Pigs n Pinot? Try Pork on The Plaza – This Weekend in Healdsburg. One Event you CAN Get Into.

Pinot Pinot Pinot!

This weekend is the 6th annual Pigs & Pinot, hosted by celebrated chef Charlie Palmer. March 18-19, 2011 at Hotel Healdsburg. The celebratory weekend offers a series of intimate dining and educational events.  Master Sommeliers and international celebrity chefs will showcase some of the world’s greatest Pinots with perfect pork pairings….you had me at Pinot…

(All proceeds from Pigs & Pinot benefit Share Our Strength and local Healdsburg Education (The Healdsburg Education Foundation, St. John school and The Healdsburg School).)

If you didn’t get a ticket to this  sold out, highly sought after event, don’t despair – there is a great alternate option below. But first here is what you will miss:

  • Friday evening’s kickoff event is the lively Taste of Pigs & Pinot where guests sample 60 highly-acclaimed Pinot Noir wines competing in the Pinot Cup competition, both from Sonoma County and around the world. (I was lucky enough to score one of these – will ‘broadcast’ live.
  • On Saturday afternoon, Pigs & Pinot participants can attend two seminars: “Tournament of The Pig” where Charlie Palmer and three guest chefs will divide into two teams to prepare the best pork-inspired dishes as determined by an expert judging panel, and “The Ultimate Pinot Smackdown” seminar led by Master Sommeliers, Keith Goldston, Fred Dame, Drew Hendricks, and William Sherer

    Courtesy of Hotel Healdsburg

  • Saturday evening – Spoonbar’s Celebration of Pigs n Pinot:  An exclusive four-course dinner on Saturday evening at h2hotel’s Spoonbar. This special dinner will begin with a welcome artisan cocktail from h2’s master mixologist, Scott Beattie, followed by an intimate Celebration of Pigs & Pinot dinner created by Spoonbar’s Chef Rudy Mihal and Guest Chef Liza Shaw, formerly of San Francisco’s Southern Italian hot spot: A16. The menu will be paired with acclaimed Pinot Noir from Sonoma County Vintners’ Inman Family Wines and Thomas George Estates along with two top international producers.
  • Saturday evening’s Pigs & Pinot Gala features a sumptuous five-course dinner at Hotel Healdsburg’s Dry Creek Kitchen.  As a collaborative offering, each course features a signature creation from Palmer and his guest chefs including: “Top Chef” brothers Michael and Bryan Voltaggio, Nancy Oakes of Boulevard and Prospect, Marc Forgione of Marc Forgione and Season 3 winner of The Next Iron Chef and Philippe Rispoli of Boulangerie Bistro. Every course will be paired with two limited-production Pinot Noirs from highly acclaimed wineries Merry Edwards, Woodenhead, Rochioli, Bodega Chacra and Domaine Parent.
  • Pigs & Pinot Late Night is a post-gala celebration with after-dinner drinks and dessert in the Hotel Healdsburg lobby.  All Pigs & Pinot celebrants are welcome to attend.


Piggy and Pinot Noir for the Rest of Us: Vintage Wine Estates  – ‘Pork on the Plaza’

Saturday March 19th, 2011 from 5:30 to 7:00 Vintage Wine Estates will host  Chef Mark Stark and award-winning Sonoma Coast Vineyards Winemaker Anthony Austin  in their intimate downtown Healdsburg Tasting Room.

Mark will pair three pork creations with three  Sonoma Coast Vineyards Pinot Noirs and demonstrate how to prepare them.
– Serrano Ham & Manchego Cheese Matchsticks with Chives & White Truffle Honey
-Pork Belly Potstickers with Chinese Five Spice and Shiitake Mushrooms
-Orange Crush Carnitas Sliders with Salsa Verde & Piquillo Peppers

Anthony will introduce you to Sonoma Coast Vineyards and his winemaking philosophy. For tasting, be greeted with bubbles with their 2007 Sea Fog Cuvee Blanc de Noirs and then pair the small plates with: 2008 Petersen Vineyard Pinot Noir 2007 Balistreri Family Vineyard Pinot Noir (a 2011 Pinot Cup contender) 2008 Bodega Ridge Pinot Noir.

Although sold out of the 2006 Petersen Vineyard Pinot Noir, which won Charlie Palmer’s Pigs & Pinot 2008 Pinot Cup,  a few are set aside  to taste.

Cost: only  $60.00 general public, $50.00 Wine Club Members. Price includes 30% off all Sonoma Coast Vineyards wines and a complimentary tasting flight of VWE wines Limited seating, so early registration is recommended. To register for the event or for more information, please call Vintage Wine Estates at 707.921.2893.

About Mark Stark:

CIA trained, Sonoma County celebrity chef Mark Stark has an esteemed career wellbutrin buy from some of the country’s most respected restaurants. Since mov- ing to Sonoma County, Mark has become renown for his innovative and creative approach to food and has developed a legion of devoted fans. With his wife Terri, he opened Willi’s Wine Bar, Willi’s Seafood & Raw Bar and Stark’s Steakhouse among others, all to rave reviews. Created in partnership with Relish Culinary Adventures.

As of today, there is some seating left – call 707.921.2893. And I don’t want to hear the usual ‘we procrastinated and its sold out’ comments later.

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