Presented by The Sarasota-Manatee Originals, this four-day culinary celebration brings together celebrated regional chefs and world-renowned vintners.
(Sarasota, Florida) Tickets go on sale November 11, 2013, for the much anticipated seventh annual Forks & Corks Food & Wine Festival, January 24-27, 2014. Presented by The Sarasota-Manatee Originals (SMO), the four-day culinary festival features the anchor event, The Grand Tasting (January 26), in the courtyard of The Ringling Museum; various winemaker events at area restaurants and retail shops (January 24, 25); Forks & Corks University’s food and wine and seminars (January 25) in Michael’s Wine Cellar and Ballroom; and a trade event for area restaurants, retailers and hoteliers (January 27).
The Grand Tasting tickets are $95 (plus service charges) and include free admission to the museum’s art galleries on the day of the event. VIP tickets are $250 (plus service charges) and include a $100 wine voucher for purchases made at The Grand Tasting, VIP parking, early admission to the event, a champagne reception, a guided tour of the art museum, covered seating at the event, and an invitation to the kick-off party. Tickets for The Grand Tasting go on sale Monday, November 11, 2013, at 5 p.m., and can only be purchased online at www.dineoriginal.com/forksandcorks. Ticket details for other Forks & Corks events will be available online soon.
“Since these tickets are the most sought-after in town, we recommend that people buy their tickets early,” says Kate Atkin, executive director of SMO. “Last year, The Grand Tasting tickets sold out in less than four hours. We predict they’ll sell even faster this year.”
The Grand Tasting features signature dishes from the area’s top chefs, along with a vast array of wines and beers presented by guest vintners and breweries. “More than 70 wineries—and about 40 individual winemakers—are participating this year,” says Michael Klauber, chair of the event. “We’re thrilled with the response from the international and national winemaking industry. This has become a major showcase event for them.” Klauber says that this year’s winemakers hail from France, Italy, South America, New Zealand, California, Oregon and Washington. “The great news is that guests will be able to purchase their favorite wines after sampling them at The Grand Tasting. We set up a special retail tent and have the wine loaded in their cars to take with them that day. Many of the wines available at the Grand Tasting aren’t available readily for purchase, so we always suggest that people buy that day,” he says.
This year’s The Grand Tasting will feature a silent auction of fine wines to benefit All Faiths Food Bank. “Raising money for area non-profit groups is a vital element of this event,” says Atkin. “We’ve raised more than $220,000 over the past six years for our charitable partners and hope to continue to raise much needed money for these worthy organizations.”
For more information about the seventh annual Forks & Corks Food & Wine Festival, visit www.dineoriginal.com/forksandcorks, or call 941-365-2800.
About The Sarasota-Manatee Originals
The Sarasota-Manatee Originals is a not-for-profit organization, founded in 2003, of more than 50 locally owned, independent restaurants in Sarasota and Manatee counties. Member restaurateurs are dedicated to preserving the culinary heritage of the Suncoast.