Whistler Cornucopia celebrates extraordinary chefs from across Canada and around the world, showcasing local, regional, and international wines for every taste. Offering a truly sensory experience, with winemaker dinners, interactive seminars, gala wine tastings and after parties, this four day (and night) festival is Whistler’s yearly premiere food and wine party. Each year, Whistler Cornucopia draws in over 6,500 attendees as well as hundreds of industry members and media.
I will be covering several Cornucopia events this year and look forward to meeting fellow wine and food lovers from around the globe.
Cornucopia is honored to present champion Chef Dale MacKay as part of the much anticipated lineup. As title chef for one of the extravagant chef’s luncheons (Saturday November 12, noon to 3:30 pm), Chef MacKay will feature his award winning cuisine and culinary flair in an exclusive 50 person luncheon held in a beautiful Whistler mansion.
Cornucopia will also showcase the East Coast’s culinary prowess in the form of six (to be announced) celebrated chefs from Quebec. Infusing Cornucopia’s programming with East Coast flavour and Quebecois energy, the chefs will be featured at a number of events including Bearfoot Bistro’s Masquerave (returning after a five year hiatus). Cornucopia creates a foundation for domestic appreciation on a culinary level by showcasing the wealth of variety and talent of our local chefs.
Masquerave at the Bearfoot Bistro will feature outstanding local and international wines, world class champagne, light shows and burlesque entertainment. The new food program will feature gastronomic creations by Bearfoot Bistro executive chef Melissa Craig as well as from other top Vancouver and Quebecois chefs.
New this year is the Bearfoot Bistro’s association with One Drop, the charitable organization and initiative of Cirque du Soleil founder Guy Laliberté. The One Drop Foundation aims to provide access to clean water for all. Masquerave’s proceeds will go to this valuable organization, to the Whistler Blackcomb Foundation, and to Whistler’s École La Passerelle.
To celebrate the 30th anniversary of internationally acclaimed Araxi Restaurant, there will be two major events. Araxi Executive Chef James Walt will unveil his most ambitious multi-course menu yet at the Big Guns Winemakers Dinner: Icons of the Wine World. The elegant evening will feature an unprecedented showing of 10 exemplary wines, each representing one of the world’s foremost wine regions.
Araxi’s legendary Bubbles + Oceans Afterparty will showcase 30 of the world’s top champagne houses and sparkling wine producers. Preeminent bubbles paired with spectacular seafood at this Whistler hotspot makes Bubbles + Oceans one of the ‘must-attend’ events of the festival.
Cornucopia proudly presents the Viking Stage and Wine Seminar series of 2011. The featured keynote speaker is award winning writer Natalie MacLean, editor of Canada’s largest wine site. The wine seminars are a perfect opportunity to combine passion for amazing wines with interactive and informative tastings.
Ms. MacLean will host a wine tasting and launch of her new book Unquenchable: A Tipsy Search for the World’s Best Bargain Wines, with travel anecdotes and colourful stories along with wines featured in the book on Friday, November 12 at the Fairmont Chateau Whistler’s Frontenac Ballroom. This is an exclusive opportunity to interact with one of the world’s most celebrated wine writers.
Tickets for all events are available (while they last) via Whistler Cornucopia’s website.
CRUSH, the two night flagship event, Winemakers Dinners, Chef’s Luncheons, Chef’s Trip to the Farm and world-class after parties round out the programming.