Sunday, June 16, 2024

People throng the Smoke This Rib Fest on Cambridge Street in East Cambridge. (Photo: East Cambridge Business Association)

Some brand-new Cambridge restaurants have signed up to take part in the 14th Smoke This Rib Fest, to be held this year on Oct. 1.

Batifol, Gufo, the Locke Bar, Turing Tavern and Oak Street Bistro are all named as participants in the culinary showdown pitting pitmaster against pitmaster for the title of best ribs in town – and Oak Street Bistro hasn’t even opened yet in the former Corazon de Frida Mexican Cantina space at 1287 Cambridge St., Inman Square.

Other new names for the festival, but from more established businesses, are Dumpling Xuan and Olé, while some that participated last year are missing from the roster, including the now closed Atwood’s Tavern. Repeating kitchens include Artbar,ki The Dial, Filarmonica Santo Antonio, Formaggio Kitchen Kendall, Lone Star Taco Bar, Puritan & Co., Rindge Tech Culinary, Shy Bird, State Park and Vincent’s. The list is still growing and will wind up at more than 20, said Jason Alves, executive director of the East Cambridge Business Association. The association is presenting the event with the developer DivcoWest.

In addition to the food and a beer garden, there will be music from performers including The New Grown-Ups, Albino Mbie Trio and Danielle Miraglia, as well as kids crafts and games at The East End House.

To sample a variety and vote for a favorite, feasters need a 10-rib Taste Ticket – this year $34 with fees – and must scramble to get those ribs on a first come, first served basis. (Restaurants also sell to non-voters.) “Taste Tickets sell out every year, so each restaurant will also be selling a dish at a great price, showcasing food from their fall menu,” Alves said. “Even if you miss out on buying a Taste Ticket, you can still enjoy tasty food from some of the best restaurants in Cambridge.”

  • The Smoke This Rib Fest is from noon to 4 p.m. Oct. 1 on Cambridge Street between Fulkerson and Fifth streets, East Cambridge. Information is here.