Zac Brown Band’s Eat ‘n Greets are legendary. No other musician we know holds big outdoor feasts out of a mobile kitchen for fans before shows, let alone two-day food festivals. Now in its fifth epic year, Brown’s Southern Ground Music & Food Festival is a band- and chef-studded blowout, held in the culinary paradise of Charleston, South Carolina; this year’s dates are April 16 and 17.
Brown, along with his longtime business partner, Louisiana chef and festival cofounder Rusty Hamlin, invites some of the South’s most talked-about restaurants and best chefs to feed the masses using fresh, local ingredients. This year’s lineup features three award-winning chefs, including Charleston native Patrick Owens, local cured-meat master Craig Deihl and five-year festival veteran R.J. Cooper. When you’re not enjoying their fare, concessions include Home Team BBQ, Cru Cafe, Bohemian Bull, Mex 1 Coastal Cantina, Kickin’ Chicken and Gilligan’s Seafood Restaurant. Nothing aids in the digestion of large portions of meat like great music, so enjoy Thomas Rhett, Tedeschi Trucks Band, Michael Franti & Spearhead, Kacey Musgraves, Hunter Hayes, Marshall Tucker Band and others up close and personal — if you spring for the pricey “Stage Box” tickets, you can eat at tables set up around and even on the stage. Zac Brown Band headlines both nights (no easy feat on a full stomach).
This year also marks the release of Z. Alexander Brown, a new portfolio of wines from Brown and Napa Valley winemaker John Killebrew, in case you get tired of bourbon and beer (however unlikely that is), so grab tickets before they’re gone and gear up for one hell of a weekend.