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Artful Dining

“Carnivale du Vin” paired fine wines with delectable dining to benefit children’s charities.

Emeril and Alden Lagasse

Melissa Calico

The theme of this year’s “Carnivale du Vin,” “Experience The Art of Food,” came full circle this year. The still life painting by Amy Weiskopf, which hangs in Emeril’s Delmonico and features the original Delmonico cookbook, hung on display as part of the ballroom decor amidst mixed metallics, florals and a food cornucopia. And as could be expected, the wine and cuisine menus were carefully curated productions.

The night opened with a reception featuring champagne from G.H. Mumm, as well as a Bacchus Reception with cuisine served by guest chefs, including Danny Bowien, Sarah Grueneberg and Frank Stitt. These selections were paired with wines from Far Niente Winery.

This year, the “Carnivale du Vin” dinner menu was created by the NOCCA students, who worked with chef Chris Wilson and sommelier Ray Gumpert to learn the art of pairing food and wine. The students assisted Emeril’s Chefs de Cuisine in executing the meal, which featured five courses paired with wines from Vintners Kistler Vineyards, David Arthur Vineyards, Martinellis Winery & Vineyards, Arista Winery and Crocker & Starr Winery. Chef Jacuqes Torres prepared desert to complete the elegant dining experience.

Sunny Anderson, co-host on Food Network’s “The Kitchen,” served as Master of Ceremonies. Trombone Shorty highlighted the musical entertainment for the evening. The live and silent auctions, run by auctioneer Dawn Marie Kotsonis, raised a combined $1.5 million in support of children’s beneficiaries. The top live auction lot was for front row tickets to Billy Joel.

More than 600 guests attended “Carnivale du Vin,” which is a “Top Ten U.S. Charity Wine Auction” as ranked by Wine Spectator Magazine.


What: ““Carnivale du Vin,” benefiting Emeril Lagasse Foundation
When: Saturday, November 5, 2016
Where: Hyatt Regency New Orleans


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