March 6 - March 10, 2019

Charleston Wine + Food

Tasting Notes


2019 Cocktail Competition Semi-finalists

Charleston Wine + Food has once again challenged local bartenders to conjure up their craftiest cocktail creations for the 2019 Charleston Wine + Food Cocktail Competition. This year, the Holy City’s best + brightest beverage professionals were tasked with mixing up a unique cocktail featuring Charleston Wine + Food’s official 2019 spirit - American Whiskey.   Dozens of mixologists submitted their take on the classic spirit to a panel of four judges. Judges evaluated each cocktail based on four categories: Originality, Use of Product, Taste, and Presentation. After the judges scored the recipes, the top 10 recipes were chosen to move onto the semi-finals.   Semi-finalists will serve up their original drinks at their respective restaurants or bars from November 1 - November 30 for the public to enjoy. Beginning November 1, people will be able to vote for their favorite cocktail online. The People’s Choice votes will contribute to the scores in Round 3.   A Fine How Do You Do Anna Lazaridis - Fiery Ron's Hometeam BBQ Spirit Used: Russell's Reserve 6 Year Rye   From the Ashes Darren Fallon - The Watch Spirit Used: Virgil Kane Ginger Infused   Pipe Dream Franklin Arevalo - The Obstinate Daughter Spirit Used: Templeton Rye aged 4 years   Star Value James Bolt - The Gin Joint Spirit Used: Old Forester Kentucky Straight Bourbon 100 Proof   Strawless Strawberry Smash Katie Daniel - Bar Mash Spirit Used: Old Forester Kentucky Straight Bourbon 100 Proof   Sugar Spice Everything Nice Melissa Yard - Joséphine Wine Bar Spirit Used: Rittenhouse Rye Whiskey   Up All Night in NOLA Morgan Hurley - Mex 1 Coastal Cantina Spirit Used: Larceny Bourbon   Real Mermaids Drink Whiskey Rochelle Jones - Stars Rooftop & Grill Room Spirit Used: Wild Turkey Bourbon Rye   Sweet Lil Nellie Ryan Wise - The Establishment Spirit Used: High West Double Rye   Whippersnapper Sam Gabrielli - Proof Spirit Used: Four Roses Bourbon   Vote Now!
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Cocktail Competition finalist: Morgan Hurley from Mex 1 Coastal Cantina

The beverage director at Mex 1 Coastal Cantina puts his own spin on the classic cocktail 2018 Cocktail Competition finalist Morgan Hurley has been a part of Mex 1 Coastal Cantina since the beginning. Getting his start at the Tides hotel on Folly Beach, Morgan made the switch to Mex 1 after his father, an original investor in the restaurant, asked him to join the team as the beverage director. Since his first night, Morgan has become a fixture behind the bar at Mex 1, creating exciting cocktails and training a new generation of mixologists. His competition entry “A Noble Hospitality” focuses on the soul of the tequila. Blended together with Aperol and pineapple juice, the tangy cocktail is served with a mezcal spritz and orange garnish. Morgan is proud that he and fellow competitor and coworker Shannon Standhart are representing Mex 1 in the competition. “Yes I’d like to win,” Hurley said. “But I just want to see Mex 1 bring home the title.” You can see Morgan and the other finalists of the 2018 Cocktail Competition battle it out at Souls + Saints: Día de los Muertos on November 1st. Tickets can be bought here.
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Cocktail Competition Finalist: Dan Williams of The Darling Oyster Bar

