St. Augustine Food + Wine Festival features celebrity chefs, wine tasting and much more
The inaugural St. Augustine Food + Wine Festival featured some amazingly fancy food, celebrity chefs, the best in barbecue, a Mother’s Day Jazz Brunch and, of course, wine.
The four-day event began with the World Golf Hall of Fame Winemaker’s Dinner on Thursday, May 6. The dinner offered six courses, each paired with a complementary wine. The meals were prepared by six different chefs — three guest celebrity/James Beard Foundation award-winning and nominated chefs and three outstanding local chefs — paired with a guest golf celebrity’s wine. The dessert course was prepared by celebrity chef and author Maneet Chauhan, who is well-known for not only her specialized Indian cuisine, but her numerous stints on Food Network, including appearances a judge in the popular “Chopped” series. Chauhan spoke at the event and mingled with fans afterward. There was also a silent and live auction held to raise money for the World Golf Hall of Fame and Jan Stephenson’s Crossroads Foundation.
The second day of the event boasted several Epicurean Master Classes and the popular Smoke on the Walk, which showcased some of the Southeast’s most celebrated pitmasters and grill masters.
On Saturday, May 8, the main event was held outdoors at the Walk of Champions at World Golf Village. The afternoon featured culinary and beverage tastings, along with live music and a VIP lounge. Guests were also able to enjoy the Taste of the South Magazine Demonstration Stage featuring chef and beverage demos by celebrity and local chefs. The Walk of Champions and the World Golf Hall of Fame was filled with a variety of exhibitors, from artisans and farmers and boasted more than 300 varieties of beverages, including wines, spirits and beers.
The event culminated with the Mother’s Day Jazz Brunch, which featured local jazz performers, lavish brunch spread with carving stations, a made-to-order omelet station, seafood station and a wide variety of desserts, as well as a bloody Mary bar, champagne and mimosas.
The festival’s two primary charitable partners included the World Golf Hall of Fame, whose mission is to “celebrate golf and preserve the legacies of those who have made it great,” and Jan Stephenson’s Crossroads Foundation, whose mission is “to provide our disabled veterans and first responders with the tools they need to move forward in life” through the game of golf.