Inside The Third Annual New Jersey Food and Wine Festival

by Melody Kettle in , , ,

Francesco Palmieri, The Orange Squirrel 

Last night, over 1050 people attended the  Grand Tasting at the New Jersey Food and Wine Festival. 

Some of the finest chefs from New Jersey and New York were in attendance serving up creative fare, while chatting it up with guests, sipping wines and sampling each others dishes.

The playful, artistic, extraordinarily talented chef, and oh-so-cool, owner of The Orange Squirrel, Francesco Palmieri, riffed on a NJ favorite, creating a shooter of Bufala Mozzarella with Marinara foam. 

James Laird, of Serenade served over 800 plates of supremely executed Veal Carpaccio with Potato Gnocchi. 

The always beautiful Ariane Duarte of CulinAriane, offered appetizing Crab Cakes with a Jalapeno Sauce that added just the right balance of heat and flavor.  There was an outstanding Grilled Octopus Carpaccio from Chef Stephen Lewandowski of Tribeca Grill, and emersion circulated smoked Salmon with caviar from Pluckemin Inn.

Did I mention the acrobats above the raw bar?  Let it suffice to say that suggestive positions were not off the menu.  It must have been the oysters. . . .

How about the wine?  In addition to Hall, Hess and Bodega Norton, New Jersey winery, Hawks Haven, poured Quill, a very nice Bordeaux blend,  (cab, cab franc, merlot) that retails at $35.  Cava Winery, a local favorite, was also in attendance. 

Desserts were created by such acclaimed restaurants as Montclair's Blu, and Copeland in Morristown.

Missed the event? Visit the photo gallery to take a peek inside the Crystal Springs Resort, and stay tuned for the video.