By Kennedy McJunkin
The 22nd Annual Corks & Chefs food-tasting event will take place over the weekend of April 27-28, from 12:30 p.m. to 3 p.m. each day at Linn Park.
Corks & Chefs, held in concert with the Magic City Art Connection Festival, will showcase more than 15 local restaurants, four cocktail bars and numerous local wineries and breweries, all of which are offering opportunities for special tastings.
Event Director Alex Kunzman, MCAC festival co-director and director of marketing, has been involved with Corks & Chefs since the first event in 1998, but he has stepped into the more active role for the past three years.
“The tasting has evolved so much since those early days when six area restaurants were featured,” he said.
Corks & Chefs was the first food and wine event of its kind in Birmingham, which Kunzman said is quickly becoming the next hot food city.
MCAC representatives wanted to elevate the culinary arts along with the visual arts during the art festival.
“The festival started exploring an opportunity to integrate a tasting event at MCAC that would spotlight talented Birmingham chefs alongside delectable wines and more,” Kunzman said.
Not only does Corks & Chefs highlight Birmingham’s culinary world, the festival also helps raise money for the Arts Educational Program, serving more than 1,000 school kids and families at Imagination Festival.
New this year, VIP tickets can be purchased for those wanting access to the newly designed Center Room. The experience includes a cocktail seminar by the 2018 US Bartender of the Year, Laura Newman, owner of the new downtown cocktail bar Queens Park. Chef Ben Vaughn of Root to Tail is creating a tasting face-off with his Pot Stirring Radio show co-host Chase Bennett, and Old Forester is showcasing a Taste Through History of its whiskey bourbons.
“We look forward to continuing to spotlight the booming taste landscape in the city and wrap it all up into an award-winning, downtown contemporary arts festival,” Kunzman said.
General admission and VIP tickets may be purchased at corksandchefs.instagift.com.
Corks & Chefs Line Up
Saturday: Brick & Tin, Carrigan’s Public House, Eli’s Jerusalem Cafe, Habitat Feed & Social, Nabeel’s Cafe & Market, Ocean, Roots & Revelry and Tropicaleo.
Sunday: Arrington at Pursell Farms, Chez Lulu-Continental Bakery, East West, Root to Tail, The Rougaroux, The Essential and The Southern Kitchen & Bar.
Cocktail Bars: Paper Doll, The Atomic Bar & Lounge, The Collins Bar and Queens Park.