Winemaker dinners benefit Wellness Kitchen

TEMPLETON The Wellness Kitchen (TWK) and Resource Center’s big annual event is the Top Chef Competition and Fundraiser. Local chefs from San Luis Obispo county go “head-to-head” in a timed competition similar to the popular Food Network TV show “Chopped.” While there remains only one Top Chef Competition in the Fall of 2019, three different wineries will host a showcase dinner throughout the year featuring a guest chef of their choice who will create a menu paired with the host winery’s selection. Each dinner will still meet the dietary standards of The Wellness Kitchen by being dairy-free and gluten-free, organic, seasonal, and as llocally sourced as much as possible.

“At previous Top Chef events, our guests told us they wished to taste the food made by each chef,” says Executive Director Gina Grieb. “Not only can they do this at each showcase, but also during dinner at our end-of-year fundraiser, The Top Chef Competition.”

Feb. 20 marked the first of these Winemaker Dinners hosted by J Dusi Wines and their competing chef, Michele Gargani of Tin Canteen Restaurant. Tickets sold out in less than 24 hours for this Winemaker’s Dinner to benefit TWK.

May 4 is the next showcase hosted by Cypher Winery featuring Chef Kurt Metzger of Thomas Hill Organics. Tickets will be available through the Cypher Winery website.

Chef Andre Averseng of Paso Terra has been chosen for the third Showcase — date to be determined — hosted by Peachy Canyon Winery.

“Each chef’s meal is not only judged for deliciousness,” says Grieb, “but also how well it pairs with the respective wine(s).”

The annual Top Chef Competition and Fundraiser will serve food from each of the respective restaurants, paired with wine from their host winery, while guests watch each chef go head to head in this one of a kind food and wine pairing exhibit. Stay informed on Showcase and Top Chef Competition details with TWK newsletter and respective Winery websites.

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