Cooking for Solutions Festival 2013 in Magnificent Monterey Bay

On the outside Deck of the Monterey Bay Aquari...

On the outside Deck of the Monterey Bay Aquarium, overlooking Monterey Bay. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

If you follow my posts, you know that I seize any opportunity to attend a Food and Wine Festival. You can enjoy three days of remarkable culinary experiences with some of the finest chefs in North America at the annual Cooking for Solutions Festival 2013 at the Monterey Bay Aquarium.

WHEN: May 17-19, 2013

Huge ocean sunfish (Mola mola) at Outer Bay ex...

Huge ocean sunfish (Mola mola) at Outer Bay exhibit, Monterey Bay Aquarium, California. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Tickets and more information: http://www.montereybayaquarium.org/vi/vi_events/cooking/

There will be plenty of fabulous Food and Wine Adventures.

Monterey Bay Aquarium

Monterey Bay Aquarium (Photo credit: Tiffany Silva)

WHERE: Monterey Bay California

Here’s a list of some of the 2012 Events:

Orange sea pen (Ptilosarcus gurneyi) at Monter...

Orange sea pen (Ptilosarcus gurneyi) at Monterey Bay Aquarium, California. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Savor the Gulf Coast Breakfast

Sat., May 19 (8-9:30 a.m.)

  • $75 general public/$60 Aquarium members
  • (Tax deductible: $30 general public/$15 Aquarium members)
  • Includes Aquarium admission
  • Aquarium Cafe & Restaurant

Our popular ocean-view breakfast returns! Start the weekend with a seasonal, sustainable breakfast Southern-style with stylish Southeastern chefs Allen Susser, Paula DaSilva, Michael Schwartz and Susan Spicer. They’ll share their love for the Gulf region and its food as you sample an abundant breakfast buffet. Live music with a Cajun flair will put a jump in your step.

Celebrity Chefs LIVE!

Sat., May 19 (10:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m., times vary)

  • $60 general public/$45 Aquarium members (price per presentation)
  • Includes Aquarium admission
  • Aquarium Auditorium

Meet your favorite celebrity personalities and learn how they’re making a difference in the culinary world. You’ll laugh, be entertained and learn something about protecting the planet during two days of special presentations and cooking demonstrations from Alton Brown, Alexandra Guarnaschelli, Rick Bayless, Cindy Pawlcyn and Michael Chiarello.  Each will create an engaging hour-long special program and sign books after their presentations. Don’t miss this opportunity for a fun face-to-face encounter with these culinary leaders. Note: When available, presenters’ books will be for sale.

Alton Brown speaking at the Google Campus in M...

Alton Brown speaking at the Google Campus in Mountain View, CA. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Alton Brown: Sustainable Seafood 101

Sat., May 19 (10:30-11:30 a.m.)

Alton’s become a Food Network star as commentator on “Iron Chef America” and through his “Good Eats” program, a smart and entertaining show that blends wit with wisdom, history with pop culture, and science with common cooking sense. He’s also a passionate advocate for sustainable seafood and Seafood Watch. He’ll showcase all this and more in a program that’s guaranteed to engage, entertain and inform.

Rick Bayless

Rick Bayless (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Rick Bayless: Seafood Across the Border

Sat., May 19 (12:30-1:30 p.m.)

Take a tour of the fresh, bold flavors of Mexico’s coastal cuisine with Rick Bayless, an award-winning chef, restaurateur, cookbook author and television personality. Rick has been honored multiple times by the James Beard Foundation and is a recognized expert in regional Mexican cuisine. He’ll share authentic Mexican seafood recipes, along with a blend of traditional and modern techniques honed over a lifetime of travels throughout Mexico. You’ll learn about his adventures and how to incorporate south-of-the-border flavors into simple seafood meals.

Alexandra Guarnaschelli: Retro Revival

Sat., May 19 (2:30-3:30 p.m.)

Join Alex as she puts a modern, sustainable spin on retro favorites, inspired by the menu of her trendy New York supper club The Darby. The star of The Food Network’s “Alex’s Day Off” and a regular judge on “Chopped,” Alex has worked at top restaurants in France, New York and Los Angeles and will bring her discerning palate and vivacious personality to this retro-cool party. Local chef Jerry Regester will join Alex to demonstrate classic culinary techniques, and you’ll hear anecdotes from Alex’s colorful restaurant and television career.

