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Culinaria Kicks Off with a Crowd at La Cantera

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Volunteers Mary and Charles Butler serve wine and snacks at Culinaria's Sip, Savor & Shop.

Culinaria got under way with a bang Wednesday as more than 1,000 people crowded into one end of the Shops at La Cantera for an evening of fun, fashion, food and wine.

The third Sip, Savor & Shop, set up in the area of The Yard House and Z Tejas, filled up quickly. The weather cooperated by not dumping (much-needed) rain on the event, the models on pedestals showed off new fashions, and nearby stores offered some great discounts.

Wines from throughout the world offered a little something for everyone. Napa Valley Cabernet Sauvignons, Texas treats from Becker Vineyards and other wineries, Spanish Riojas, Argentine Malbecs and Italian Prosecco were among the wealth of wines poured. Mumm Brut Ros√© offered a little bubbly fizz, while Trinchero’s single vineyard Merlot offered robust red fruit. For sweet wine lovers, several moscatos proved popular while the Terra¬† d’Oro Zinfandel Port earned a host of fans.

Fashion stands above the throng at Culinaria's Sip, Savor and Shop.

Plenty of treats were passed out, including shrimp and guacamole nachos, chicken and arugula salad tartlets, chicken nuggets, cheeses, fruit and cracker trays, mini beef kebabs, cannoli and more from restaurants ranging from Pasha Mediterranean to Z’Tejas and Chick-fil-A.

Chicken and arugula salad tartlets

The solid response to Wednesday’s opening was good news to Culinaria’s executive director Suzanne Taranto. Many other events during this year’s festival, which runs through Sunday, are already sold out. Tickets are gone for the Black Tie dinner, the Grand Tasting below the Convention Center, the luncheon at Becker Vineyards and even the 5K run on Saturday morning.

Tickets are still available for Friday’s Best of Mexico tasting at La Villita and Sunday’s Burgers, BBQ, Beer and Texas Spirits. For more information, click here.

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2 Responses to “Culinaria Kicks Off with a Crowd at La Cantera”

  1. ron says:

    i was kind of disappointed with this one. the red wine was served *way* too warm in most cases – still very warm outside at opening. food selection limited. music on the loud side. we ended up eating at ztejas.

    • John Griffin says:

      Red wine should not be served at room temperature, but at cellar temperature, so the reds should have been chilled somewhat in the evening heat. A few tables did, but not enough.