1st Annual Alexandria Food and Wine Festival June 23

This first annual Alexandria Food and Wine festival on Saturday, June 23, 2012 from 12-5 p.m. will transform the Carlyle District in Old Town Alexandria,  conveniently located across from the King Street Metro, into a lively festival, complete with live entertainment, a children’s corner, food and wine tasting, and food demonstration showcase area. While the name suggests that it’s a new event, the previous held event, “Champagne Strawberries and Chocolate” festival has simply been re-branded this year to include wine, but not champagne, due to the law that prohibits the use the protected name “Champagne,” unless the bubbly beverage originates from the region in France. Makes sense – so Alexandria is continuing their annual tradition, but with a new name!

Attendees will enjoy sampling food and wine from diverse local participating restaurants and Virginia’s wineries. Local participating restaurants, including The Chart House, Delia’s, San Antonio Bar and Grill, Walker’s Grille, Clydes at Mark Center, Rita’s, Indigo Landing, La Tasca, and Jamieson Grille. Participating restaurants will compete for the title of  Best appetizer, Best main course, and Best dessert. Judges include Dining in DC’s own, Lisa Shapiro and the Mayor of Alexandria, William D. Euille. Each food sample will be judged on 5 different criteria on a scale from 1 to 5, 1 being poor and 5 being perfect: presentation, uniqueness, flavor, texture, and overall impression.

Also check out the Food Showcase Tent featuring, Olio Tasting Room where they strongly believe that Oils and vinegars are like fine wines: with subtle nuances of flavors, thousands of varieties and, not to mention, the pure deliciousness that comes from cooking with them. I  whole heatedly agree, as I can’t imagine life without my Olio chocolate raspberry balsamic and blood orange olive oil. It is their mission to provide our patrons an opportunity to experience and learn about the highest quality and freshest olive oils and aged balsamic vinegar from around the world.

Alexandria’s Food and Wine Festival participating wineries include: Mattaponi Winery, Unicorn Winery, Prince Michel Vineyard and Winery, Lake Anna Winery, Glass House Winery, DelFosse Vineyard and Winery and Cedar Creek Winery. Admission is FREE; however, tickets are needed to sample food and beverages. Each booklet is comprised of a total of 25 Taste tickets at the price of $20. Each food item costs between 1 to 5 tickets. $10 per person for the wine garden

How about the entertainment? Check out Hand Painted Swinger, nominated as Best Pop-Rock Recording and Best Pop-Rock Group by the Washington Area Music Association. Hand Painted Swinger humbly began as the PestStrips. They recorded a full length CD of original music in 1996 entitled “Sticky,” which was nominated for a “Wammy” award by the Washington Area Music Association. Over a decade later, with an impressive library of original and cover songs under their belt, Hand Painted Swinger continues to play in the DC area promoting their CD “Speed Hump,” all while gearing up to record their next CD. Don’t miss them at the event, they will be performing for 45 minutes.

The festival provides the opportunity to give back to the community through local non-profit organizations. Active duty military families will benefit from one (1) free book (25 taste tickets) per family (while supplies last) and a portion of the proceeds will be donated to the Carpenter’s Shelter of Alexandria.

It is easily accessible by car, Metrorail or Dash Bus. It is conveniently located just three blocks from the King Street Metro Station and four blocks from the Eisenhower Avenue Metro Station on Metrorail’s Yellow and Blue Lines.

Presented by S and B Event Management LLC in partnership with the City of Alexandria and Carlyle Community Council. Sponsors for the festival include: Elmina Catering, Post Properties at Carlyle, George Washington University Off Campus Programs, NOVA Advertising, Indigo Landing, and ESI Enviro Solutions.

About Alexandria’s Carlyle Community

Alexandria’s Carlyle Community is undergoing rapid change, both demographically and economically. The Carlyle District is one of the newest parts of Alexandria. It is a 76.5 acre development in Old Town Alexandria. This modern district includes a complex of offices, hotels, including The Westin Alexandria and retail space. It is home to U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, the Federal Courthouse, as well as condo communities such as Carlyle Towers. The dynamic of these balanced uses insure a vibrant environment for office workers, residents, shoppers, and visitors alike.

It is conveniently located across from the King Street Metro Station. The Carlyle District welcomes over 10,000 workers and 5,000 residents daily.We also want to give back to the community: active duty military families will benefit from one (1) free book per family and a portion of the proceeds will be donated to Carpenter’s Shelter of Alexandria.

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