The temperature climbed into the 80s, but that didn't diminish the enthusiasm of about 1,800 people gathered at the rooftop parking lot of the Peterson Auto Museum last Sunday for Gold Standard: the L.A. Weekly's food-sampling bonanza featuring 40 restaurants picked by Jonathan Gold. Even Bludso's BBQ — where hot smoke billowed from some kind of firepit — attracted a crowd. Although the line for Bulgarini Gelato may have been longer. Other highlights? Flip through Anne Fishbein's slideshow.
Of course, we could tell you about the food. Butterscotch budino from Mozza. Huckleberry's spread of baked goods. The Angeleno cocktail — gin, aperol, orange, lemon, and bitter lemon soda — from Mezze, served alongside brisket schwarma sandwiches. Or Night + Market's very spicy “startled pig.” Le Comptoir's bite-sized lemon pound cake. Cochinita pibil from Chichen Itza. We could go on.
But we also appreciated the moments that didn't involve stuffing our faces. Like chatting with Susan Feniger as she warmed mung bean pancakes (from Street) with a clothes iron. Admiring a woman's stunning purple sari at Mayura. Laughing about the pig figurines displayed with pulled pork sliders at Tiara. Bumping into friends (literally) and swapping recommendations. The disappointment of missing horseradish snow at Ink., then deciding we now have one more reason to visit the restaurant. And we enjoyed the sight of chefs abandoning their posts to line up at other vendors, as eager to sample new tastes as share their own. See what we mean in the slideshow. (And you can always upload your own photos to our Flickr pool. No better way to tell friends: “You had to be there.”)