Why The Quail is the best car show on the planet
A recap of last year's 2021 edition of The Quail, A Motorsports Gathering. Full photo gallery of the best of Monterey Car Week - Further proof that this might be the greatest car event on Earth.
Words and photos by Mitchell Weitzman
King for a day. That's how I described my first visit to The Quail, A Motosports Gathering in the scenic Carmel Valley, CA, and it still holds true several years later. What's now become a headlining feature during the annual automotive pilgrimage that is Monterey Car Week, The Quail has become my favorite. However, I was at the Quail Lodge and Golf Club before The Quail became The Quail, as it used to be the home for the Concorso Italiano car show. The Italiano since moved to various venues, leaving the Quail to form its own eponymous show in its stead. While it started small in its infancy, it's rapidly grown the past decade to become a tour de force for car lovers. Unlike other car shows, this one is about more than celebrating the automobile - It's the whole lifestyle that we embrace.
But, wait! There's more! You don't have to love cars to enjoy The Quail. A foodie and/or drink lover? Your admission gets you unlimited food and beverages. At various corners of the lush, green fairways (in an otherwise drought-stricken California), you'll find large tents that are home to a variety of gourmet dishes to fill your heart's (and stomach's) content, with each location featuring a different theme of food; Greek, French, etc,. Find a bartender, and you can pick between cocktails and wine. While I don't recommend getting piss-faced around a collection of a half-billion dollars worth of cars, you certainly can if you feel entitled enough to.
Ranging from classics to modern hypercars, there is plenty to ogle over, so much so that, even after staying for 7 hours, cars had packed up and left that I hadn't gotten the chance to see yet. I even got to meet Jenson Button and Ant Anstead, both of whom were there showing the new Radford Type 62-2, a stunning sports coupe with retro Lotus styling and underpinning from Hethel, too. Oh, both the Englishmen were absolutely amazing to meet and chat with - just normal blokes who love cars.
Guntherwerks showed off their new Speedster restomod, Bugatti had the Bolide track-only hypercar on display (that they just confirmed to build, too, no less), plus there were the Koenigsegg Gemera and Jesko megacars, and of course a multitude of Paganis. I don't mean it to sound like an afterthought, but it's just because of HOW many brands were represented there, but Rimac was also present as was Hennessey's new F5 and the Pininfarina Battista (which is based on said Rimac). I almost even forgot the new Countach.
It's so much to take in, same with the food. I have a decent appetite and yet I was unable to convert on each food tent, settling for just two of them; I ought to fast the entire day before next time! And next time I do hope for, as The Quail has become my pinnacle event of Monterey Car Week. Some people look forward to Christmas or their birthdays, but nothing comes close to The Quail for me. King for a day - it feels nice.
I eagerly already await next year's edition. Until then, please enjoy and indulge in the full photo gallery below.