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Food & Drink

Wine & Food Week Concludes Awarding $5,000 to Wooster’s Garden

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THE WOODLANDS, TX – The 15th anniversary celebration of Wine & Food Week concluded in the Woodlands with a $5,000 check presentation and final closing ceremony capping off an extraordinary week of culinary and wine making achievement. More than 10,000 foodie friends, celebrity chefs and wine makers from across the U.S. raised a glass in honor of this annual food fete. All total, the week featured 50 accomplished chefs, 92 restaurants, 928 wines, numerous educational seminars, and various culinary events ranging from taco takedowns to the HEB Wine Walk to the elegant Ladies of the Vine Luncheon panel and culminating in the elegant Wine Rendezvous Grand Tasting & Chef Showcase.




The Wine Rendezvous Grand Tasting & Chef Showcase was the ultimate adult evening out where guests sampled dishes like Peli Peli’s South African Surf & Turf; Eunice’s refreshing watermelon gazpacho with crab; and Tlahuac HTX’s beef cheek huarache, oval masa cake layered with clay pot black beans, beef cheek barbacoa and Mexican herb salad, as well as hundreds of wines as chefs representing more than 60 restaurants competed for the national Chef of Chefs Award judged by an esteemed chef and food media panel. The fabulous evening ended on a sweet note with a decadent selection of desserts extraordinaire in the Celebrity Cruises Life is Suite Zone.

Wooster’s Garden took top honors for a braised beef short rib with fermented cauliflower and fresh shaved summer black truffles claiming the coveted Chef of Chefs award and a $5,000 cash prize along with the Waterford Crystal Trophy presented by GOYA Foods. In second place was Carlos Ramos, with Latin Bites for a ceviche mussel. And, in third, was Nick’s Fish Dive & Oyster Bar for a miso-marinated sablefish, daikon radish noodles, grilled Shiitake mushrooms with a wasabi ginger beurre blanc sauce.

An elated Brandon Silva accepts his $5,000 prize from Clifton and Constance McDerby along with GOYA Foods representatives Tony Unanue, Chef Fernando Desa and Tommy Unanue.

“This 15th anniversary celebration was a chance for us to reunite with so many talented people who’ve impacted the world of wine and food in big ways while recognizing the fresh faces making their mark as well,” said Wine & Food Week founder Constance McDerby. “We hope that guests at Wine & Food Week 2019 enjoyed all the glorious sips and tastes as much as we enjoyed reuniting with the many people who’ve helped this event grow to the magnitude that it has over a decade and a half.”

Mixing, mingling and munching in the crowd were a who’s who of food and wine superstars, including: Master of Wine Tim Hanni and founder, Master Sommelier, Guy Stout; Wine Enthusiast Wine Maker of the Year, Michael David Winery—Michael David; Oregon Wine Person of the Year—Biodynamic Vintner Rudy Marchesi, Montinore Estates; former and longest tenured White House Chef, John Moeller; Erwin Husken, Owner and Executive Chef of Screaming Eagle; and Chef and Owner Urvin Croess of The Kitchen Table by White ranked as TripAdvisor #1 Caribbean fine dining traveler’s choice.




From Houston, rising BBQ stars Chef Ara Malekian and Wade Elkins both recently featured in the best new BBQ joints in Texas Monthly, plus fresh faces like Alex Au-Yeung, Chef/Owner of Phat Eatery; Wade Elkins, Pitmaster/Partner, Reveille Barbecue Co.; Drake Leonards, Executive Chef, Eunice; Omar Pereney, Chef, A La Carte; Tim Welch, Chef de Cuisine, Emmer & Rye; Brandon Silva, Culinary Director, Wooster’s Garden; Vanquelis Pablopulos, Chef, The Petroleum Club; Nicolas Vera, Chef and Owner, Tlahuac HTX; Olivier Ciesielski Chef, Avondale Food & Wine; Ben McPherson, Chef and Owner, BOH Pasta and Pizza; Manuel Pucha, Chef and Owner, Maison Pucha; and Ernesto Villarreal, Executive Chef, Thistle Draft Shop.

Wine & Food Week supports charitable organizations such as New Danville, The Woodlands Waterway Arts Council, Montgomery County Food Bank, and The John Cooper School Signature Series just to name a few. Food & Vine Time Productions has raised well over one and a half million dollars through various channels for local charities over the years.

Make plans to attend Wine & Food Week 2020 June 1-7, 2020. For more information, visit

Wine & Food Week, produced by Food & Vine Time Productions, is the first multi-day, multi-faceted, comprehensive destination culinary and wine event in the Houston Metro area. Owners Clifton and Constance McDerby are dedicated to showcasing the culinary talent in the Houston metro area while welcoming great chefs from across the globe who share their passion for flavors. They also are committed to extending their love of wine by featuring the flavors of the wine makers, growers, and producers who bring a time-honored tradition of the flavors of the vine.

Food & Vine Time Productions created another first with the state’s first multi-day craft beer destination and educational event featuring over 300 craft beer selections. Brewmasters Craft Beer Festival, now celebrating a decade of craft beer experiences, has been named #3 Beer Event in America by USA Today and #1 in Houston by Houstonia Magazine. Food & Vine Time Productions offerings include Wine Fair Cy-Fair, Zest in the West, Katy Sip N Stroll, BrewMasters Craft Beer Festival, Houston Chronicle Culinary Stars, Tomball’s Freight Train Food Truck Fest and a myriad of private events for various clients. Since its inception in 2002, Food & Vine Time Productions has assisted in raising well over one and a half million dollars for local charities through live and silent auctions and cash donations.