There’s a lot going on this week, foodly and winely speaking, beginning with the Friends of James Beard Benefit at Quantum Leap Winery on Thursday, Nov. 9. The sold-out event, Friends of the Vine: A Magical Evening, is a fundraiser for the Beard Foundation’s mission “to celebrate, support, and elevate the people behind America’s food culture.”
Friday and Saturday it’s the annual Walt Disney World Swan and Dolphin Food & Wine Classic featuring food stations from the resort’s many restaurants. Food will be slung and beverages poured from 5:30 to 9 p.m. both eventings. Tickets to the event on and around the causeway are $185 per person and available here.
If there are fewer people at the Swan and Dolphin on Saturday night, it might be because they’re all at Cows ’n Cabs, the John Rivers-led event in Winter Park’s West Meadow benefitting Central Florida children charities, including After-School All Stars Orlando, 4 Roots and Winter Park Day Nursery. This is the 11th version and it seems to get bigger every year, no longer contained under the Barnum & Bailey-sized tent. More than 35 of the area’s top restaurants and chefs, including Greg Richie of Soco, Richard Blais of Four Flamingos, and Norman Van Aken of Norman’s, will be serving alongside Rivers and his 4 Rivers Smokehouse team. If you dressed up like a cowpoke for Halloween, you can use that same outfit at CnC. But if you don’t already have your tickets, you’ll have to wait until next year – the event is sold out.
Only a few seats remain for the wine dinner at Francesco’s Ristorante on Monday, Nov. 13. The multi-course dinner with pairings will feature bresaola with arugula and cherry tomatoes; cream of asparagus with truffle; tagliatelle with wild boar ragu; and Sicilian eggplant and beef tenderloin Napoleon. Chef and owner Francesco Aiello will serve and sommelier Pierluigi Gaeta will pour. Tickets are $125 plus tax and gratuity. Reservations at 407-960-5533.
And planning ahead, Winedos’s next wine tasting master class will be Dec. 14 at the Winter Park Collective. Tickets are $40 if purchased before Nov. 30 and $60 after (if any seats remain). The evening will include a jazz quartet and organic pizza. Sign up here.