Passion – Passion is one of those quintessential elevator speech words. Sprinkled into small talk for emphasis and brushed off just as quickly. That’s because passion has to be seen, it has to be shown and heard. Charleston local Austin Hubbard, wears passion on his sleeve. Austin’s love and pride for Charleston’s bustling wine + food culture shines through each and every action he takes for the Charleston Wine + Food team.
Five years ago, Austin found his passion for the Charleston’s rich culinary history during his rookie year volunteering with Charleston Wine + Food festival. From the beginning of his time as a volunteer, Austin showed a genuine drive to help the organization showcase the remarkable talent of today’s food and beverage industry. Between attending volunteer meetings, assisting with ticket distribution, helping set up for the Culinary Village, Austin took advantage of all of the opportunities available to him as a volunteer.
Now a veteran volunteer for Charleston Wine + Food, Austin is serving his third year as Volunteer Captain for the 2019 festival. In this role, he delegates volunteer responsibilities, ensures that all operations run smoothly, and holds the Charleston Wine + Food brand to the highest standards. Although his role revs up as the festival approaches each year, Austin is involved in Charleston Wine + Food events throughout the year.
“The excitement of the festival has kept me engaged with Charleston Wine + Food over the years,” Austin said. “I believe that it’s something everyone needs to be a part of at least once, despite your level of background or skill.”
Like many of the festival guests, the memory if the Culinary Village sparks a gleam in Austin’s eye. “When it comes down to my favorite event during the festival, it has to be the Culinary Village. It may seem like a cliche answer, but it is truly where you see really [sic] the diversity of the festival – the people that attend, the chefs, the winemakers and the real excitement of how fast pace the festival is.”
The three days in Marion Square expose guests to a variety of food and beverage experts that enrich their knowledge and passion for the culinary and imbibe industries. “Everyone comes together by sharing the same passion,” said Austin. “ Charleston Wine + Food Festival is one of the best events that really shows the true excitement and depth of the food and beverage world of Charleston.”
Austin is most inspired by what CHSWFF shares with the community – an intangible energy that courses through the festival, elevating the experiences of stakeholders at all levels. Each year since his first festival in 2015, Austin witnesses some of the most impressive and innovative creations in the culinary industry. However, for him, the real magic always comes down to one essential ingredient for festival success – the people.
“It’s not really a time to show off how good you are at making something or how knowledgeable you are about things, it boils down to the passion that is shared throughout all those involved that allow this festival to be so unique and monumental to the Charleston culture.”