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Tasty Tidbits: Austin Food & Wine Festival

Posted by on October 27, 2021

Austin Food & Wine Festival kicks off on Friday, November 5, when select festies will spend an evening Grillin’ & Chillin’ with Chef Tim Love (Lonesome Dove). Chef Love’s popular hands on grilling class is exclusively for All-In ticket holders only, and serves up plenty of cooking techniques and advice along with libations and laughter. The festival has made some changes this year, including 86’ing the Taste of Texas showcase that was traditionally held on the first evening, and moving Grillin’ & Chillin’ to the evening slot.

We’re certain Chef Love will be in high spirits, as he has announced plans to open Koko’s a German biergarten, with partners Charles Attal (C3 Presents), Jesse Herman (La Condesa, Sway), and Konstantin Prinze Von Bayern, the latter of which has legitimate street cred with Germanic food and libations, as his family notably started what has become the modern Oktoberfest in Germany. Koko’s will be located in East Austin, in the former Brewer’s Table location, and will serve house-brewed beers along with other drafts, sausages, roasted chicken and pork, and Belgian fries, of course.

“She persevered.”

Among other tweaks to the festival this year is the new Dinner Series, which replaces the one night only Feast Under the Stars. Tickets are available for your choice of a 3-course dinner with wine pairings and welcome cocktail at the opulent and romantic Lutie’s; a 4-course meal with wine pairings, welcome cocktail and a tasty hors d’oeuvre at the newly opened and highly anticipated Caribbean restaurant Canje; and/or for wine, appetizers and the holy grail of grazing boards from Salt & Time Wine Shop, Austin’s preeminent producer and purveyor of charcuterie.

After forgetting sunblock one year, I had sympathy for this pig.

This year’s festival is a veritable who’s who of the crème de la crème of chefs with demos from the skilled Jam Sanitchat (Thai Fresh), Olympian-turned-chef Dawn Burrell whose Houston-based restaurant Late August opens later this year, Rodney Scott (Rodney Scott’s Whole Hog BBQ), Helene Henderson (Malibu Farm), and a slew of other multi-talented folks, as well as an exciting lineup for the Chef’s Showcase. Combine the demos and chef showcases with action from the Fire Pits (this publication predicts long lines for anything LeAnn Mueller decides to serve), mix in Saturday night’s Rock Your Taco competition (All-In tix only), and serve it up with sips of wine, beer and spirits and the Austin Food & Wine festival will leave you satisfied and content.

The festival will require proof of vaccination or a negative COVID-19 test. Masks are required in areas where social distancing is difficult to maintain, and when not eating or drinking. Purses and bags 4.5″ x 5.5″ or smaller will be allowed, but anything larger must be clear, no larger than 12″ x 12″ x 6″ and single-pocket only (such as a tote or drawstring bag). Please indulge responsibly, and use a designated driver or other transportation for a safe ride home. The hashtag for sharing your selfies and snaps is #AFWfest.

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