Several hundred people gathered at Aldridge Gardens on October 7 for the Taste of Hoover 2021 event, tasting food and drink from 33 Hoover restaurants, catering companies and beverage suppliers.
Tynette Lynch, CEO of Aldridge Gardens and director of tourism and hospitality for the City of Hoover, said she was grateful for a dry night less than 24 hours after torrential rains hit the city.
Hoover City workers helped clean up storm debris in Aldridge and prepare for the annual event, Lynch said.
“We’re just thrilled with the turnout,” Lynch said. “It’s a beautiful night.”
Aldridge sold approximately 275 tickets for this year’s event and gave away 50 to 60 free tickets to special guests. Lynch said she expects this year’s Taste of Hoover to bring in around $ 14,000 for the gardens.
But the big plus is the exposure it gives Hoover restaurants and other food and beverage providers, she said.
Most of the restaurants had participated in the past, but there were a few newcomers, like GRK Street, a new Greek restaurant spinoff from Taziki’s Mediterranean Café, and Saw’s BBQ, which hopes to open its first Hoover store in the Riverchase Village mall in December.
R&S Catering won first prize for best stand presentation, while second place went to Newk’s Eatery and third place to The Whole Scoop ice cream shop.
Other participants this year include:
► Return Forty Beer Co.
► Big Whiskey American Restaurant & Bar
► Bruno Hospitality
► Cake Effect
► Italian grill Carrabba
► Chattanooga Experimental Whiskey Distillery
► Chicken Chick Salad
► Coca-Cola Bottling Co. United
► Customs Café
► Dread River Distilling Co.
► Emily’s Legacy Poundcakes
► Eugene’s hot chicken
► International wines and craft beers
► Jefferson State Community College Culinary and Hotel Institute
► Jimmy John’s
► Jubilee Joe’s Cajun seafood restaurant
► Tavern and kitchen of Merk
► Nothing Bundt Cakes
► Red Diamond coffee and tea
► Rock’n’Roll Sushi
► Savoie catering
► Sprout producers market
► Super Chix
► Mediterranean Taziki coffee
► The Happy Catering Co.
► Tre Luna Catering / Tre Luna Bar & Kitchen
► Sports bars on foot
The Hoover Belles girls’ services organization greeted guests as they arrived and the Lori Rayne group of Lori Rayne and Daniel Bowden provided music throughout the night.