Food Festival

Tenderfest LA to Feature Chicken Tenders Galore

Dino-shaped nuggets, knobs of crunchy flavor, the classic strips: A comfort food receives its fancy food festival due in Beverly Hills.


What to Know

  • Tenderfest LA, presented by Bucket Listers and Off the Menu
  • Saturday, Aug. 20 at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in Beverly Hills
  • $67 general admission; $157 VIP

Comfort food?

It can come in all shapes, sizes, scoops, and silhouettes, depending on what a person is hankering for, but only one offbeat eat invites the imagination to soar: the chicken tender.

Or should we say 'saur, since dino-shaped nuggets are a common and much-loved offering from this comforting corner of the cuisine world.

Tenders, in fact, arrive in all sorts of tempting and surreal shapes, with lots of different coatings, from your basic bread crumbs to elegant panko crusts, and celebrating the vast variety of these dippable icons, and the fans who adore them, seems to be a step that's crystal clear, as clear as ketchup is red and ranch dressing is... the color of ranch.

And the chance to celebrate the tenderverse is just what will happen on Saturday, Aug. 20.

That's when devoted tenderists will gather at the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts in Beverly Hills, all to eat lots of chicken strips, chicken fingers, and other chicken-based bites that are creatively crusted and ready for dipping.

It's Tenderfest LA, hurray, and the tenders in the snacky spotlight will hail from a host of tender-perfecting restaurants around the area, including Willie Mae's, Howlin' Ray's, and several other popular eateries and food trucks.

But wait: The tender's BFF, the French fry, will also have its condiment-coated moment at the afternoon-long food festival, and desserts, too, will play a tasty role. As will the search for the Best Tender, something that a line-up of acclaimed chefs will consider at the National ConTender Championships.

Two drink tickets are part of your admission fee, as are "unlimited" desserts, fries, and, oh goodness, tenders, too. And oh yes: There'll be a plant-based tender option, from Daring.

Kids, and former kids, know that tenders have long been a reliable way to fill up and find some fun flavor in the freezer.

But the modern "tendies" phenomenon has found new fans in recent years, thanks to all of the whimsical and high-styling takes on chicken tenders at fancier restaurants.

Oh yes, and the popular memes featuring The Child from "The Mandalorian" demanding delicious chicky tendies.

Honestly, though: Wouldn't you want a chicken tender or two if you were roaming space and time, all while narrowly escaping the Galactic Empire?

Talk about comfort food at a cosmic level.

SoCal snackers, don't delay: Tenderfest LA tickets are available now.

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