Our last and final days in Charleston were packed with adventure, education and some delicious southern delights.
We went “Back to School” at the Culinary Center for the Top Sommelier wine and food pairing session. The lecture hall was packed full of people, wine glasses, bottles of water to cleanse your palate, and the anticipation of what was to come. Four of the top Sommeliers in Charleston gathered to share their knowledge of food, wine and hurl insults at each other over some of the finest wines around.
They brought us in gently with several white wines; some creamy and smooth while others were crisp, fruity and dry. The chef, who had a very difficult task ahead of him, paired these whites against an open faced bahn mi sandwich with spicy meat and pickled vegetables.
After the introduction was over our wine guides ramped things up with some bold and aggressive reds from distant corners and local hills. While each explained his reasoning behind his wine choice his peers would hurl playful insults and colorful jabs. These people not only loved their wines, they wanted to teach all of us in that room just a little bit more. The chef paired these reds with a beautiful pork mole on a crispy and slightly sweet arepa.
But enough wine, time for a taste of what Charleston is famous for; Oysters!!! At the Pluff mud oyster feast we donned our protective gloves, selected our weapon of choice (a small wood handled oyster knife), and dove right into never ending piles of hot and steamy oysters. Not content to be labeled a one trick event, chefs from all around Charleston were present showcasing their take on classic oyster pairings and fare. A beautiful spring day, some great local beer, and some sweet southern blue grass echoing off the concrete floor of the barn and into our souls, what more could anyone ask?
\Charleston has a natural beauty all its own. The history, the cuisine, and the people all exude pride in what they (and their ancestors have built). Each old cobblestone tells a story, and no matter where you are, you could find someone to tell you that story over some great drinks and fantastic food. Till next time Charleston!