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June 24, 2010 by Gregory Coin
Wilmington Tourism Examiner
For many, “taste” is the most enjoyable of all of the senses. And Delaware has a full schedule of world-class tasting opportunities throughout the year. Most of the annual events are scheduled on a specific day or weekend of the month year after year to help traveling tasters plan ahead. But be sure to confirm the dates for each tasting venue in advance just in case there is a change in schedule. Here are some fantastic opportunities to savor the flavors in all three of Delaware's counties, New Castle, Kent and Sussex, in calendar order!
Meals for the Masters - 3rd Weekend in April
What could be more appropriate than kicking of the tasting season with a “Celebrity Chefs’ Brunch” on the 3rd Sunday in April to benefit Meals on Wheels Delaware. The Brunch is a huge and scrumptious event held at Bank of America Headquarters at 11th and King Streets. Chefs from all over the country gather in Wilmington to prepare extraordinary dishes, and the silent auction that accompanies the culinary masterworks is the biggest and best I ever seen.
But “Meals for the Masters” has blossomed into a year-round tasting extravaganza. “An Evening with the Masters” and “Cellar Masters’ Wine Auction” are scheduled on the Friday evening before the Brunch. Other events include a Celebrity Chefs’ Beach Bruch in Dewey Beach in October and Denim & Diamonds in September in Dover, Delaware. And if all that tasting isn’t enough to entice you to the First State, there are privately-hosted Wine Dinners throughout the year. Contact Meals on Wheels Delaware for information on all these unique events!
Taste of Coastal Delaware – 1st Saturday in June
ResortQuest hosts the “Taste of Coastal Delaware” at the Marketplace at Sea Colony in Bethany Beach from 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm on the first Saturday in June. Visitors are invited to sample the best local flavors “under the big top,” at Sea Colony with live entertainment. Sea Colony can accommodate hundreds of vacationers in its modern, oceanfront condominiums, so plan to stay a while!
Woodside Farm Creamery National Ice Cream Day - 3rd Sunday in July
Woodside Farm ice cream is a Brandywine Valley treasure, and the Creamery’s summer Bluegrass Jams have transformed the dairy into a destination for ice cream aficionados as well as music lovers on Saturday afternoons. Tours of the farm, live entertainment and games for the kids are all offered free of charge. And to celebrate National Ice Cream Day on July 18, there is an Ice Cream Eating Contest at 3:30pm (entry fee required).
Best of Delaware - 4th Thursday in July
Delaware Today magazine’s “Best of Delaware” parties are legendary. Each year the magazine solicits help from its readers to select “The Best” businesses and attractions in Delaware over the past year. Each business then shows off its products and services at the “Best of Delaware Party,” which will be held Dover Downs Resort & Casino in Kent County this year, on July 22. It’s a savory sensation, because restaurants, eateries and taverns are selected in a host of different categories. And, the party includes great music, lots of give-away items, and a silent auction. The cost ranges from $50 to $75 and it’s worth twice the price! Even better – net proceeds from the event are allocated to Delaware charities and nonprofit organizations.
The Farmer and The Chef – 3rd Thursday in September
The “Farmer and The Chef” party at the Chase Center on Riverfront on Thursday, September 16 will pair local farm products with local chefs who will prepare tasty treats for all attendees. There is also a silent auction, and all proceeds from the event benefit the March of Dimes. The celebration runs from 5:30 to 8:30 pm and tickets are $40 in advance/$50 at the door.
Taste of Dover – 2nd Saturday in October
The tasting season concludes on the second Saturday in October with a “Taste of Dover” from 6:00 to 8:30 pm. The event is sponsored by the Dover Art League and is held at the Art League's Galleries at 21 West Lockerman Street. Tickets are just $35 and are available by phone at (302) 674-0402 or at the Art League Galleries.
TravelTip: The lower Delaware Valley is also home to two unique heritage beverage trails – the Brandywine Wine Trail and the Delaware Wine and Ale Trail. Be sure to check out their websites for special events and programs when you plan your “search and savor” excursion.
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