SUGAR LAND (Covering Fort Bend News) – As the saying goes, “It’s always bigger and better in Texas,” and the 16th annual Sugar Land Wine & Food Affair has taken that motto to heart. Celebrating the region’s rich diversity of food, drink and culture, this year’s event promises new attractions and is moving to the fall. The very popular culinary bacchanal will take place at multiple venues in Sugar Land over four days, October 24-27. Taking the spotlight will be mixologists, world-class wine tastings, and top culinary talents from Sugar Land, Houston and beyond. The event, founded by the Fort Bend Chamber of Commerce, benefits a permanent scholarship endowment created at the University of Houston Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management.
With all events taking place in Fort Bend County, one of the most ethnically diverse counties in America, the Sugar Land Wine & Food Affair focuses on the many stories and recipes of the region’s melting pot of Asian, African, Latino, European and Southwestern flavors. This year the event will continue to partner with leading culinary talent that reflects the diversity of the locale and will showcase the area’s reputation for pushing the envelope on regional cuisine influenced by global tastes, ingredients and traditions.
Moving the event from spring to fall allows attendees to take advantage of the season’s cool, crisp days and nights. The opening night’s event, Bartenders Challenge, will take place within Sugar Land Town Square, and that same vibrant urban backdrop will also serve as the location for Sunday’s final event, the family-friendly Bistro Brunch.
A highlight of the four-day event will be Friday night’s Masquerade which promises an evening of pre-Halloween festivities. Masked event-goers will stroll the Brazos River Park grounds. Wine and spirit producers, top chefs and DJs will compliment the party atmosphere. A perennial favorite, Saturday’s Sip & Stroll is back and will feature a deliciously curated schedule of wine seminars, daytime cocktails and indulgent bites.
This year’s event will also feature a number of 2018 International Wine & Spirit Competition winners. Setting the international benchmark for quality, the International Wine & Spirit Competition has been judging wines and spirits and awarding medals to the world’s best products since 1969. Now in its fiftieth year, and with more than 400 global experts judging the awards for seven months of the year, the competition remains as relevant today as when chemist Anton Massel created the idea of a wine and spirit competition based both on organoleptic judgment and chemical analysis.
To kickoff this year’s Sugar Land Wine & Food Affair festivities, there will be a cocktail reception and a seated four-course dinner with wine pairings. The event, hosted by Rebecca Masson of Fluff Bake Bar and Charlie Berg, Sommelier at The Inn at Dos Brisas, will take place on Thursday, June 27 at a private Sugar Land residence. Other chefs participating in the dinner include Ryan Lachaine of Riel, Terry Wong, Robin Wong and Quy Hoang of Blood Bros. BBQ and, lastly, Ming Pu of 502 Bistro & Bar in Louisville KY. For tickets to the 2019 kickoff event, click here.
FESTIVAL WEEKEND EVENTS
Thursday, Oct. 24
Bartenders Challenge – Sugar Land Town Square 5 p.m. – 8 p.m.
Wine Dinner Private Home – Sugar Land 7 p.m. – 10 p.m.
Friday, Oct. 25
Masquerade – Brazos River Park 7 p.m. – 10 p.m.
Saturday, Oct. 26
Sip & Stroll – Brazos River Park 2 p.m. – 5 p.m.
Sunday, Oct. 27
Bistro Brunch – Sugar Land Town Square 11:30 a.m. – 2:30 a.m.
Tickets for the 2019 event go on sale June 27 and will be available to purchase here.
Sugar Land Wine & Food Affair, founded in 2003 by the Fort Bend Chamber of Commerce , was designed to create a cultural food and beverage experience while showcasing the growing City of Sugar Land. Since inception, the annual spring event has been produced by the FBCC and has benefitted a permanent scholarship endowment at the University of Houston Conrad N. Hilton College of Hotel and Restaurant Management.