Chef Rob Feenie, cook book author, Food Network personality, and the owner and executive chef for the critically acclaimed Lumiere restaurant in Vancouver, will be in Whistler next week for the Cornucopia Food and Wine Celebration, Nov. 6 to 10.
Feenie will host a segment called Cooking Canadian for the Food Network on Nov. 8, sharing his expertise of making award-winning dishes with simple ingredients and techniques.
There are still tickets available for the majority of events, although they are selling fast. Some of the seminars that have already sold out at press time include the Rare Wines Tasting, a seminar called Oysters, Clams, Mussels and More, and the always popular Chefs Trip to the Farm.
Wednesday and Thursday features Trade Days, which includes seminars for industry professionals and the media. Trade Days are a chance for front-line staff, including servers and bartenders, to learn more about wine. It includes a Brews and Blues reception with music and beer tasting, as well as a wine tasting event.
At press time there were still tickets available for trade events, although they are expected to sell out.
The public can get into the action on Thursday evening with a Preview Grand Tasting, featuring all of the participating wineries, for $40.
On Friday, the food and wine seminars get underway in the afternoon with Bi-Regional Cuisine Cooking West of the Rockies; The Magic of Meritage; A Taste of Niagara; How Dynamic! Organic Wines; and California Dreamin.
Friday evening features the highlight of Cornucopia, the Crush! Gala Grand Tasting at the Westin Resort and Spa from 8 to 10:30 p.m. The event includes live jazz, the culinary talents of Chef Hans Stierli of the Aubergine Grill, and especially the wines from more than 60 wineries. Tickets are $95.
There will also be a silent auction, featuring unique wines and rare gifts, with proceeds going towards the Whistler Health Care Foundation.
Following Crush! Is the after party at the Bearfoot Bistro from 10:30 p.m. to 2 a.m. with dancing, live music and champagne. Tickets are $65.
The seminars continue on Saturday with A Chefs Trip to the Farm; a Whistler Walk; Grape Beginnings; Rare Wines Tasting; Rustic Breads from Scratch; Say Cheese; Kampai! An Introduction to Sake; Sake To Me; Duqqa: A Taste of the Exotic; Flavours of the Pacific Northwest; Syrah, Shiraz Whats in a Name?; A Taste of B.C. Wine Country; Fusion Confusion; Seeing Red: Exploring the Reds of Australia; Cooking Canadian; Oysters, Clams, Mussels 101; Double Delights: Enliven the Senses; and Feeling Fruity.
That afternoon, chefs square off in the first Cornucopia Culinary Challenge, which is essentially a wine and cheese party and a blindfolded competition for chefs, wine experts and members of the media.
That evening nine local restaurants are teaming up with winemakers to host Winemakers Dinners. The dinners range in price, starting with the most affordable dinners at Zeuskis and Thai One On.
The winemaker dinners always sell out, and people are urged to book as early as possible.
Cornucopia wraps up on Sunday with the Wine and Wagon Wheels Farewell Brunch at the Fairmont Chateau Whistler.
For more information, tickets and packages, call the Cornucopia Sales Booth at 604-938-2769 or visit the Web site at www.mywhistler.com/cornucopia/