Last year's inaugural Flavor! Napa Valley event drew some 3,000 people, star chef power, and a hefty dose of drama to the Valley during a typically slow time of the year. Now that summer is underway, festival founder Michael Chiarello and friends have already lined up a steller showing of chefs for this year's festival, to be held from November 14 to 18. No Richard Blais this time around, but Thomas Keller and Christopher Kostow will be doing demos, and Cindy Pawlcyn, Morimoto, Scott Conant, Geoffrey Zakarian, Johnny Iuzzini, and Charlie Palmer have all confirmed they'll be participating. Considering tickets will be going on sale tomorrow morning at 10 a.m. sharp, now is your chance to get acquainted with the event's best sellers, so you can swoop in and beat the masses. Here now, a rundown of the tickets that are sure to go the quickest, and how many of each are being sold.
· The Welcome Dinner set at Sliverado Resort honors Larry Forgione, who was recently appointed culinary director of the Conservatory for American Food Studies at the CIA, Greystone. Given Chiarello, Palmer, Iuzzini and Forgione's sons will be preparing various courses, this should be one of the long weekend's hottest tickets. Roughly 200 will be sold for $295.
· Thomas Keller and Christopher Kostow, The Napa Valley's two chefs with three-Michelin stars under their belts, will both be hosting hour-long demonstrations for $100. Tickets can be had here for Keller and here for Kostow. Enough said.
· Based on last year's experience, the Dinner with Napa Valley Winemakers should go quickly at its price of $150. A different Napa Valley winemaker hosts each table, and capacity is about 200.
· Iron Chef vets Michael Chiarello and Geoffrey Zakarian will indulge the public with a "Food Fight" battle to see who can make the best dish from a basket of local Napa Valley products. 125 tickets will go for $100 a pop.
· At $3500 per ticket, The Legends of Napa Valley tasting hosted by The Tasting Panel's esteemed Anthony Dias Blue is one of the most expensive events of the weekend. Over the course of two mornings, fewer than 35 tasters will sip through the history of Napa Valley wines from leading post-Prohibition vintages to stars from the present day. The full array of wines to be popped is listed on the website, here. Given the exclusivity of the tastings, this one should be hot.
· On the flip side, Flavor!'s largest event, the Appellation Trail Tasting, was also one of its most popular last year. 400 tasters will pay $150 for a stroll through the array of wines the Valley has to offer, set up in the CIA at Greystone's historic main building. Over 24 Napa restaurants will provide bites at stations throughout.
Check out highlights from last year's event on the Flavor! NV Flickr photostream.
· All Flavor Napa Valley Coverage [~ ESF ~]