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2011 San Diego Bay Wine & Food Festival

Best show in town

2011 San Diego Bay & Wine Food Festival

2011 San Diego Bay & Wine Food Festival

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  • 2011 San Diego Bay & Wine Food Festival
  • 2011 San Diego Bay & Wine Food Festival
  • 2011 San Diego Bay & Wine Food Festival
  • 2011 San Diego Bay & Wine Food Festival
  • 2011 San Diego Bay & Wine Food Festival
  • 2011 San Diego Bay & Wine Food Festival
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Food festivals, tastes of (enter city or location here) are plentiful in San Diego and a great way to sample and savor culinary treats both familiar and new. The granddad of all food festivals is about to take San Diego by storm as the 2011 San Diego Bay Wine & Food Festival makes landfall Wednesday, Nov. 16 through Sunday, Nov. 20.

The five-day event rolls out pretty much every aspect of wining and dining in a wildly delicious game of multiple choices: Cooking classes? Thursday and Friday are loaded with them. From Macon’ Bacon to A Taste of The Mid east to Italian Master Class to Belgian Beer Pairing to the ever-popular “Reality Chef Super Stars” cook-off, the broad range of classes embodies knowledge, experience, laughter and the always-great food and wine pairings.

The classes are held at the Macy’s School of Cooking and the San Diego Wine & Culinary Center. Seating is limited, so get ’em while they’re hot. Macy’s space is pretty large, but getting stuck in the back of the room is not as fun. Classes range from $45 to $75.

Want to hit a party or two? How about the San Diego Wine Rave held at Eden in Hillcrest on Wednesday, November 16. The event showcases 25 of the edgiest wines on the market with delectable food, making for a truly “spirited” evening. Friday, November 18 brings the Reserve and New Release Tasting at the San Diego Air & Space Museum with 160 wine and spirit companies, and 10 gourmet food purveyors to dazzle and delight you.

Culminating the week of Sunday, November 22 is the Celebrity Chef Luncheon & AIWF Big Bottle Auction at the San Diego Marriott Marquis with 15 winemakers and a world-class menu prepared by nationally recognized chefs.

The grandest of these events is aptly named the “Grand Finale.” Embarcadero Park North behind Seaport Village is where the San Diego Bay Wine & Food Festival lets its hair down and gives it a shake. Take in the beautiful San Diego Bay, sunny skies, lovely fall breezes plus 170 world-class wineries, breweries and spirit booths, knowing full well there will be more than a “buzz” in the air.

Add tasting samples from 70 of San Diego’s top-chefs as they compete for the “Chef of the Fest” honors, and you have an undoubtedly good time on your hands. These are big bites of incredible food too, not just the half-Dixie cup you usually get at some of those other wannabe tastings.

By the time you’re done a hotel room may be in order. Either that or a nap in the grass, and don’t say we didn’t warn you. And if you still want more, saunter over to the All-Star Mixology Afterparty at the U.S. Grant where mixologists from Grant Grill, Searsucker, Prohibition, Noble Experiment, Vin de Syrah, Craft & Commerce and Tower 23 will be tempting you with their wild creations.

You can tell the chefs are really having a great time. With a complimentary wine glass and custom plate holding your glass and food, you have all you need to make the rounds. There is no hurry as you’ll have four hours to feed the mighty beast. Various live music performers and even cookbook signings at the Border’s booth make the day even more fun.

The San Diego Bay Wine & Food Festival is a highly-anticipated event for any foodie, Food Network watcher or anyone who likes to eat, drink and be merry. The Grand Finale tends to sell out year after year, so get your tickets early.

The Good: The best of the best are here with lots to eat and drink. The Bad: Too much food, too much wine, too much fun…wait, is that the bad part?