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Austin FOOD & WINE Festival is pleased to announce the addition of seven Tasting Room Sessions and the Chefs’ Showcase, featuring eight of Texas’ top toques cooking throughout the weekend on Festival grounds. In addition to featuring rising-star Texas talent and chefs from across the country, cooking demonstrations, interactive Fire Pit demonstrations helmed by chefs like Bryce & Jack Gilmore, Rene Ortiz, Jason Dady and Tim Byres, the world’s largest hands-on grilling demos, live musical performances and more, the Austin FOOD & WINE Festival will feature over 35 artisanal food purveyors, 45 wineries, and 10 spirits exhibitors during the April 26-28th weekend.

The Tasting Room Sessions will be held on the grounds of Auditorium Shores throughout the weekend, with topics ranging from American winemaking to urban farming. On Saturday, April 27, the Tasting Room Sessions will include Charles Smith on the Charles & Charles Project, where Charles Smith (K Vintners, Charles Smith Wines) and Charles Bieler (Three Thieves, Bieler Père et Fils) will offer insight on being two friends with one goal: pay tribute to France by making the best American rosé. In Altitude Matters, attendees will join Stonestreet’s master mountain winemaker, Graham Weerts, for a blind tasting of high-elevation wines from around the world. Weerts will guide attendees through the challenges and rewards of growing these powerful, mineral-driven wines in vineyards high above the valley floor.  And during Why Washington?, guests will taste why they should be drinking Washington State wines during an informative discussion of how its wine country was formed, and what makes it special, from weather to terroir.  

In Social Media On the Plate: Sharing Takes On A New Meaning, social media guru and food blogger Natanya Anderson will show attendees that sharing at the table in today’s social media-obsessed world no longer requires an additional fork. These days, sitting down to a meal usually involves a phone, an app like Instagram, and some patient friends at your table as you snap, tweet and post your way to sharing every dish coming from the kitchen. This engaging discussion will help decode how and why we’ve all taken to sharing our food adventures and what this means to chefs, restaurants and your next meal.   

Urban Farming Grows Up will show how from rooftop plots to corner farm stands, urban farming has taken root in the U.S. This talk will explore urban farming, both as a trend du jour and as consumers understanding the benefit and importance of food grown locally.  David Pitre and Katie Kraemer Pitre of Tecolote Farm have experienced a 20-year evolution in the popularity of locally grown produce and urban farming, and in their quest to bring locally grown organic foods to Austin, their next project brings produce to the doorsteps of low-income families — making urban and organically grown produce available to an even wider audience.  

On Sunday, April 28, the Tasting Room Sessions will continue with Apple Revolution: Ciders Trending Now, a look into Argus Cidery, the first American Hard Cider crafted in Texas from apples produced by Texan growers. As the  winner of a $10,000 grant by the Austin Food & Wine Alliance (AFWA), Argus is taking the lead on culinary innovation to plant a test orchard in Dripping Springs for experimentation of new apple varieties and rootstocks not grown in Texas, and will be the first Texas apple orchard using organic practices. And last but not least, at Mixing it up: Austin’s Craft Cocktail Scene, David Alan, otherwise known as The Tipsy Texan (also the title of his upcoming book!) and one of Austin’s most beloved bartenders, will share insights and insider tips on the use of ingredients ranging from custom ice to exotic bitters and how locally produced spirits are taking the main stage.  

The full list of scheduled Tasting Room Sessions is available here: http://www.austinfoodandwinefestival.com/ 

The Austin FOOD & WINE Festival also introduces the addition of the Chefs’ Showcase. Over the course of the weekend at Auditorium Shores, eight of the Lone Star State’s brightest chefs will be on-hand to offer tastes of their signature creations to all attendees. The Chefs’ Showcase will include:  John Bates (The Noble Pig); Stefan Bowers (Feast); Shawn Cirkiel (Parkside, Olive & June, Backspace); Jeff Martinez (El Chile); Janina O’Leary (Trace); Jesse Perez (Arcade Kitchen); Sandi Reinlie (Vespaio); and Josh Watkins (The Carillon).

Tickets for the Austin FOOD & WINE Festival come in two flavors: Taste ($250) and Savor ($850). The Taste pass includes access to over 40 demos, seminars and tastings, and daily Grand Tasting events. Purchasers of the Taste pass can also add-on tickets for Friday night’s Taste of Texas event ($150) and/or Saturday night’s Rock Your Taco event ($200). The Savor experience includes priority access to all demos, tastings and hands-on experiences, private Grand Tastings on Saturday & Sunday, access to a VIP lounge with a bar and additional tastings, and access to both the Taste of Texas and Rock Your Taco evening events.

All attendees must be 21 years of age or older with a valid ID.  For more information or to purchase tickets, please visit www.austinfoodandwinefestival.com, or follow us on Twitter @austinfoodwine and Facebook.com/austinfoodwine.

The Austin FOOD & WINE Festival is generously sponsored by FOOD & WINE Magazine, Citi, Buick, H-E-B, KitchenAid, Stella Artois, Republic National Distributing Company, Glazer’s, American Airlines, Tito’s Handmade Vodka, Chateau St. Michelle, Majestic Fine Wines, Elite 25, Spec’s, Big Green Egg and Gottesman Residential Real Estate.

About Austin FOOD & WINE Festival:

The Austin FOOD & WINE Festival marks a compelling collaboration between C3 Presents and some of Texas’ most exciting chefs and restaurateurs, including Tyson Cole, the James Beard Foundation Award-winning Owner/Chef of Uchi & Uchiko in Austin; Tim Love, Iron Chef Champion and Owner/Chef of Love Shack, The Lonesome Dove Western Bistro, TLC Catering, White Elephant Saloon, & Woodshed Smokehouse; and Jesse Herman, owner of the James Beard Foundation Award-nominated La Condesa, Austin, Texas, and La Condesa Napa Valley & Sway. C3 Presents is the Austin-based event company that produces Lollapalooza in Chicago’s Grant Park, and Austin City Limits Music Festival in Austin’s Zilker Park.  The Austin FOOD & WINE Festival will take place April 26-28, 2013, bringing an array of taste, talent and culinary entertainment to the Capital City.  Please visit www.austinfoodandwinefestival.com for future details on the event.

About FOOD & WINE

FOOD & WINE is the modern, stylish, trend-spotting, talent-seeking epicurean brand. Created by American Express Publishing, the luxury-lifestyle authority, FOOD & WINE includes a monthly magazine with a circulation of 925,000; digital editions on the iPad, Kindle Fire, and Nook Color; a books division; and a website, foodandwine.com, with updates on Twitter (@fandw) and Facebook reaching over 500,000 followers and fans.

 

Press release provided by the Austin FOOD & WINE Festival Team (BALTZ & COMPANY, SARAH ABELL)

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