The Austin Food & Wine Festival recently announced a panel of celebrity chefs and restaurateurs from around the country, establishing itself as one of the most prominent events for foodies and gourmands in the area.
Like the Aspen Food & Wine Classic, the collaboration between Food & Wine magazine and C3 Presents (the company behind Austin City Limits Music Festival) features a schedule of top-tier chefs and James Beard Foundation Award winners and nominees, and promises to draw a host of food and wine aficionados to the festival. The event will be held April 27-29, 2012, and will take place primarily at downtown Austin’s Republic Square Park and Auditorium Shores on Lady Bird Lake. VIP tickets are $850 and include an exclusive Friday evening VIP kickoff event with singer Lucinda Williams, reserved access to cooking demos and wine seminars, VIP lounge access, preferred seating and parking, private tastings and a Celebrity Chef VIP event. Top names include Masaharu Morimoto, Gail Simmons, Andrew Zimmern, Marcus Samuelsson and Jonathan Waxman, who are all holding cooking workshops or teaching seminars throughout the weekend. A nationally recognized panel of Texas chefs and restaurateurs will be on hand, including Tyson Cole, owner/chef of Uchi and Uchiko in Austin and Tim Love, Iron Chef champion and owner/chef of The Lonesome Dove Western Bistro and The Love Shack in Fort Worth. Other local names include David Bull (Congress), Paul Qui (Uchiko, Top Chef), Bryce Gilmore (Barley Swine), Rene Ortiz (La Condesa) and Aaron Franklin (Franklin BBQ). Featuring a schedule of hands-on demos and tastings, the festival offers attendees the chance to participate in everything from building a fire and grilling with Tim Love, to filleting the perfect fish for sushi rolls with Tyson Cole. There are also numerous events scheduled to taste wines from around the world, including some of the Lone Star State’s own varietals. If you plan to visit Austin for the weekend, the Four Seasons Austin, is a Harper-recommended hotel, and is also a Austin Food & Wine Festival partner hotel. For more information regarding the event, visit the Austin Food & Wine Festival website.