Finger licking food, free-flowing wine and beer, Jill’s Cashbox rocking the dance floor, it was a magical evening to say the very least! Cows ‘n Cabs (“CNC”), a charity-based culinary festival curated by ABC Fine Wine & Spirits’ David Larue and celebrated chef-owner John Rivers of 4 Rivers Smokehouse out did themselves with the 3rd annual Cows n Cabs held October 26th, 2013.
Cows n Cabs was created in 2010 with hope of helping break the cycle of poverty in Central Florida, 100 percent of ticket sale proceeds and auction items will benefit the Community Food & Outreach Center and Elevate Orlando, which assists with fighting hunger and mentoring at-risk youth, respectively.
In addition to a selection of gourmet samples presented by 20 specialty chefs, including some of my favorite local celebrity chefs, more than 200 wines, spirits, and craft beer samplings, and Drew Estates signature collection of cigars was on display. It was an evening filled with love and pride.
The evening commenced with your choice of beer, wine, spirits, and champagne. With Mr. Francis Moutard in the house, it was bound to be a sparkling event.
The event is about Cows and Cabernet, yet he showstopper of the evening had to be the Big Pig Picking by the gracious Chef John Rivers of 4 Rivers Smokehouse Restaurant. Succulent and finger licking good two hundred pound whole roast pig, pulled fresh, served on a bun with your choice of BBQ sauce and cole slaw. Did I mention 4 Rivers is my to go BBQ spot in town?
Chef Steve Saelg proudly showcased his brand new full service restaurant The Crooked Spoon Gastropub. His dish – Short Ribs, Ropa Vieja, Plantain Mash was melting in your mouth, finger licking good….Yeah! I went in for seconds.
Chef Kevin Fonzo of K Restaurant as usual tantalized my palate with Braised Beef Cheek, Burnt Onion Puree, and Pickled Celery Salad.
I finally had the opportunity to taste the decadent chocolate and bacon delights by Peterbrooke Chocolates.
Cask and Larder displayed a bold presentation of Steak Tartar and Fried Oysters and then some….
Salud to ABC Fine Wine & Spirits for keeping my glass full of Cabernet the entire evening. The line-up was impressive; William Hill Cabernet in particular swirled in my glass all night.
Chef Jamie McFadden of Cuisiniers won me over, yet again, with Chorizo Ragout, Lake Meadow Quail Eggs, House Biscuit.(I had recently tasted his wonderful short ribs at Chef Kevin’s Edible Schoolyard fundraiser).
Chef Hari from Cress, Chef Todd English’s Blue Zoo, Taverna Opa, Christner’s Steak, Hamilton Kitchen, Cocina 214, Puff n Stuff, Mitchell’s Fish Co, and Frenchy’s shared their deletable treats with us.
I could continue rambling over the copious amounts of delicious and daring dishes and varied selection of fine wines and craft beers I got to experience. That said, a picture is worth a thousand words so please check out the entire evening via my lenses in the below video.
This was a wonderful opportunity to taste and experience the finest, CFL has to offer in the culinary arena. Delicious samples beautifully and meticulously presented by some of the most exceptional and talented chefs in town, free-flowing wide range of craft beers and wine; all in all a great way to spend your Saturday night.
I for one would personally like to thank each and every member on and behind the scenes to make this event such a success!! Especially Rockaway PR, Marketing, & Special Events for handling this spectacular event.
The patrons fortunate enough to attend this event, do pay the restaurants a visit at their individual locations to enjoy the entire experience of what these phenomenal Chefs do best. For the rest of us, below are the addresses for some of the mentioned restaurants. Stop by at your leisure, you just might be blown away with the level of excellence and passion Central Florida has to offer in the culinary world. I for one can’t wait until next year…..