Back in early October we headed to Takko Town for their annual Beef and Garlic Festival. We hadn't been to this festival yet and it would be our last chance before moving later in 2015. Think of Takko Town as the Gilroy of Japan or at least the Tohoku region. Since I don't eat meat I didn't partake in the main event, but it was still fun to walk around and see the local goods and other festival foods available. We went with a larger group of people which was nice because then Ryan wasn't the only one eating beef.
The first thing we did was take our beef ticket to the counter to pick up the items for cooking. Below you can see everything that was given per ticket. I didn't have to pay for a ticket to the festival but if you wanted to eat the beef, you had to buy a ticket. I believe it was about $20. The hard part was finding an open grill! This festival was so busy and real estate was limited.
Each person got beef, garlic, sauce, veggies, and wet-wipes. The grills were already going and had lard on them for cooking grease. I ended up eating some plain veggies before everyone cooked theirs.
Our group used this end of one of the tables. You can see what it looked like as everyone was getting started.
Here is Ryan peeling his garlic. Then it was just cooked on the grill with the veggies.
Everyone started grilling.
Eventually everyone had the grill filled with beef and veggies.
Once everything was cooked everyone enjoyed their delicious beef and garlic. I don't have a picture of it, but I did enjoy some other foods. I even had grilled tofu on a stick!
Afterwards we headed to see the entertainment. Miss Gilroy was there and performed a ballet dance to "Let It Go". She's the girl in the white outfit.
There was also a garlic spitting contest. I know, sounds strange! Contestants were given a piece of garlic and they stood on the stage and spit it out into the grass. There was a line they had to pass with their "spit" and there were circles too. If it landed in the circle the person got a prize, like from Sports Authority or other local businesses. If it didn't land in the circle the person got a bag of garlic flavored potato chips.
Definitely glad we did this once. It was neat to see the local tradition and get some garlic to bring home. We have tons still!
QUESTIONS: Have you ever been to a garlic festival? Have you ever visited Gilroy, CA? Does your town has a famous food?