In just a few months Atlanta Food & Wine Festival-goers will once again take over Midtown. In its third year, the festival projects a record attendance of about nine thousand this May, quite an increase from the five thousand attendees in 2011.
Founders Dominique Love and Elizabeth Feichter designed Atlanta Food & Wine Festival to put the national spotlight on the food and beverage traditions of the South and to establish Atlanta as the gateway. To that end, they have created the three-day event composed of learning experiences, tasting experiences and special events.
Each year brings new programming and tweaks to refine the entire experience. Here’s what we can expect this year.
Expect these to become more interactive with seating at round tables (instead of classroom-style) and some chefs instructing from the audience rather than the stage. Classes will now be an hour in length with a 30-minute intermission between sessions, during which chefs will offer small-bite snacks and tastings on the Loews patio.
Programming will explore the theme “old is new again,” Latin influences and women as the guardians and teachers of Southern recipes.
Technique labs will return with classes on how to make items including marshmallows, macarons, donuts and basic cocktails.
Here are just a few of the many classes in the works (subject to change):
There are a few changes in store for the tasting tents this year. The footprint will be expanded, 500 more people accommodated and the layout altered to include beverage pairings within each trail. Here are the trails you can expect to find in the tents this year:
The trails are a celebration of the flavors of Southern regions around the globe including Southern Europe, South Africa, South America, Southern Hemisphere (Australia and New Zealand) and South-of-the-border Mexico.
Dinners and Events:
In its inaugural year, the festival organized a staggering number of dinners around town each evening. Last year fewer dinners were offered and this year the downsizing continues. Expect only a handful of dinners, some of them private.
The JCT Kitchen Pig Out and Rathbun’s Watch List events will remain. For those who went to the JCT event last year, we’re told that they will sell fewer tickets and scatter the food stations throughout the space this time around.
The festival will take place on May 30- June 2. Tickets for the 2013 Atlanta Food & Wine Festival go on sale this Thursday and will offer early-bird pricing until Mar. 18.
*Connoisseur ticketholders may choose reserve seating for general classes in lieu of attending Connoisseur Learning Experiences.
–by Jenny Turknett, Food and More blog