsored the event and kept everyone well hydrated. I cannot explain how big of a deal easy access to free water is at a hot and boozy food festival in the Florida sun. This really shows the event planners consideration for the event goers. I've been to many food festivals that don't do this and it's a mess and honestly dangerous. 

Event Pricing

We spent $80 for our tickets instead of $130 because I got them during their public pre-sale. I think $80 was an amazing price for the huge variety of, basically all-you-can-eat, food and drinks at the festival. We spent $15 to park in the Poe Parking Garage next door to the event. 

I found out about the pre-sale because, last year I subscribed to their email updates! This will keep you in the loop for when tickets go on sale, event updates and things you need to know for the day of the event! Subscribing to event updates/newsletters is my secret to staying in the loop, especially to save money with pre-sales! 

Thanks for reading! and I hope you check out the food festival next year! I'll definitely be back! Keep reading for some photos of the amazing food that we had!  

Happy Travels! - XOXO Lydia 

Sweet Potatoe Tacos

Fresh Hummus & Meatballs

Vegetable Spring Rolls

Fried Pork Dumplings

Steak with Polenta

Beef Empanadas

Parmesan with Truffle Honey & Truffle Shavings

Ribs with Mac and Cheese

Mojo Fried Chicken Sandwich

Tuna Sushi Bowl

This was one of my favorites! 

Banana Pudding Ice Cream