Check our website the week of August 27 to see the schedule of events before the on sale date
1. Mark Your Calendar: The dates of the festival are Wednesday, March 4 – Sunday, March 8. The annual Opening Night Gala presented by the Art Institute of Charleston will kick off the festivities on Wednesday, March 4.
2. Culinary Village will run from Friday, March 6 through Sunday, March 8 from 12-6pm each day. Your $85 ticket ($70 for locals on Sunday) grants you access to a full day (6 hours) of eating, drinking and merriment throughout the Village. Tickets are offered daily as First Taste or Second Taste, which is your 2 ½ hour tasting experience in the Baker Motor Company Grand Tasting Tent. Spend the rest of the day enjoying new Village features, including our new Summers Corner Third Space with chef conversations and tastings, a SCE&G hands-on kitchen, Diageo cocktail pop-ups, live music and more. Start dreaming about your date with the festival in March for a full day of food, drink and fun!
3. Perfectly Paired dinners have become Signature Dinners! Signature Dinners allow local chefs to work creatively with their guest chef and winemakers to create a once-in-a-lifetime experience for guests. Become putty in the capable hands of our chefs and beverage experts as they collaborate to celebrate the decade. Signature Dinners will take place onThursday, Friday and Saturday nights. Spreading them out allows more opportunities to experience the Signature Dinners local chefs and their guests are creating exclusively for the festival.
4. Our annual poster celebrating Year 10 (X) will be available for purchase on-line early this year – 8.27.2014! We’re delighted to share our poster collaboration with esteemed Charleston-based artist Jonathan Green. His work, Loaded Rice Barge, evokes the rich cultural stories of the Lowcountry, its food and traditions. Expect the full story about this inspiring collaboration soon.
Annual Poster Sneak Peek!
5. Storytelling is the festival theme for 2015, and the stories of our chefs, our purveyors, our ingredients, and guests joining the festival will be at the heart of the BB&T Charleston Wine + Food experience. We’ll launch an oral history program with Southern Foodways Alliance to collect culinary stories of the Lowcountry on their new SFA Oral History Bus (on loan from Jim ‘N Nick’s) parked at the Culinary Village.
6. Our new website is launching the week of August 27th (keep your eyes peeled for a first look at the 2015 ticket schedule) and will showcase our schedule of events confirmed and ready to go for launch! Ticket sales will begin the morning of Wednesday, August 27th.
7. Friends have benefits, including a preview of our ticket schedule and an ability to purchase tickets before they go on sale. If you’d like to be a friend, call Nysa Hicks at 843-727-9998 x8 and enjoy these perks for the 2015 festival. Your donation not only gets you perks, but most importantly it supports our non-profit organization.
8. What to expect from BB&T Charleston Wine + Food? The 2015 events will be more intimate, so be sure to check our new website to find out when an event is close to selling out. The event schedule is more festive and friendly, and with over 25 events under $100, we have culinary experiences for every budget.
9. X MARKS THE SPOT: Win tickets to the festival all year simply by finding inspiration in our decade! The Roman numeral for 10 is X, and all year we are celebrating the 10-year anniversary of Wine + Food with stunning X images that showcase Charleston, our food, our chefs, and fun! Hashtag #CHSWFX across social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter,Instagram) and you automatically enter to win tix – first up, Party @ The Power House tickets for 8.27.2014. Enter to experience the decade with us!
10. Enjoy a SNEAK PEEK some of the events at the 2015 festival: Fish Fry + Clam Bake at home with Chef Mike Lata, High Tea with Nathalie Dupree and guests, Cross-Culture BBQ featuring pit masters paired with top chefs’ twists on a Southern staple, Signature Dinners, and a Culinary Village that features delicious and festive experiences in every single area.
We hope you are as amped as we are to celebrate the decade of BB&T Charleston Wine + Food! See you at the Party @ The Power House – our ticket launch presented by Limehouse Produce on 8.27.2014 (rain date: 9.03). Tickets are almost sold out!
The board of directors of Charleston Wine + Food is a vital part of our non-profit. These professionals volunteer their time with support, feedback, and insight to help supervise and manage our organization. Heralding from a range of industry leaders in Charleston, the board shapes and steers our organization as a whole. They also enthusiastically support the mission and values of the festival, and act as our ambassadors in the Charleston community and beyond.
We would like to wholeheartedly welcome our new board members to the Festival for 2015, and take this opportunity to introduce them. They will serve a 3-year term with Charleston Wine + Food.
Frank Bullard, BB&T, Coastal Regional President of our Signature Title Sponsor
Richard Bush, Owner and Partner of the Bush Law Group, P.C. has developed a keen sense of Charleston and offers legal expertise.
Harry Root, President of Grassroots Wine LLC in Charleston and wine and spirits expert
Kevin Johnson, Executive Chef and Owner of The Grocery, has had plenty of experience in the food and beverage industry and with the festival as a chef at our opening night galas, intimate dinners, and other events. He steps in as Chef Liaison.