Food & Wine Adventures

Sat., May 19 (9:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m., times vary)

  • $225 general public/$175 Aquarium members
  • (Tax deductible: $140 general public/$90 Aquarium members)

Explore, savor and learn at one of six small-group events led by our celebrity chefs. Each takes you on a different exploration of sustainable foods: on the farm, in the water or in the kitchen. Whether you want to hone your culinary skills with a master chef, learn salty stories from a “seafoodie” or explore scenic vineyards in the Santa Lucia Highlands, our Food & Wine Adventures give you the opportunity to spend time with culinary leaders and gain firsthand knowledge from their expertise.  Depending on the adventure, you’ll join John Ash and Clayton Chapman, Sean Baker, Ben Sargent, Kevin Gillespie, Jesse Ziff Cool or Cindy Pawlcyn for a fascinating culinary exploration.

Tour 1: The Art of Food

Sat., May 19 (9:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.)

  • Sponsored by Estancia
  • Event begins and ends at the Aquarium. Transportation will be provided.

Join celebrity chefs John Ash (culinary educator and cookbook author, Santa Rosa, California), Clayton Chapman (The Grey Plume, Omaha, Nebraska) and Wendy Brodie (Art of Food, Carmel, California) at Wendy’s Carmel Highlands home. Guests will enhance their culinary skills and get a glimpse into the creative minds of each chef as the group prepares a gourmet lunch in a demonstration kitchen that affords sweeping views of forest and ocean. It’s a true opportunity to cook with the masters. You’ll enjoy the fruits of your labors together, along with premium wines by Estancia.

Tour 2: “Seafoodie” Adventure

Sat., May 19 (11 a.m.-3:30 p.m)

  • Sponsored by Carmel Road Winery and La Crema
  • Event begins and ends at Heritage Harbor, 99 Pacific Street, Suite 100A
  • Transportation not provided. Tour involves some walking.

Ben Sargent, host of The Cooking Channel’s “Hook, Line & Dinner,” takes curious pescetarians on a tour of one of Monterey‘s key industries. You’ll visit three commercial fishing vessels at the Monterey commercial wharf to learn about different gear types and hear salty stories of the fishing life. Then enjoy a spectacular bayside sustainable seafood lunch presented by Dory Ford (AQUA TERRA Culinary) and inspired by a few of Ben’s favorite recipes. Ivan Giotenov, winemaker at Carmel Road Winery, will discuss Monterey’s unique terroir as you sip Carmel Road and La Crema wines and take in views of Monterey Bay.

Tour 3: Napa-Inspired Al Fresco Lunch with Cindy Pawlcyn and Larry Turley

Sat., May 19 (11 a.m.-3:30 p.m)

  • Sponsored by Asilomar Conference Grounds and ARAMARK
  • Event at Asilomar Conference Grounds
  • Transportation not provided.

Join Chef Cindy Pawlcyn to savor the flavors of Napa Valley in a spectacular seaside setting. The founder/owner of three of Napa Valley’s most beloved restaurants (Mustards Grill, Cindy’s Backstreet Kitchen and Brassica Mediterranean Kitchen & Wine Bar), Cindy is celebrated for soulful cooking that’s deeply connected to the bounty of the land. Gather on the patio of the Scripps’s Lodge among the trees and dunes of Asilomar and enjoy an al fresco lunch inspired by Cindy’s favorite Napa-grown ingredients, prepared by Asilomar Chef Danny Abbruzzese. Cindy’s good friend Larry Turley, owner of Napa Valley’s much-honored Turley Wine Cellars, will join her to discuss their mutual passion for local, seasonal, wine-country cuisine and wines that reflect the unique character of the land. Mingle with Cindy, Larry and Danny, sip select Turley wines with your delectable lunch, and take in the spectacular setting and sea air—a perfect marriage of Napa flavors and Central Coast style.

Tour 4: Masters of Pork

Sat., May 19 (11 a.m-2:30 p.m.)

  • Sponsored by Pebble Beach Resorts
  • Event at The Lodge at Pebble Beach
  • Transportation not provided.

“Top Chef” star Kevin Gillespie (Woodfire Grill) is a self-professed super-fan of pork and a barbecue aficionado. Join Kevin and Jeremy Tummel, executive chef at Pebble Beach Resorts’ Stillwater Bar & Grill, for a lively culinary demonstration, showing how you can turn pork into delectable dishes to share with family and friends, drawing on the Southern traditions reflected so well in Kevin’s culinary creations.  You’ll meet Sarah Willis—daughter of Paul Willis, founding hog farmer and manager of the Niman Ranch Pork Company—who’ll share stories of growing up on the farm, and secrets for sourcing the finest, sustainably raised pork available. Start with a sparkling wine reception hosted by Scheid Vineyards, then Martha Barra of BARRA of Mendocino will pour her award-winning certified organic wines as you enjoy a succulent barbecue lunch prepared by Jeremy and take in views of Carmel Bay that only Pebble Beach can offer.

