food festival

Gilroy Garlic Fest's Famous Gourmet Alley Will Be a Drive-Thru

Nosh on all sorts of piquant favorites, from the comfort of your car, at the scaled-back but super-flavorful 2021 to-do.

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What to Know

  • July 23-25 and July 30-Aug. 1, 2021 (4-7 p.m. on Fridays, 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays)
  • Gilroy Presbyterian Church
  • Scampi, steak sandwiches, garlic bread, more

YOUR CAR? It can hold maybe four or six people, or even eight, if it is especially spacious. But a garlic bulb? It can hold upwards of a dozen cloves, or even more, a tasty temptation for lovers of piquant, tongue-hot, richly fragrant foodstuffs. But if you wanted to compare your car to a head of garlic, and quiz your kids about whether a vehicle can hold more people or a bulb can hold more cloves, you are certainly welcome to do so as you make your way to the first-ever drive-thru Gilroy Garlic Festival Gourmet Alley. That's right, the annual summertime celebration's beyond-famous food area is...

POPPING UP... as a stay-in-your car happening in 2021, giving garlic-seekers a chance to enjoy their favorite aromatic herb from the comfort of the driver's or passenger's seat (and the backseat, too, if you've filled up your automobile with a load of bulb buffs). And here's another twist, if you've been attending this world-famous festivity for four-plus decades now: The Gourmet Alley will be open over two weekends, and not just one. Adding to the twists? It's all getting good and garlicky at the Gilroy Presbyterian Church. On the drive-thru menu? You'll be able to order the fest's world-famous Garlic Bread, Steak Sandwiches, Shrimp Scampi, and Garlic Fries, too.

THE GARLIC GOODNESS SIMMERS ON: "We have all been confronted with so many changes due to COVID-19," said Tom Cline, current president of the association, which has distributed more than $12 million to community groups since 1979. "There is a great community desire to see some reminders of Festival past that highlight our community, our commitment to our non-profit partners, and, of course, our love of garlic." There are a couple of other festival-inspired events coming up, including a golf classic and a farm-to-table dinner at Fortino Winery. For details, visit the Gilroy Garlic Festival site now.

You can also preorder food here.

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