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By Audrey O’Neill and Samantha Kinnard. October 23, 2018 - 9:00 am
With the sound of Italian music echoing through the air in Kaka’ako, attendees filled Cooke Street Saturday, October 6th, to celebrate Italian culture.
Italian-influenced musicians performed live music and Italian cars were on display along the street for people to feel immersed in the cultural ambiance.
“Hawaii’s only Italian Festival” included many vendors that sold food such as pasta, gelato, pizza, calzones, and even french crepes.
Locally owned and operated, Crepes Hawai’i, crafted homemade, made to order crepes using fresh and local ingredients.
Mediterraneo was another featured vendor at the event. It offered authentic pasta that was cooked al-dente, as inspired by Chef Fabrizio who is from Frascati, a small town near Rome, Italy. Mediterraneo uses the freshest ingredients to ensure you are experiencing real italian food.
Gelato was a popular dessert that grabbed a lot of attention. The vendor that everyone seemed to love was IL Gelato Hawaii. They offered a variety of delicious, creamy, and rich flavors that created the illusion of strolling down the streets of Italy. In 2017, they were awarded Best of Honolulu “Hall of Fame” Award for Ice Cream & Frozen Yogurt.
In addition to the option for attendees to check out the local vendors, they had the option to do the VIP experience. Lovers of wine were able to indulge in the many flavors of Italy through the carefully curated wine and food selections. Some of the featured wine vendors were Arancino at The Kahala, Chef Massimo Falsini, Noe at Four Seasons Resort Oahu and Sale Pepe. The lounge was decorated with fairy lights that created a beautiful scenery as the sun set in the background.
In a nearby park, artists worked on a chalkboard drawing for the entirety of the festival while festival goers looked on. As the hours of the festival went by, attendees could see the Italian inspiration of the piece come to life.
From the fine wines at the Passaporto Italiano wine tasting to the unique musical experience provided by the entertainers, “Hawaii’s only Italian Festival” was a success at celebrating memorable aspects of Italian culture.
Visit the Festa Italiana website for more information.