29th Annual Hilton Head Island Wine Food Festival

A large part of the southern hospitality that Atlanta residents are known for stems from being as polite as possible to your neighbors. That means supporting neighboring cities and states when they have an event that is likely to be attended by several Atlantans. Said event happens to be the 29 th Annual Hilton Head Island Wine & Food Festival held in Hilton Head Island, South Carolina, March 10-15. If you pride yourself on being a connoisseur regarding all things wine and food-related, this is one festival that you don't want to miss, even if it is just a short distance outside the city limits. Get all the delectable details about this festival, and how you can attend, below!

The Hilton Head Island Wine & Food Festival began 28 years ago as part of an island wide promotion to bring visitors and stimulate the island's food and beverage industry in the early spring shoulder season. At that time, Hilton Head Island was mostly known as a summer beach and golf destination. A group of fun-loving wine enthusiasts along with some great island culinary talents started the tradition of the annual Wine & Food Festival serving as the herald of spring. It was a coming out party of sorts, for residents and visitors alike who wanted to shake off winter. And with the help of many hands, the festival grew. From its origin as a one-day three-hour tasting, the festival has now blossomed into a full week of events: wine dinners, author receptions, movie screenings, wine knowledge sessions, a grand tasting and the public tasting. The signature event, the original Public Tasting, is the largest outdoor tented public wine tasting on the East Coast! One of the unique characteristics of the Hilton Head Wine & Food Festival is the festival's cornerstone: the International Wine Competition. Earlier this year, Certified Wine Educators and Advance Sommeliers spend 3 days judging over 850 different wines.

Gold and silver medals are awarded and those wines are featured throughout the festival events along with other vintner's choices. Wines are judged in various categories and at all price levels. The Festival is an event produced by the non-profit corporation Hilton Head Wine & Food, Inc. The proceeds from the festival's wine auction at the Grand and Public Tastings support the John & Valerie Curry Educational Scholarship Fund for college students pursuing degrees in the hospitality & tourism field. Scholarships are currently offered at the University of South Carolina Beaufort and the Technical College of the Lowcountry. A schedule of the Wine & Food Festival events is below: Wine & Cinema Festival Kickoff Event March 10 To benefit the John & Valerie Curry Scholarship Fund Custom Audio Video in Sheridan Park, Bluffton 6:00pm - 9:00pm *Private screening of SOMM the Documentary with hors d'oeuvres catered by Redfish and award winning wines.

Menu: Charred naan flatbread with local shrimp, mozzarella, fresh arugula and tomato jam Marinated skirt steak satay with cabernet-port reduction Asian pork meatball with wasabi cream and soy reduction Charred zucchini rolls with Boursin, goat cheese and wild flower honey spread Red Fish pimento cheese crusting House made mini whoopee pies Triple chocolate macadamia nut bark Mini carrot cupcakes with cream cheese frosting Great Chefs of the Island Wine Dinners March 11-15 A series of dinners at some of the Island's most outstanding restaurants where great wines and local chefs are partnered for a wide variety of scrumptious menu pairings. Wine Knowledge Sessions March 13-14 Sonesta Resort Hilton Head Island For those looking to learn more about tasting, pairing and choosing the right wines for any occasion. These sessions will provide wine lovers a fun and affordable opportunity to taste and learn about new wines. Grand Tasting March 14 Sea Pines Country Club 5:30 - 7:30pm Offers an opportunity to learn about and taste premium wines in an intimate setting. Hors d'oeuvres served in reception style.