Hartford Taste Festival celebrates the cuisine of local restaurants

Participating restaurants and vendors will offer three to five “taste portions” of signature menu items, and the variety of cuisines will include barbecue, pizza, sushi, vegan dishes, seafood, juices, desserts and the likes of Jamaica, Peru, Guatemala, Mexico and Haiti.

Eggplant rollatini at Fornarelli in Colchester

Winter Caplanson / CT Food & Farm

Admission to the event is free, but menu items will cost between $1 and $5, with official food tokens used to purchase food and drink throughout the festival.

The list includes Perfect PoundCakes, Bert’s Pizzeria, Wood-n-Tap, Bear’s Smokehouse, Ital Juicery, La Flor Mix Kitchen, Cora Cora, Fornarelli’s, Huasteca Restaurant, Frida Mexican Cuisine, Jamaican Jerk Shack, Juiced Up Juice Bar, The Greenway Market , Ranch House Pizza, Terraza Latina Restaurant, No Pork On Dis Fork, More Than Just Lobster 2, The Corner Cafe, Poke Sushi, JAR Bar & Restaurant, Four Dads Pub, Republic, The Place 2 Be, Aurora’s, Disheveled Diva, Fire N’ Spice, Hartford Flavor Company and NoRA Cupcake Co.

Avon's Kate Pasternak pours Oktoberfest beer from Bloomfield's Thomas Hooker Brewery during the first Hoptoberfest at Warsaw Park in Ansonia.

Avon’s Kate Pasternak pours Oktoberfest beer from Bloomfield’s Thomas Hooker Brewery during the first Hoptoberfest at Warsaw Park in Ansonia.

Brian A. Pounds/File Photo

The Thomas Hooker Brewery will serve beer and liquor, and Dunkin’ is setting up a Dunkin’ Brew Bar, featuring samples of products like cold brew with sweet cold foam. Other amenities include a cigar bar from Cromwell’s Up in Smoke, free Wi-Fi, and a charging station courtesy of Comcast. Stanley Black & Decker will also be offering free tours of its Manufactory 4.0 space at Constitution Plaza, an innovative manufacturing hub.

Entertainment includes a full lineup of musical acts each day, on two stages, and live art demonstrations, including a mural by Tao Labossiere. Children’s activities include arts and crafts.

A cooking contest, sponsored by Whole Foods, is scheduled for Saturday with entrants Reverend Lyndell Brown, CEO of The 224 Ecospace; Chion Wolf of WNPR and Connecticut Public Radio and Jim Kane, vice president, retail internal controls analyst at Webster Bank.

Tallarin saltado of Cora Cora in West Hartford, nominated for a James Beard Foundation Award in the Outstanding Restaurant category.

Tallarin saltado of Cora Cora in West Hartford, nominated for a James Beard Foundation Award in the Outstanding Restaurant category.

Courtesy of Cora Cora

The Hartford Taste Festival, which runs daily from 11 a.m. to 10 p.m., is presented by The Hartford in partnership with the Hartford Chamber of Commerce. Proceeds from the event will be donated to Connecticut Foodshare.

Gladys T. Hensley