Hilton Head Wine & Food Festival Kicks Off Its 33rd Year

Thursday, March 8th, 2018

The Hilton Head Wine & Food Festival, sponsored by Publix, is currently underway at The Sea Pines Resort. A year of hard work by volunteers, board members, and staff has culminated in this 33rd annual celebration of wine and food in the Lowcountry.

While local restaurants will be hosting wine dinners to delight the senses during the week, the sold-out seafood cooking class with executive chef Matthew Roher is the first official event on Thursday, March 8th. A Comparison of Burgundies from France and Oregon with Scott Cohen and the classic Sip & Stroll along the Harbour Town Yacht Basin accompany the cooking class as Thursday’s offerings.

“Support from so many business owners in our area is what allows us to show off the best the Lowcountry has to offer,” said Festival Director Jeff Gerber. “Our presenting sponsor, Publix , along with The Sea Pines Resort and other integral sponsors have helped us create a world class event right on Hilton Head Island.”

At “Blends from Around the World,” attendees will taste through six different blends from Napa, Australia, Argentina, Washington, Italy and France. Tom Hines, from Trinchero Family Estates and chair of the 2018 festival board, will help oenophiles experience the differences in the wines from each country and how they are used in blending in each region.

Friday evening features the always popular Grand Tasting while Saturday offers this year’s Public Tasting at The Sea Pines Resort complete with a beautiful backdrop of majestic oaks and beautiful yachts. Each year tickets go fast for the early events including the sold-out Sip & Stroll, Grand Tasting, and VIP experience at the Public Tasting event.

Wine lovers from around the world attend the one-of-a-kind Public Tasting at the Harbour Town Yacht Basin. Roughly 50 labels will be present pouring over 250 wines, so guests can find the perfect pinot, cabernet, or sparkling wine to suit their tastes. This year, in addition to the auction of competition wines benefitting the John & Valerie Curry Educational Scholarship Fund, some 30+ wines will be available to purchase, including best in show winners, Lucien Albrecht Brut and Klinkerbrick Rose.

Favorite local restaurants and talented chefs will be making sumptuous meals and tastings for guests. Competitions like the Sysco Outdoor Gourmet Challenge with the Lowcountry’s top chefs, the always entertaining waiter’s race, and the Blue Chair Bay Bartender Challenge create a fun-filled atmosphere.

The week winds down with a new tradition, spanning the last few years, a champagne brunch. The Sea Pines Resort is hosting the Southern Fried Chicken Brunch sponsored by Nicolas Feuillatte from 11:00 am to 1:30 pm, the perfect way to close out the wine festival. With over a dozen wine dinners hosted throughout the week as well (notably including the Trinchero Family Estates Wine Dinner at the Heritage Room in the Harbour Town Clubhouse immediately following the Grand Tasting), the festival promises to continue its tradition of being a true Southeastern celebration of wine and food.

Supporters know that the Hilton Head Island Wine & Food Festival is far more than a good time, having raised more than $54,000 in the last five years alone for local USCB and Technical College of the Lowcountry students.

Tickets for most of the week’s events are expected to sell out. Those who wish to attend are encouraged to buy their tickets before they are gone. For information on how to purchase tickets, and the scholarship fund, visit the festival website at: www.hiltonheadwineandfood.com.