Fort Worth Food + Wine Festival sparks return of 4-day foodie party

Fort Worth Food + Wine Festival sparks return of 4-day foodie party

Fort Worth’s tastiest spring frenzy is back for its seventh edition. The 2022 Fort Worth Food and Wine Festival will take place over four days and three nights from March 31 to April 3, featuring the city’s top culinary talent, plus some special guests.

“We are very proud to offer a range of exceptional chef-led concepts and beverage partners to delight nearly 7,000 foodies with their innovative and delicious offerings,” said festival director Julie Eastman.

Hungry festival-goers aren’t sleeping on their chance to dig; From 10 days, all Weekender passes (which allow access to the entire festival) and early entries to all events are sold out. General admission always available.

With six tasting, sip and stroll events, the festival takes place primarily in the heart of the ranch at Clearfork, a tree-shaded outdoor space located at Edwards Ranch along the Trinity River. Tickets range from the $50 Tacos + Tequila night on Thursday, March 31 to the $125 main event, which will feature substantial dishes from more than two dozen Fort Worth-area chefs and restaurateurs, as well as more than 100 wines, beers and spirits.

From Houston to Ho Nai
New this year is a special collaborative dinner featuring award-winning chef James Beard from Houston Chris Berger (newly appeared as a guest judge to Excellent chef), and the Chief of Fort Worth Tuan Pham of the Four Sisters of Fort Worth – A taste of Vietnam. The four-course seated dinner, called “From Houston to Ho Nai,is meant to be an evening of Texas cuisine with Asian influences; it will take place at the Brik Venue on Thursday, March 31. Price of $195 per person includes drink pairings and an autographed copy of Shepherd’s cookbook Cook Like a Local: Flavors That Can Change the Way You Cook and See the World.

The menu will include Cha Lua with green papaya salad paired with Banh Cuon with pork and mushrooms; Cajun-Viet crawfish porridge, crawfish and noodles like crab fried rice with fried egg; and much more. For the full menu and more information, visit location of the event.

One of Houston’s most celebrated chefs, Shepherd won his Beard Award at Underbelly, a restaurant that blends local ingredients with culinary techniques inspired by the city’s diverse immigrant community. Now the owner of four Bayou City restaurants, Shepherd also co-founded the Southern Smoke Foundation, a nonprofit that has provided millions of dollars in emergency relief to hotel workers in crisis.

Here is the rest of the festival program with all the details.

Tacos + Tequila
Thursday, March 31st
Tickets: $75
Heart of the Ranch in Clearfork
Tacos and margaritas are a pairing that never disappoints. There will be 18 chefs and 12 tequila vendors sharing their tastiest creations, from classics to inventive dishes and drinks. Participating restaurants include Del Norte Tacos, Ole Enchiladas, Funkytown Donuts, Fantasma Kitchens (from Chef Lanny Lancarte), Magdalena’s, Los Vaqueros, Paloma Suerte, Toro Toro and many more (list is here).

The main event
friday april 1st
6:30 p.m.-9 p.m.
Tickets: $125
Heart of the Ranch in Clearfork
Arrive hungry for the biggest deal of the festival. There will be over 100 wines, craft beers and spirits to choose from, as well as food from 27 chefs, restaurateurs and artisan producers. Don’t miss the pop-up experience with BBQ expert Matt Pittman from Meat Church BBQ, which will invite top culinary talents to fire up the grill, including Lisa and Tom Perini of the James Beard Award-winning Perini Ranch Steakhouse in Buffalo Gap. Other participating restaurants include 97 West, Bonnell’s, Carpenter’s Cafe, Ellerbe Fine Foods, The Fitzgerald, La Onda, Lonesome Dove and many more (full list is here).

Night bites
friday april 1st
Tickets: $60
whiskey ranch
This balmy evening will take festival-goers to the 112-acre home of TX Whiskey for an after-hours dance party complete with DJ music. There will be 16 chefs serving up both desserts and savory bites and 14 mixologists shaking up TX Whiskey cocktails. Participating restaurants include Branch & Bird, Dusty Biscuit Beignets, Stir Crazy Baked Goods, The Bearded Lady and many more (full list is here).

culinary corral
saturday april 2
Tickets: $85
Heart of the Ranch in Clearfork
Brunch all day with a three-hour celebration of the best of the party with 25 chefs and 35 drink vendors. The Culinary Corral features a tasting tent, beer garden, and live music. Customers can wander, taste, and sip to their heart’s content, as one ticket covers all the food and drink you can (responsibly) consume. Participating restaurants include Boopa’s Bagel Deli, Hurtado Barbecue, Nonna Tata, Rise No. 3, Waters, Wicked Butcher and many more (full list is here).

Burgers, Blues + beers
saturday april 2
6 p.m.-9 p.m.
Tickets: $80
Heart of the Ranch in Clearfork
Burgers are basically a food cluster in Cowtown, and this event showcases some of the best in town. More than a dozen chefs will grill their tastiest burgers, which will be judged by both celebrity judges and festival patrons. Wash them down with craft beer from several area breweries. There will also be live blues music. Participating restaurants include Fred’s Texas Cafe, JD’s Hamburgers, Melt Ice Creams, Pearl Snap Kolaches and many more (full list is here).

Ring of Fire: Next Level BBQ
Sunday April 3
2 p.m.-4 p.m.
Tickets: $90
Heart of the Ranch in Clearfork
Close out the festival at this live-fire event, where 22 pitmasters and chefs will host Fort Worth’s largest barbecue. There will undoubtedly be a lot of barbecue, but also exotic dishes. Wine, beer and spirits will be accompanied by live music. Participating restaurants include Dayne’s Craft Barbecue, Heim BBQ, Smokestack 1948, The Original Black’s Barbecue and many more (full list is here).

Proceeds from the festival benefit the Fort Worth Food + Wine Foundation, which provides grants and scholarships to aspiring culinary students. The Foundation also financially assisted several struggling Fort Worth restaurants during the 2020 closure.

Eric Sandler contributed to this story.