This March 6th-10th marks the second annual MidAtlantic Wine and Food Festival. This 5 day event highlights not only wine and food, but beverages such as spirits, tea, and coffee. The events are held in venues up and down the state of Delaware and benefits such amazing art institutions as the Delaware Art Museum, Opera Delaware, The Grand Opera House, Christina Cultural Arts Center, Delaware Center for the Contemporary Arts, Delaware Symphony Orchestra, Delaware Theatre Company, Kent County Fund for the Arts, and The Rehoboth Beach Film Society. One very cool aspect of the Festival, is that some events are geared towards helping certain institutions, but quite a few of the events let you chose which institutions you want to help with your ticket purchase.
Below is only a small sampling of the amazing events with descriptions from recent press releases and the website. For more information, visit their website at MidAtlanticWineandFood.com, Facebook, and make sure to follow them on Twitter for updates. I’d like to thank JulieAnne Cross for keeping me in the loop for this amazing event!
CRAFT BEER :
The Craft of Beer: Thursday, March 7, 5:30-7:30pm, OperaDelaware, Wilmington. We celebrate the MidAtlantic’s role in the craft beer revolution at this event that brings together brewers and beer lovers. Many of the region’s most beloved craft brewers will gather to share their creations, sample some suds and talk a little shop at this tasting event. The list of participating breweries includes Dogfish Head Craft Brewed Ales, Troegs Brewing Company, Yards Brewing Company and Evolution Craft Brewing Company, just for starters. $50
He Said Beer, She Said Wine: Friday, March 8, 6-9pm, on stage at The Grand Opera House, Wilmington. Which drink is a better food partner — beer or wine? You’ll decide who wins this delectable and entertaining debate as a legendary brewer and a world-class sommelier go head-to-head. Join Sam Calagione of Dogfish Head Craft Brewery and noted wine author Marnie Old, co-authors of the popular illustrated book, “He Said Beer, She Said Wine,” as they present rival pairings for a multi-course dinner prepared by Chelsea Tavern (home to one of Delaware’s most impressive beer lists) and served on the main stage of The Grand Opera House. $125
Belgian Beer Lunch: Saturday, March 9, 12pm-1:30pm, Union City Grill Wilmington. Belgian beer will take center stage at this three-course lunch paired with Saison DuPont, Gulden Draak and Olvisholt Lava Smoked Imperial Porter. Host Chef: Matthew Curtis, $50
937-Point Wine Tasting: Friday, March 8, 2013, 5:30-7:30pm, Delaware Center for the Contemporary Arts, Wilmington. Just because a wine isn’t “perfect” doesn’t mean it’s not darn good. This tasting event, the little sister of Saturday’s 1000-Point Wine Tasting, brings together 10 extraordinary wines that came close to a perfect 100-point mark rating. $100
Wine + Chocolate Tasting: Saturday, March 9, 2013, 3-4pm, Christina Cultural Arts Center, Wilmington. Artisanal chocolates (including Swiss Neuchatel truffles!) and fine wines—both perfect on their own, but together they create entirely new flavor profiles. Taste and sip along with the experts at this sinfully good afternoon indulgence. $50
Champagne + Caviar Tasting: Saturday, March 9, 2013, 5-6pm, Christina Room at the Hotel du Pont, Wilmington. Sample quality American caviar, sustainably produced in the Sunshine State. Presented by Carter Caviar, selections include American Hackleback, American Osetra, American White Sturgeon and more, all paired with bubbly to keep the taste buds dancing. $50
Gospel Brunch with Wines from Around the World, Sunday, March 10, 2013, 11am-2pm, World Café Live at the Queen, Wilmington. More than a dozen regional restaurants take brunch to a new level, where breakfast sandwiches might be made with quail eggs, and light risotto might be topped with a shaved truffle. Sample 80 wines from around the world, and have your spirits lifted by the rousing sounds of the 60-member Combined Choir of the Calvary Baptist Church, returning to the Festival by popular demand. $125
THE HARD STUFF :
