Nearly 40 of Our Area's Best Chefs Converge to Celebrate California Figs | Don't Miss the Inaugural San Diego Fig Fest on September 8 at the San Diego Public Market

August 14, 2013

Figs are erotic. Eating a fresh ripe fig is as near a sexual experience as food consumption can be (unless you're George Costanza).  As the versatility of this flavorful fruit is more courageously explored, the prevalence of its use can be seen across an array of cuisines.  On September 8th, nearly 40 of San Diego and Baja's best chefs and food purveyors will join local wineries and breweries for a celebration honoring California figs. Enjoy fresh and dried figs, delicious fig-influenced recipes, live entertainment and more at the inaugural San Diego Fig Fest held at the San Diego Public Market!

On Sunday, September 8, from 4 to 7 p.m., Les Dames d'Escoffier's San Diego Chapter, the California Fig Advisory Board and the San Diego Public Market are presenting California Fig Fest San Diego.  This is the 10th anniversary of Fig Fest, but the event has previously been held in Fresno, CA, until this year.  An amazing line up of chefs and artisan food vendors from San Diego and Baja will offer fig-centric dishes and products, with a host of local wineries and breweries servings beverages to compliment the culinary offerings.  Chefs currently on board include:

  • Chef Jeff Jackson, A.R. Valentien
  • Chefs Nicolas Bour & James Kozak, Avant
  • Chef Amy DiBiase, Baleen
  • Chef George Morris, Beaumont's Eatery
  • Chef Patrick Ponsaty, Bellamy's Restaurant
  • Chef Gayle Covner, Blueprint Cafe
  • Chef Katie Grebow, Cafe Chloe
  • Chef Joanne Squires-Sherif, Cardamom (Bakery)
  • Dave Rudie/Tommy Gomes, Catalina Offshore
  • Chef Martin San Ramon, Martin San Ramon Catering
  • Chef Ryan Steyn, Ryan Steyn Catering
  • Chef Carmine Lopez of Great Maple 
  • Chef Fran Lovello of Fresh Start
  • Chef Catherine Perez of Con Pane
  • Beatriz Ledezma, Caxao Chocolates
  • Robin Ross, Cupcakes Squared
  • Michelle Ciccarelli Lerach, Cups
  • Chef Drew Deckman, Deckmans
  • Chef Olivier Bioteau, Farm House Café
  • Chef Flor Franco, Indulge Catering
  • David Baron, Jackie's Jams
  • Chef Christian Graves, Jsix
  • Chef Gregory Frey, BlueFire Grill
  • Chef Benito Molina, Manzanilla
  • Chef Javier Plascencia, Misión 19
  • Chef Fabrizio Cavallini, Monello, Bencotto
  • Chef Rachel King, NINE-TEN
  • Chef Michael Alves, Roseville Cozhina
  • Chef Maeve Schulz, Sugar & Scribe
  • Chef Matt Richman, Table 926
  • Chef Jean-Michel Diot, Tapenade
  • Catherine Demuth-Pepe, Temecula Olive Oil
  • Chef Bradley Austin, Tender Greens
  • Chef Jeff Rossman, Terra American Bistro
  • Chefs Bernard Guillas and Ron Oliver, The Marine Room
  • Chef Miguel Valdez, The Red Door/Wellington
  • Gina Frieze, Venissimo Cheese with Bread & Cie
  • Chef Dawn Parks, Wild Thyme

The San Diego Public Market
The San Diego Public Market is an exciting urban venue in Barrio Logan - just minutes from downtown San Diego, and has consistently been a fantastic host for other food festivals (Taste of Asia, Street Food Market and Taste of the Market). At Fig Fest SD, guests will experience a unique community treasure in the making, as the Public Market strives to meet the likes of Pike Place in Seattle and Reading Terminal Market in Philadelphia.

Fig Fest's major sponsor for the occasion is Specialty Produce, who will be supplying ingredients for the event as they do for so many area restaurants (and the public).  At Fig Fest, there will be live musical entertainment and a pavilion set up for Les Dames members to showcase their products - from edibles to books.  There will be a chef competition where local culinary students will be paired with chefs and judged by food connoisseurs from outside San Diego. Guests will also be gifted with a full-color recipe booklet with tested recipes from participating chefs and artisan vendors, not to mention some of the best fig-oriented food around.

The wineries and breweries participating are still being confirmed, but Baja wineries on board for Fig Fest include Paralelo, Casa de Piedra, Estacion de Oficios el Porvenir, Aborigen, Vinisterra, Viñas Pijoan, Tres Valles, Viñas de Garza, Cava Aragon 126, La Lomita, and Möebius.

Tickets for Fig Fest are $45 before Aug. 15 and $55 thereafter, with $20 tickets for kids under 12. Get your tickets now by going to

Proceeds from tickets will be donated to a variety of nonprofit projects that the Les Dames d'Escoffier's San Diego Chapter sponsors. Their history of giving includes recipients such as Olivewood Gardens, low-income female culinary student scholarships, The San Diego Food Bank, Rachel's Women's Center, St. Vincent de Paul's culinary program, Scrumptious Schoolyards and Grow Your Lunch, and St. Madeleine Sophie's Center.

Visit to get more information and to purchase tickets.