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For the Love of Pork, Lamb & Cocktails: February Texas Food Events

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Photo courtesy of Cochon555


Cochon 555
Sunday, February 8

Cochon 555 is coming to Houston, Texas to celebrate family farms, heritage breed pigs and today’s emerging chef community with 5 chefs, 5 pigs and 5 winemakers. Embark on a journey to the new hyper-local culinary landscape, one whole pig at a time. The tour is aligned with the modern-day good food movement — notable chefs, barrier-breaking women, artist-like butchers, spirited bartenders, top winemakers, brewers, distillers and brazen pastry talent working together to prepare an epic feast celebrating responsible family farming. Tickets and more information here.

Lamb Jam
Sunday, February 22

The American Lamb Jam is an epic tasting event and competition that brings together 16 talented local chefs to compete for your vote and the honor of Best Lamb Dish in Austin. Joining the chefs will be local breweries, winemakers and other local food artisans serving up tasty treats. Between bites, attendees can watch butcher demos, play in the interactive photo booth, meet local shepherds and concoct their very own lamb spice rub. Proceeds from Austin Lamb Jam will benefit The Austin Food & Wine Alliance. Purchase tickets now!

Official Drink of Austin
Thursday, February 26

Hosted by the Austin Food & Wine Alliance and Tipsy Texan. Six bar teams from local bars and restaurants will be selected in a rousing citywide competition to raise funds for culinary grants while trying to capture the title of Austin’s official drink. Information and tickets here.

Looking ahead to March…

Toast & Roast
Sunday, March 1

The Wine & Food Foundation of Texas is thrilled to partner with Texas Monthly and Jessica Dupuy for an exclusive tasting of Texas Monthly’s Best Texas Wines of 2014! Join them to taste the twenty best Texas wines produced last year. Following an hour-long sip and stroll tasting, Chef John Bates of Noble Sandwich will roast up a feast of pig, goat, and lamb. Toast & Roast is the perfect opportunity to celebrate Texas Independence Weekend and to support our states growing wine industry. Purchase now.

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Harvesting Community and Fun at Texas Vineyards

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Most of us have experienced the joy of  sharing a lovely glass of wine with friends and at Texas vineyards, you can take that experience one step further by being part of the harvest.

Messina Hof

Messina Hof

Starting at the beginning of August, vineyards across the state began harvesting their grapes, rescuing them from the brutal summer sun and transforming them into beautiful vintages. Two years ago, I had the opportunity to participate in the harvest at Pedernales Cellars in Stonewall  and this year I joined the crew at Messina Hof in Bryan.


My friend Stacey at the Messina Hof harvest

My friend Stacey at the Messina Hof harvest

Harvest is truly a community gathering, with the vineyards relying on the extra hands of friends and family to race the clock of mother nature to ensure that they pick the grapes at their peak.

Family and friends pitching in at Pedernales Cellars

Family and friends pitching in at Pedernales Cellars

The grapes are collected in large bins and then processed through a sorter to remove the MOG (material other than grapes). From there, the the wine making begins.


Grape collection in the fields

The sorter

The sorter


Material other than grapes (MOG)

You can participate in grape stomp and harvest events at wineries around the state over the next two weekends. Don’t miss this chance to be part of your favorite wine from the start of its journey from vine to bottle.


(And thanks Lillian for pulling together this list of upcoming events!)

Texas Hill Country Wineries – great website with extensive winery events calendar.

Pedernales Cellars
Grape Stomp 2014
August 22, 23, & 24  Noon- 5pm

Messina Hof
Harvest Festival 2014
August 22-23, Bryan
August 29-30, Fredericksburg

Becker Vineyards 
18th Annual Grape Stomp!
August 23-24, & August 30

Fall Creek Vineyard
25th Annual Grape Stomp & Harvest
August 23, 11am-5pm

Stone House Vineyard
Time to Harvest! 
August 23, 6:30 am

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August Texas Food Events

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Chefs Erica Beneke, Bridge Bishop, Kenzie Allen, Hannah Love, Abby Yates and Alexis Chong at Eat.Drink.Empower dinner.


