Late February is the new April is the new October.
That’s a twisted way to say that there’s a lot of stuff going on this weekend, thanks in no small part to the looming South by Southwest madness that will descend upon the city in a few weeks.
Organizers try to avoid booking events on already busy weekends, and in the months of March, April and October, that means cramming lots of festivals and other activities into precious few weekends that don’t conflict with other big events, such as SXSW, ACL and Longhorn football games.
This weekend, there are no fewer than four food competitions taking place.
Farmhouse Delivery Fais Do-Do & Gumbo Cook Off: Saturday from 1 to 5 p.m. at Rain Lily Farm, 914 Shady Lane, featuring gumbo, live music and drinks. (Tickets, benefiting Urban Roots, cost $25 at community.farmhousedelivery.com.)
Spicewood Vineyards Pair It with Claret Chili Cook Off: Saturday from 1 to 6 p.m. at Spicewood Vineyards, 1419 Kromer Lane in Spicewood, with a chili cook-off, live music and wine. (Tickets, $20, at spicewoodvineyards.com.)
Austin Lamb Jam: Sunday from 3 to 6 p.m. at Barr Mansion, 10463 Sprinkle Road, featuring chefs from across Texas cooking lamb dishes. (Tickets, $60, at americanlamb.com.)
That Takes the Cake Sugar Arts Show: One of the country’s largest cake competitions and sugar art shows. Saturday and Sunday at the Round Rock Sports Center. (Tickets, $10, at thattakesthecake.org.)
There’s also the Austin Oyster Festival, which is taking place from noon to 6 p.m. Saturday, but I don’t think there’s a competition element to that one.
Months ago, I’d already signed up to judge two of them (the Spicewood Vineyards chili cook-off, which I’ve judged every year but two, and the Lamb Jam), and I hated having to say no to That Takes the Cake, because that’s a really high-caliber baking competition.
Are you gearing up for a weekend full of eating? Which food events did I leave off this list?