Chefs often describe the pairing of fare and wine as the height of culinary potential, yielding even more unexpected pleasures than eating sashimi while riding down a slip ‘n’ slide. Slide down gourmet pathways with today’s Groupon deal: for $75, you get two general-admission tickets to Savor’s Tampa Bay Food & Wine Experience at Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park in Tampa on Saturday, October 1, from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. (a $150 value). All tastings and samples are included in the admission. Guests may pick up their tickets at will-call beginning at 11 a.m.
The penultimate verse of Savor’s five-day ode to gourmet cuisine and wine, Saturday’s The Grande Experience gives the general public a privileged peek behind the kitchen doors of its renowned vintners, spirit producers, and local chefs. As they wander around a 40,000-square-foot tent specially designed to lock in the aromas of sizzling meats and freshly popped champagnes, couples can table-hop via pogo stick between restaurant exhibits or simmer in the sauces of edification at a tasting-village seminar. With more than 400 wine varieties, a beer garden in full bloom, and a bevy of homegrown restaurateurs passing around samples, guests will have little space remaining on their plates and in their jewel-studded goblets.
When the showcases are over and pockets are stuffed to their brims with samples, the emerald meadows and riverfront breezes of Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park make for a pleasant evening stroll. Though the sun may set on satisfied taste buds, the Food & Wine Experience will continue to exert its influence on Florida’s local flavor; proceeds from the event benefit culinary and hospitality scholarship programs throughout the Sunshine State.