Fine wines. Elegant dinners. It’s everything you’d expect from a world-class food and wine event. But look into the corners of the 2013 MidAtlantic Wine + Food Festival, and you’ll find some small-batch bourbons. Gourmet scrapple. And stogies smoked out back behind a great stone estate. Yeah, there’s just a little bit of hipster running around this joint.
There’s something to satiate just about every curiosity or appetite at this year’s event, all while raising funds for nine Delaware arts organizations. Find these events, and more, on midatlanticwineandfood.com:
• 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
• 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
• 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
• 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
• 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. It takes place inside the Festival Village tent, where the drinks will shake things up and the music will stir the spirit. $50
• 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
Other Festival events in New Castle County include:
• Restaurant Lunches: Mediterranean (Piccolina Toscana), South Africa (Buckley’s Tavern), Rioja and Tapas (Orillas), Argentina (Harry’s Savoy Grill), Chateau Tanunda (Domaine Hudson), French Connection (University & Whist Club), Chesapeake (Harry’s Seafood Grill), Martinelli Wines (Domaine Hudson) and Belgian Beer (Union City Grille)
• Master the Blind Tasting (Delaware Museum of Natural History)
• Winemakers Dinners at private homes and exclusive properties (Mt. Cuba, Oberod and private residences)
• The Centennial Tea (Green Room of the Hotel du Pont)
• 937-Point Wine Tasting (Delaware Center for the Contemporary Arts)
• Pop-Up: Restaurant 2020 (Vicmead Hunt Club)
• Desserts by Dana Extravaganza (The Grand Opera House)
• Sweet William Bakes (Delaware Children’s Museum)
• Tasting with the Pros (Green Room at the Hotel du Pont)
• 1,000-Point Wine Tasting (Gold Ballroom at the Hotel du Pont)
• Wine + Chocolate Tasting (Christina Cultural Arts Center)
• Champagne + Caviar Tasting (Christina Room at the Hotel du Pont)
• South African Braai (Festival Village)
• Gala Wine Dinner + Live Wine Auction (Gold Ballroom at the Hotel du Pont)
• Gospel Brunch (World Café Live at the Queen)
For more information, visit midatlanticwineandfood.com or call 302.660.2200.
About the MidAtlantic Wine + Food Festival
The MidAtlantic Wine + Food Festival boasts dozens of events over four days in formats ranging from small, intimate dinners to gala black-tie events. The region’s premier food and wine event has grown with the support of scores of partners, restaurateurs, chefs, distributors, breweries, the Wine Guild, international winemakers and visiting chefs.
Tatiana and Gerret Copeland, proprietors of Bouchaine Vineyards in Napa Valley and long-time patrons of the arts, co-chair the 2013 festival with Ajit Mathew George, chairman of Strongpoint Atlantic.
All net proceeds from the 2013 festival will benefit nine Delaware arts organizations through the MidAtlantic Food + Wine Feast Charitable Fund at the Delaware Community Foundation. The 2013 beneficiaries are the Christina Cultural Arts Center, the Delaware Art Museum, the Delaware Center for the Contemporary Arts, the Delaware Symphony Orchestra, the Delaware Theatre Company, the Grand Opera House, the Kent County Fund for the Arts, OperaDelaware and the Rehoboth Beach Film Society.