Eat | Drink

KAABOO Del Mar wows the Palate

palate kaaboo

Bartender Lorie Black serves a drink at KAABOO Del Mar. 

(Misael Virgen)

Between jumping, fist pumping and booty shaking, KAABOO Del Mar festival goers need drinks to quench slaking thirsts and food for boundless energy.

Luckily for patrons of this year’s event, the festival is providing a world-class array of restaurant quality nibbles, chef appearances, craft beer, wine, cocktails, and non-alcoholic drink options. In other words, if you leave KAABOO hungry or thirsty, you’ve cheated yourself out of a gastronomic extravaganza.

Here is a rundown of food and drink at KAABOO, from Sept. 14-16, that should definitely make your checklist.


The KAABOO Palate program raises the bar this year with an all-star collection of culinary talent, including Michelin-star and James Beard Award winning chefs.


Trois Mec chef Ludo Lefebvre is hosting his second annual 2 Chefs dinner series this fall with some
Trois Mec chef Ludo Lefebvre is hosting his second annual 2 Chefs dinner series this fall with some of the best chefs in the country. LOS ANGELES, CA - SEPTEMBER 12, 2016 - Chef Ludo Lefebvre at Petit Trois Bar a la Carte, September 12, 2016. (Ricardo DeAratanha/Los Angeles Times).
(Ricardo DeAratanha / Los Angeles Times)

In the lineup are famed French chef and restaurateur Ludo Lefebvre; Marc Forgione of Food Network’s Chopped and The Next Iron Chef; James Beard Award winner Michelle Bernstein from Miami; and Jessica Koslow, owner and chef of the Los Angeles eatery Sqirl. Representing San Diego will be Richard Blais, from Bravo’s Top Chef and Juniper & Ivy, and Brian Malarkey from Searsucker and Herb & Wood.

(Picasa / )

For those wanting to dine restaurant-style at the festival, KAABOO elevates the scene with the premium Palate “Countertop Spots” featuring such local restaurants as STK and Mariposa Ice Cream. If you favor staying light on your feet or perusing artwork while you eat, check out sample booths providing a variety of vegetarian, vegan, gluten-free, dairy-free and kosher options from San Diego’s own Board & Brew Specialty Sandwiches, Poseidon Del Mar, Puesto, Searsucker, Sweetfin, Superfood & Company, The Oceanaire Seafood Room and The Baked Bear, along with other purveyors such as barkTHINS, Bling Bling Dumpling, Crab Hut, Dang Brother Pizza, Island Noodles, Nacho Taco, Red O Taste of Mexico, Rita’s Italian Ice, Sambazon, So Rich! Chocolates, Thai One On, The Dirty Cookie, and Wicked Maine Lobster.



Spirits fans will want to shoot selfies and social media photos while sipping cocktails at artisan gin producer Hendrick’s crafty three-story bar and whiskey maker Monkey Shoulder’s Monkey Mixer. The custom Monkey Mixer truck is modeled after a cement mixer, a yellow and black semi with a behemoth silver cocktail shaker, set for action. The truck declares for all spirit lovers, “Play with your whiskey.”

monkey shoulder

The Monkey Shoulder Mixer will be at KAABOO Del Mar.

(Jared Gase)

Along with featured wine partner HARKEN and featured beer partner Sapporo, other renowned names coming to KAABOO include San Diego’s own Ballast Point, Cutwater Spirits and Saint Archer Brewing, along with Charles Smith Wines, Clos du Bois, Cooper & Thief Cellarmasters, Domaine Ste. Michelle, Flor De Caña, Franciscan, Health-Ade Kombucha, High Brew Coffee, Hop Valley Brewing Company, Magic Hat, Mark West Wines, Robert Mondavi Private Selection, Ruffino, San Pellegrino, Spoken Barrel, Tullamore D.E.W. and Wyder’s Cider.


Ludo, Mina, Malarkey and Blais among A-list chefs at KAABOO 2018

Sign up for the Pacific Insider newsletter

PACIFIC magazine delivers the latest restaurant and bar openings, festivals and top concerts, every Tuesday.

You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Pacific San Diego.