TR Robertson — The streets of Downtown Historic Vista were once again the scene of hundreds of people enjoying the sights, sounds and tastes of an annual event that grows each year, The Taste of Vista. Twenty-one eateries, 15 wineries/breweries and entertainment provided an enjoyable late afternoon experience for over 750 participants in this annual event. Smells filled that air as a variety of restaurants set-up tents to give the patrons a small sampling of food offered at their restaurant. Along with this, patrons took their taste cups and headed for the wineries and breweries that were set-up as Sip Stops in businesses throughout the downtown area.
The restaurants provided a variety of tastes as each person, who had paid to take part in The Taste of Vista, approached those serving the food to have their card marked and receive their food sample. Our first stop was at Partake Gastropub serving Duck Bahn Mi, a tasty way to begin our food adventure. Next we were off to US Foods, a food supplier for a number of the restaurants, who was serving Salmon Poke and Sautéed Pork Belly. Close by was Sunrise Café, serving warm waffles covered with strawberries and cream. In front of their restaurant, When Pigs Fly, last year’s Golden Fork Award winner, dished out berry cobbler, a new dessert just added to their menu.
On and on we wandered, tasting until we could eat no more. We tried a mini-chicken pot pie from the Vista Village Pub, marinara penne pasta and cream puffs from Ciao, our choice of chicken or pork street tacos from Mr. Taco, picked up a card for a free appetizer from Wildwood, tried a great tasting brownie from Souplantation – they also had won ton happiness salad, and we were just getting started. Frazier Farms had a number of selections to choose from as they offered lemon bars, vegan brownie cookies, coconut lime ceviche and organic charcoal cleanser.
As we headed down Main Street, we walked past the Greg Douglas Band, playing music from the 60’s and 70’s. Just across from them, Leucadia Pizzeria Shadowridge served up Vodka Penne. Farm to Fresh set up a booth to pass out information about their program of getting fresh food delivered to your home. Across from them Pyke’s Pantry, currently in San Marcos but soon to locate in Downtown Vista, offered a selection of products their store sells. In Vista they will have a small kitchen serving up dishes like lavender lamb burgers. I was told they will offer healthy food with a twist.
We tried the Banana Pudding from Flying Pig, the carnitas from Mrs. Taco (they also had carne asada), and Bread Pudding with Butterrum sauce from Vista Way Café. I’m sure there were some spots we missed, but what we had was quickly filling us up. Also involved was Dog Haus Biergarten, Connie’s Café, Mother’s Provisions, and Queen of Cakes.
We decided to stop in several of the Sip Stops along the way checking out Mother Earth Brewing at Twice on Main Street and a new brewery, Eppig Brewery, now located in North Park, who will soon be moving to Vista’s Business Park, close to the Target Store. They hope to open in October. Eppig was hosted by Children’s Paradise. The other breweries, wineries and distilleries taking part in this event included 117 West Spirits, Backstreet Brewery, Battle Mage Brewing, Belching Beaver Brewery, Booze Brothers Brewing, Brooking Vineyards, Ebullition Brew Works, Guadalupe Brewery, Henebery Spirits, Partake Gastropub, Prohibition Brewing, Twisted Horn Mead & Cider and Wave Length Brewing.
Toward the end of Main Street, Five Star Premiere Events, the company in its 4th year of putting on the Taste of Vista, had set-up a 6 passenger cart to take folks to the Cinepolis plaza area where patrons could sample food from Lamppost Pizza, Little Cakes Cupcakes, Raising Cane’s, Cold Stone Creamery and Swami’s. Of course we had to try some of the food offered here. Raising Cane’s also had some swag to pass out.
Each participant in the Taste of Vista was given a plastic gold coin to use to vote for their favorite restaurant at this year’s event. The restaurant receiving the most coins is awarded the Golden Fork Award. The 2019 winner of the Golden Fork is the Sunrise Café and their warm waffle topped with strawberries and cream. The Sunrise Café is a favorite breakfast spot in Vista and is located at 1250 South Santa Fe Drive.
The Taste of Vista has become a great way for many of the eateries and breweries/wineries, located throughout Vista, to remind people of the great food and drink selections they offer as well as a chance to wander the streets of Downtown Vista socializing, visiting other businesses and taking in the sights of a vibrant North County City. When this event comes around next year, join in the fun and enjoy the food and drink.