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May 2014 Food & Wine Events Calendar

The New Orleans Wine and Food Experience celebrates the rich cultural heritage of New Orleans

Seasonal Tip:
HARICOTS VERTS (French green beans) are their best this month. Also, look for these spring items in markets and on restaurant menus: red onions, sweet basil, mangoes and fresh goat cheeses.

April 30-May 3
Washington, DC — 15th Annual Heart's Delight Wine Tasting & Auction
Heart's Delight Wine Tasting & Auction in Washington D.C.
Master winemakers and top chefs gather to play and bid at the yearly wine tasting and auction that benefits The American Heart Association. The event kicks off on Wednesday with an evening featuring the best American wines. Thursday will offer intimate wine dinners with an international flair all over the city. On Friday, folks can enjoy an exclusive Vintners Dinner at the Andrew W. Mellon Auditorium, while on Saturday you can take a virtual tour of Bordeaux. The wine weekend then rounds out with a seated tasting, seminars, food, and live and silent auctions. Participating wineries include Chateau Coutet, Chateau Lafon-Rochet, Chateau Guirad and many others. Tickets range from $250-$2,000. For more information, call 703-248-1720 or visit www.heartsdelightwineauction.org

May 1
Lexington, KY — Ninth Annual Kentucky Bluegrass Wine Auction
The Kentucky Bluegrass Wine Auction takes place during Derby Week
The Kentucky Bluegrass Wine Auction & Derby Gala is a unique event held during one of the most exciting weeks of the year in Kentucky -- Derby Week! The auction is held at the beautiful Donamire Farm. In eight short years, this event has raised over 8 million dollars in support of the Foundation's mission in the fight against cancer. The evening begins with an exclusive vintner pouring and silent auction, followed by dinner and a live auction. Last year's participating vintners included Blackbird Vineyards, Alpha Omega, Skipstone Rance Vineyards, Hess Collection, Carter Cellars and Duckhorn Wines. For more information, call 888-388-2620 or visit www.lexingtonfoundation.com

May 2 & 5
New York City, NY — James Beard Foundation Awards
James Beard Foundation Awards at the Lincoln Center in New York
Considered the "Oscars of the food world," the James Beard Foundation Awards Ceremony & Gala Reception is one of the most prestigious events in the food and beverage industry. This black-tie event will be held at Avery Fisher Hall, Lincoln Center in New York. On May 2, the winners in the categories for book, broadcast and journalism awards will be announced, while the chef and restaurant awards will be given on May 5. Tickets are open to the public for $475. For more information and tickets, call 914-231-6180 or visit www.jamesbeard.org/awards

May 3
Ka'anapali, HI — 25th Annual Maui Onion Festival
The Annual Maui Onion Festival at Whalers Village in Lahaina, Hawaii
Once again, Whalers Village will celebrate all things onion at the 25th annual Maui Onion Festival. Guests enjoy gourmet delights in the food booths, chef demonstrations and recipe contests. Local chefs will demonstrate their unique recipes using the Sweet Maui Kula Onion, said to be the sweetest onion in the world. The Maui Onion Festival has been a signature event at Whalers Village since 1990. Each year, it is enjoyed by thousands of visitors and residents fascinated by the cultivation and preparation of the world-famous Sweet Maui Kula Onion. Enjoy live performances throughout the day. Admission is free, and guests who spend $150 receive a free Maui Onion Festival gift. For more information, contact Whalers Village at 808-661-4567 or visit www.whalersvillage.com

May 3-4
Mountain View, CA — 18th Annual A La Carte & Art Festival
A La Carte & Art takes place annually in Mountain View, CA
The Bay Area's bustling festival season kicks off in Mountain View at this vibrant springtime celebration featuring savory ethnic and classic American foods, premium wines and microbrews, cooking demonstrations, a juried art show, lots of music and fun for kids. Downtown will be transformed into a moveable feast of strolling people and colorful tents. Get your fill of gourmet sausages, crêpes, marinated artichokes, barbecue chicken, fresh fruits, organic produce and more. Located on Castro Street between Church Street and Evelyn Avenue, 10 a.m.-6 p.m. each day. Admission is free. For more information, call 650-964-3395 or visit www.miramarevents.com

May 14-18
Nantucket, MA — 18th Annual Nantucket Wine Festival
Nantucket Wine Festival in Massachusetts
Over the past 17 years the Nantucket Wine Festival has blossomed into one of the nation's most celebrated wine and food events. With the help of Landmark Nantucket Hotel, The White Elephant, most of this year's festival will be staged entirely in the heart of downtown Nantucket. Events include The Grand Tasting taking place in the newly renovated Nantucket Yacht Club, The Harbor Gala dinner event at The White Elephant and seminars led by wine and food experts, including chefs Rick Gresh (David Burke's Primehouse), Timothy Cushman (O Ya) and fromager Louis Risolli (L'Espalier). Tickets range from $45 to $400 per event. For more information, visit www.nantucketwinefestival.com

