Williamsburg Taste Festival Celebrates Culinary Traditions

The Williamsburg Taste Festival returns for its third year to celebrate our nation’s most famed food traditions. The four day event will take place at several Williamsburg establishments from Thursday, April 19 to Sunday, April 22.

Williamsburg is home to many culinary firsts, including the brewing of America’s first beer, establishing the state’s first cultivated vineyard and introducing trending farm-to-table cuisine. The April event will showcase the progression of our nation’s culinary roots through the handcrafted beverages and from-scratch dishes prepared by the region’s most talented chefs, brew masters and vintners.

The weekend-long food celebration kicks off Thursday evening with a two-hour preview of the delicious food and drinks that will be served over the next three days. While the kickoff is exclusive to All Festival Pass holders, tickets for other festival events may be purchased individually.

Following the kickoff is the festival’s first Out and About celebration, during which guests are invited to dine with local celebrity chefs at various Williamsburg eateries. Thursday night’s Out and About will feature authentic Spanish cuisine prepared by Chef Ika Zaken at La Tienda, a five-course meal and wine pairing at Williamsburg Winery’s Café Provencal, a worldwide culinary tour crafted by Colonial Williamsburg’s own, The Hound’s Tale and three-part walking food tour at the Yorktown River Crawl, including stops at Umi Sushi, Water Street Grille and Carrot Tree Kitchen.

From 5:30 to 9:30 p.m. on Friday, the Williamsburg Community Building will host a family-friendly Street Beats celebration, serenading guests with live music and dishing out regionally crafted cuisine from local food trucks. Chef Hans Schadler of Waypoint Seafood & Grill headlines Friday evening’s Out and About tour with his incorporation of Chesapeake Bay tastes into the grill’s modern American cuisine.

The heart of the Taste experience will take place from 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday at the festival’s Culinary Village. Hosted in the Williamsburg Community Building, attendees may sample dishes from regional vendors and Virginia-made libations from local brewers and winemakers. Chefs will also exhibit their gastronomic expertise during the Culinary Village’s cooking demonstrations.

Dovetailing the Culinary Village will be a number of adult education tracks in the form of lectures and hands-on culinary demonstrations. Lectures will be hosted in the Williamsburg Stryker Center and cooking classes will be held in the Williamsburg Community Building.

Out and About will return for its third and final night showcasing Riverwalk Restaurant’s Dock to Dish Dinner, a Masters of Taste Sommelier Wine Pairing Dinner at Williamsburg Winery, Billsburg Brewery’s food truck rodeo and an exclusive dining experience at the city’s newest drinking establishment, Amber Ox Public House. Night owls may also enjoy a Bourbon and Cigars event from 9 to 11 p.m. at the Williamsburg Stryker Center.

The Williamsburg Taste Festival’s closing ceremonies include an extensive brunch at the Culinary Village at 11 a.m. and panel discussion led by five local brewmasters at Beer U.

For the full Taste Festival schedule and detailed ticket information, visit the event website.

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Grace Silipigni
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Grace Silipigni is an elementary school Spanish immersion teacher based in Virginia Beach and a regular contributor to Coastal Virginia Magazine, covering a wide range of topics such as health and wellness, education and learning, food and drink, happenings and events, travel and getaways and more.

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