It's Fall in LA, which only means one thing: ethnic festivals galore. Greek, Japanese, Korean, Asian, Serbian. Serbian? Seeing the banner blowing in the middle of downtown Alhambra, we had to go.
For a festival, it was pretty low key and noncommercial. Held last weekend at the Saint Steven's Serbian Orthodox Cathedral, it was really more like a local parish fund-raising event than a festival. Admission was only $2, which gave you access to a small food tent, a bar, and entertainment. The food was pricey, with dinners around $11, and the only Serbian beer was really from Montenegro, but the food was good and everyone was having a good time (I think we were the only people who didn't know anyone there). The festival also had a separate children's playground with bouncy castle type things -- but the admission was $20!
Here's a picture of one of our favorite items at the festival, a Serbian fruit cake that was a lot like a trifle. I guess Serbians really like their sweets because there was a whole pastry hall with a great selection of desserts from cheese pastries to strudels.
After having our fill of lamb sandwiches and dessert, we headed back down to central Alhambra and had Vietnamese iced coffee at Banh Mi Che Cali (theirs is pretty good -- they also have great French baguettes you can buy like at a bakery). Where else but in LA can you have Serbian food one minute and Vietnamese the next?