The Midnight hour shines a little brighter with Dan Williams Midnight Sun Cocktail. Bursting with local ingredients, 2018 Cocktail Competition finalist takes his favorite tequila drink and spices it up with Southern Twist Ginger & Jalapeno Syrup. After spending time at Stars and then Cypress, Dan is now the bar Manager at The Darling Oyster Bar. Heating up the competition with his Midnight Sun cocktail containing a mix of lime, local Southern Twist Ginger & Jalapeno Syrup, and Chile liqueur this spicy drink will keep you going long past sunset. We had a chance to sit down with him and ask where his inspiration for this sizzling masterpiece comes from. Keeping with Charleston's tradition of using local ingredients is what inspired his twist on a classic tequila cocktail. Dan says staying “true to food and true to drinks” is something he has learned throughout his time behind the bars of Charleston.   A regular attendee to the Culinary Village, Dan is excited to participate this year in a Charleston Wine + Food event. Although the crowds are larger than the average bar allows, Dan is confident he can shake things up. Catch Dan Williams and our three other contestants at the Charleston Wine + Food's Souls + Saints: Día de los Muertos event on November 1st. Buy your tickets and be sure to vote for Dan as your crowd favorite! SaveSave SaveSave
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2018 Cocktail Competition: Patricia Smith of 5 Church

Pouring up a cocktail that eases us into the weekend, Patricia Smith of 5 Church mixes things up with her Tea is for Tequila Mexican/Asian fusion cocktail. Digging deep and pulling influence from her memories of growing up in San Diego and taking the trolley to Tijuana, Patricia uses those influences mixed with the Asian influences from her city to bring her drink together. Two types of tequila mingle with Hibiscus Tri Pepper Tea, with a splash of lemon juice and topped with Lemon Mint Sea Salt Boba this drink will transport you around the world and back. When asked what she loves about bartending she instantly answered with “Talking to people...You never know who you’re going to meet and everyone's an interesting character. If you dig down deep, everyone has interesting stories.” Patricia takes the calm of tea and mixes it with a confidence boost of tequila to give you a drinkable cocktail to sip and enjoy while you mingle with others. Stories are sure to be shared between sips at Charleston Wine + Food's Souls + Saints: Día de los Muertos on November 1. Get your tickets and watch our four finalists prepare their signature drinks and vote for your crowd favorite! SaveSave SaveSave SaveSave SaveSave
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Cocktail Competition finalist: Shannon Standhart of Mex 1 Coastal Cantina

The bubbly bar manager at Mex 1 Coastal Cantina serves up an un-bee-lievable cocktail 2018 Cocktail competition finalist Shannon Standhart has made a big splash at Mex 1 Coastal Cantina. After receiving a bartending course from her grandmother for Christmas, she fell in love with the exciting, fast-paced environment behind the bar. Trading in the Maine coast for South Carolina’s shores, Shannon is now a bar manager at Mex 1 where she dazzles customers with her infectious smile and tasty cocktails. Her cocktail entry “MisBEEhavin’” is a simple yet fun mix of lemon juice, agave nectar and honey liqueur. Served in a chilled glass rimmed with lemon zest and sugar, the sweet cocktail is sure to leave you buzzing with excitement. Although she is competing against her fellow Mex 1 mixologist Morgan Hurley, Shannon is ready to take home the title. “I would love to beat him,” she said. “He would never be able to live it down.” You can see Shannon and the other finalists of the 2018 Cocktail Competition battle it out at Charleston Wine + Food’s Souls + Saints event on November 1st. Tickets can be bought at www.charlestonwineandfood.com.
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The Hunt Is On: Charleston Wine + Food Cocktail Contest

Calling all cocktail sipping + tequila loving, mixologists. This one is for you! Charleston Wine + Food is hosting the 2018 Cocktail Competition, inviting all local beverage professionals to compete for the title of Official 2018 Charleston Wine + Food Signature Cocktail. This year’s spirit of celebration? TEQUILA! With a grand prize of $500 and features at events throughout the festival season and a digital feature in Imbibe Magazine this is one competition you want to be a part of.  Before you run off to sign yourself up let's talk a little more about how this is going down. Join us for Round 1 on Tuesday, October 3rd at our new office digs.  Pack up your favorite tequila, juices, mixers, herbs, sweeteners, spices and whatever secret ingredients your heart may desire. Remember that first impressions are key, so be sure to bring any presentational notes (ice, garnish, glassware) that makes your drink rank supreme. Each contestant will have 15 minutes to prepare their cocktail, then our team will present your creation, along with your recipe card, to the judge panel featuring: Penelope Bass of Imbibe magazine, Dan Dao of SAVEUR, Robert Berry of Pancito & Lefty, and Hanna Raskin of Post and Courier. Your cocktail will be scored on aroma, appearance, taste, imagination and overall impression. The four drinks with the highest score will be invited to compete in the Finals on November 1st at Souls + Saints: Dia de los Muertos. With the stakes just a bit higher, competitors will prepare their cocktail live before our judge panel and guests. Event attendees will also get to participate in the fun by sampling + voting for a crowd favorite. The winner will be announced at the end of the event and be crowned The Official Charleston Wine + Food Cocktail Competition winner and their cocktail will be dubbed the Signature Cocktail of the 2018 festival. If you feel your creativity flowing and you think you have what it takes. Sign up to compete by September 29th. For those that simply love a good night out and want to leave the competition out of it, we understand. We still have tickets to our Souls + Saint: Dia de los Muertos available here.
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10 Can't Miss Events Under $100