Tour 5: In the Santa Lucia Highlands

Sat., May 19 (9:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.)

  • Sponsored by SIP Certified and Hahn SLH Estate Winery
  • Event begins and ends at the Aquarium. Transportation provided.

Join chef Sean Baker of Gather, Berkeley’s hip farm-to-table restaurant, for an exploration of the scenic vineyards of the Santa Lucia Highlands in the Salinas Valley. You’ll board four-wheel ATVs at the vineyard house of Hahn Estates for a tour of the benchlands above the valley that produce some of Monterey County’s finest wine grapes. Along the way, Andy Mitchell, director of vineyard operations for Hahn Estates, will share insights about how climate, soils and sustainable farming practices contribute to Hahn’s award-winning wines. Back at the vineyard house, Sean will demonstrate cooking techniques that you can use at home. Then you’ll settle in for a memorable lunch prepared by Hahn’s executive chef, Brian Overhauser, accompanied by wines from the vineyards you visited.

California - Between Monterey And Big Sur - NA...

California – Between Monterey And Big Sur – NARA – 543403 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Tour 6: Big Sur Escape

Sat., May 19 (9:30 a.m.-3:30 p.m.)

  • Sponsored by Esalen Institute
  • Event begins and ends at the Aquarium. Transportation provided.
Big Sur

Big Sur (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Join celebrity chef Jesse Ziff Cool (Cool Eatz Restaurants & Catering/Flea Street Café) as you explore the grounds and rich organic gardens at world-renowned Esalen Institute in Big Sur. You’ll learn how Esalen nourishes extensive organic gardens that supply flowers and produce for the 27-acre human potential center. Tour the Esalen kitchen with Executive Chef Phillip Burrus and learn about other approaches the Institute takes to integrate gently with the landscape. Chef Jesse Cool will demonstrate her favorite ways to create delicious meals straight from the garden, while Jonathan Fabio of Paul Dolan Vineyards pours premium wines and talks about their organic and biodynamic practices. You’ll take in the peaceful surroundings and enjoy a gourmet picnic lunch prepared by the Esalen kitchen, served in the open air between the Esalen gardens and the sea.

Salon Series

Sat., May 19 (10 a.m-4 p.m., times vary)

  • $45 general public (per presentation)/$20 Aquarium members (per presentation)
  • Salon series One-Day Pass for all five presentations $80, Aquarium members only
  • Includes Aquarium admission
  • Aquarium Ocean View Conference Room

Join us for one, or more, of these intimate culinary experiences with chefs and artisans that will offer delicious insights into some of your favorite foods. Whether you want to learn how to cook seafood perfectly, become a chocolate-tasting expert or make your own bacon, the pros will share their tips, tricks and lively commentary in each hour-long, interactive program.

California Artisan Cheese

Sat., May 19 (10-11 a.m.)

California’s artisan cheesemakers are a diverse lot, making everything from creamy crescenza to pungent blues. Take a tasting tour of the Golden State with the California Artisan Cheese Guild and a featured local cheesemaker. You’ll enjoy a structured tasting of cheeses in a variety of styles, with flavors that range from mild to bold. Learn what it’s like to raise goats, sheep and cows, and what it takes to make some of the world’s best cheeses.

Monterey Bay

Monterey Bay (Photo credit: theo5664)

Bringing Home the Bacon

Sat., May 19 (11:15 a.m.-12:15 p.m.)

Salty, smoky and succulent, bacon has everything a food needs to be a culinary superstar. Join Tony Baker, executive chef at Monterey’s Montrio Bistro and owner of Baker’s Bacon, to learn the secrets behind making his distinctive English-style, artisanal bacon. Learn about Tony’s craft, sample his bacon and discover some new ways to cook with this celebrated ingredient.

Gold Rush: California Olive Oil

Sat., May 19 (12:30-1:30 p.m).

California’s olive oil industry is experiencing a renaissance. With more than 100 different cultivars grown in the state, the spectrum of flavors and styles is virtually limitless. Join Peggy O’Kelly of St. Helena Olive Oil Company to learn about her journey from a career as a San Francisco CPA to a producer of sustainable California olive oil in Napa Valley. You’ll discover the history of olives in California, sample a variety of oils with different flavor profiles and learn the nuanced secrets of pressing and extracting the state’s liquid gold.

