Thursday, March 10, 2011

Charleston Wine & Food Festival: Opening Night Party

Last weekend was the sixth annual Charleston Wine & Food Festival.  I was really excited to get to help out at the opening night gala.  It took place in Marion Square, and much like last week's Chef's Feast, about twenty local restaurants had tables set up with small plates for the partygoers to dine on while they drank and mingled.

Blake, John, me, and Chef Ramon 

We had time to snap some photos before the crazy influx of people happened.  There were over 1,000 attendees there, which made for a busy night, to say the least.

John and me
Blake and me

Chef Frank Lee and his Chef de Cuisine, Russ Moore

our dish

I was happy that, unlike at the Chef's Feast, our plate was cold rather than hot. There were so many people, we were busy enough as it was without having to actually cook or heat the food to order.

gorgeous tuna, fennel and radish salad, blood orange puree, 
crispy beet chip, olive oil powder, and micro greens

The crudo tasted really great, too. All the flavors together made for a very refreshing, light couple of bites. I think it was a nice contrast to some of the other heavier (but still delicious) charcuterie-oriented dishes I saw.

 I tried to get a crowd shot to show how many people were there

After the crowd started to die down, we enjoyed tasting some of the other restaurants' dishes.  Chef Bacon from Oak was doing a gorgeous homemade (oxtail? not quite remembering...) ravioli, while Chef Brock from Husk was putting out pig's ear sliders which were pretty much amazing.  Overall, it was a lot of fun, and I've enjoyed getting to go to so many exciting events in the past few weeks.