Monday, May 9, 2011

Pebble Beach Food & Wine, a Legendary Epicurean Experience on one of the world’s most Picturesque Coastlines

Cuisineist Editor-In-Chief Elaine Harris

Pebble Beach, the Spanish Bay Inn and the Lodge have been known throughout the world for decades for its resort lifestyle and what many consider one of the most picturesque coastlines in the world. The fourth Pebble Beach Food & Wine was an experience that words and pictures really don’t do the event as a whole justice; you really need to be there. Upon checking in on the first day, guests are given the event program. It actually resembles a small novel. The 257 page , 8 ½ by 11 , high gloss ‘epicure’ IV Pebble Beach Food & Wine Presented by American Express Publishing Publication contains Chef Profiles , Schedule of Events , Interviews with Celebrity Chefs , Master Sommeliers and even recipes. Just leafing through the ‘epicure’ gave an overall view of this very upscale event where only the very best in Food and Wine is presented.

Starting with The Opening night Reception at the Spanish Bay Inn, guests enjoyed dishes from 23 celebrity Chefs and sampled wines, many from the world’s top 100 producers. And if you like bubbles , The events Bubble Lounge featured Champagne Krug , Dom Perignon , Veuve Clicquot La Grande Dame just to name a few.

 And then there were the Celebrity Chefs. Guest sampled culinary genius from Graham Elliot , Roy Yamaguchi , Claudine and Jacques Pepin , Shawn McClain and Grant MacPherson as well as many more names that your are sure to know. After seeing how the Pebble Beach Food & Wine was kicking off we could not even imagine what two full days of events would bring.

The first full day gave us a wide variety of choices to start the day. But where do you begin with events that feature Champagne Louis Roederer Cristal or dessert with Top Chef Yigit Pura or a wine seminar and tasting on Super Tuscans or an interactive lesson in blending? We joined Master Sommelier Andrea Robinson for her Breakfast of Champs : Champagne , Bacon , Eggs and Caviar . Tasting some of the world’s finest caviar along with Champagne and Sparkling wines as Andrea Robinson hosted, was a wonderful way to start the day. Do you even think about lunch when the mid day hour tolls after a breakfast like that ? Sure you do when at Pebble Beach Food & Wine! .

Chef Mark Estee , PINTADE TRIO  , Breast , Crepinette and Agnolotti

 The selection of luncheons included a Belgian Beer lunch, another featured Sustainable Delicacies from the Sea and then there was the Chefs Table Lunch with Michael Chiarello and Graham Elliot ; there was something for everyone.

We decided on the lunch at Club XIX at The Lodge overlooking the world famous 18th hole at Pebble Beach. Five Chefs treated us to a 5 course lunch and Champagne Reception featuring ‘REAL’ food outdoors with the 18th hole at Pebble Beach as our backdrop underneath a beautiful blue, cloudless sky.

The 18th Hole at Pebble Beach

Pebble Beach Food &Wine kept the hits coming in the afternoon with a Family Meal with Tyler Florence , and Chateau de Beaucastel pouring their historic wines from Chateauneuf-du-Pape and other wine events . We stopped in on Laura Werlin and “ A love affair with Cheese and Wine” for an educational experience on cheese and wine pairings and lovely wines from Domaine Serene . As the first day moved into the evening hours, guests could get formal and spend the Evening with Michelin Stars for an epic meal or enjoy Food and Wine Magazine’s Chef Alumni dinner or even some Haute Cuisine with Champagne Krug. Just experiencing the first day was a foodie and wine aficionado’s version of heaven and the Pebble Beach Food & Wine was just getting started.

On the second day at Pebble Beach Food &Wine, events were at full steam . Guest’s could start the day with Tom Colicchio , explore Burgundy’s Grand Crus and even a Pinot Noir Blind tasting. We found our interest drawn to a Bordeaux Retrospective featuring Chateau Lagrange and Chateau D’ Issan where we began with the 2005 vintage and worked our way back to 1985 .
 A very nice vertical to start off the day ! Lunch time brought guests a lively Interactive lunch with Guy Fieri and then off to the Saturday Grand Tasting where we strolled amongst over 300 wineries and 25 celebrity Chefs.

Chef Ressul Rasallat

Evening fell upon Pebble Beach but that in no way meant the day was over. With dinners featuring The Stars of Napa Valley and Food & Wine Magazine’s Best Sommeliers , a Tribute to Tom Colicchio and of course the Grand Finale Dinner featuring Charlie Trotter , Michel Richard and Gary Danko . All of these events gave the guests a nice choice of dining with culinary legends.

Any event of this stature had to finish with a bang or in the case of Pebble Beach Food & Wine, Bubbles! A nice way to wake up for the last day at this prestigious event was attending a 1990 Vintage Champagne Tasting , featuring Champagnes and Sparkling wine from around the world. The Sunday Lexus Grand Tasting brought more wineries and even more celebrity Chefs for us to enjoy. Even if you attended the Saturday Grand Tasting, Sunday brought a whole new experience to tantalize your palate.

Pebble Beach Food &Wine is an event that takes its guests into the Stratosphere with culinary events that most foodies only can imagine  with a literal dream team of celebrity Chefs. In addition to the culinary stars, this upscale event features an All-Star team of Sommeliers , many of whom have attained the Master Sommelier level to educate the guests with seminars and dinners featuring many s of the World’s finest wines. For those who want an upscale Food and Wine experience, Pebble Beach Food & Wine in Pebble Beach is the only place you should be next spring. We plan on being there for the 5th Pebble Beach Food &Wine and hope to see you there.

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Elaine and Scott

Elaine and Scott
Elaine and Scott