NEW ORLEANS (press release) – Modelo Beer’s Top Taco returns for the 5th year on Thursday 27 OctoberAt the beginning of the Halloween celebration.
This year’s all-inclusive taco and tequila show takes place at Lavrinere Park in Metairie, Los Angeles. Only one night event will continue to benefit Please Foundation, a nonprofit that provides mentorship, leadership training, and scholarships to at-risk teens in the area. Event producer Shane Finkelstein is using the shift in dates from spring to fall to continue growing the newly launched and very successful FOOD FIGHT event in May.
“Our fans, sponsors and restaurant partners loved Lafreniere Park and moving into October. The park’s proximity to the city, ample parking and beautiful grounds make it the perfect venue for our event,” Finkelstein said.
Of all the difficulties in producing an event in 2021, the move of Top Taco to Jefferson Parish has allowed event organizers to raise more than $30,000 for the PLEASE Foundation while holding the kind of event that Top Taco fans have come to expect. Finkelstein credits the continued support of Top Taco sponsors and participating restaurants for the ability to host the event in 2021. The hugely popular event debuted on the New Orleans Festival scene in 2017. Since then, the event has raised more than $100,000.00 for non-locals . profit organizations.
“Top Taco is back in Lafreniere Park, but this year we are moving to the waterfront area and the islands surrounding the spacious pond,” Finkelstein said. “Every year, we aim to exceed expectations and this move will allow us to take advantage of existing infrastructure so we can bring back popular entertainment elements we’ve got.”
This year’s event will include three stages of live music, lucha libre, the popular mezcal tent, and Casamigos costume contest, as well as exciting new arts and entertainment.
The big addition to this year’s event will be a barbecue show and island taco competition in the VIP area sponsored by BBQ World Champion James Cruz and directed by famous Mississippi restaurateur Brad Orison. Eight of the city’s best barbecue spots will be fighting for bragging rights and NOLA Boards awards.
“The VIP BBQ competition is big at Top Taco Denver, so why not bring it to New Orleans and show off our amazing barbecue joints in town?” said Finkelstein.
On the main lawn, top taco fans and celebrity judges select the winners of the Top Creative Taco, Top Traditional Taco, Top Creative Tequila Cocktail, and Top Traditional Margarita – and new this year – Top Vegetable Taco.
Restaurants that have already been confirmed include past winners Johnny Sanchez, Velvet Cactus, The Joint, Los Jeeves, Palm & Pine, Southerns, Habaneros and Phillips. Returning spirits include Don Julio, Milagro, Hornitos, Herradura, Patron, Just Tequila, Opium, Corralejo, Who Dat Spirits, Wetlands Sake, and Casamigos.
BBQ competitors include Desi Vegas Smokehouse, City Pork, Smoked, Gonzo’s Smokehouse & BBQ, NOLA Cochon King, and Frey Meat Company.
Festival-goers will also enjoy creative pop-up bar areas and DJ lounges, tequila tastings, live Latin music by Otra and Muevelo, and eye-catching visual elements.
Top Taco 2022 tickets go on sale Tuesday, July 12, with early bird discounts starting at $50. Regular ticket options include $135.00 for VIP, $105.00 for early entry/first tasting, and $85.00 for general admission. Once you enter the festival, all food, drinks, and entertainment are included. Visit www.toptaconola.com for more information.
Lafreniere Park is located at 3000 Downs Boulevard in Metairie, LA, ten minutes from downtown New Orleans, just off the I-10 exit on Veterans Blvd.