South Walton Beaches Wine & Food Festival Announces Wine and Spirits Seminars and Delicious Accompaniments in the Savor South Walton Culinary Village

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Celebrity winemakers and chefs, master distillers share their passion for their craft during Northwest Florida Beaches Ultimate Wine Week

The new Rosé All Day Garden will showcase the popular wine at South Walton Beaches Wine & Food Festival, April 26-29.

“We strive to bring the winemakers and founders of the most respected brands in the world to the festival to personally share their passion for producing fine wines and spirits with the wine loving audiences,” said Stacey Brady, festival executive director.

One of the elements that sets South Walton Beaches Wine & Food Festival apart from other wine festivals around the country is the focus on education. This year is no exception as winemakers and distillers from around the globe will join together to present tasting seminars that paint a vivid picture of the history, ingredients and processes employed to create some of the most sought-after wines and spirits while participants sample the coveted results.

“While many festivals focus solely on tastings and pairings, we strive to bring the winemakers and founders of the most respected brands in the world to the festival to personally share their passion for producing fine wines and spirits with the wine loving audiences,” said Stacey Brady, festival executive director. “The result is an intimate experience where participants form a deeper connection with the wines and spirits they have come to enjoy, and in some cases, are discovering for the first time.”

The tasting seminars begin on Saturday, April 28 at 1:30 p.m. as Anthony Hamilton Russell and Olive Hamilton Russell of Hamilton Russell Vineyards as well as Southern Right and Ashbourne wineries present “Hamilton Russell Vineyards - Cape wine and classic cuisine.” Anthony will present his spectacular South African wines while Olive, a successful cookbook author, will share exciting foods with which to pair their wines.

The tasting seminar will cover their renowned Pinot Noir and Chardonnay wines produced by Hamilton Russell Vineyards, located in Walker Bay, South Africa. In addition, attendees will taste their lauded white wines produced at Southern Right and Ashbourne wineries. Anthony starts the tasting seminar with his red and progresses with his white wines, one of which was GOLD Medal Winner at the South Walton Beaches Wine& Food Festival International Wine Competition. Find out why Hamilton Russell starts with the red wine and ends with the white wines.

Following the celebration of wines from South Africa, Master Distiller Rob Samuels with Maker’s Mark will lead an educational tasting seminar on Saturday from 2:45 – 3:30 p.m. Samuels is the COO and grandson of the founders and will walk participants through a unique whisky flight, including White Dog (unaged bourbon), Maker’s Mark, Maker’s 46 and Maker’s Mark Cask Strength, while sharing stories of his family’s rich bourbon history.

On Sunday, April 29 from 1:30 – 2:15 p.m., Mathieu Pouchan of Salon Delamotte will kick off the day with an educational tasting seminar on the timeless classic, Champagne. House of Delamotte has been a benchmark in Champagne since 1760 and its sister, Champagne Salon, is regarded as one of the greatest champagnes on the market. It was originally the product of one man, Aimé Salon, from one single region, the Cote de Blancs, from one single cru, le Mesnil-sur-Oger, from one single grape variety, Chardonnay, and from one single vintage, with no blending. The result is a critically-acclaimed Champagne made in the blanc de blancs style.

Pouchan will pour their “Four Important Bruts of Great Charm,” two of which are medal winners from February’s South Walton Beaches Wine & Food Festival International Wine Competition. Pouchan will pour the finest of the Salon Champagne library at Friday’s VIP tasting.

Oregon wine lovers will be thrilled with the second tasting seminar on Sunday. From 2:45 – 3:30 p.m., wine icon David Adelsheim of Adelsheim Vineyard will lead attendees through his journey of founding the Willamette Valley wine industry. By sharing the roots of Adelsheim Vineyard in the Chehalem Mountains, Adelsheim will portray the stellar trajectory of Willamette Valley Chardonnay. Four of his delicious wines will be poured and tasted.

