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A large, happy crowd swarmed through the Savannah Rapids Pavilion in Columbia County Saturday, enjoying more than 200 wines, international beer, delicious food from local restaurants and caterers and live jazz. It was one of the liveliest and possibly the biggest CoCo Culinary and Wine Festival, now in its 7th year.

“It looks like we sold more than 300 tickets,” said festival organizer Pat Goodwin. “We had a lot of interest online and sold tickets as far away as Kentucky and Stone Mountain.

“The word is really getting out that this is the place to be. This year we had so many culinary people approaching us, saying they wanted to be a part of this. I think it is a lot of fun for everyone.”

Pat was happy to announce later that they were able to contribute $2,500 to the Augusta Technical College Culinary Arts Endowment Fund. This brings the total contributed to ATC from the CoCo Wine Festival and other fundraisers to $6,500 since 2010. The fund has to reach $10,000 before scholarships can be awarded so this year’s contribution is a significant move in that direction.

In between trying wines there were some great nibbles to sample. Chef Jai West of Casa Blanca, Chef Heinz of LaMaison, Chef Charleen Tinley of Culinary Connections and Chef Rose of Bu-ca were on hand to hand out freshly made samples of their work. We can’t leave out Mellow Mushroom who served up more than just delicious pizzas. And of course a salute to the students from the Augusta Tech Culinary program who prepared some very impressive appetizers.

Everyone looked like they were having fun, whether they were sipping the award-winning wines, munching mouth-watering food, or serving.

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Where: Savannah Rapids Pavilion 3300 Evans to Lock Rd. Martinez, Ga. located east of Augusta, GA.

When: Saturday, October 13, 2012, 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.
Cost: $35.00 per person if purchased in advance. The ticket price will be $40.00 at the door.

 

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The crew from United Distributing had six wines win medals this year.

 

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[quote] Which is the best wine I’ve tried? Gosh, I don’t know where to start. –One of the tasters [/quote]

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[quote] $2,500 was contributed to the Augusta Technical College Culinary Arts Endowment Fund [/quote]

 

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Charleen Tinley, of Culinary Connections, serving a Mulled Muscadine Wine Sorbet. It was a great palate cleanser.

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