Let’s be honest: One of the main reasons to hit a major festival this summer has nothing to do with the bands that are playing—it has to do with the food scene in whichever city you’re landing in. After all, the cities that host the big fests are also some of the best food cities in the country. That’s why we got one of the best chefs in the country—James Beard nominee Kelly Fields of New Orleans’ Willa Jean—to dole out her must-eat recommendations for those times when you’re off the field.
The classic California cuisine spot has become a Sunset neighborhood—and citywide—fave.
“The aesthetic of the restaurant is all wood and it all sort of flows. But they do a really good job of using what they have around them and making pristine food that’s completely approachable and craveable. It’s totally that California approach to just use what they have access to. They start with really good bread. It’s the ideal California restaurant, if you ask me.”
Must-order dish: The Dutch Baby
Mashti Malone’s Ice Cream
The low-key Hollywood ice-cream spot serves a slew of exotic flavors.
“I haven’t been to LA since like 2003. I’m really embarrassed to say that, but the only thing I remember is getting Turkish ice cream at Mashti Malone’s. It kind of changed my idea of what ice cream could and should be. From a technical standpoint, it doesn’t melt that quick and it’s all stretchy and kind of chewy and it’s just delicious.”
Must-order dish: Saffron ice cream
You may need to stay an extra day in New York to hit this Brooklyn Italian spot since they’re only open for dinner, and you know you’re not gonna miss the headliners. It’ll be worth it.
“Missy Robbins is the chef/owner. She does really simple, beautiful Italian cuisine there, and it’s all wood-fired—she’s got this big, beautiful grill, and she keeps it truly simple. She does grilled fish, and you also always have to save room for outstanding soft serve. Last time I ate there she gave me a vanilla soft serve and then doused it with olive oil and sea salt, and then shaved white truffles over it. I mean, it was stupid good.”
Must-order dish: Grilled clams
This barstaurant could be the perfect post-Lolla drink-hang.
“It’s clean but it’s cozy and kind of dark—and they have a super-great whiskey program. They also have little plates and sandwiches and stuff like that; [it’s] craveable, eatable cocktail food. It’s cavernous without feeling dark, and it’s masculine without being forcibly so.”
Must-order drink: Negroni
Turkey and the Wolf
Pick up a sandwich here before heading into Voodoo: It’s one of the best new sandwich shops in the country.
“Mason Hereford opened it about a year ago and I think he is one of the most talented chefs in New Orleans—and he’s making sandwiches. Like, fried bologna sandwiches stuffed with potato chips, served on those old school McDonald’s plates that you got your Happy Meal on when you were a kid. He’s having so much fun doing really solid food.”
Must-order dish: Collard Green Melt
Fluff Bake Bar
This critically-acclaimed bakery revels in negative reviews—it’s infamous for using upset Yelpers’ takes as inspiration for new treats.
“Rebecca Masson owns it. Everything I’ve had of hers is like silly good. It’s more of a bakery than it is anything else. She’s always got some hot food, which changes a lot because she invites her friends to come cook with her. We’re gonna do a bake sale together this summer. I’m gonna go over and we’re gonna do pastries and then I’m gonna cook some crawfish and grits or whatever to sell.”
Must-order dish: Laminated dough pastries FL
This article originally appears in the FLOOD Festival Guide presented by Toyota C-HR. You can check out the rest of the magazine here.