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South Beach Wine & Food Festival
The South Beach Wine & Food Festival is right around the corner. This is the tenth year of the festival, and an expected 50,000 food and wine lovers will enjoy four days of fun, food, wine and spirits on the beach in Florida. Everyone who is a Food Network culinary rock star will be there (Rachael, Guy, Giada), and even the not so famous, like me! Sad to say, the tickets to my events are already sold out. But in case you're curious (or want to stand by in case there's an opening), here they are:
February 25 The Betsy Hotel, 5:00 p.m. - 6:30 p.m.
Wine & cheese party co-hosted with wine guru Josh Wesson
Wild and fun wine guy Josh Wesson and I will be co-hosting this rooftop soiree just as the Florida sun is setting. We've chosen cheeses and wines from around the world, and the pairings will be sublime, just like the setting itself.
February 26 W South Beach 12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m.
Grilled cheese and wine pairing
Seminar attendees will learn how to turn this lunchtime favorite into something heavenly with a delicious menu of grilled cheese twists: fruit, veggies, herbs, spices, different types of bread, and of course the cheeses in between. But that's not all. They'll also taste the sandwiches and the cheeses on them with the wines I've chosen just for this event.
February 27 W South Beach 11 a.m. - 12 p.m.
Northern Italian Cheese and Wine seminar with Andrea Robinson
Andrea and I will be taking seminar-goers on a delicious romp through Northern Italy, where the windy hills leads to complex and memorable cheeses and wines and, of course, pairing of the two..
Cheese and Wine of the Pacific Northwest
By now, most people know that some of the best wines in the world are coming from Oregon and Washington, but did you know that the cheeses being made in those states are equally stellar? At this class, you'll find that out first-hand when I'll be pairing Pacific Northwest cheeses with the amazing wines of the region. I guarantee it will be a spectacularly delicious experience and a fun evening.
The Great Cheeses of Wisconsin
If you thought the cheeses of Wisconsin were ho-hum, think again. This class is your chance to sample the truly spectacular cheeses being made in the Dairy State. After all, a certain Wisconsin cheese didn't win Best of Show at this year's American Cheese Society annual competition for nothing. And to think it's the third time that same cheese has won. Come taste that extraordinary cheese along with many other cheeses in what's sure to be a very special evening of great cheese and wine.
Ferry Building Farmers' Market Cooking Class
Once again, I'll be firing up the stoves (and oven) to cook up some cheesy dishes for farmers' market-goers. Please stop by, watch a little cooking, and most of all taste the creations culled from recipes in my books. It's sure to be a fun and educational morning as always.
Santa Fe Wine & Chile Fiesta
If you like wine, cheese and good food, and if you've always wanted to see Santa Fe, do NOT miss the 20th anniversary of the Santa Fe Wine & Chile Fiesta. It's one of my favorite events all year, and this year is certain to be more special than ever. This year, I'll be leading a seminar focusing on the cheeses and wines of the Pacific Northwest. In the course of this extensive tasting of some of the best cheeses and wines of the region, we'll be able to figure out once and for all whether the saying, "what grows together goes together" is true or maybe just a romantic notion.
American Cheese Society Annual Conference
This annual conference is a must for anyone that loves cheese, wants to learn about it, and wants to taste just about every cheese being made in the United States. This year's conference is going to be particularly special not only because of a great line-up of events but also because the keynote speaker is none other than Michael Pollan, author of the groundbreaking The Ominvore's Dilemma: A Natural History of Four Meals, In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto, and his new book, Food Rules: An Eater's Manual. Few people have affected the national dialog on food more than Michael Pollan. Check out the American Cheese Society website for the latest information, which includes a humorous and informational video promoting the conference.
SF Chefs 2010
Ace sommelier Christie Dufault from restaurant RN74 and I will be teaming up to do Slam Dunk pairings -- cheese and wine pairings sommelier and cheese-gal style at the 2nd annual SF Chefs 2010 food and wine extravaganza. You'll get the lowdown on how to pair cheese and wine by tasting some amazing cheeses and wines. Joining us on the panel will be none other than Karl Wente, winemaker at the iconic Wente Vineyards. He'll be bringing a couple of his stellar wines and explaining how they get to be so darn good. Put them with cheese and we're talking amazing. But that isn't all. Everybody that comes to this session will receive a copy of my book Laura Werlin's Cheese Essentials. Cheese, wine, a sommelier, a winemaker, and a book all in one session? Now that's a great deal.
Join Rainbow Grocery cheesemonger and author Gordon Edgar and me as we talk through life and cheese lessons by way of stories and an extensive cheese and wine tasting. 18 Reasons is a special place, and I'm pretty sure that this collaboration with Gordon will make it a special evening. Sign up now before it sells out.
Food & Wine Magazine Classic at Aspen
I am thrilled to once again be leading the cheese seminars at this crème de la crème of events. I mean, Aspen? Food & Wine? Together??? I'm particularly excited about this year when one of my seminars will be devoted to the humble yet exalted grilled cheese sandwich. I'll be presenting four sandwiches from my book Great Grilled Cheese and pairing them with four wines. I'll also be showcasing and pairing the four spectacular cheeses that will be in each of the sandwiches in their unmelted form. But great grilled cheese isn't all. Once again I'll team up with Chicago's fantastic wine guy, Brian Duncan, for a seminar on French cheese and French wine pairing. Mais oui!
