Three events you need to know about: Hot sauce expo, a chocolate convention and Cocktails in the City


From a two-day hot sauce celebration to a cocktail festival that promises drinks from 30 Los Angeles bars, here are three events you should have on your summer calendar.

California Hot Sauce Expo

Listen up, chile heads, this event is for you. The third annual California Hot Sauce Expo is happening Aug. 19 and 20 at City National Grove of Anaheim. It’s two days celebrating all things hot, plus eating competitions. There will be hot sauce from 40 hot sauce makers around the world as well as food vendors. And when the heat gets a little too hot to handle, look for one of the craft beer or specialty cocktail vendors. If you enjoy watching others in chile agony, there’s an area called the Stage of Doom, where the competitions will take place. This year, you can expect the Guinness Book of World Records Reaper Pepper Eating Contest, the Booze & Infuse Cocktail Competition and the Spicy Pizza of Doom contest. Also look out for lucha libre wrestling, because when your mouth is on fire, why not cheer on wrestlers in cool masks? There are three tiers of tickets, including $10 general admission, $40 craft brew package tickets and $75 VIP package tickets. Everyone gets access to the hot sauce samples and the eating competitions. The craft brew package includes extras like drink tokens, and the VIP package includes access to a VIP area with complimentary drinks and a BBQ buffet. 2200 E. Katella Ave., Anaheim,

Los Angeles Chocolate Salon

If you’re the sort of person who keeps a not-so-secret chocolate stash, then you’ll want to check out the 11th Los Angeles Chocolate Salon. It’s basically a convention center full of both chocolate and fellow chocolate lovers from around the world, held Oct. 1 in Pasadena. A ticket gets you access to chocolate tastings, demonstrations, and chef and author talks. Some of the participating chocolatiers include Amano, Mignon, Zenbunni, Valenza and David Bacco. And if you’re into marijuana edibles, this year, Défoncé Chocolatier, the seed-to-bar company that was started by a former Apple employee, will do a presentation on its chocolate edibles (you must be 21 or older to attend this presentation). Tickets are $20 if purchased in advance and $25 at the door. Tickets for children ages 6 to 12 are $10. The Pasadena Convention Center, 300 E. Green St., Pasadena,


Cocktails in the City

This city is home to some of the best cocktail bars in the country. At least that’s what the crew behind Cocktails in the City, one of the U.K.’s biggest cocktail festivals, thinks about the tipples in L.A. That’s why the festival is holding its first Cocktails in the City event in L.A., on Sept. 23 at the Majestic. The organizers are billing it as the biggest cocktail festival in California, with more than 2,500 people expected to attend and 30 pop-ups from bars around Los Angeles. Roger Room, the Normandie Club, Sassafras, Birds and Bees, Melrose Umbrella Co., Now Boarding, the Edison, Lost Property, Big Bar, Harvard and Stone and Hotel Figueroa will all be mixing up drinks, most making specialty drinks for the event. You can also check out a bar school for budding home bartenders, a craft spirits discovery room and buy food from some local restaurants. Tickets are $25 and include a free cocktail from any of the participating bars, an event guide and a swag bag. Additional drink tokens are $10 each. Just don’t forget to arrange for a designated driver. 650 S. Spring St., Los Angeles,



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