Texas Restaurant Weeks

August means restaurant weeks all around Texas! It’s hot, you don’t want to turn your oven on so get out and support your favorite restaurants or try a new one.

Houston Restaurant Weeks
August 1 – September 1

Eat Out for Good 
August 3 – August 13

DFW Restaurant Week
August 11 – August 17

San Antonio Restaurant Week
August 16 – August 23

Grub Trivia
August 17, 12-4pm

Whether you’re a cooking connoisseur, a food-biz wiz, or gastronome novice, Slow Food Austin Grub Trivia challenges you to join the second annual fundraising event full of food-focused, pub style trivia. Teams will compete to win the surprise grand prize and the honor of being named the quickest slow foodies in town. Register a team or attend with a general admisson ticket to enjoy the grub and watch the competition.

August 21, 6-10pm

MAX’s Wine Dive Austin is proud to present the second annual Eat. Drink. Empower event showcasing Austin’s top female talent coming together for a worthy cause, and to celebrate the growing number of female chefs on the rise. This year’s event will feature a 12-course menu with beverage pairings, all curated and designed by the talented team of female chefs and bartenders. A portion of the event;s proceeds will go directly to SafePlace’s domestic violence and sexual assault programming.   




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Featured Texas Food Events for February

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Photo from The Red Cross.


Free Week of Cheese
Monday, February 10 – Friday, February 14

Antonelli’s Cheese Shop, locally-owned and operated by John and Kendall Antonelli, will celebrate its fourth anniversary on February 11, 2014.  To commemorate this cheese-y day, as well as thank customers and partnering wholesale restaurants, Antonelli’s Cheese Shop is continuing its annual tradition of giving away free cheese plates around town from February 10 – 14.  While supplies last, the following restaurants will be participating. Each will begin offering free cheese plates at 5pm (unless otherwise noted below) and will go until the cheese runs out!

Monday, Feb. 10th:   Cipollina & Easy Tiger
Tuesday, Feb. 11th:        Bess Bistro & Max’s Wine Dive
Wednesday, Feb. 12th:   24 Diner & House Pizzeria
Thursday, Feb. 13th:       Bufalina (starts at 5:30) &  Qui
Friday, Feb. 14th:           Drink.Well

Night of 50,000 Lives
Thursday, February 13, 6-8pm

The Alice Kleberg Reynolds Foundation and the American Red Cross of Central Texas present the Night of 50,000 Lives, an exclusive dinner at Sway to benefit the Measles & Rubella Initiative. It costs $1 to vaccinate one child and save a life. With your help, the American Red Cross of Central Texas can save 50,000 lives in one evening.

 Sway Executive Chef Alexis Chong will prepare and present a spectacular 5-course menu, featuring award-winning modern Thai cuisine and hand-selected beverage pairings. Purchase tickets here.

Slow Food Houston Happy Hour
Thursday, February 20, 5:30-7:30pm

Slow Food Houston invited you to join them for their monthly happy hour. This months event will be hosted at Sparrow Bar + Cookshop with a special introduction by Monica Pope. Check out the Slow Food Houston Facebook page!

Official Drink of Austin
Thursday, February 20, 7-10pm

Official Drink of Austin returns as The Austin Food & Wine Alliance partners with Tipsy Texan for an evening that celebrates Texas spirits and shines a spotlight on the talented bartending community. Six bar teams from local bars and restaurants will be mixing up Austin-inspired cocktails to raise funds for culinary grants. Purchase tickets here.

Beer & Bacon Festival
Saturday, February 22, 2:30–5 pm

Two of Austin’s favorite things—bacon and beer—come together for this festival at The Marchesea as a partnership between Eat Boston and Edible Austin. The festival will feature local chefs, restaurants and craft brewers and we’ll all toast to bacon and beer! A portion of the proceeds will benefit Capital Area Food Bank of Texas. Purchase your tickets today.




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