David Marconi, Director of Operations at S.N.O.B, and co-creator of the restaurant in 1993, offers valuable insights into the development and hospitality of the Charleston restaurant industry.
Rick Rubel, Wine Director of Charleston Place Hotels and a wine sommelier at Charleston Grill, has an impeccable palate, a keen understanding of the wine industry, and will be lending his expertise to take our beverage program to new levels.
Boris Van Dyck, founder of IceBox, has been on the Beverage Committee of Charleston Wine + Food for years, and he is stepping into a more robust role to bring our cocktail and beverage program to new heights.
Suzanne Wallace, Director of Sales at the Charleston Area Convention & Visitors Bureau, deftly understands our industry from a hospitality and tourism management side. Her work spearheading our 2015 Hotel Committee (along with Linn Lesesne) has already made significant contributions to our long-term success.
Rick Widman, owner of the Circa 1886 and Charming Inns, has significant experience in the hospitality industry as a Founding Board member nowreturning. He and his wife Linn are active throughout hospitality, hotel, and culinary groups locally and internationally.
We would also like to gratefully recognize and thank the board members rolling off this year. The caliber of expertise among board members never ceases to amaze us. Thank you, Randy Byerly, Melissa Clegg, Patrick Emerson, Helen Hill, Frank McMahon, and Steve Palmer for all of your hard work and dedication to this festival – we sincerely appreciate it!
Food is how a Southerner says hello and welcome. From a glass of sweet iced tea to our grandmother’s favorite family recipe, Southerners have been eating, drinking and sharing our food gospel for generations.
Over the last decade, the culinary scene in Charleston has grown and blossomed into one of the most thriving hospitality communities in the world – our pristine waters, historic downtown, and delicious Lowcountry ingredients make Charleston the quintessential spot to call home (or adopted home).
In 2006, Chef Marc Collins of Circa 1886 asked a simple question: Why? Why doesn’t Charleston have a festival to celebrate its rich food traditions and natural bounty? A group of food (and Charleston) lovers came together, and overseen by Southern Grand Dame Nathalie Dupree, Angel Postell and a host of other innovators, BB&T Charleston Wine + Food was born.
Ten years later, we are looking back in awe and honor of the hard work, community, love, dedication and communion that came before. And we are looking forward to the future of BB&T Charleston Wine + Food. How will our Festival grow and innovate over the next decade while keeping our charm? How do we remain homegrown, fun and festive, while staying fresh and modern? These are questions we ask ourselves everyday, and we are also posing these questions to our community – chefs, restaurant owners, farmers, historians, hoteliers, friends, farmer’s markets, food producers, journalists and more. What we’ve heard are some amazing stories about the festival and the culinary community in Charleston. From new artisanal products conceived, grown and created in the Lowcountry to the struggles and triumphs of perfecting a southern staple to add to a menu, personal stories offer rich insight into our region. They remind us what we savor and celebrate during our annual festival.
That is why we are launching our theme, Storytelling, to honor a decade of BB&T Charleston Wine + Food. Storytelling is as ancient as breaking bread, and it happens naturally, everyday, at tables across America. We hold a special place for storytelling in the south, especially in Charleston, and have so many rich stories about our history, our landscape, our estuaries, our harvests, and our food. The festival seeks to generate, foster, save and nourish these stories, not just at the festival but throughout the year. To revel in the memories, dreams and reflections of festivals of yesteryear, and get excited about the festival to come!
If you haven’t already, mark your calendar. The festival takes place March 4-8, 2015, and we host pre-festival events throughout the year. We officially kick off the celebration of our new event schedule and forthcoming festival on August 27, 2014 at our Ticket Launch Party presented by Limehouse Produce, affectionately called Party @ The Power House. We hope to see you there!
Did you know that X is the roman numeral for ten? Probably. But did you realize that X is the cross walk shape inside historic Marion Square, home of the heart of our festival’s Culinary Village? Hmmmm. How about that theX is actually our Wine + Food “+” sign turned sideways? Whoa – now you do!
In honor of ten years of BB&T Charleston Wine + Food, the festival will be bringing X to life all year in Charleston. X marks the spot – when you see it, anywhere in town (on your plate, in a garden, architecture, a chef, farmer or friends makes the symbol), capture and share it w/ the hashtag:#CHSWFX.
The five most inspiring images will be selected on a rolling basis and the winners feted with 2 complimentary tickets to attend Sunday’s Culinary Village in March to see X in action. And don’t delay because the best Ximage shared by Monday, August 25 will receive 2 tickets to our Ticket Launch event presented by Limehouse Produce, PARTY @ THE POWER HOUSE.
