events Fourth Annual BB&T Charleston Food + Wine Festival
February 2009

The table is set for the fourth annual BB&T Charleston Food + Wine Festival, March 5-8, 2009. This four-day event will combine Charleston, South Carolina’s best gastronomic experiences into one delicious weekend. Guests will have the opportunity to indulge in the unique flavors of Lowcountry while tasting the epicurean delights of the country’s best chefs, authors, and wine makers at more than 50 events throughout the weekend. Attendees and supporters of the Festival, a 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization, lend a hand in raising charitable donations for the MUSC Children’s Hospital and area culinary-related charities.

Top chef Bobby Flay, an icon of Southwestern cuisine, is the star of the weekend with events such as the “Flay Down” South Charity lunch, book signings, and a burger demo. Other highlights include the Dine-Around event, in which Charleston’s finest restaurants share their kitchens with nationally acclaimed guest chefs, and the Food and Wine Pairing Cruise. And, of course, the Culinary Village Grand Tasting Tents are not to be missed.

Highlights from Schedule of Events
For a full schedule of events click here.


JMC Charleston presents Food Glorious Food Culinary Excursion  
($250 per person)
Food Glorious Food Culinary Excursion leaves from the historic steps of the U.S. Custom House in downtown Charleston. The outing sets off with an exclusive behind-the-scenes tour of the Food for the Southern Soul warehouse, a 15,000 square foot facility right outside of Charleston, SC. Pitmaster and owner, Jimmy Hagood has an enthusiasm for Southern cuisine which guests will welcome as they enjoy samples of shrimp sauce, dry rubs, stone-ground grits and artichoke relish. Guests will learn the secrets of making Hagood’s award-winning BBQ sauce utilizing a 40 gallon steam kettle. Right next door, guests will find themselves surrounded by the heavenly smells of the Charleston Cookie Company factory. The group will tour the facility and learn how these prized cookies go from factory to the shelves of high-end retailers. A high-noon luncheon along the banks of Folly Creek at Crosby’s Dock will wrap up the afternoon. A Southern BBQ lunch will be served followed by scrumptious deserts by Charleston Cookie Company. The amazing views from Crosby’s dock and the bluegrass sounds, provided by The Bluestone Ramblers, will embody Charleston’s coastal character and charm. Guests will then return to the starting point at to the U.S. Customs House.

Ben Arnold Beverage Company Presents Salute to Charleston Chefs: Opening Night Party ($100 per person, ticket includes commemorative glassware)

The Festival gets underway in grand style with the Opening Night Party, presented by Ben Arnold Beverage Company.  This signature kick-off event features over nineteen of Charleston’s top chefs serving small plates of the finest cuisine in the city. This annual fete is the best way to taste the Lowcountry’s premier restaurant creations under one roof.  Wines from across the country will be poured, from intense full-flavored Cabernets to bright, citrusy Pinot Gris and everything in-between. Charleston’s smoothest jazz musician Quentin Baxter and his ensemble provide the musical backdrop as tantalizing sweet treats are presented by the Lowcountry’s top dessert companies. With a cigar bar provided by Coastal Cigars and a signature cocktail, featuring Brown-Forman brands, created by the winner of the 2009 Festival Mixologist Competition you won’t want to miss this party!


Opening Ceremonies (Free and open to the public)
Join area dignitaries and Festival supporters for the official Opening Ceremonies at Marion Square. Schramsberg vineyards sparkling wines will be sabered and poured for guests to celebrate! The winner of the once-in-a-lifetime chance to cook on stage with Bobby Flay during his Burger Demo on Saturday will be announced! One thousand tickets were sold but there can only be one winner, will it be you? Free and open to the public. Robert Dickson will set the afternoon into motion with a vocal performance of Food Glorious Food. 

