Sunday, July 28, 2013

TANGLEWOOD (Lenox, Ma) Wine & Food Classic is a MUST to Attend--August 15th-18th by Philip S. Kampe

Tanglewood, the summer home of the Boston Symphony Orchestra, to me, means music, perhaps a rock concert, scenic beauty and a picnic.
But, from August 15th (Thursday) to 18th (Sunday), Tanglewood means a lot more.
Tanglewood, from those dates, is the home of the ‘Tanglewood Wine & Food Classic’, supervised by Debbi Otto, head of this great event.
The four day event focuses on wine and food. If you have not attended the Tanglewood Wine & Food Classic in the past, this is a great opportunity to learn about food and wine from some of the country’s leading authorities.
Experts from both fields will lead seminars, tastings and wine dinners within the bucolic Tanglewood setting.
The four-day schedule is designed specifically for the consumer to learn, from experts in the field about wine, food, cheese and chocolate.
If there is ever a week to support Tanglewood, this is the week. All of the events take place on the grounds of Tanglewood and are void of large crowds.
Consider attending the wine and food events during the day and afterwards, why not take in a concert at the shed or Ozawa hall.
The main action takes place on Saturday, August 17th (1-4pm) at the Grand Tasting at the Hawthorne tent ($105), which features hundreds of wines to sip, many dishes to sample and hourly cooking demonstrations by chefs like Richard Bourdon, owner of Berkshire Mountain Bakery (1:30-2pm) and Jeff Thompson, executive chef of Lenox’s Wheatleigh (2-3pm).
Opening this great schedule of events is a ‘Pio Cesare Wine Dinner’ hosted by Chefs Jimmy Bradley, chef/owner of the Red Cat and the Harrison in Manhattan and David Dubois, chef/owner of the Franklin Café in Boston and overseer of the Franklin Restaurant group. The wine tasting dinner begins at 5:30pm and end at 8pm. The event takes place at Tanglewood’s elegant dining/social facility at Seranak ($195).
 Pio Cesare wines were founded in 1881 by Cesare Pio, focusing on the terroir of Piedmont (Alba) and producing the regions finest Barolos, Barbarescos and Barbaras.
Also on Thursday evening, the Formal Gardens Tent hosts Ihsan Gurdal’s ‘Farmhouse Cheese’ presentation ($55), where the focus and discussion will center on some of Ihsan’s favorite farmhouse cheeses from small producers.
Pittsfield’s own, Jim Nejaime, owner of Spirited wines will lead a ‘Blind Tasting’ on Friday night, August 16th from 7-8pm at the Hawthorne tent ($55). Jim will explore the geographical difference a location and terroir make in regard to the same grape varietal development.. Jim is a motivational speaker and a leader in the Berkshire wine scene.
Lydia Shire, known for her creative, innovative menus will pair her dishes with the wines from Duckhorn Vineyards, which will be represented by northeast ‘Brand Ambassador’, Frank Barbagallo. The dinner ($195) will take place from 5:30-8pm on Friday, August 16th, in the Formal Garden Tent.
Duckhorn was founded in 1976 and has been crafting Bordeaux varietals from the Napa Valley for over 35 years. Personally, the best wine tasting event I have attended, was an event hosted by Duckhorn Vineyards.
Prior to the Grand Tasting, on Saturday, Joseph Carr will host a ‘High Noon Wine Tasting’($55) at the Ozawa tent. Joseph is a friend of mine. He makes incredible wines at his Carneros (Ca) Vineyard, which he founded in 2005. His winemaking projects include the Napa Valley, the North coast and the Stag’s Leap district. His winemaking projects are both innovative and experimental. The results will surely please you.
The final day, Sunday, August 18th, of the ‘Tanglewood Wine & Food Classic’ focuses on two great ‘sweet’ events.
Chef Joanne Chang will pair her bakery sweets with Veuve Clicquot Chanpagne at Searanak from 12-2pm ($70). Chef Chang will bake her treats from recipes taken from her two best selling cookbooks.
If Chef Chang is not sweet enough, join local chocolate guru, Josh Needleman, founder of Chocolate Springs (Lenox) from 12-1pm at the Formal Gardens Tent ($55) to learn from Mr. Needleman’s seminar the relationship between chocolate and port wine.
Josh will pair his homemade chocolates with three Graham’s Ports, Six Grapes, 10 year old Tawney and 20 year old Tawney.
What a way to end the ‘Tanglewood Wine & Food Classic’.

Philip S. Kampe

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