A few months ago I was invited to attend the Newport Mansions Wine and Food Festival as a blogger. When the invite came I was beyond excited! If you’re local to the Boston area you know how many great reviews this event gets and how many people love it. If you know me personally, you know that there are few things in life I love more than good food. Michael and I are always trying new restaurants wherever we are love to find that hidden gem! We excitedly accepted the invite and marked our calendars! Thanks to Michael for playing photographer!
Yesterday we headed down to Newport for the festival. We had tickets to the Grand Tasting at the Marble House Mansion and it was a gorgeous fall day. Things were off to a good start…
As we entered the mansion they gave us our swag bags and glasses to use throughout the day. Porsche was there with a few cars on display when you first walked in. It was kind of fun to look around and live in fantasy land for a minute. Once we made our way through the Porsche tent we entered the main tent, it was swarming with people, wine and food. We quickly realized that most of the food was on the perimeter and the wine was in the middle. Outside the main tent as you approached the water was a couple of craft beer companies including a bar featuring Stella Artois.
It was lunch time when we arrived so we promptly made our way to some of the delicious food and a glass of red wine. We started with a salmon dish served over a cauliflower puree, a seafood risotto with shrimp and veggies and a duck pot pie of sorts.
It all tasted so delicious. We also had smoked salmon with crème fraîche on a pancake, tasted cheese from all over Italy and sampled a high-end craft beer that tasted so smooth and delicious I’m not convinced it was beer. Then we wandered outside to the Stella Artois bar where I tried their new Cidre and took in the gorgeous ocean views. I was really excited to try the Cidre as I’d seen it advertised quite a bit and I’ve always liked ciders. I’m happy to report, it was delicious and I’ll be buying some to enjoy this fall!
We wandered around for awhile trying different wines and tasting the different foods. Bin 27 was there with a really interesting combination…their port wine and chocolate chip cookies. I’m not one for port but I have to say this combination was absolutely delicious and all I could think of was cozying up on a cold winter night with a fire, warm chocolate chip cookies and port wine to dunk them in!
In the middle of the tent they had a Jenn-Air kitchen featuring all of their top of the lines stoves, refrigerators, microwaves, espresso machines and more. Michael and I spent some time wandering around and checking everything out. I thoroughly enjoyed planning my fantasy kitchen!
Around mid-afternoon we took a break from the wine and food to watch Johnny Iuzzini take over the Jenn-Air Master Stage. Johnny is the author of Dessert Fourplay: Sweet Quartets From A Four-Star Pastry Chef and owner of Sugar Fueled Inc. He talked about the different types of chocolate, the various ways to prepare them and how to combine them with savory ingredients. In his demo he combined chocolate with black olives. Crazy right? Johnny had a great personality and was really fun and entertaining to watch. Plus they gave us boxes of Guittard chocolate so we can make our own chocolate creations at home!
After the demo we were able to try the dessert and the subtle olive taste combined with the chocolate, was really nice and an interesting twist!
After watching Johnny we headed out to check out the other half of the tent. We filled our glasses with champagne and made our way through the food. Matunuck Oyster Bar was there shucking fresh oysters, we had mussels, and I tasted an amazing goat cheese ice cream that paired wonderfully with red wine.
Perhaps my most favorite food of the entire event was a Duck Duck Goose Dumpling.
Now I’m not usually one for duck but it seemed to be the food of the day yesterday and I think I tried more duck than I have in my entire life. This dumpling was unreal, right down to the sauce. I swear I could have eaten 10 of them.
The other highlight of the day food wise was this twist on proscuitto melon salad. The salad was tossed with a homemade honey melon dressing and then wrapped with proscuitto. It tasted so good and was a fun way serve this salad.
We continued making our way through more vendors and trying more wine and food and more duck! Seriously, how pretty do these look?
By late afternoon the temperature had warmed up and we’d had our fill of food and wine but we hadn’t tried tequila popsicles! Michael and I shared one of these strawberry margarita popsicles under the warm sun and it was surprisingly good!
We had so much fun spending a gorgeous afternoon at the festival. It was exciting to try new foods and wines in a beautiful setting and we even learned a few new things too! As we made our way out of the festival we felt full and happy…the only thing that could have made the afternoon better was a nap!