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On the Menu: Annual Food & Wine Festival set for Aug. 3-5

 

NATCHEZ — Delicious offerings fill the menu for this year’s Natchez Food & Wine Festival.

Always a favorite summer event, this year’s festival on Aug 3-5 features a little something for everyone, festival organizer René Adams said.

“We have some wonderful chefs coming from Louisiana, Tennessee and Mississippi for this year’s festival,” Adams said.

Tastings on the River kicks off this year’s event with tasty dishes served up by some of the region’s best chefs.

Martha Foose from the Viking Cooking School in Greenwood, Mitch MCarney from the Neon Pig in Tupelo, Richard Sutton from the St. James Cheese Company in New Orleans are among the list of guest chefs who will be sharing their unique culinary style.

International Blues finalist Chris Gill and the Sole Shakers will provide their unique brand of soul, funk, blues and jazz for the evening’s entertainment.

In the past 10 years, Mae and Friends Lemonade Stand has been set up at the Natchez Convention Center on the first day of the festival to help raise money for the local animal shelter. This year, the lemonade stand will not be a part of the festival weekend.

In addition to this year’s Tastings on the River, Adams said local chef Esther Carpenter will join Florida chef Adam Ozga to provide a unique five-course meal at her house The Elms. Carpenter and Ozga will offer a second seating on Saturday evening.

The meal which will feature mango gazpacho aspic, salmon roulade and beef short rib bourguignon begins at 7 p.m. both nights with cocktails and hors-d’oeuvres.

Dunleith will also offer a seated dinner at 7 p.m. Saturday, which will be prepared by guest chefs from Tupelo, Memphis, New Orleans and Baton Rouge. The menu includes beef short ribs with chanterelle mushrooms, seared scallops over roasted corn and blackberry pie with cardamom caramel ice cream.

Adams said the dinners offered at The Elms and Dunleith would be very popular. Tickets are $125 per person at both locations.

“These tickets will go very fast,” Adams said.

Adams said two other exciting events — a paranormal tour at The Towers and a progressive lunch at three Natchez Bed and Breakfasts — have been added to this year’s festival schedule.

On Friday and Saturday night, The Towers will be hosting a paranormal Champagne and dessert tour. The tour will include accounts of ghostly appearances that have occurred at the house along with glasses of Champagne and dessert at the end of the tour. Saturday night’s event has been sold out, Adams said. Tickets for Friday’s event which begins at 8 p.m. are $60 each.

Back by popular demand, the Natchez Food & Wine Festival is partnering with the Natchez Bed and Breakfast Association to host a progressive luncheon. Magnolia Cottage, Garden Song and The Guest House will host the luncheon, which will include appetizers, lasagna with wilted spinach salad and assorted cheesecakes and cookies.

“It is a wonderful way for people to see some of Natchez’s best Bed and Breakfasts,” Adams said.

Luncheon tours are from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday. Tickets are $60 each.

Other weekend events include brews, blues and burgers from 4 to 6 p.m. Saturday at Bowie’s Tavern on Broadway Street and a Sunday jazz brunch from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Rolling River Bistro on Main Street.

Go to http://www.natchezfoodandwinefest.com/ for more information and tickets.

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