Santa Barbara Museum of Natural History WINE FESTIVAL Story & photos by Bonnie Carroll
The 2011 Santa Barbara Wine Festival was a sell out, with the grounds of the Museum of Natural History crawling with wine aficionados and gourmet food and dessert devotees. Crowds wrapped around the museum dinosaur at the entrance to collect their glass, program, and Whole Foods bag to begin their wine adventure in the Museum Backyard.
Executive Director Karl Hutterer and his able staff assisted visitors and perused the grounds to keep everyone happy. Easter Moorman graciously greeted visiting media and welcomed them, as well as the sponsors to the annual event. The army of volunteers who did everything from passing out glasses to providing designated driver services to attendees did a fantastic job.
Wineries participating included a bevy of wonderful vintners from far and wide, and food providers included many of Santa Barbara’s best restaurants. Special dessert makers I savored included Cup Cakes in Wonderland, McConnell’s ice cream and Pinkberry yogurt. My two favorite Italian pasta offerings came from Via Maestra 42 and Ca Dario. Via Maestra 42 was a perfect pair for Palmira Wines, and Jessica Foster once again drew a crowd with her ‘melt in your mouth’ chocolates. Brophy Brothers offered oyster shooters that were purported to be outstanding, and D’Angelo bread was everywhere.
Coast Restaurant at the Canary Hotel, Renaud’s Patisserie & Bistro, Pure Joy Catering (offered the best artichoke appetizers), Michaels Catering, Omni Fresco Catering, Stella Mare, Il Fostino, La Mousse, Village Modern Foods, Venus Wafers, The Berry Man and Whole Foods – Santa Barbara offered perfect tastes to pair with the numerous wines being served.
Singer Margie Nelson of Hungry Girl fame and Mark Weber provided some really great afternoon jazz favorites to entertain the philanthropic crowd in attendance. This is always a delightful event that Santa Barbara wine lovers look forward to. It is an opportunity to discover new products, chat with friends, meet vintners, say hello to their favorite chefs, and delve into an ocean of sweet dessert sensations. Congratulations to the Museum staff, it looks like they have pulled off yet another great success for 2011. For a complete list of all participating wine and food sponsors please visit www.sbnature.org.
LOOK FOR SPECIAL STORY ON BODEGA DE MACIA BATLE IN MALLORCA SPAIN IN AUGUST ISSUE
Low Calorie Cocktails & Mocktails
Stay healthy this summer with one of these refreshing low-calorie drink recipes. From a 5-calorie per serving margarita mix to both alcoholic and non-alcoholic drink options, we’ve got you covered. By Amy Cassell
Courtesy of The Tides Inn in Irvington, Virginia, this tasty non-alcoholic drink is made with muddled lemon balm, an herb from the mint family that you can grow yourself or buy at a local health food
- Sprigs of fresh lemon balm, muddled
- 1 fresh lemon, squeezed
- ginger ale
- Add lemon wheels to beverage, and garnish with fresh lemon balm and a lemon wedge