Monday, February 11, 2008

2008 Charleston Food and Wine Festival Announces Line-up

A dynamic list of national talent were announced for the third annual BB&T Charleston Food + Wine Festival, scheduled for February 29-March 2, 2008. The Festival will showcase some of the country's top culinary professionals including James Beard Foundation award winners, expert sommeliers and authors and chefs featured in local and national publications, including Gourmet magazine, Bon App├ętit, Food + Wine Magazine, Travel + Leisure, just to name a few.

Renowned culinary talent of both local and guest chefs, authors, and wine professionals will make this an experience unlike any other. Some of the highlighted guests include celebrated names such as Ruth Reichl, editor of Gourmet, Marvin Woods, chef, author and host of Turner South's "Home Plate", David Chang, chef and co-owner of the Momofuku restaurants in New York City, Suzanne Goin, chef and owner of Lucque restaurant in West Hollywood California, and Gale Gand, executive pastry chef of Tru in Chicago and host of Food Network's Sweet Dreams.

The BB&T Charleston Food + Wine Festival is set to combine the city's best culinary experiences into one spectacular weekend, February 28-March 2, 2008. A food and wine event like no other, the Festival provides guests the opportunity to meet and get a taste of some of the country's best chefs, authors and wine professionals. Guests can educate their palates with Southern cuisine and the Lowcountry's unique food styles, heritage and recipes at one of the 50+ events throughout the weekend. Highlights include the Celebration of Charleston Chefs Opening Night Party, the Restaurant Dine-Around, Bubbles & Sweets, the King Street Sip & Stroll, the Lowcountry Gospel Brunch and the BBQ, Blues, & Brew. An expanded Culinary Village takes over Marion Square Park in downtown Charleston with two Grand Tasting Tents, a Culinary Competitions, Cooking Demonstrations, Chef Tastings and more.

To view the complete list of guest chefs, wine professionals, and authors, visit www.charlestonfoodandwine.com or call 843.722.5547. Tickets on Sale Now!

Chili Cook-Off in Columbia

If you’ve got the best chili in Columbia, prove it on Saturday, February 23 during the Palladium Society's 10th Annual Chili Cook-Off.

The Chili Cook-Off will be held at the Moore Building on the State Fairgrounds from 5:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. Enjoy live entertainment by Flatt City Bluegrass Band, a variety of chili recipes to sample, local celebrity judges, and prizes for the winners. Tickets in advance are $15, $10 for Historic Columbia Foundation members. Tickets at the door are $20, $15 for members. To RSVP, call 803.252.7742, ext. 29 or email reservations@HistoricColumbia.org.

Join the competition to make history and gain bragging rights. The deadline to enter your chili is Monday, February 18. The entry fee is $15. Visit our website at www.historiccolumbia.org to download the registration form or call 803.252.7742, ext. 27 for more information.

Congratulations to SC Restaurants!

Umi Pacific Grille in North Myrtle Beach was rated AAA Four-Diamonds recently (the first in the area), and chefs from the Devine Dining Group won a silver and 2 bronze medals in a recent American Culinary Federation competition.

Circa 1886, a AAA Four-Diamond award-winning restaurant in Charleston, SC., recently added the Mobil Four-Star Award to its list of accolades. One of only four restaurants in South Carolina to make the list, this is the first year the restaurant has received the honor.

Circa 1886, is making its online video debut in a new Podcast featuring Executive Chef Marc Collins. The Podcast, which is the first in a regular series offered by the restaurant, showcases the restaurant’s winter menu and provides tips on cooking with seasonal ingredients.

The Dining Room at Woodlands is a Five-Star Mobil recipient, while the Charleston Grill, Peninsula Grill, and the Ocean Room at Kiawah Island are Four-Star Mobil Travel Guide award winners in South Carolina.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Woodlands' Wines of the World

Not only has Chef Tarver King been recognized in the November issue of Esquire as a "Chef to Watch," the resort located in Summerville, SC has made it easy to do so. The Woodlands is hosting the highly-acclaimed Wines of the World food and wine series the third Tuesday of every month. December 11 and 18 will feature "Champagne and sparkling wines," while the 2008 series kicks off on January 15th with a visit to the private cellars of the top "Burgundy Winemakers."

In addition, on December 1, 8, 15, and 22 they are offering a Christmas lunch and tour starting at $39 per person.

But wait there's more! On December 4th, Chef King will host a truffles cooking demonstration - stay for dinner and the demo is free!

Here is the full Woodlands calendar of events.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Cure for the Turkey Coma

Take a break from leftovers and crowds at the mall and treat yourself and your family to a drive in the country. Split Creek Farm is holding a holiday open house Saturday, November 24 from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Known for their artisan goat cheese and goat milk fudge, they also carry Carolina rice, Timm's Mill grits and cornmeal, Bee Well honey, and gourmet dog biscuits.

Handmade jewelry, baskets, painted gourds and fiber art will be available from arts and crafts folks. And you can get the best goat cheese pizza from their country porch kitchen.

You also might want to check out Harmon's, a tree farm and Christmas House. Enjoy a free train or hay ride, hot chocolate or cider while you pick out your perfect tree.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

South Carolina Sody-Pop!

If you've never heard of Blenheim Ginger Ale then you must not be from around here. Locally brewed and bottled in Hamer, SC since 1903, Blemheim's makes four different flavors - Old #3, Old #5 (not so hot), #9 diet, and #11 Ginger Beer. If it is your first time, be warned...this sweet and spicy brew will set your head to sweating, tickle your throat and make your tongue throb, but it is oh-so-delicious. If you are near South of the Border (I-95 at the North and South Carolina stateline) stop in for a tour. The plant is open Monday-Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Call first at 1-800-270-9344. Hard to find retail outlets outside of South Carolina, but worth the hunt.

If a smoother brew is preferred you might want to check out Dr. Root Beer's Hall of Foam, located at Barefoot Landing in North Myrtle Beach, SC. In addition to the private label root beer, the shop also makes a mean Sweet Sassafrass BBQ sandwich. Be sure to ask which antique signs were used in movies The Bridges of Madison County and Fried Green Tomatoes.

Finally, if you are in Greenville, SC it is worth the hunt to find Smoken' Stokes famous for their Cheerwine BBQ sauce. Just follow your nose.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Holiday Culinary Tours of Charleston

Strolling through beautiful, historic Charleston while savoring chocolate? My dream come true courtesy of Carolina Food Pros. Local food expert Amanda Dew Manning takes you behind the scenes with pastry chefs, bakers, and Chocolatiers while sampling deliciously decadent chocolate desserts at some of Charleston's finest restaurants, bakeries and specialty shops. Every Friday in December from 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.