If there's a more exciting ongoing food and wine program than the one at the spectacular Blackberry Farm, I'd like to know about it because it's hard to imagine. I am thrilled to have been invited to lead a two-and-a-half day celebration of cheese, which will include cheese education, cooking, eating (lots), cheese and wine pairing, and a tour of the farm where cheesemaker Adam Spannaus makes his award-winning sheep's milk cheeses. By all accounts, Blackberry Farm is a very special property, and I can't think of a better place to focus on and celebrate cheese than one where it all begins: the farm.
This shop is a culinary treasure. For anyone that loves food and loves reading about it this a must-visit destination. Owner Celia Sack is constantly sourcing culinary books that only she seems to know exist. But not to be overshadowed by the past, Celia also features present-day authors as well. On this day, I will be that author and will be talking about the rise of American cheese and serving a little of it too.
All American Cheese and Wine
When Steve Jones started Steve's Cheese, he was doing so with little else but passion. But he turned that passion into a viable business to the point where he's now changed locations, names, and expanded the business to feature cheese, craft beer, and wine. Christened The Cheese Bar, Steve's new place is likely to be a roaring success. I'm excited to be able to check it out first-hand with a casual book signing alongside my friend and fellow cheese book author, Tami Parr, author of Artisan Cheese and founder of the Pacific Northwest Cheese Project and Tumalo Farms owner, Flavio DeCastilhos, who'll be handling out samples of his unparalleled aged goat's milk cheeses. A local craft brewer will be on hand to complete the tasting extravaganza. I promise, this is going to be a great evening. Alas, Steve has been so busy he hasn't gotten his website up and running yet, but you can find The Cheese Bar at 60th and Belmont.
Pebble Beach Food & Wine
I'm pretty much over the moon to be participating in the 3rd annual Pebble Beach Food & Wine extravaganza. I'll be presenting cheese and wine pairing while in the company of luminaries like Thomas Keller, Jacques Pepin (this year's most-deserved honoree), Iron Chef Michael Symon, Michael Chiarello, and the awesome chef at Meadowood Resort, Christopher Kostow. The Pebble Beach setting absolutely can't be beat, and the amount of fantastic wine and food can't be either. If you live in the Bay Area, it's easy to check out just for the day, but you'll be happy if you stay the weekend.
I really love it when cheese and wine can come together for a cause. In this case, that cause is ALS aka Lou Gehrig's disease, and the fine folks at Carmichael Salon will be gathering good eats, entertainment, and yours truly to celebrate our good fortune while hopefully helping improve that of others. If you're in or near San Francisco, please come by. It's the best $10.00 you'll ever spend.
California's Artisan Cheese Festival
Come to Petaluma in Sonoma County for an artisanal cheese extravaganza. Spectacular cheeses from California, Oregon, and Washington are the stars of the show where you'll get to meet the cheesemakers, sample their cheeses, taste wines from local, small producers, and attend cheese seminars conducted by the cheesemakers themselves as well as by cheese educators and retailers. I'll be among the presenters and will be conducting two seminars. The first one is "Cheese Essentials", in which I'll be leading a tasting of the eight basic styles of cheese paired with two amazing wines, including the brand new Migration chardonnay, the first-ever white wine by this Duckhorn Wine Company brand.
Plan on a few laughs in the second seminar when I team up with Seattle's Beecher's Handmade Cheese founder and entertainer extraordinaire Kurt Dammeier as we present Washington cheeses and Washington wines. You'll not only walk away with tips on how to pair cheese and wine but you'll also learn about Washington cheeses, which is a sector of American cheese growing by the minute. Make sure to buy tickets for the Festival soon, which is held at the lovely Sheraton in Petaluma.
The Friday night barn dance at Green Spring Farm featuring great food, cheese, and beer and the Saturday night extravaganza, "Curds, Cooks, and Cuvees: A Moveable Feast of Eight Courses Featuring Great Cheese, Food and Wine," are both events you definitely won't want to miss. I promise.
Cheese and Beer
New World cheeses and wines
New World cheeses and wines (cheeses from Australia, New Zealand, Canada, and the United States!)
Northern Italian cheeses and wines
Wine and Cheese Pairing with Duckhorn Wines
Talk about an incredible event. Join me along with Duckhorn Vineyards winemaker Bill Nancarrow as we pair fantastic cheeses (truffles, anyone?) with the spectacular Duckhorn Vineyards wines. These will include their famed Pinot Noir, Goldeneye (no less than their single-vineyard Gowan Creek) two brand new wines not yet on the market (I have one word for them: WOW), the now infamous Duckhorn Three Palms Vineyard Merlot, the unique zinfandel-based Bordeaux style wine, Paraduxx, and of course, Duckhorn Sauvignon Blanc. This is all being held at the beautiful Auberge du Soleil resort high above the Napa Valley. Sign up soon 'cause spaces are going quickly.