And the Winners Are?
Following the footsteps of last years successful event, the 2nd annual Ventura County Wine Trail Food
and Wine Challenge
was held lastThursday at the Embassy Suites
in Oxnard. The turnout of about 400 was terrific, with people coming
from all over the county.
Twelve local wineries paired up with as many eateries to try to create
the perfect food and wine pairing. In addition, a portion of the
proceeds went to benefit the Ventura County FOOD Share.
This years winners were split into two groups. First, a panel of judges
from both the food and wine industry, tasted the pairings. The wine was
served blind, so as not to bias any opinions. A secondary award award
was given called the "People Choice" award, handed out at the end of
As I kept going around the room asking people their opinion, I found
that the fans were taking the event very seriously. They did not make
quick decisions. They all had a handful of favorites and were trying to
narrow down their decisions. I thought that all the contestants did an
outstanding job and that everyone was a winner. The wines were
exceptional, which in itself speaks for the quality of wines being
produced locally. I myself, also struggled with trying to make a
decision. After the first go around, I had it down to five different
groups. Another observation that I saw was the passion, fun, and
commitment from both the wineries, winemakers and the chefs that I was
able to communicate with.
The winners were announced as the event was winding down. The awards
were as follows:
People's Choice Award
Cantara Winery and Twenty 88 Wine
2009 Intrepid, a blend of Syrah,Cabernet and Cabernet Franc paired with
crispy short ribs with peppers, onions and a dark cherry blend
Bella Victorian Vineyard and
Bella Victorian Bistro
2008 Bella Elena Syrah paired with wild boar stew over pancetta, root
vegetables and mushroom
My deepest congratulations to all the participants and winners. By the
way, the two winners were on my final list of five that I mentioned
See you next year.
Questions or comments?
Reach me at :
last month's "Let's Talk Wine" article by Eric
Ventura Wine Bars
County Wine Trail
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