Good Fish

Sat., May 19 (1:45-2:45 p.m.)

Whether you’re a seasoned Seafood Watch advocate, or just learning about sustainable seafood, everyone wants a new way to cook fish. Join chef Becky Selengut, author of Good Fish, as she shares how to choose and prepare her favorite environmentally friendly Pacific Coast seafood selections. An advocate for seasonal, regional cuisine, Becky will give you insights into creating simple weeknight meals, and special-occasion dishes using local ingredients and sustainable seafood. After the program Becky will sign her books.

The Future of Chocolate

Sat., May 19 (3-4 p.m.)

San Francisco-based chocolate company TCHO fuses Silicon Valley innovation with Slow Food soul to make what they dub “obsessively good, flavor-focused chocolate.” Like wine, well-made chocolate can have a broad spectrum of flavors and aromas. Join a TCHO chocolate expert to learn how their innovative approach is redefining the way chocolate is tasted. You’ll be guided through a simple tasting of distinct cocoa liquors and learn how the company conducts sensory mapping with farmers, using their web-based quality platform called “Cropster”—a true synthesis of technology and good taste.

Sustainable Seafood Challenge with Carla Hall, Ben Sargent and Featured Celebrity Chefs

Sat., May 19 (5-7 p.m.)

  • $150 Aquarium members only
  • (Tax deductible: $50)
  • Monterey Plaza Hotel & Spa

Four celebrated chefs race against the clock to create tasty and sustainable seafood dishes in this action-packed evening. Carla Hall, co-host of ABC’s “The Chew,” and Ben Sargent, host of Cooking Channel’s “Hook, Line & Dinner”, will offer lively commentary as challengers Nathan Lyon (PBS/Veria/author), Floyd Cardoz (“Top Chef”/North End Grill), Sam Talbot (“Top Chef”/author) and Susan Spicer (Bayona / MONDO) compete to take home honors in one of four fun categories. Mingle with Cooking for Solutions participating chefs and take in the spectacular bayside setting at the elegant Monterey Plaza Hotel & Spa. You’ll enjoy abundant hors d’oeuvres prepared by your host, Plaza Executive Chef James Waller, along with premium wines from Carmel Road Winery and La Crema as the contestants slice, dice, sizzle and chat their way to victory. Guest judges Rick Bayless, Sam Choy, Alexandra Guarnaschelli and Allen Susser will offer their expert observations and clever quips as the challenge heats up.

Sustainable Foods Celebration at the Monterey Bay Aquarium

Sat., May 19 (10 a.m.-6 p.m.)

  • Featuring Whole Foods Marketplace and Kids’ Zone and Clover Stornetta Fun & Learning Area
  • Included with Aquarium admission
  • Aquarium galleries and Great Tide Pool deck

Learn more about sustainable seafood, organic agriculture and earth-friendly winemaking at information booths as you stroll through the Aquarium galleries. Visit the Whole Foods Marketplace and Kids’ Zone to mingle and graze with local growers and food artisans, or attend informative “talk and taste” demonstrations with culinary experts on our oceanview deck. See cooking demonstrations by celebrity chefs Sam Choy, Nathan Lyon and Barton Seaver, chat with the Whole Foods Market Seafood Team to get tips on selecting and preparing seafood, or learn about local olive oil, produce, cheese, honey, ice cream and other delectables from around the region. Visit chef Hákon Már Örvarsson at his station and taste samples of Icelandic seafood. Meet celebrity bovine Clo the Cow at Clover Stornetta’s Fun & Learning area. Taste sustainable wine by La Crema and Carmel Road Winery from 3 to 6 p.m. each day. With chef book signings throughout both days, activities and crafts for kids, a photo booth and a spectacular waterfront setting, it’s an engaging way for all ages to learn more about the food we eat.

English: Interior shot of Monterey Bay Aquarium

English: Interior shot of Monterey Bay Aquarium (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Get your tickets ASAP at  http://www.montereybayaquarium.org/vi/vi_events/cooking/   Events are selling out fast!!

Dr. EveAnn Lovero writes Travel Guides @ www.vino-con-vista.com

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One response to “Cooking for Solutions Festival 2013 in Magnificent Monterey Bay

  1. Pingback: My Glorious Vino con Vista Weekend in Scenic Monterey California | Vino Con Vista Italy Travel Guides and Events

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