Dinner followed by a movie is a standard recipe for dates, reliable when other food-and-entertainment pairings fail to impress. Since its launch last year, Street Food Cinema has been offering an alternative to the classic combo on weekends by bringing everything outdoors at locations throughout the city. Running through the summer season, the series will show popular flicks, including Stand by Me and Pitch Perfect and invite food trucks — India Jones, Kogi, Lime, Cousin's Maine Lobster, Sweet Arleen's, Don Chow Tacos, Grilled Cheese, to name a few — to help provide food and drink to filmgoers.
We asked Heather Hope-Allison, who co-founded the film and food series with her husband Steve Allison, for a few pointers on how to make an outdoor film date night as seamless as possible. The two run Street Food Cinema through their company TIL Lifestyle Marketing and Events.
“Most people like to see movies at night and dinner is the perfect way to start the evening,” says Hope-Allison. “My husband Steve hates sitting through a long dinner and a long movie back-to-back, so outdoor movies with picnics and food trucks are really ideal in that they combine the experience. You also don't feel like you're stuck in a chair the whole time.”
Hope-Allison says planning ahead is key to a successful outdoor movie outing. This includes leaving early for the film. She also recommends bringing a small collapsible table; a waterproof blanket as the ground can get dewy; a fleece blanket to share; and a bottle of wine. For food to enjoy during the film, she says to consider bringing a baguette with cheese, grapes, soft tacos, sandwiches and something sweet, such as a stuffed Oreo cookie or chocolate-covered strawberries.
Street Food Cinema will show Monty Python and the Holy Grail at L.A. State Historic Park this Saturday, July 27. The series will continue to run at Exposition Park on the following Saturday, August 3, with Silver Linings Playbook, then Swingers on Saturday, August 10, and Skyfall on Saturday, August 17.
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