8.) Cleveland Garlic Festival Review – Cleveland – August 22, 2021

Right in the heart of Shaker Square…

…a festival was cooking up…

…and it celebrated garlic.

Presented by the North Union Farmers Market, the Cleveland Garlic Festival brought in local garlic growers (Big Roy’s/BJ Gourmet)…

…who offered all sorts of garlic varieties (Family Roots Farm/Pirnati Farm)…

…for festival goers to examine up close, ask questions (Hansen’s Greenhouse)…

…and purchase for their home cooking.

Vendors sold various garlic products, including olive oils, seasonings (Olive Tap)…

…sauerkraut (Cleveland Kitchen)…

…and savory granolas (City Hippie Granola)…

…while there were also plenty of garlic-free vendors, offering creative aprons, handmade earrings (EA Coastal Designs/My Turquoise Kitten)…

…beautiful ceramics (Billy Ritter 77)…

…and non-garlicky snack foods like shaved ice and popcorn (Kernals by Chrissie).

In-between the shopping and snacking, guests could get distracted with some glass blowing (North Coast Novelties)…

…rocking music (The Evil Ways Band)…

…some free hydration, thanks to the free water bottle and filling station from Cleveland Water

…and a children’s area…

…where children could climb…

…get their face painted…

…request a balloon animal (Flower Entertainment)…

…and get their own garlic to plant at home.

But the main attraction, which was hosted by the CLE Foodcast‘s Lisa Sands…

…was definitely the Top Chef Grill-Off…

…where festival goers could line up…

…and sample each competing dish…

for free!

This only inspired me to seek out other garlic-rich foods among the food vendors, including garlic sausages and brats (Bluebird Meadows Farm)…

…garlic shrimp (Zanzibar)…

…garlic-topped fries (La Campagna)…

…and more fries with an incredible garlic aioli (Cafe Avalaun), which I ended up getting…

…only to wash it down with a garlic popsicle that even my son enjoyed (Pop Culture CLE).

And while we did miss out on the garlic sugar cookies sold by The 3 Aprons

…we had a wonderfully stinky time.