Thursday, May 22, the festively epicurean gathered for the Royal Street Stroll, an event of the 2008 New Orleans Wine and Food Experience. A party at the Hotel Monteleone kicked off the night’s revelry. After, spectators enjoyed a parade of members of the Krewe of Cork, including 2008 Grand Marshall Kix Brooks, of Brooks & Dunn, paraded in libation-themed costumes and krewe members delighted onlookers, throwing beads and cork trinkets to waiting hands.
The 2008 NOWFE was successfully managed by Executive Committee members including 2008 President Howard Brown of Wines Unlimited, 2007 President Mark Needham of the Law Offices of Mark Needham, Vice President Greg Reggio of Zea Rotisserie Grill and Semolina, Treasurer Octavio Mantilla of Besh Restaurant Group, and Secretary Beth Sacco of Republic National Distributing Company.
2008 NOWFE Sponsors sponsors included: The Glenlivet, Kleenex Viva, Rouse’s Supermarkets, Mumm Napa, Wine Enthusiast, Cox Media, nola.com, The Times Picayune, Louisiana Rebirth (Lt. Governor Mitch Landrieu, Dept. of Culture, Recreation and Tourism), Nestle Waters, Barefoot Wine, Loews New Orleans Hotel, The Ritz-Carlton New Orleans, Hotel Monteleone and the Omni Royal Orleans.
This year, roughly 1,600 revelers participated in the Royal Street Stroll.
A study by the Hospitality Research Center at the University of New Orleans estimates the total economic impact from the NOWFE 2008 was $6.8 million, with an additional (approximately) half-million dollars in tax revenue.
Tim McNally, Margarita Bergen and 2007 Board President Mark Needham
Jeff Hinson and Mary Letter
Cheryl Mintz and Brett Bauman
Lara Yarrusso and Barbara Keezell
Crew of Cork members Gail Cavett and Sherry Sanborn