May 14-18
San Antonio, TX — Culinaria Wine and Culinary Arts Festival
Culinaria Wine and Culinary Arts Festival in San Antonio, Texas
Set against the backdrop of San Antonio's unique Spanish Colonial architecture and celebrated River Walk, the Festival explores the city's Latin and European culinary and cultural roots in the company of wines with world-class credentials. On Wednesday and Thursday, enjoy winemaker dinners at restaurants across the city, taste the Best of Mexico at the Shops at La Cantera on Friday night, be dazzled at The Grand Tasting on Saturday night and kick back with Burgers, BBQ and Beer at The Pearl on Sunday at 1 p.m. Tickets range from $20 to $125 per event. For more information, visit www.culinariasa.com

May 15-18
Paso Robles, CA — 32nd Annual Paso Robles Wine Festival
The Paso Robles Wine Festival in California
The Paso Robles Wine Festival celebrates wine country by bringing nearly 60 wineries to the Downtown City Park. In addition, local artisans and chefs will be found throughout the weekend engaging their cuisine in a dance that highlights the best of both food and wine. Taste award-winning wines from Paso Robles wineries pouring their top bottles at this annual event. Tickets range from $25 to $135 per event. For more information, visit www.pasowine.com

May 16-18
Monterey, CACooking for Solutions
Author and chef Alton Brown at Cooking for Solutions
More than a dozen noted chefs from every region of the United States will act as ambassadors of sustainable dining at Monterey Bay Aquarium's Cooking for Solutions. The focus will be on great cuisine from sources that protect the health of the oceans and the land. Celebrity chefs, among them Lindsay Autry, Art Smith and Hugh Acheson (Five & Ten), as well as special guests like Carla Hall and Food Network’s Alton Brown, will create memorable gourmet dishes, host one-of-a-kind food and wine adventures and present cooking demonstrations that feature sustainable seafood. More than 90 chefs and 70 wineries and breweries will be present for this delicious three-day event. Select events are open only to Aquarium members; general admission tickets range from $50 to $235 per event. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit www.cookingforsolutions.org

May 17-25
Los Angeles, CA — 25th Annual Culinary Evening with the California Winemasters
Culinary Evening with the California Winemaster
Benefiting the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation, this 25th annual celebration — which draws esteemed wineries and chefs each year — takes place at the "Midwest Street" backlot of Warner Brothers Studio in Burbank. More than 70 California wineries and 50 noted chefs — among them David Codney (The Belvedere), Mirko Paderno (Livello) and Brian Malarkey (Herringbone) — across the nation will tantalize the over 1,200 expected guests. Individual tickets cost $375 each (of which $250 is tax-deductible) and table packages range from $2,500 to $10,000. The event is held from 6 p.m. to 10:30 p.m. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit www.californiawinemasters.org

May 21-24
New Orleans, LA — New Orleans Wine and Food Experience
New Orleans Wine and Food Experience

Experience the rich cultural heritage of New Orleans through its local cuisine paired with wines from around the world. This four-day vinicultural and culinary experience kicks off with wine dinners across the city. At the center of the celebration are the Grand Tastings, featuring 1,000 vintages and more than 75 chefs, as well as a cooking demonstration stage. A variety of seminars will be offered, and not to be missed is the Royal Street Stroll on Thursday, an evening outdoor event showcasing the lively city's art scene and architecture alongside live jazz and wine offerings, and the Big Gateaux Show on Friday, where celebrity chefs will host a pastry competition and tasting. Event tickets can be purchased individually and range from $50 to $150. For tickets and more information, call 504-583-5550 or visit www.nowfe.com


May 17-25
Vancouver, BC — EAT! Vancouver Food + Cooking Festival
One of many food booths at EAT! Vancouver Food and Cooking Festival
The 12th annual EAT! Vancouver Food + Cooking Festival will be held May 30 to June 1 at the BC Place Stadium. Visitors will once again explore, taste, sample and shop from more than 200 exhibiting companies showcasing a huge variety of food-, beverage- and cooking-related products. Among the many special attractions, cooking competitions, cheese seminars, wine tastings and restaurant bites, the most popular continues to be the Food Network Celebrity Chef Throwdown -- this year, Rob Feenie, Vikram Vij and Ned Bell will face off in a culinary fight in front of an audience. Ticket prices are $15 for adults, $14 for seniors over 65, $9 for teenagers aged 13 to 16 and free for children 12 and under. For more information, visit www.eat-vancouver.com

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There's always more to learn about wine. Take part in a class, a wine and cheese pairing or a fancy prix-fixe meal at these events across the country.

Eat, drink and celebrate at these festivals, special dinners, happy hours, cooking classes and more from Los Angeles to New York to London.