By now, you’ve probably picked up on the fact that Pittsburgh loves hosting fun food-themed festivals. Whether it’s ribs, pickles, pierogis, or any other type of cuisine, you can count on Pittsburgh to celebrate it! One unique food festival is right around the corner, and is going to be better than EVER….and that event is LAMB FEST! The Western Pennsylvania Lamb Fest is celebrating its fifth year on Sunday, October 23 at SouthSide Works. With a stellar line-up of 11 chef teams, you’re sure to get your lamb fix with some of the best creations in the region!
Competing for the best dish, each team of chefs will prepare their take on local Pennsylvania lamb. One of the coolest parts of this event is that not only the lamb is locally sourced from Pure Bred by Elysian Fields, but all other ingredients are also locally sourced thanks to a partnership with Farm to Table Buy Local. Who doesn’t love a local food festival with local chefs using all local ingredients?!
Some of the biggest names in the Pittsburgh culinary scene are participating in this ultimate lamb showdown! From classic spots like Alla Famiglia and Nemacolin to newer names like Parlor Dim Sum and Siempre Algo, there will be no shortage of unique, flavorful dishes. This year will truly be bigger and better than ever with some great additions including, Chef Jackie Page’s team as the first ever all-Black chef team and a first-ever food truck chef team! Here’s a full list of the teams and where the chefs are currently creating dishes:
- Chef Chris Bonfili (Bonfire) and Chef Cory Hughes (Fig & Ash)
- Chef Roger Li (Parlor Dim Sum, Nanban, and Allegheny Wine Mixer) and Chef Julio Peraza (Torogoz)
- Chef Jackie Page, Chef Dan McKenzie, Pastry Chef Augusta Williams
- Chef Fiore Moletz (Burghers), Chef Rich Burns, and Michelle Moletz (Della Terra)
- Chef Chris O’Brien (Hyehold), Chef Gary Klinefelter (Alla Famiglia), Chef Brian Hammond (Siempre Algo)
- Chef Luke Cypher (Blue Sparrow Food Truck and Commonplace Coffee)
- Chef Kristin Butterworth and Team Nemacolin
- Chef Isaac DeBoer and the deadfish team, and Don Mahaney (Scratch & Co.)
- Chef Jen Urich and the Farmer x Baker team
- Chef Cody Maze and Ariel Alexander (Stunt Pig), Chef Jacqueline Wardel (The Speckled Egg)
- Chef Curtis Gamble (Station) and Chef Joey Hilty (The Vandal)
If this lineup isn’t enough to convince you to purchase tickets for Lamb Fest, allow us to continue sharing all Lamb Fest has to offer this year! From 1-5:30 pm, you’ll not only get to stroll down 27th and Sidney Street watching the chefs prepare their creations, but you’ll also be able to taste samples of each dish, enjoy throwback tunes courtesy of local artist DJ Selecta, vote for the best dish, and sip on specialty cocktails! The specialty cocktails will feature Bacardi Products and will be shaken and stirred by another local favorite, Sarah Shaffer from the fabulous Lawrenceville cocktail bar, Tina’s. If cocktails aren’t your jam, no worries! Thanks to Stella Artois and Goose Island, brews will be flowing as well.
Other sponsors of this year’s Lamb Fest include the well-known Sewickley and Mt. Lebanon bakery, Mediterra, which will be providing their bread and other ingredients, and Liokareas Olive Oil which will provide ingredients and an olive oil tasting! With these local household brands and the talent of these chefs, the dishes that will be created will truly be world-class.
Last year’s winner of the People’s Choice Award was the Lamb Lettuce Wraps made by Chef Corey Hughes (Fig & Ash) and Chef Chris Bonfili (Bonfire), so be sure to check out their station this year to see what new and exciting creation they will be cheffing up! If you’re loving a certain dish, there will be additional voting tickets available for purchase to benefit non-profit partner, the Children’s Institute.
Tickets for this year’s event are $80 in advance and jump to $95 the day of. With this ticket, you’ll receive all of the above-mentioned chef tastings, music entertainment, etc. If you’re looking for a heightened experience, consider purchasing a VIP ticket for $150! This ticket includes access to a temperature-controlled VIP lounge and second-story patio, an open bar, gift bags, and free garage parking. The lounge and patio are a part of the newest SouthSide Works development in the town square, the Box Office. Be one of the first folks to fully enjoy this new space overlooking this year’s Lamb Fest!Secure your ticket NOW for the 5th annual Western Pennsylvania Lamb Fest by visiting their ticket site. Remember not to wait until the day of because ticket prices go up when you purchase at the event. For updates on Lamb Fest, follow their Instagram page @westernpalambfest. We hope to see you there!This content was provided by a local, independent contributor to Made in PGH, a lifestyle blog.