The Charleston Wine and Food Festival is over and I am having withdrawals. From the festival, not the booze. Maybe a little bit because of the booze. Anyway, the pining away I’m doing for the Culinary Village is worth it and this was definitely the first of many annual visits.
We took our very first Uber downtown at 12pm sharp for the start of Sunday’s local day at the Culinary Village. Entrances on all four corners of the spacious Marion Square opened to an excited crowd and we all made our way in. The reusable commemorative wine glass was a must.
With an abundance of starting points available, we made our way to the Biergarten made possible by one of our faves, Bay Street Biergarten. It was here that we got our second commemorative glass of the day for beer tasting. For those of you who don’t know, I am sucker for wine and beer glasses from events we’ve attended- they make up about 1/3 of our glassware.
Thirteen beer stands and a special Bay Street Biergarten new beer tasting tent made up the brewsky section. Not a bad way to start a foodie Sunday.
After a short stint with the beer we decided to make our way around the first tent in the Hub. The Hub boasted numerous stands handing out tastings of spirits, wine, and food. We ran into this enthusiastic lady representing Striped Pig Distillery first and had a little sample.
The Lowcountry Tea was dangerously good and Alfonso loved the Striped Gin and Juice. Sipping on Gin and Juice was the assist I needed to slam a little Snoop Dog (NSFW) on Alfonso. Talk about a perfect teaching moment.
Shout out to our new friend Amber of Slim Pickins Kitchen, who we met over cocktails!
Next stop was for these gin cocktails.
They were SO GOOD. So, obviously I forgot to write down or take a picture of who made them. If it’s you- let a girl know! It was about this time that it dawned on us that the next booth needs to be food. Too much sippage, not enough chomping.
Thankfully, these babies were right next door.
These little broccoli salads reminded me of a grown up, more sophisticated version of broccoli and ranch dip for kids in the best way. There were pine nuts, pork rinds, and a beautiful creamy dressing. It might have been the Lowcountry Tea talking, but I could have eaten seven of these. Chef Brandon Lapp of Tomasso did it right.
A great thing about the Culinary Village was that everywhere you looked there were tables, lawn chairs, couches, bean bags, etc, etc, to sit on. We headed out of the Hub to finish our cocktail and broccoli salad.
…and right back in again to gobble up these little goodies.
Made by the women at sponsor Williams-Sonoma’s table, they definitely hit the spot. Warm and creamy and what a beautiful dumpling! It’s so cool to me how all of these artists were able to create such gorgeous, tasty plates in make-shift “kitchens” outside. Slow clap.
Lucky for us, the tastiness continued next door at the Grand Marnier stand. Before Sunday, Grand Marnier made most of it’s appearances in my kitchen in the form of margaritas, but now I know I was foolish. Bring on the Grand Marnier!
Cooking with Cocktails’ Jennifer Booker served up delightful buttermilk biscuits with Grand Marnier fruit sauce accompanied by a spiked cinnamon tea with Grand Marnier.
As we downed the last of the biscuits and tea an aroma tapped on our noses, beckoning Alfonso and making me roll my eyes. The nose pollution/orgasm (depending on who you ask) was the cigar lounge. We made our way to the smoky tent and Alfonso picked out his cigar.
He was in the market for a new life motto. Check.
Before heading back to the Hub, we heard the call of the FIRE. The Fire section hosted by Firefly Distillery, of course. We thought we had died and gone to foodie heaven in the Hub, but nothing could have prepared our taste buds for what came off those grills…
Come back and see us later in the week for part 2 of Local’s Day in the Culinary Village and look for some new recipes coming soon! Anyone else have a great foodie time this weekend? Tell us about it!