It’s crunch time people! With the festival less than almost a week away, those looking to purchase last minute tickets to the best events can look no further. Check out our favorite events under $100 here: Fowl Mouth - $95 This’ll be the best #partyfowl you’ve ever seen. Check us out at Cooper River Brewing Co. for all things winged fowl. Accompany your smoky snacks with fresh beer, wine, and deep bourbon cocktails at this low-key hangout that’s sure to kick off your weekend the right way! Dynamic Drinking: Making Sinsky Of It All - $95 For one of the best deals of the festival, make your friends jealous with this once in a lifetime chance to hear what Master Sommeliers and elite vineyard owners have to say about some of the best wine in the world. Sustainable and environmentally friendly wines are the focus of this panel, so sit back and get ready to have your tastebuds tannon-talized! Commodores + Admirals - $75 Think delicious party at Charleston’s hottest new late night hangout, The Commodore. Yummy snacks and craft cocktails to be provided by Roti Rolls accompanied by special guests from The Lot on James Island and Eric Warnstedt of the Hen of the Wood (Burlington, VT). Come dance the night away with us at CHSWFF’s hottest new event of 2017! The Ice Age of Mixology - $75 Ever wondered what it takes to make a good cocktail? Fresh mixers, elite liquor, and ICE, of course! Come to Proof with mixologist Charlotte Voisey to learn how ice can make or break a great drink. What The Pho? - $70 Oodles of East-Asian inspired noodles and high energy music by DJ Rehab, this event held at the Le Creuset Atelier is sure to go down in the history books. Imagine a dozen of your favorite local and guest chefs partyin’ all night long- chopsticks provided. The Business of Food - $70 With guests speaker stars like Chef Danny Meyer, Nancy Silverton, Ruth Reichl, Darcy Shankland, and Steve Palmer, those looking to get the inside scoop on the restaurant business look no further. Those already in the local food + bev business, enter code INDY17 and receive a $25 ticket! Namaste Bubbly - $65 Join us in the Cedar Room at the Cigar Factory for an exclusive yoga class taught by local favorite Cortney Ostrosky followed by Sunday champs and healthy fare. Round up your friends and let’s get fizzical! Pedals + Pints - $65 Bring your own bike or rent one from Trek Mt. Pleasant for a stylish, leisurely ride through downtown Charleston with your favorite brewmasters. Reward yourself after with local food truck bites and drafts; this event is sure to be snatched up by beer and bicycle lovers everywhere, so don’t wait! Iron Mixologist - $65 This live action, Iron Chef America-style cocktail combat is back and supported by Imbibe to bring guests the ultimate exhilarating experience. Enjoy exclusive cocktails crafted by local mixologists at Bar Mash and watch the competition unfold! Pecha Kucha + Wine + Food - $40 Join an all-star lineup of local chefs and restaurateurs MC’ed by Tradesman Brewing Company’s Chris Winn to be inspired by food + bev chatter and snacks + drinks. Get your tickets now for this 3rd time event that’s sure to be the opposite of boring. Didn't find the event curated perfectly for you + your crew? No fear! Find a complete list of all of our events with a simple click!
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Spirt-Heavy Events

