This year's Uptown Talks was all about the food

Chino Latino's Thai pork belly lettuce wrap at Tuesday night's Uptown Talks

Chino Latino's Thai pork belly lettuce wrap at Tuesday night's Uptown Talks

This year's Uptown Talks event, hosted Tuesday night by the Uptown Association, paid special attention to the area's bustling restaurant community. In addition the wide array of businesses present, there were also 19 area restaurants, bakeries and other food related businesses serving up tasty samples for hungry event goers.

Some of the restaurants dishing out tasty morsels included the Nightingale, showing off a baby beet salad with beer gastrique; The Gray House, with a pickled ramp and goat cheese spread on house-made crackers; Republic with a decadent duck meatball; and the newly opened Hammer & Sickle serving up creamy stroganoff on their housemade spaetzle. In addition to the tastings, a sit-down dinner was catered by Uptown's It's Greek to Me. The food focus was a new angle for the annual event, and based on this year's success, could become a new tradition.

We talked a little bit with Robert Gregg of the new Hammer & Sickle, who summed up the evening as "a way for businesses who are all in Uptown to meet each other, to meet residents that want to learn more about the businesses, and to meet the council members and politicians who are making the decisions that effect all of us."

Brandishing a table filled with decadent donuts, Glam Doll Donuts Erica Davis admitted that they're more in the Whittier neighborhood, but added, "they asked us to come and do this, so we were like 'yeah', because we'd like to get our name out there in Uptown a little bit more."

The ticketed event is held annually by the Uptown Association, but this is the first year that they've held a cocktail hour with restaurant tastings. The event also hosted a panel discussion featuring such prominent figures as Police Chief Janeé Hartaeu, Senator Scott Dibble, Ward 10 city council member Lisa Bender, and local artist Dessa.

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