BB&T and FedEx present Flay Down South Charity Luncheon hosted by Bobby Flay 

($125 per person. $25 of the ticket price benefits the MUSC Children’s Hospital)
Critically-acclaimed chef/restaurateur, award-winning cookbook author and Food Network television personality Bobby Flay throws down a lunch “Southern Style”. Together with the executive chefs from his celebrated restaurants Mesa Grill, Bar Americain and Bobby Flay Steak they will present five stations of American southwestern cuisine complemented with a Southern twist. Flay Down South Charity Luncheon, presented by BB&T and FedEx, benefits the MUSC Children’s Hospital. Chef Flay will entertain the audience with his good natured banter and charm during this stellar event. Guests of the luncheon are invited to stay and attend the Live Charity Auction afterwards.

The Ultimate Cheese + Wine Pairing with Caviar & Bananas Seminar
($45 per person)
Cheese is as diverse and unique a topic as wine.  Place of origin, textures, ingredients, methodology and aging all play in the creation of the great cheeses we see on gourmet shelves.  Together wine and cheese can be either a brilliant success or a horrible experiment gone awry.  Learn the basics of cheese and the best pairings from Mike Black, Sous Chef at Caviar & Bananas.

Brewmasters Beer School ($35 per person)
The Brewmasters Beer School will provide an opportunity to learn firsthand about the brewing process and the amazing range of beer styles that are unique in their ability to gracefully accompany any combination of plate and palate. Head Brewmaster Angelo Cayo, Anheuser-Busch Brewery, Catersville, GA, will detail why beer is an excellent companion with a wide range of foods, from casual to fine dining. Guests will have the opportunity to sample several varieties and styles along with the Brewmaster. 

Restaurant Dine-Around
$150 per person (Dinner includes five-course tasting menu with paired wine, tax and gratuity. Cash Bar)
Each year the sell-out Dine-Around event provides guests an extraordinary opportunity to dine in one of Charleston’s finest restaurants as local chefs share their kitchens with a nationally acclaimed guest chef. Many of these guest chefs are James Beard Award winning talents and owners of 4-star restaurants. Together these chefs partner their skills with a host restaurant to craft a five-course tasting menu paired with exclusive wines for a dining experience that is anything but ordinary. Each of the eighteen restaurants will host a featured winemaker who will be on-hand to share their professional experiences.


Culinary Village + Grand Tasting Tent Ticket: Saturday AM / PM
($55 per person, ticket includes commemorative glassware)
The hub of the Festival, the Culinary Village is anchored by two Grand Tasting Tents, sponsored by The Charleston Club at Daniel Island and FedEx, hosting more than seventy companies featuring samples of specialty foods and unique wines.

The Culinary Village Ticket includes commemorative glassware and entrance into the Grand Tasting Tents at the selected time and unlimited all day access into the BB&T Hospitality Tent, the SCE&G’s Celebrity Kitchen Tent and the Charleston Cooks! Book Signing Tent.Saturday ticket holders can also attend the Certified SC Grown Cooking Competition Tent and BB&T’s Bobby Flay Cookbook Signing as part of their ticket. When purchasing a Saturday ticket guest MUST select a specific time for entry into the Grand Tasting Tents!

The Art Institute of Charleston and BB&T present Bobby Flay’s Burger Demo  
($30 per person)
Ever wondered how to make the ultimate burger? Critically-acclaimed chef/restaurateur and Food Network television personality Bobby Flay will show you how! Since recently opening Bobby’s Burger Palace he has gathered all the ingredients for this classic staple and will share with you the secrets to creating the perfect gourmet burger. Demonstration only. No food will be served. Guests will have access to the Bobby Flay book signing immediately following the demo inside the BB&T Hospitality Tent. 

Women Rock! ($45 per person)
Women are rockin’ the wine world these days. Taste the wines and meet some of these women winemakers and winery owners. Listen to them talk about their insight into the wine industry and what sets their wines apart from the rest.  They will discuss their winemaking techniques and individual wine styles.  Come celebrate women and wine!

