Dusk Music Festival redefines festival food

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The Daily Wildcat

(Courtesy Obon) Obon's Tuna Poke Bowl (tuna, sushi rice, cucumber salad, seaweed salad, avocado, jalapeños, spicy poke dressing and crispy onions) is one of the many dishes from various restaurants that will be featured at the Dusk Music Festival. The festival has placed an importance on providing quality, local food to the festival-goers.

Most music festivals first book their artists and worry later about how they’ll feed and hydrate a huge crowd.

However, for Dusk Music Festival, food wasn't an afterthought.

The team behind Dusk has thought about its potential food offerings since they first conceived the idea of a local music festival — partially because half of Dusk’s founding partners are restaurateurs.

Festival founder Pete Turner owns Illegal Pete’s, a Colorado-based chain serving quick-service Mexican food. Illegal Pete’s opened its first location outside of its original restaurant in Colorado on University Boulevard in December. Illegal Pete's faced protesters when first opening due to its name, but Pete’s has since become a staple among UA students.

Steve Stratigouleas, another festival founder, coordinates the food that will be available at the festival. Stratigouleas co-owns Union Public House and Reforma Cocina Y Cantina. Reforma opened in late 2015 and Union opened in 2011.

Stratigouleas said both Reforma and Union will serve adapted versions of dishes on their existing menus.

Illegal Pete’s, Union Public House and OBON Sushi Bar Ramen will all have a presence at the festival.

Other restaurants include Commoner & Co., Prep & Pastry, Choice Greens, BrushFire BBQ Co., Dante’s Fire, Empire Pizza, Goodness Fresh Food & Juice Bar and BIRD Southern Table & Bar, the newest concept from Fukushu Restaurant Concepts, the creators behind OBON, Greek House and Goodness.

BIRD will open on Oracle Road in November, Tucson Foodie reported. The restaurant will serve a taste of its cuisine at the festival as well.

Now onto the exciting part: Dusk's menu.

OBON will serve tuna poke, while Goodness will serve assorted juices, snow cones and pastries.

BIRD will share a sliver of its upcoming menu at Dusk — fried chicken waffle cones and house-made custard. Chef Daniel Thomas will prepare the dishes, according to the restaurant's Facebook page.

Stratigouleas gave the Daily Wildcat a sneak peak of what his own restaurants will bring to the festival.

“From Union we are going to have our famous pub chips," Stratigouleas said. "So those are hand-cut russets with our mornay cheese sauce, and then you’ll get some bacon lardons. Our pub chips — people have been loving those for five years. So that’ll be one of the items. The other item we’re doing is a kalua pork Hawaiian sandwich — a barbecue pork sandwich — with a pineapple kimchi.”

Reforma will also have two menu items for sale.

“For Reforma, we’re doing carnitas tacos and then nachos with our manchego cheese sauce and black beans and Jalisco salsa,” Stratigouleas said.

Bart Dahl from Dusk's management and booking firm, Madison House Inc. , said all food and drinks will have a reasonable price tag.

Attendees can expect to spend about as much money as they normally would at these restaurants — no crazy price markups just to get some good grub in between sets.


Follow Nina Ulloa on Twitter.



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