New Wine & Food fest in the works
October 31, 2012By Liz Biro
Wine and food business people in Wilmington have joined forces to create what they’ve named Wilmington Wine & Food Festival to take place in spring 2013.
Organizers talked possible locations Monday at Wilmington Wine, 605 Castle St., during one in a series of meetings that started happening weeks ago.
An exact date and location are still in the works, but festival committee secretary and Juice Wine Purveyors representative Shawn Underwood emphasized that plans are for the event to incorporate the Cape Fear region’s broad wine and food scene.
“Certainly, we want people to drink wine, but we want them to understand its relationship to food,” Underwood said, noting that besides the festival, to be staged downtown, the event would include wine dinners and activities throughout the area.
“We want everybody with an interest in food and wine, even if they’re on the periphery,” Underwood said.
The idea was inspired by the annual Beaufort Wine & Food weekend that happens each spring in Beaufort, N.C., Underwood said. The event pairs food from the town’s chefs and restaurants with great wine. Area wine reps like Underwood attended the event and thought they could duplicate it in Wilmington, Underwood explained.
Wilmington’s festival will benefit Cape Fear River Watch, which works to protect and improve the river’s water quality, and 1000 People Who Care, which is aimed at adding and enhancing green areas in Wilmington.
A Wilmington Wine & Food Festival kick-off wine dinner is planned for Nov. 19 at Rx Restaurant and Bar. Each of the seven courses will be paired with wine. Just 40 tickets, $75 each, will be sold and can be purchased at Rx, 421 Castle St.
A series of wine-and-food pairing classes also are planned in December at Rx, Underwood said.
A number of businesses have been involved with Wilmington Wine & Food Festival planning, Underwood said, including Dionysus Wine Distributors, Juice Wine Purveyors, Choice Specialty Wines, Wisdom Beverage, Country Vintner, Wilmington Wine, The Fortunate Glass, Deluxe, Rx and Divine Wines.