America's Test Kitchen hopes to highlight its Boston roots when its new food festival debuts this weekend.
Although ATK has always called the Hub its home, culinary stars Bridget Lancaster and Julia Collin Davison note that fans often forget that fact. The co-hosts of ATK's popular cooking show tell Metro that they believe the upcoming Boston EATS event will help reintroduce the brand to the local food scene.
"We’ve been on the air for a long time, people know the magazine, but people had no idea we were in Boston," Davison says. "Joining us with local restaurants and inviting people into our new space, it’s kind of like a ‘we’ve arrived’ party. It’s nice not to be hidden anymore."
Organizers are going all out for Boston EATS, which takes over ATK's headquarters and studios in the Seaport Oct. 27-28. The fest will feature three sessions, where attendees will get the chance to watch cooking demonstrations, munch on dishes prepared by some of the area's top restaurants, as well as receive a behind-the-scenes look at the new test kitchen.
"No other food festival will take you behind the scenes of a TV show," Davison says.
The festivities kick off on Friday night with Taste of Innovation. Hosted by Lancaster and Davison, the tasting party will pair some of Boston's best chefs with ATK test cooks to create innovative recipes using local ingredients. Chefs Michael Schlow, Jeremy Sewall, Matt Jennings and more are expected to participate.
The fun continues on Saturday with Backstage ATK, the ultimate behind-the-scenes experience at ATK's 55,000-square foot facility. Attendees will receive a guided tour of the new kitchens and studios, as well as participate in taste tests, a book signing with Lancaster and Davison and more.
While each of the sessions requires seperate tickets, fans who attend Backstage ATK will also have access to the main Boston EATS event on Saturday, which will include cooking demonstrations, interactive exhibits, plus tastings from more than 40 of New England's top restaurants, such as Area Four, SRV, Citizen Public House & Oyster Bar, Post 390 and Saltie Girl.
Lancaster hopes the two-day affair will help foster more of a connection between ATK and Boston's vibrant food scene.
"We have a wide range of chefs offering a lot of different cuisine," Lancaster says. "But it’s not just about cooking food for the public. It’s really about making that connection."
If you go:
Oct. 27-28, 15 Dry Dock Ave., Boston, $100+, atkeats.com