Bourbon + Bacon – North, South and Central editions: Thursday, March 7, 5:30-7:30pm at the Columbus Inn, Wilmington; Friday, March 8, 5-7pm at Nage, Rehoboth Beach; Saturday, March 9, 5-7pm, Triad Farms, Dover. It’s the perfect pairing of pork and potent potables, as small-batch bourbons are poured and paired with delectable parts of the pig. Bourbon experts will lead a tasting journey, exploring some of finest examples of America’s native spirit. These promise to be among the hottest events of the festival. $50
Scotch + Cigars: Thursday, March 7, 8:30-10:30pm, Oberod, Centreville. Join us after your dinner to relax with a stogie and a snifter at this Scotch and cigar tasting on the patio of Oberod, one of the finest estates in the heart of Delaware’s chateau country. It’s a magnificent setting for a quiet night out, and one that would make Gatsby envious. Bill Sullivan, the highly respected general manager of the Courtyard by Marriott Newark at the University of Delaware and one of Delaware’s top cigar aficionados, will be the lead storyteller. $50
Single and Malty: Friday, March 8, 9-11pm, Buckley’s Tavern, Wilmington. Take a trip to the Highlands at this tutored tasting event where you’ll sip and sample a variety of single malt Scotches. $60
In the Mix: Mixologists and DJs: Friday, March 8, 9-11:30pm, Festival Village, Rodney Square, Wilmington. Some of the area’s most talented mixologists create cocktail masterpieces using all-American spirits at this late-night party inside the Festival Village tent, where the drinks will shake things up and the music will stir the spirit. $50
Brunch and Bloody Mary Throwdown: Sunday, March 10, 11am-2pm, Noble’s Pond, Dover. Amateurs and professionals compete to create the perfect Bloody Mary. Attendees will vote, and in the final round, the leading amateur and the leading pro will face off in a final battle. Area restaurants will provide tasty brunch foods for a bloody good morning, and sparkling wine will complete the treat. $50
OTHER FUN STUFF:
Scrapplegasm: Saturday, March 9, 8-10am in the Green Room at the Hotel du Pont, Wilmington. The defining breakfast meat of the MidAtlantic gets redefined at this incredible scrapple breakfast, where the only thing you can expect is the unexpected. Pheasant scrapple? Bison scrapple? Anything is possible when chefs tackle the region’s signature breakfast meat, served in addition to everything you’d expect from a traditional Hotel du Pont breakfast. Host Chefs: Keith Miller of the Hotel du Pont and Robert Lhulier of The University & Whist Club. $40
The Great Coffee Roast: Saturday, March 9, 9-11am, Festival Village, Rodney Square, Wilmington. Watch and smell your morning coffee as it’s roasted on the spot. Learn how to “cup” coffee and what makes one roast style different from the next. If that java jolt is your thing, you will come away energized and educated. Free with Festival Village pass.
The MasterChef Tasting Experience: Sunday, March 10, 5:30-7:30pm, Festival Village, Rodney Square, Wilmington. For the Festival’s finale, seven contestants representing all three seasons of Chef Gordon Ramsay’s “MasterChef” TV show on Fox — Christian Collins, Suzy Singh, Dave Miller, Tracy Kontos, Becky Reams and Derrick Prince, plus Wilmington’s own Jennifer Behm, winner of season two — will show off their culinary skills and tell stories from the show. Each chef will prepare tastings for the crowd from the Festival Village Kitchen Stage. Photos and autograph opportunities will be available after the event. Host Chef: Jennifer Behm. $75
The Centennial Tea: Friday, March 8, 2013, 2:30-4:30pm, Green Room of the Hotel du Pont, Wilmington. Join the 100th birthday of the Hotel du Pont at this spectacular Centennial Tea. Served with all the trimmings, from finger sandwiches to petits fours, the tea is hosted by certified tea master Sergio Mueller, and features special tins of estate tea. $50
Desserts by Dana Extravaganza: Friday, March 8, 2013, 8:30-10pm, Wesler Room at The Grand Opera House, Wilmington. Join Chef Dana Herbert, owner of Desserts by Dana and winner of TLC’s popular competition show, “Cake Boss: The Next Great Baker,” as he pairs delectable creations with dessert wines in the sweetest tutored tasting of the weekend. $60