“Fish to Fork” Event Benefits the James Beard Foundation

Plus other news and notes from the world of wine, beer and spirits.



Pool overview at the Omni Amelia Island Plantation

On May 15–17, Florida’s Omni Amelia Island Plantation hosted its inaugural “Fish to Fork” culinary weekend in collaboration with the James Beard Foundation. The event featured cocktails, farm-to-table dinners and a beach bonfire, culminating in a competition featuring six renowned chefs from around the country. Jackson Family Fine Wines, Bacardi USA and Amelia Angler Outfitters sponsored the event, which benefits the James Beard Foundation scholarship program.

The Beer Institute, a trade association representing beer brewers, suppliers and importers, appointed James A. McGreevy III to the post of President/CEO, which had been vacant since December. McGreevy will officially assume the role on June 23. McGreevy joins the Beer Institute from the American Beverage Association (ABA), where he was senior vice president of government affairs.

The Society of Wine Educators announced a new agreement with the Pearson VUE testing centers, giving certification candidates the ability to schedule the CSS and CSW exams at any Pearson VUE center in the world. Under the partnership, the SWE will increase its current offering of approximately 100 test dates in the US, Toronto and Hong Kong to Pearson’s network of testing centers (which number more than 5,100 centers in 175 countries). The exams can be scheduled on demand, also allowing candidates to receive their exam results immediately upon completion.

Drizly, the iOS and Android app powering local alcohol delivery, announced its expansion into Chicago. The Windy City now joins Manhattan, Brooklyn and Boston as major metropolitan areas currently serviced by Drizly. Since launching in March, the fast-growing app has raised $2.3 million from investors.

Last week, the Santa Cruz Mountains Winegrowers Association (SCMWA) announced the launch of the Silicon Valley Wine Auction. An alliance of more than 65 wineries promoting wines sourced from the Santa Cruz Mountains AVA, SCMWA will produce the auction in early November of 2015. The proposed three-day event will include a Grand Cruz Auction, tastings, a weekend Passport program and a Grand Pro Tasting conducted by wine industry professionals. The Silicon Valley Wine Auction's 2015 honorary chair is Dave House of House Family Vineyards; other committee members include Sheri Sobrato-Brisson (The Sobrato Organization), Kristi Markkula-Bowers (Kings Mountain Winery) and Lisa Rohorer (Centenove and Cin Cin Winebar.)

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