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Top winemakers and culinary superstars to gather at Kapalua Wine & Food Festival

By Staff | Jun 1, 2017

KAPALUA – The 36th annual Kapalua Wine & Food Festival is just around the corner, June 8-11, and promises to be another spectacular weekend gathering of top winemakers, superstars from the celebrity chef scene and homegrown Maui favorites.

To purchase tickets online, visit www.kapaluawineandfoodfestival.com.

On Thursday, June 8, the Welcome Reception will be held on the Plantation House Restaurant’s Lower Lawn from 5 to 6:30 p.m. The reception is open to invited guests and four-day pass holders.

Events on Friday, June 9, will begin with the Festival Golf Tournament?at The Bay Course in Kapalua at 7 a.m. Advance registration is required.

The “Regional Focus: New Oregon” wine seminar and tasting will be held at Merriman’s Kapalua from 12:30 to 2 p.m. The Willamette Valley is evolving, and there is a great movement underway – an evolution of viticulture, winemaking and flavor! Discover some of the top players on this scene and taste some amazing samples of their newest projects.?Confirmed winemakers/wineries include Adam Lee of Siduri, Tony Rynders of Zena Crown Wines,?Jay Somers of J. Christopher Wines and?Erik Kramer of Willakenzie Estate Winery.

The “Regional Focus: Cruising Highway 101, Paso Robles” wine seminar and tasting is slated at The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua from 3 to 4:30 p.m. Enjoy road-trippin’ through Paso Robles and their 11 new AVA’s diversity of grapes, styles and fun! Confirmed winemakers/wineries include Scott Shirley of Justin Vineyards,?Matt Trevisan of Linne Calodo, Chloe Asseo of L’Aventure Winery, and Karl Wicka of Turley.

At “The Grand Tasting-Kapalua Style” at Montage Kapalua Bay from 6 to 9 p.m., premium wines are showcased with fabulous gastronomic indulgences from Kapalua Resort restaurants and friends. Enjoy a walk-around tasting and evening under the stars – all on the oceanfront grounds of Montage Kapalua Bay. Dishes by Cane & Canoe,?Honolua Store, Maui Culinary Academy, Merriman’s Kapalua, Pineapple Grill, Plantation House, Taverna, and?The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua will be accompanied by desserts, Gourmet Cheese Station provided by HFM Food Service,?Petrossian Caviar Station, premium wines, Kona Brewing Company beer and a Bombay Sapphire specialty craft cocktail bar. Enjoy the OluKai Experience Tent, where the newest in their handcrafted, island-inspired designs are showcased. Enjoy entertainment by the four-piece string band Bravado and preview the newest in luxury vehicles by Lexus, official vehicle of the festival.

The lineup on Saturday, June 10, begins with “Varietal Focus: Rising Rockstars of Pinot Noir,” a wine seminar and tasting, at The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.?Amazing Pinot Noir specialists are now building up-and-coming wineries in the heart of California’s Pinot Paradise. Discover these great winemakers’ newest projects. Confirmed winemakers/wineries include?Jeff Gaffner of Ram’s Gate, Tony Lombardi of Lombardi Wines, Bibiana Gonzalez Rave of Cattleya Wines, and Bob Cabral of Three Sticks.

Celebrity Chef Andrew Sutton will lead a cooking demonstration at The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua from 1 to 3 p.m. Chef Sutton of Disney’s Napa Rose prepares cuisine celebrating the bounty and heritage of California, inspired by the seacoast, farms and diverse flavors of the state. Hosted by Master Sommelier Michael Jordan and paired with exquisite wines, the event will feature the wines of Williams Selyem.

“Historic Focus: Family Tree – Scions of the Vine” will be held at The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua from 3:30 to 5 p.m. This seminar honors the great legacies of historic family wineries. The tasting brings together second- and third-generations winemakers and their winemaker parents to share their history, secrets, great stories and killer wines. Confirmed winemakers/wineries include Gary & Jeff Pisoni of Pisoni Vineyards,?Lee & Regina Martinelli of Martinelli Winery, and Herta & Lisa Peju of Peju Wines.

Events on Sunday, June 11, begin with “Regional Focus: Baja Mexican Magic, An Emerging Region with Five Valleys,” a wine seminar and tasting, at The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua from 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.?Valle de Guadalupe in Baja California wine country has been growing grapes and producing wine for many years. There are over 130 different Italian grape varieties alone, along with grapes from Spain, France and NO RULES! Delicious wines made by artisan winemakers and an incredible emerging region are just waiting to be discovered. This is a must-see region!? Confirmed winemakers/wineries include Fernando Martain of Cavas Valmar,?Tom Bracamontes of Corona del Valle, Alberto Rubio of Fluxus, and Daniel Lonnberg of Emeve/Literal/ Canada de los Encinos.

A cooking demonstration with Celebrity Chef Cat Cora will be held at The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua from 1 to 3 p.m. Cora is an American professional chef and restaurateur best known for her featured role as an “Iron Chef” on the Food Network television show “Iron Chef America” and as co-host of “Around the World in 80 Plates” on Bravo. Hosted by Master Sommelier Michael Jordan, the event will feature a selection of Greek wines.

“Varietal Focus: Classic California Cabernet Sauvignon,” a wine seminar and tasting, is slated at The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua from 3:30 to 5 p.m. A star-studded tasting with classic California wineries famous for producing stellar wines. Enjoy a great study of sites and styles, texture and flavors from Napa Valley, Alexander Valley and Sonoma Valley. Confirmed winemakers/wineries include Kristina Werner of Arrowood Winery, Rob Davis of Jordan Winery, Philippe Melka of Melka Wines, Sam Kaplan of Arkenstone, and Marcus Notaro of Stag’s Leap Wine Cellars.

The Seafood Festival will conclude the weekend at The Ritz-Carlton, Kapalua’s Aloha Garden Pavilion from 6 to 9 p.m. Maui’s top restaurants will showcase a seafood specialty and culinary creation in competition for Maui No Ka Oi Magazine’s “Best of the Fest” award. Premium wines, Kona Brewing Company beer and Bombay Sapphire specialty craft cocktails will be served. Perennial favorite Nuff Sedd will provide rocking tunes to dance the night away.

Participating restaurants include Cane & Canoe, Fleetwoods on Front St., Gannon’s in Wailea, Humuhumunukunukuapua’a, Japengo, Morimoto Maui, Pacific’O, The Banyan Tree, Tommy Bahama, Hula Grill Kaanapali, Maui Culinary Academy/Laulima Catering, Pulehu, Roy’s Kaanapali, and Sea House Restaurant.