Are you ready to drink your way through the festival?  If wine just isn’t for you and beer never seems to cut it, look no further than these spirit-heavy events curated for liquor lovers like you!  The Lowcountry has endless bourbon, rum, tequila, + whiskey to offer, plus so much more, which is why we’ve teamed up with the best distributors and distilleries to ensure everyone can get a taste.  Check out what we’ve been getting excited about for weeks below and get ready to knock ‘em back- the festival is just two weeks away!   Iron Mixologist - $65 Presented by William Grant & Sons Supported by Imbibe It’s time to crown our next Iron Mixologist!  Charleston Wine + Food’s 6th annual cocktail competition modeled after Iron Chef America will take place at Mercantile’s Bar Mash this year- and the competitors are gearing up a stiff race and even stiffer drinks.  Sit back and sip on their creations to witness which mixologist will next claim the title! The Ice Age of Mixology - $75 Supported by Imbibe Presented by William Grant & Sons Ever think about how ice can make a difference in your cocktail?  Learn how to choose and use the best ice for your own cocktails and how bartenders are changing the ice game from mixologist Charlotte Voisey while sipping on an ice-cold drink.  Come to Proof for an enlightening and booze-filled afternoon! A Bourbon Affair - $115 Presented by Brackish Supported by Cigar Aficionado Brown water aficionado? The Cedar Room is calling your name! This high-class venue will host every bourbon lover’s dream event: a lineup of the country’s 50 best bourbons and stylish, hand-picked bites to match.  Dress your best for a swanky afternoon of drinking + cigars. The Home Bar at High Wire Distilling Company - $125 Supported by Imbibe If you’ve ever wanted to know how to make the perfect Tom Collins or Mint Julep right in your own kitchen, look no further than this event at High Wire Distilling Co.  Mixologist Jerry Slater will guide us through the ins + outs of cocktail creation (and consumption) to figure out what it takes to make a good cocktail GREAT. Hooked On Bowens - $135 Presented by Don Julio A festival favorite, this evening soirée on Bowens Island will be highlighted by tasty cocktails, free-flowing wine, stunning sunset views on the water, and of course a mouthwatering multi-course meal straight from the sea. If you have a fear of missing out, don’t waste one more minute - purchase your ticket now.
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Meet our Artisan Market Exhibitors

The Culinary Village, taking center stage in Marion Square, is the heartbeat of the five day festival. Welcoming approximately 9,000 guests Friday, Saturday and Sunday the first weekend in March, the village offers a grandiose tasting experience featuring wine, beer, spirits, artisans, musicians, craftsmen, chefs, caterers and more. The Artisan Market, located in the Culinary Village, offers guests the opportunity to taste and sample high quality, artisan goods from local and regional companies. This year our Artisan Market will be located in a larger, open air tent and features a stellar line-up of products and companies. You will want these items in your kitchen and home. We are pleased to introduce the 2017 Artisan Market line-up: For the Foodie + Chef For the Cocktail Connoisseur For the Fashionista      
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And the winner is...

Congrats to Ryan Welliver of The Cocktail Club! His fabulous rumtastic cocktail, "Storm the Beach", was chosen to be our 2017 Official Cocktail. In addition to industry bragging rights, Ryan will receive a trip to NYC to sling drinks alongside Nick Bennett at Porchlight Bar, and a feature on ImbibeMagazine.com. Ryan and his custom rum cocktail will also be featured exclusively at the festival’s kick-off event, Opening Night: Rooted in Charleston, Wednesday, March 1, 2017.  Congratulations is also in order to Allen Lancaster of The Spectator Hotel whose cocktail, "No Bunny's Bizness", won Crowd-Favorite of the evening. Catch all four finalists at What The Pho? during the 2017 festival weekend on Saturday, March 4, 2017.  
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Need Assistance?

We totally get it. The 2018 festival has a lot going on. Let us guide you through the ticketing process, answer any questions, and help point you in the right direction.

Here's how to reach us:

843 727 9998
635 Rutledge Avenue, Suite 101, Charleston, SC 29403