A four-week French Wine Academy beginning March 4 at the downtown Bristol Bar & Grille (614 W. Main St.) will feature Beaujolais, Bordeaux, Rhone and Burgundy wines.
“The super cool thing is once you learn about French wine it can really help you with everything else,” says master sommelier Scott Harper, corporate wine and beverage director at the Bristol and instructor for the series of classes. “You learn about where the grapes come come and that helps you (understand other wines).”
Though the class “isn’t necessarily for the beginner ... if you were a beginner you could still gain something,” Harper says. “It’s for wine enthusiasts who want to lean more.”
Half of each two-hour class will be devoted to a presentation on one of the major wines with the other hour spent on tastings, according to Harper, with about “eight or so” wines tasted in each class. “It will help build ideas of what wines you like,” he says.
“Sometimes French wine can get a bad rap of being serious and expensive,” says Harper. “And we’ll have some expensive wines, but it’s not as if it’s all serious and staunch. … It’s more of a lively informative class ... and bad humor,” he adds with a laugh.
The classes take place 6:30-8:30 p.m. Mondays, March 4-25. The cost is $159, or $299 per couple, for registration before Feb. 25, after which the cost increases by $10. Materials are included. Participants must be at least 21.
More information: (502) 582-1995 or www.bristolbarandgrille.com.
Culinary conference coming
The 2013 American Culinary Foundation Southeast Regional Conference takes place March 1-4 at the downtown Marriott (280 W. Jefferson St.). “People downtown the weekend of March 1 will probably be wondering why there are so many people in chef coats wandering around,” says Dan Thomas, conference co-chair. “We expect around 400 to 500 chefs from around the region to be in attendance.”
Though the event is geared toward food professionals, all food enthusiasts are welcome. Many local chefs will take part in conference events, including Dean Corbett, owner of Corbett’s An American Place, as keynote speaker.
The conference includes educational seminars and demonstrations featuring local experts such as Joy Perrine, bartender at Equus & Jack’s Lounge and co-author of “The Kentucky Bourbon Cocktail Book”; Matt Jamie, founder/president, Bourbon Barrels Foods; and Barbara Turner, chef instructor, Sullivan University.
“A big part of the conference is the culinary competitions,” says Thomas. He will be competing along with a number of other local chefs and students for various regional awards. Dallas McGarity, the ACF Kentucky Chapter Chef of the Year, will be competing for a chance to represent our region for the National Chef of the Year title at the national convention in Las Vegas this summer.
“We have really put a lot of local flair into this, as we want to showcase our local culinary community,” Thomas says.
Learn more: www.acfchefs.org/regionalconferences.
Holly Hill Inn launches bourbon society
The newly created 1785 Bourbon Society from Holly Hill Inn in Midway aims to educate bourbon drinkers and enhance their appreciation for bourbon through activities including palate training, mixology, food pairings and cooking with bourbon as well as help participants gain an understanding of bourbon’s origins and history. Tasting classes, bourbon-themed dinners, presentations by bourbon makers and field trips to bourbon producers are also on tap.
Tim Knittel, a professional bourbon educator and former general manager of Holly Hill Inn’s Culinary Program at Woodford Reserve Distillery, directs the program. The society is named for the year Bourbon County was formed.
“This is such a natural project for us. We’re located in the heartbeat of bourbon country and our experience with operating a similar program, our very successful Wine Guild, has been wonderful,” says Ouita Michel, chef/owner at Holly Hill and chef-in-residence at the Woodford Reserve Distillery. “Much as with wine, the flavors of bourbon pair really nicely with the cuisine we offer at Holly Hill.”
The first meeting and dinner, scheduled for Feb. 22, sold out quickly, but plans for more are under way. Membership in the society is free, with events priced individually; email email@example.com to join.
More information: www.hollyhillinn.com/ or (859) 846-4732.
“502 Restaurant Week” launches Feb. 22 and runs through March 3. More than 20 local restaurants will feature special pricing of either $50.20 for two people or $50.20 per person for a full meal. www.502restaurantweek.com
Southern Living magazine, for the second straight year, has named Louisville one of the “Tastiest Towns in the South” (Louisville was second to Lafayette, La., last year). Vote for Louisville online at www.southernliving.com through Feb. 28.
The Irish Rover (2319 Frankfort Ave.) is hosting an opportunity at 6 p.m. on Feb. 26 to compare the world’s great whiskey styles. Tasting flights will feature examples of Scotch, Irish and bourbon whiskey, along with tasting notes and experts on hand to guide your tastings.
Lynn’s Paradise Cafe will refund gift cards today and Saturday from 1 to 7 p.m. at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, 830 Phillips Lane.
Heine Brothers’ Coffee is opening a new location at 4901 Brownsboro Road (in a former Vint Coffee location) at 6 a.m. today. The first 52 customers to arrive will win free coffee every week for a year; customers 53 through 100 will receive 10 free coffees.
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