1. MeatopiaLondon, UK

When: August 31 to September 2, 2018

Carnivores can gorge themselves on slabs of fire-cooked meat of every description, ranging from hunks of beef to succulent goat, at this festival at the Tobacco Dock in London’s East End. As many as 27 chefs a day, including celebrities like Yotam Ottolenghi, will be on hand serving meaty creations, and patrons can also enjoy a craft beer hall, DJs and street theatre performances. Ticket prices range from around £23 for Friday night to £93 for a full-day Saturday “bundle” pass.


2. Prince Edward Island Shellfish Festival, Charlottetown

When: September 13 to 16, 2018

Part of the month-long Fall Flavours Festival, the P.E.I. Shellfish Festival is four days of shucking, chowder slurping and legendary East Coast hospitality. Hosted by celebrity chef Lynn Crawford, the festival’s mainstage will feature a variety of cooking demos and competitions, including the Garland Canada International Chef Challenge, in which 12 Canadian chefs  will vie for a $10,000 prize. 


3. Eat Local Aruba Restaurant Month, Aruba

When: October 1 to 31, 2018

For the entire month of October in Aruba, food takes centre stage. More than 60 local restaurants, mostly in the Noord and Oranjestad areas, offer two-course lunches for US$15 and three-course dinners for US$30 or US$40. In addition to the deals, restaurants offer local dishes—like Aruban-style fish with creole sauce or creamy fish soup with pica di papaya—to ensure visitors get an authentic taste for the island’s cuisine.


4. Kitchener-Waterloo Oktoberfest, Ont. 

When: October 5 to 13, 2018

Celebrating its 50th year, this is one of the largest Oktoberfests outside of Germany, and it’s full of traditional Bavarian music, German food and plenty of beer. Visit one of the 15 “Festhallens” (beer halls), take in the Thanksgiving Day parade or enjoy the many scheduled family activities. Prices vary—book tickets in advance.


5. New York City Wine & Food Festival, New York

When: October 11 to 14, 2018

This big NYC fest features a number of celebrity chefs, with more than 70 events taking place around the city. The main action is down at Piers 92/94, where onlookers can watch cooking demos and attend events like a farmers’ market brunch, while eating and drinking to their hearts’ content. Ticket prices vary by event.



[This story appears in the August 2017 issue of WestJet Magazine and has since been updated.]