2015 Audi Feastival

Feastival – A Modern Day Bacchanalia

In Festivals, Philadelphia by Daryl & Mindi Hirsch2 Comments

Feastival is an exciting annual event that benefits the Philadelphia Fringe Festival. This modern day bacchanealia is a feast for all five senses.

2015 Audi Feastival Ben Franklin Bridge Strange Fruit As we entered the 2015 Audi FEASTIVAL, performers from Melbourne-based performance arts company, Strange Fruit,  swayed high in the air as they drifted across the picture portrait image of the Ben Franklin Bridge in the background. Dancers, some topless, coated in gold and silver body paint sashayed through the crowd, stopping to provocatively pose in random intervals. Music from cover band Red 40 and the Last Groovement wafted through the air. And this was all before we even got to the food and drinks.

2015 Audi Feastival

Artists coated in silver paint stopped to pose at FEASTIVAL.


Not a new event, the 2015 FEASTIVAL was the sixth annual benefit to raise money for Philadelphia’s FringeArts festival.  Overseen by local Philadelphia restauranteurs Stephen Starr, Michael Solomonov, and Audrey Claire Taichman, the event celebrates artists of all types – dancers, musicians and chefs. The juxtaposition of the live arts and culinary arts is both jarring and exhilarating.

2015 Audi Feastival Strange Fruit

This Strange Fruit performer seems to be having as much fun as the attendees.


To us, the food is always the main event at FEASTIVAL, and this year was no exception. Over 70 popular restaurants and bars set up tables where they served tastes, bites and sips of their choosing. Dishes ran the gamut from vegan snacks to steak tartare . Perhaps the tides are turning, as we favored many of the meatless dishes this year. Here’s a photo perspective of some of the most memorable dishes we enjoyed:

2015 Audi Feastival 10 Arts - Heirloom Tomatoes with Farinata, Nicoise Olives and Pecorino Cheese.

10 Arts – Heirloom Tomatoes with Farinata, Nicoise Olives and Pecorino Cheese.

2015 Audi Feastival Audrey Claire - Coconut Panna Cotta with Purple Yam.

Audrey Claire – Coconut Panna Cotta with Purple Yam.

2015 Audi Feastival Pickled Eggplant Walnuts Dizengoff

Dizengoff – Pickled Eggplant & Walnuts.

 V Street - Papadum with Cauliflower and Whipped Dal.

V Street – Papadum with Cauliflower and Whipped Dal.

2015 Audi Feastival Figs Foie Gras Bistrot La Minette

Bistrot La Minette – Figs & Foie Gras.

2015 Audi Feastival Grilled Swiss Chard Veal Tartare Lacroix

Lacroix Restaurant – Grilled Swiss Chard and Veal Tartare.

2015 Audi Feastival High Heat Dog Shack Cheddar American Cheese Sauce Chopped Cherry Pepper Shake Shack

Shake Shack – Hot Dog with Shack Cheddar, American Cheese Sauce and Chopped Cherry Pepper (This simple dish was Mindi’s personal favorite.)

Despite the abundance of savory dishes, there were enough desserts to satisfy the pickiest of sweet tooths. We passed on the doughnuts, cupcakes and macarons, but we couldn’t resist the artisan chocolates from local chocolatier Chris Curtin’s Éclat.

Feastival 091715-102 Éclat Chocolate

Aleppo Chili Chocolates as served by Éclat Chocolate

Various crafted cocktails completed the food-packed evening. We especially enjoyed the refreshing, Mojito-like Old Cuban served by The Good King Tavern. All of the usual components were there including slow-age rum, lime, mint and sugar, but the Good King added sparkling wine to the mix.

2015 Audi Feastival Old Cuban Cocktail The Good King Tavern

The Good King Tavern’s Old Cuban Cocktail adds sparkling wine to a mix of slow-aged, rum, lime, mint and sugar.

The party was mostly outside, but there was also a VIP bar inside Le Peg Brasserie. The bar proved to be a welcome respite from the late summer weather, plus it was a thrill to look up at the performance artists flying and gyrating above.

2015 Audi Feastival

Performing artists were suspended from the ceiling, adding a unique element to the event.

As we departed the party after more than our fair share of eating, drinking and mingling, we couldn’t help but turn around for one last glance at the urban spectacle that was FEASTIVAL. With all of the glorious excess, perhaps it’s a good thing that this event occurs only once a year. This interval of time gives us just enough time to recover from the modern-day bacchanalia and anticipate the next one.

Feastival 091715-154

Our last glance of FEASTIVAL captured the event’s funky vibe.

FEASTIVAL is an annual event that directly benefits the Philadelphia’s FringeArts festival. Tickets can be purchased on the official website. We received complimentary tickets to facilitate our coverage of the event.

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  1. It looks like such a fun visit. The silver people almost don’t look real!

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