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Friday, June 13, 2014

Great Deal in Wine Country: A Taste of Napa

Posted By on Fri, Jun 13, 2014 at 9:07 AM

click to enlarge FESTIVAL DEL SOLE
  • Festival del Sole

Next month, Festival del Sole serves up a sweet roster of events: food and wine tastings (something of a driving force for the region), music, dance and even yoga in the vineyards. For star power, Sophia Loren is booked for an event celebrating her son Carlo Ponti as he introduces his new chamber orchestra. The 9th annual festival runs from July 11 to 20 and has one food and wine event in particular that screams "yay, big value!"

A Taste of Napa is priced at $45 and follows a familiar format: walk around. Eat. Look pensive while you watch a cooking demo. Drink. Repeat. 70 Napa Valley wineries, food artisans and chefs are scheduled, including: Ca'Momi Enoteca and Winery, Napa Valley Bistro, Napkins Bar & Grill, Rancho Gordo, Tarla Mediterranean Grill, and the Farmer and the Fox. Wineries range from: Trefethen Family Vineyards to Sterling, Robert Mondavi, Acacia Vineyards, Judd's Hil, Keller Estate and more.

The festivities will for the first time feature live cooking demos worth a watch: Bravo's Top Chef season 7 fan favorite Chef Tiffany Derry will be in house as will hottie wellness expert Dr. Melina Jampolis (I love her tips on eating healthier and she has smart ideas). "BBQ artisans" and craft beer from the Carneros Brewing Company and Napa Point Brewing round things out.

A live recording of the popular food, wine, and travel Dining Around radio program is returning, giving fans a shot at watching Talk 910's Joel Riddell, do his thing. (He is award-winning and charming, what's not to love?).

Hot tip: something I've learned from years of catering and attending tasting events is that the best bounty of food delights always goes to the most earnest of early birds.

Festival del Sole's A Taste of Napa

Where: 500 First St., Napa

When: Saturday, July 12, 11 a.m. to 2 p.m.

Cost: $45, ticket link here

Use that spit bucket and send hot tips to writereadeat (at) gmail. Follow @mladdfood

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Mary Ladd


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