Since the closing of COPIA in 2008, there hasn't been a concentrated event that celebrates Napa Valley's abundant food culture and world-renowned wine. That changes this weekend, when Flavor! Napa kicks off four days of celebrity chefs, not-yet-celebrity chefs, cooking demos and enough wine to float a battleship.
The inaugural event runs Nov. 17–20 at Silverado Resort and Spa in Napa and the Culinary Institute of America (CIA) at Greystone in St. Helen. Net proceeds will benefit the scholarship fund at the CIA.
Events include a discussion on mouthfeel and texture with Meadowood's Christopher Kostow—profiled in last week's Bohemian—a sushi and sashimi demo with Masaharu Morimoto and a tasting of Napa Valley mountain Cabernet Sauvignons with Ray Aisle, executive wine editor at Food & Wine magazine. Some events have already sold out, but the list of offerings is long.
Tickets are available a la carte, starting at $95 and going up. (On the high end, $1,000 buys entrance to an exclusive, 10-person dinner at premier Napa Valley restaurants like the French Laundry, La Toque and Morimoto Napa.) The "Appellation Trail" grand tasting at the CIA may be the best bang for the buck. A $150 ticket allows you to taste wines from more than a hundred wineries and sample bites from more two dozen Napa Valley restaurants along the virtual wine trail. For more, see www.flavornapavalley.com.