To complement the educational seminars and wine tastings, the Savor South Walton Culinary Village is set to deliver delicacies that pair beautifully with the wines. Lead by the Culinary Director of The Wine Bar, Scott Plumley, the creative spread infuses local produce along with local meats from Heureux Beef just north of Defuniak Springs, Fla., and Coastal Blue Farms in Freeport, Fla. With distinct flavor profiles to blend acidity with bases and balance the wines, the menu includes: Alabama goat cheese fritters with San Marzano Tomato Sauce; avocado sourdough paired with marinated baby tomatoes and Aleppo pepper; Heureux Beef slider topped with aged gouda, tomato-bacon marmalade, and Coastal Blue Farms Micro Arugula; as well as Low Country Shrimp and Grits paired with Conecuh Sausage, Shellfish Nage and Collard Greens.

Award-winning cheeses will also be on the menu. Presented by Gourmet Foods International, world-renowned cheese expert and educator Michael Landis will present a sampling of the American Cheese Society’s Medal-winning cheeses. As the Director of Education for the Institut du Fromage, Landis has been teaching food and beverage pairings for more than 20 years. He is an American Cheese Society Certified Cheese Professional and authorized Educator, Court of Master Sommelier, certified Cicerone beer server and was inducted into the International Guilde des Fromages in 2011.

The venerable Yoshi Eddings of Harbor Docks restaurant in Destin, Florida is a featured chef in one of the Nosh Pavilion on the Boulevard. Yoshi is known as the sushi chef to the stars since she flies to movie sets and wrap parties to make her famous sushi at the personal request of celebrities and movie companies. Ever modest, Yoshi has trained dozens of successful sushi chefs throughout the Southeast and in Northwest Florida. Every year festival attendees line up for Yoshi’s Gulf fresh, hand rolled sushi selections.

Last but not least, participants will want to experience the Rosé All Day Garden, featuring a variety of still, sparkling and even frozen, rosés for enjoyment. Special guest and featured Chef Wesley True, executive culinary director of The Gulf Restaurants and a season 13 Top Chef contestant, will serve his Gulf ceviche with coconut and rose water, a dish that will pair beautifully with the wide spectrum of rosés.

The four-day celebration of wine also includes Craft Beer & Spirits Jam, Spirits Row, a VIP Tasting, live entertainment and more than 800 wines poured by knowledgeable wine industry insiders. The ultimate wine weekend is complemented by the Destin Charity Wine Auction and proceeds from the auction and the festival benefit children in need in Northwest Florida.

Tickets are now on sale. Event details and tickets are available at http://www.sowalwine.com. To purchase tickets, visit https://sowal-wine.xorbia.com/.

Presented by Wine Enthusiast Media, Grand Boulevard at Sandestin and Visit South Walton, the festival offers the ideal backdrop for a beach getaway. The Festival is made possible by the generous support of the following Founding Partners: Destin Charity Wine Auction Foundation, Visit South Walton Tourist Development Council, Florida Restaurant & Lodging Association, Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort & Spa, Wine World of Northwest Florida and Grand Boulevard at Sandestin. ResortQuest by Wyndham Vacation Rentals is the official lodging partner of the festival.

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About South Walton Beaches Wine & Food Festival
This year’s annual South Walton Beaches Wine & Food Festival will be held April 26-29, 2018 throughout the Town Center of Grand Boulevard at Sandestin. The festival features a stunning showcase of the best wines in the world. Meet the celebrity wine producers and master distillers presenting their fine wine and spirits from around the world. The Savor South Walton Culinary Village offers a sumptuous array of foods to taste, wines to pair, as well as wine and food tasting seminars. Visit the new Rosé All Day Garden, Spirits Row and Nosh Pavilions and enjoy live entertainment throughout the weekend. The Craft Beer & Spirits Jam and Winemakers & Shakers events round out the extended festival weekend. The event is a major fundraiser for Destin Charity Wine Auction Foundation, which benefits children in need in Northwest Florida. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit http://www.SoWalWine.com.

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