Inspiration abounds – celebrate the decade! #CHSWFX #CHSWFF
This week marks the first time you can support our non-profit this season by purchasing tickets to our inaugural event, BB&T Charleston Wine + Food’s Annual Ticket Launch Party presented by Limehouse Produce! This year, we affectionately call our ticket launch event Party @ The Power House – it will be electric, so sizzle over and pick up tickets while they are still available!
8.27.2014 is our first event of many more to come, and it officially kicks off our celebration of a decade of BB&T Charleston Wine + Food. We are thrilled to offer a taste of double-digit-worthy excitement at our upcoming annual festival: Wednesday, March 4 – through Sunday, March 8. Already you may notice something new: a day! We’re launching festivities for the festival on Wednesday, March 4 with our annual kick-off to chefs in gala-style under a magical tent in Marion Square, presented by The Art Institute of Charleston. Tickets for this not-to-be-missed celebration (like most festival events) will go on sale on Wednesday, August 27th, so please mark your calendars!
Returning to Our Main Thing
BB&T Charleston Wine + Food is a non-profit that celebrates Charleston, our impressive lowcountry ingredients, inspiring flavors, a local food culture rich in tradition and award-winning chefs. That’s a lot to celebrate, and we have a lot of work to do! The festival is at the heart of our mission, bringing old and new friends together to learn, laugh and commune with local and national masters. We have taken great effort to cut expenses, foster sponsorships that truly benefit our mission, and plan to donate more year upon year to our culinary and hospitality scholarships. The financial shift in planning is underway with a renewed focus on partnership (sponsors and friends) development.
Support Our Non-Profit
While we begin our 2015 season in the red, we have already begun the important financial efforts to ensure a long, thriving future for the festival. Many returning sponsors have stepped up generously, new sponsors have joined our festivities, and we have a resourceful staff committed to creating a new decade of BB&T Charleston Wine + Food.
Would you like to help us? It’s simple – join us! Here are five easy ways you can step up:
1. Become a Friend – Friends give generously now and enjoy benefits like intimate year-round events, curated festival tickets, and concierge-level service throughout the festival weekend. This is the quickest and best way an individual with means can step up. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to receive information on how to become a Friend of the Festival!
2. Buy A Ticket (or many!) – Starting Wednesday, August 27, BB&T Charleston Wine + Food will have the bulk of our 2014-2015 festival tickets for sale. Get ready for an improved website with new sorting options like UNDER $100 – a new website for our new decade, coming soon! In the meantime, get your tickets to our PARTY @ THE POWER HOUSE.
3. Become a Volunteer – Starting in Early October, we put up a volunteer form. Volunteers help us run events, check tickets, meet and greet, and learn the festival inside and out to give our guests a memorable experience during the festival. Have a special gift you want to share with the festival? Let us know about it. We’ll be posting reminders in September, but mark your calendar and plan to volunteer!
4. Join Our Newsletter – are you signed up and receiving our newsletters? If not, sign up at the bottom of our website homepage. Are you forwarding to friends and sharing? Awesome, thanks!
5. Spread the Word – help us by being our ambassador. Bring a friend to our launch party, or share the news on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram (hashtag: #CHSWFF). Read our weekly blog posts, starting this week, and let’s share and celebrate BB&T Charleston Wine + Food over dinner with friends.
Advanced Sommelier Patrick Emerson Joins BB&T Charleston Wine + Food Festival as Wine and Beverage Director
Patrick Emerson, founder of Communion Wine Club LLC. and outgoing Board member at the BB&T Charleston Wine + Food, has joined the Festival as wine and beverage director in a consultant capacity. In his new role, Emerson will nominate and recruit top wineries, winemakers, distillers and brewers to participate in the Festival. He will also develop innovative seminars and tastings for the beverage program hosted during the four-day Festival at The Culinary Institute of Charleston. In addition, Emerson will partner wineries with participating restaurants for the Festival’s much loved intimate dinner series. “I have been involved with the Festival since its inception and I’m thrilled to step into an expanded role to help create an awesome 10th anniversary celebration,” says Emerson.
Executive Director Gillian Zettler adds, “Patrick is committed to enhancing the wine and beverage experience throughout our Festival, and I’m delighted to have someone with his beverage expertise working to bring the very best beverage offerings to the BB&T Charleston Wine + Food Festival.”
Since 2004, Emerson has been a leading sommelier and wine director in the restaurant wine community in Charleston. His restaurant wine lists have been awarded 28 Wine Spectator “Award of Excellence.” In November 2012, he was voted as the top sommelier in Charleston and was honored at the Festival’s highly acclaimed Ultimate Critics Dinner. As a founding member of the Charleston chapter of the US Bartenders’ Guild, Emerson is also a celebrated mixologist, garnering praise in GQ Magazine(winner of the Bombay Sapphire Challenge), Southern Living, Food and Wine Magazine (best cocktails), LocalPalate, Charleston Magazine, City Paper and The Post and Courier.