AUSTIN (KXAN) – This Friday and Saturday, 20 chefs from around the world are coming together to serve up carnivorous delights to Central Texans at the Meat Carneval. This festival celebrates all things meat – though they do offer vegetarian substitutes – and encourages guests to “get primal,” by ditching the cutlery and eating with their hands. 

The Meat Carneval was started by two Israeli chefs – Gili Ben Shahar and Ohad Kvity  – and this weekend is the first time it will be held in Austin and in Texas. The event has traveled to four other U.S. locations, said Mikayla Springer, an event planner working on the Carneval. 

“(Ben Shahar and Kvity) wanted to create an experience where they could interact with their guests (and) could make intimate connections. Because for them, cooking for people is a way that they show love,” Springer said. 

The event will include chefs from all over the world, including from Israel, Portugal, Chile, New York, California and Texas. Two of the Texas chefs cooking at the event are Andy Knudson, Executive Chef at luxury resort Camp Lucy in Dripping Springs, and Aaron Alterman, a popular Austin chef on social media with nearly 600,000 followers on TikTok. 

“(The chefs) all keep referring to it as a jam session. So like as a band gets together and just like jams out, that’s what they’re doing here. They’re all coming to create the most magical things that they can,” Springer said. 

 The festival offers all-you-can-eat, all-you-can-drink beer and wine, live music, live demonstrations with opportunities to engage with chefs and transportation to the event from the Austin Hotel. The event starts at 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday and tickets are $225 per person. 

“There is a lot to eat, a lot to see and a lot to drink,” Springer said.