I promise, this is the last time that I’m going to whine about the fact that I’ve been so busy. But on that note, I’ve been so busy that I haven’t even gotten around to sharing with you an experience that I had at the end of October at Destination Kohler in Kohler, Wisconsin! I’ve talked about Kohler and The American Club in the past, but their fall Food & Wine Experience is probably one of my favorite times to visit the area.
The Kohler Food & Wine Experience is a four-day filled adventure filled with food, wine, top name chefs and a whole lot of fun. I had the chance to attend 4 different classes while I was there, ranging from the wines of Tuscany to a delicious demonstration for holiday entertaining. Here’s a little recap of what I learned:
The Art of Risotto – Dan Bonanno, Executive Chef & Owner at A Pig in a Fur Coat (Madison, WI)
Risotto is probably one of my favorite meals, side dishes and things to make. If you’ve ever had a good risotto you would most likely agree with me here. I was pleased to find that Dan Bonanno is actually from my home town of Kenosha! He decided to head to Madison to start his own restaurant. For the class he made a Wild Mushroom Truffle Risotto. I wasn’t totally on board with the idea of the mushrooms but was certainly excited when I learned that there would be truffles involved. Much to my surprise, I actually enjoyed the entire dish.
I did learn a few new things about making risotto. Make sure you always toast the rice with olive oil to start out the dish. 1/4 cup of rice is enough for 2 people. You can never have too much wine when you’re deglazing the pan of rice. Just make sure that all of the wine absorbs prior to adding in your chicken stock or water.
Want the recipe for this? Shoot me an email and I’d be happy to share!
The Flavor of Tuscany – Emanuele Graetz, BiBi Graetz
I love to do wine tastings so I was excited to attend this session. Emanuele had just flown in from Florence to chat about his Sangiovese wines. Based in Florence, Italy, this winery offers small batches of some really amazing wines. One of my favorites was the Soffocone di Vincigliata, something that is very difficult to fine here in the US. I was lucky enough to score a few bottles while in Kohler.
Spaghetti – A Family Favorite with a Delicious Twist – Scott Conant
If you’ve ever watched Chopped then you’re familiar with Scott Conant. He’s a little abrasive at times but he makes a mean dish of spaghetti. We’re not really talking red sauce and meatballs here. We’re talking about something a little more unique featuring octopus, white wine and a hint of red pepper. While I’m not a huge fan of octopus, I did take a few bites to take in the flavor that he created.
Some of the things that I took away from this session was to make sure that you always choose a high quality spaghetti. And you always want to finish cooking your pasta in the sauce. Just before the pasta is finished, pull it out of the water and mix it in with your sauce to soak up all of the flavors and complete the meal.
Hosting Beautifully for the Holidays – Grant MacPherson
I wasn’t completely familiar with this chef but the idea of holiday hosting really brought me in to the class. What I learned was that Chef MacPherson really knows his stuff! He brought some different recipes to the class including a twist on chicken and waffles and a little sturgeon. I stayed away from the fish but my husband found it delicious!
Following all of the fun I was able to enjoy dinner at the beautiful Wisconsin Room, which features farm-fresh meals and some of the best steak that I have ever had! No, seriously, it was like eating butter it was so tender. If you’re ever in Kohler I suggest a visit to The Wisconsin Room. Make sure to order the Wisconsin Cheese & Charcuterie, the Filet Mignon and top it all off with their very unique cheesecake.
Next Year’s Kohler Food & Wine Experience: You can “Savor the Date” for the 16th annual Kohler Food & Wine Experience all set for October 20-23, 2016. To keep up-to-date on events, special offers and more you could sign up for the resort e-newsletter.
If you don’t want to wait for next year here are some other fun events coming up at Destination Kohler:
â¢ Five-Star Dine Around, Dec. 10, 2015
â¢ Kellie Pickler Concert, Dec. 12
â¢ New Year’s Eve, Dec. 31
â¢ Wisconsin Food Favorites, Jan. 29-31, 2016
â¢ In Celebration of Chocolate, Feb. 19-21, 2016
â¢ Kohler Festival of Beer, May 6-7
Special thanks to Destination Kohler for inviting me to the event!