Fab Food Fest: Winter's Eve at Lincoln Square

One way to combat holiday blues and withdrawal is to reflect kindly on the wonders of Thanksgiving whilst jumping right into spreading Christmas cheer. Always a sap for the spirit of Christmas, I'm wasting no time gearing up for my favorite holiday.

Tonight at Lincoln Square, it's Winter's Eve, the annual Lincoln Center tree lighting and food fest. Beyond the whole Christmas cheer thing, there's food and entertainment stretching from the Time Warner Center to 68th Street and everywhere in between. Local restaurants set ups tents and offer food samples ranging from $1-$5 and I'll be sampling up a storm, not to mention hunting for the freebies. The tree lighting starts at 5:30 and food and entertainment lasts until 8 making this a perfect post-work stop for food and fun. I'm super excited about this for two main reasons:

1) Some of the participating restaurants are ones that are generally a bit out of my price range (Bar Boulud, Asiate) and this is a perfect opportunity to sample their offerings without breaking the bank.
2) A portion of proceeds will go to City Harvest, New York's only food rescue organization. As a bonus, they'll also be collecting canned goods at their truck parked at 63rd and Broadway, so do your part and bring one.

Participating Restaurants:
A Voce
at65 Café
Bar Boulud
Bar Masa
Bouchon Bakery
Café Fiorello
Dizzy's Club Coca-Cola and Great Performances
Ed's Chowder House
Europan Bakery Café
Gabriel's Bar & Restaurant
Gourmet Garage
• Le Pain Quotidien
Magnolia Bakery
Nick and Toni's Café
P.J. Clarke's
Porter House New York
Rosa Mexicano at Lincoln Center
Sapphire Indian Cuisine
Screme Gelato Bar
Siam Inn
Soutine Bakery
Sushi a-go-go

Other promised highlights:
-Free hot chocolate and peppermint bark at Williams-Sonoma @ Time Warner Center
-Dante Park's got cheese sampling (you know, the little square outside Lincoln Center)
-Kiehl's has got cider and samples
-NYIT's boasting a 'Go Green exhibit'
-Whole Foods will have holiday food samples
-Find your inner kid at Landmarc as they've got cotton candy

Bottom Line: Cheap, charitable, and fun to boot

Beware: It gets mighty crowded, so come prepared to battle your way through crowds to reach your desired food stops. For some tips on how to do the festival circuit, check out my article on the San Gennaro Festival back in September.

Anyone else plotting their festival route for tonight? I'm hoping the weather holds up and I can hit as many stops as possible. If you're attending, give me a shout to meet up!

*Be sure to check back for the wrap up later this week!