Masters at Work: Food and Wine Pairing
($75 per person)
Come experience extraordinary creations from the kitchen paired perfectly with wines by Sara Floyd, Master Sommelier, Jorge Ordonez Wines and Craig Locascio, CWE. You will sample tapas made by Chef Robert Del Grande from Café Annie, TX and Chef Ben Berryhill of Ben Berryhill’s Red Drum, SC. You will leave with a greater understanding of the magical synergy between food and wine and the skills to create your own perfect pairings. Best of all you will be cruising on the Charleston Harbor and will have chance to have see one of the best views around. 

Viva Italia! Seminar ($45 per person)
Italy is a pillar of the wine industry and has some of the longest vinicultural history in the world. Italy’s glowing reputation with wine is due to not only the fact that it produces and exports more wine than any other country but that it offers the greatest assortment of wine varieties. Come discover what Italy has to offer you. Long live Italian wine!

The Green Debate-Organic, Sustainable, Biodynamic
($45 per person)
Strip away the mystique and after all, wine comes from grapes – it’s an agricultural product like any other.  We’re all hearing terms like organic, biodynamic and sustainable agriculture but what do they mean?  Learn what these processes are and, most importantly, how they do or don’t impacy the flavor and earth-friendliness of our wines.

Mixology 101 Seminar ($50.00 per person; almost sold out)
Join Tim Laird, America’s C.E.O. (Chief Entertaining Officer), for a fun and spirited session on mixology and the history of the cocktail.  This festive demonstration will include sampling and many new cocktail building ideas. 


Lowcountry Gospel Brunch ($55 per person)
Spend Sunday morning relaxing in the Holy City at the Lowcountry Gospel Brunch. The sound of gospel music by Voices of Deliverance fills the air as some of Charleston’s top restaurants and caterers serve the best brunch in town. Traditional style cocktails will be served along with a 3-course menu of miraculous adaptations of a true Lowcountry brunch. When purchasing tickets guests MUST select the restaurant/caterer that they wish to dine with.

Bourbon Tales from the Whiskey Trail ($45 per person)
How much do you know about bourbon? Come learn and taste with Hans and Becky Offringa, The Whisky Couple and writers for the Charleston Mercury. They will conduct a panel alongside Julian Van Winkle, Old Van Winkle Distillery, and other Kentucky bourbon trail distillery masters, discussing the finer points of bourbon. You will taste several batches from different distilleries including some of the highest quality bourbon made. 

Culinary Village + Grand Tasting Tent Ticket: Sunday ($45 per person, $35 for locals;  ticket includes commemorative glassware)
The hub of the Festival, the Culinary Village is anchored by two Grand Tasting Tents, sponsored by The Charleston Club at Daniel Island and FedEx, hosting more than seventy companies featuring samples of specialty foods and unique wines.

The Culinary Village Ticket includes commemorative glassware and unlimited all-day access into the following tents: Two Grand Tasting Tents, BB&T Hospitality Tent, SCE&G’s Celebrity Kitchen Tent and Charleston Cooks! Book Signing Tent.

South Carolina Education Lottery Presents BBQ & Blues
($75 per person)
BBQ & Blues, presented by the South Carolina Education Lottery, is a local’s favorite way to end the weekend. Top southern pit masters and “que” professionals serve a variety of barbeque favorites-whole hog, brisket, ribs, shoulder and chicken alongside all the fixin’s. Chef Fatback and the Groove Band return to rock the main tent as guests enjoy cold libations and a true Southern celebration. Special smoked fish presented by Dan Long of Crosby’s Seafood and a BBQ Lowcountry Boil presented by the South Carolina Education Lottery.

Featured Desserts + Companies:

Assortment of cupcakes, Cupcake, Charleston, SC
Caroline’s Famous 7-layer Caramel Cake and 7-layer Southern Chocolate Cake, Caroline’s Cakes, Annapolis, MD
Chef Fatback’s Famous Peach Cobbler, Chef Fatback, Columbia, SC
Banana Pudding, Food for the Southern Soul, Charleston, SC

(The festival is a 501 (c)(3) non-profit organization, and profits will go to support the MUSC Children’s Hostpital and area culinary-related charities.)