Saturday, June 23, 2018



Story and photos by Dwight Casimere

 The Krewe of Cork at Royal Street Stroll

Revelers let the Good Times Roll! at the Royal Street Stroll

Dwight The Wine Doctor with Jennifer Wall-Winemaker at Barefoot Cellars

by Dwight Casimere

There's no question that the New Orleans Wine and Food Experience is the undisputed start of the summer Wine and Food Festival scene. Beginning with the Royal Street Stroll on Opening Night, with the Krewe of Cork leading a Second Lin traditional New Orleans Jazz Band, marching lazily down Royal Street and snaking its way through the French Quarter, this is the start of perhaps the country's largest moveable feast.

More that 50 wineries from across the globe and 60 restaurants from every nook and cranny of New Orleans, strutted their stuff before more than 7,000 gourmands and wine enthusiasts who traveled from hither and yon for the experience. Brennan's, Broussards, and the Court of Two Sisters were among the New Orleans legends who sent their best chefs to prepare exquisite gourmet dishes for participants at both the Stroll and the Grand Tasting events, held over two days at the Morial Convention Center. Emerald Lagasse, celebrity chef and television personality and proprietor of his landmark namesake restaurant in the Garden District, was awarded this year's Ella Brennan Lifetime Achievement Award.

Some of the finest wines to be had on the planet were poured at both The Stroll and the Grand Tastings; Barefoot Cellars, with winemaker Jen Wall on the sidelines, celebrating a birthday, Stella Wines, Constellation Brands, Grand Cru Selections, Jordan Winery, Dry Creek Vineyards, just to name a few of the more than 50 winery groups represented.

Immersive experiences included opportunities to blend your own wine cuvee, learn the proper methods of aging and preparing prime aged steaks from a Master Chef, Sausage Making from a James Beard Award-winning chef and a Cellar Stroll through the French Quarter's most famous restaurant wine calls, The Experience also included  a dazzling selection of wine pairing dinners at some of the city's top restaurants, such as R'evolution at the Royal Sonesta, with star-chef Rick Tramanto coming in all the way from Chicago to preside over a multi-course pairing meal with the wines of Ancient Oaks Cellars and Bistreaux at the Maison Dupuy with Executive Chef Matt Regan and Selby Winery.

Here are some scenes from highlights of the NOWFE weekend.

 Tom Roby Executive Cvhef Kingfish prepares Short Rib Sliders

 Chef de Cuisine Bryony Hensel with Soft Shell Crab and Shrimp Kabobs-Lafitte's Den-Old Absinthe House

 Sands Kelly Owner Saundus Sauce Slidell, LA
 Jonathan Emerson-Dir. Food and Beverage

 Scott Maki-Chef/Owner ChewRouge Arabi,LA
 Joe Howell-Sous Chef Windsor Court
 Heritage Pig Tacos

 Casey McClelland Winemaker/Owner Seven Hills Winery, Walla Walla, WA

Corey Jenkins, Banquet Chef (l) Executive Chef Jeff Mattia (c)

 Lena Prima, daughter of the great jazz singer and composer Luis Prima at The Carousel Bar

Rick Tramanto of Chicago-Co-founder R'evolution Restaurant

 Melissa Moholt-Siebert-Owner-Ancient Oak Cellars Sonoma (2nd from l) Greg LaFollette-winemaker (far r) with her parents at the R'evolution Wine Dinner on Bourbon Street
 Melissa Moholt-Siebert and Greg LaFollette preside over the multi-course Wine Dinner
 Maison Dupuy Executive Chef Matt Regan at Bistreaux Restaurant
 Dwight The Wine Doctor at the Grand Tasting

No comments:

Post a Comment